US home improvement retailer The Home Depot has announced a 7% decrease in net earnings for the first quarter (Q1) of the fiscal year 2024 (FY 2024), reporting $3.60bn compared to $3.87bn in Q1 FY 2023. 

The retailer’s earnings per diluted share (EPS) for the quarter stood at $3.63, a decrease of 5% from $3.82 in Q1 FY 2023.  

During the quarter ending 28 April 2024, The Home Depot experienced a 2.3% decline in sales to $36.41bn, down from $37.25bn in the corresponding quarter of the previous year. 

The retailer posted a decrease in comparable sales by 2.8%, with US comparable sales down by 3.2%.  

Its gross profit for the quarter was $12.43bn, a 1% decrease from $12.55bn in Q1 FY 2023. 

Operating income for The Home Depot fell by 8.5% to $5.07bn in Q1 FY 2024, compared to $5.55bn in Q1 FY 2023.

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Despite the downturn, the company maintains its fiscal 2024 guidance, expecting total sales growth of around 1%, including the impact of the 53rd week.  

It expects comparable sales to decline by 1% for the standard 52-week period. 

The company anticipates a 1% growth in 53-week diluted EPS and plans to open around 12 new stores during 2024.

It operated a total of 2,337 retail stores as of Q1 FY 2024. 

The Home Depot chair, president and CEO Ted Decker said: “The team executed at a high level in the quarter, and we continued to grow market share. 

“And while the quarter was impacted by a delayed start to spring and continued softness in certain larger discretionary projects, we feel great about our store readiness, our product assortment in stores and online, and our associate engagement.  

“Our associates are energised and ready to serve our customers as spring breaks across the country. I would like to thank them for their continued hard work and dedication to serving our customers and communities.”