Earnings

Whole Foods Down As Lower Prices Don’t Sway Shoppers

If Whole Foods has really drastically cut prices, consumers don’t seem to be buying it.

At least, that was the message on Thursday (July 28) as shares of the upscale and health-styled grocer fell more than 9 percent on a disappointing quarterly earnings report.

It was Whole Foods’ fourth straight quarter of same-store sales decline, according to Reuters.

Whole Foods' stock dropped more than 9 percent a share, or more than $3 per share, to close at $30.61 a share on Thursday.

Whole Foods' reported earnings of $0.37 per share on revenue of $3.70 billion in the quarter, compared to analysts’ estimates of $0.37 per share on revenue of $3.73 billion, according to TheStreet.

Whole Foods' stock price has dropped 18 percent in the past year but still trades at 21.69 times forward earnings, which is still above the grocery industry median of 18.84 times earnings, according to Reuters.

After controversy over how it set its prices last year, Whole Foods has been trying to rebrand itself as a more affordable, yet still healthy option for consumers, but those efforts do not appear to be bearing fruit quite yet.

Whole Foods has begun to open several new “365” stores that will be smaller and cheaper to run than the typical Whole Foods Market and carry more affordable products. Whole Foods has already opened the first two 365 stores in Silver Lake, California, and Lake Oswego, Oregon, with a third location planned to open in Bellevue, Washington, on Sept. 14.

There are 13 more 365 stores listed as opening in 2017.

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