Walmart (WMT) is an economic bellwether, right?
Some say so, but there are other companies soon to report earnings investors need to eye, as they get their gauge on where the U.S. economy is.
Walmart beat estimates on earnings, but missed on revenue Thursday, sending the stock up 1.23% on the day.
But with tariffs in the picture now, and likely more so in the next few weeks, Walmart could see rising costs, which could result in the company raising prices. But that may not hurt demand very much, as Walmart is more of a consumer-staples shop than a discretionary one. It is also already a low-priced player in many of its product segments, as Jeff Marks, Jim Cramer's Action Alerts Plus portfolio analyst noted Thursday morning. Some share of shoppers could move to a player like Dollar General (DG) over Walmart, but the impact isn't necessarily likely to be large. Dollar General reports earnings May 30, which could provide more clarity on competition in food staples.
As investors look for clues for the direction of consumer spending, there's one highly economically sensitive company reporting earnings very soon:
Nordstrom (JWN) reports earnings May 21. Nordstrom is at the high end of retail clothing spend, and during economic downturns, which many say is looming, shoppers move toward lower-priced to off-priced retailers like Kohl's (KSS) , Ross Stores (ROST) and Five Below (FIVE) , if household spending grinds to a near halt.
Nvidia (NVDA) reported earnings Thursday, and its gaming and data center businesses are largely economically sensitive. Those segments combine for 75% of its revenue.
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