What to Expect When Target Reports Wednesday Morning

Target Corp. (NYSE: TGT) is scheduled to release its fiscal first-quarter financial results before the markets open on Wednesday. The consensus estimates call for $0.68 in earnings per share (EPS) and $19.0 billion in revenue. The same period of last year reportedly had $1.53 in EPS and $17.63 billion in revenue.

In late April, the company provided preliminary data for its fiscal first quarter, after it withdrew its first-quarter guidance on March 25.

The company said that February comparable store sales were up 3.8% year over year, powered by late February traffic and sales in both its stores and digital channels as Americans stocked up on goods to see them through the coming COVID-19 lockdowns.

Traffic and sales at Target rose even more strongly beginning about the middle of March. In March, comparable store sales increased in the low double digits, reflecting mid-single-digit growth in stores and more than 100% growth in Target’s e-commerce channels. March sales jumped by 40% in both the essentials and food and beverage categories and by 20% in hardlines. Sales were down in the low single digits in the home category and by more than 30% in apparel and accessories.

Strong sales picked up even more after mid-April, with comparable-store sales up by 5% for the first three weeks, store sales dropping by mid-teen percentages and digital sales jumping by more than 275%.

Excluding Tuesday’s move, Target stock had outperformed the S&P 500 and Dow Jones industrial average with a 2% loss year to date. In the past 52 weeks, the stock was up closer to 77%.

A few analysts weighed in on Target ahead of the report:

  • BofA Securities has a Buy rating with a $145 target price.
  • Morgan Stanley rates it as Equal Weight with a $105 target.
  • Deutsche Bank has a Buy rating and a $121 price target.
  • Nomura’s Buy rating comes with a $121 target price.
  • BMO Capital Markets has an Outperform rating and a $125 target.

Target stock traded down nearly 1% on Tuesday, at $123.66 in a 52-week range of $70.71 to $130.24. The consensus price target is $121.76.