ATLANTA - The Home Depot reported sales of $18.2 billion for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2012, up 13.9 percent over fiscal 2011, with Hurricane Sandy rebuilding contributing to the rise. Net earnings were $1 billion, up from $774 million the year prior.
"We ended the year with a strong performance as our business benefited from a continued recovery in the housing market coupled with sales related to repairs in the areas impacted by Hurricane Sandy," said Frank Blake, CEO. Home Depot plans a $17 billion stock buyback.
Part of the jump for the world's largest home improvement retailer is explained by an extra week in its fiscal year, which added $1.2 billion to sales. (Lowe's had the opposite situation in its earnings report yesterday.) Comparable store sales increased 7 percent.
Home 2,256 stores in all 50 states, in 10 Canadian provinces and in Mexico, and employs 300,000.
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