Lowe’s big sales growth lags Home Depot

Lowe’s posted a huge sales gain Wednesday but not big enough to match that of archrival Home Depot.

The home improvement retailer’s quarterly same-store sales jumped nearly 26% as customers used their stimulus checks, keeping demand for home improvement products resilient. Still, that was less than Home Depot’s 31% increase. The results signaled that Lowe’s was slipping further behind.

It had outpaced Home Depot last year amid the health crisis when its core base of do-it-yourself customers bought tools, paint and building materials to work on their homes. Home Depot, by comparison, gets a bigger chunk of its revenue from high spending builders and handymen. But now, as business restrictions ease, those professionals facing project backlogs returned to Home Depot.

Lowe’s total sales grew 24% in the latest quarter, but it foresees that falling 4% in fiscal 2021.

Lowe’s shares fell in early trading Wednesday, cutting into their 65% gain over the last year.

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