Why Lowe's Companies (LOW) Is Higher on Wednesday

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Lowe's Companies (LOW) is gaining on Wednesday after posting healthy profits in its fourth quarter and announcing an additional buyback allowance.

Shares added 6.5% to $51.23 by early afternoon.

Lowe's, the second-largest U.S. home improvement retailer after Home Depot (HD), reported a 5.6% gain in quarterly sales to $11.66 billion and an 11.5% increase in net income to 29 cents a share.

Comparable-store sales jumped 3.9% over the three months to December.

"When extreme winter weather arrived late in the quarter, our distribution network responded quickly and efficiently to move product where it was most needed," said CEO Robert Niblock in a statement.

Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters had forecast net income of 31 cents a share on $11.67 billion in revenue.

The Moorseville, N.C.-based business said it expects revenue to increase 5% over the fiscal year, assuming total sales of around $56.07 billion. Per-share earnings are expected at around $2.60, four cents higher than analyst consensus.

The board also authorized the repurchase of an additional $5 billion in common stock. The remaining $1.3 billion balance will continue to be utilized.

Also See: Home Depot Reports Better-Than-Expected Q4

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TheStreet Ratings team rates LOWE'S COMPANIES INC as a Buy with a ratings score of A-. The team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate LOWE'S COMPANIES INC (LOW) a BUY. This is based on the convergence of positive investment measures, which should help this stock outperform the majority of stocks that we rate. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, impressive record of earnings per share growth, increase in net income, notable return on equity and increase in stock price during the past year. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow."

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