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Grainger Raises 2018 Sales, Adj. Earnings Guidance - Quick Facts

Grainger (GWW) announced, for 2018, the company now expects sales growth of 5.5 to 8.5 percent and adjusted earnings per share of $15.05 to $16.05. The company's previous 2018 guidance was sales growth of 5 to 8 percent and earnings per share of $14.30 to $15.30.

Second-quarter adjusted earnings per share was $4.37, up 59% versus $2.74 in the 2017 second quarter. The company said the improvement in earnings was driven mostly by higher sales, operating expense leverage, a lower tax rate and a lower share count. Sales were $2.9 billion increased 9.4% versus $2.6 billion in the second quarter of 2017. The company said the increased sales were driven by a 9 percentage point increase from volume and 1 percentage point from foreign exchange, partially offset by a 1 percentage point decline from the divestiture of a specialty business.

"The second quarter exceeded our expectations, with strong growth from U.S. large and medium customers, gross profit that was better than anticipated and meaningful operating expense leverage. We continue to gain share across both large and medium customers and acquire medium customers amid a strong economy. In Canada, we are on schedule with the business turnaround. And the single channel and international businesses also improved operating performance," said DG Macpherson, CEO.

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