The home improvement chain said on Tuesday that comparable sales rose an astounding 6.6% in the United States in its most recent quarter, propelling the company to its highest quarterly revenue ever.
The Home Depot has been benefiting from rising home values and people's desire to invest in their houses. But the company has also stacked the deck in its own favor but beefing up its own e-commerce and providing advice and resources for big projects for the do-it-yourself crowd, which has made its stores more than just places to pick up sheetrock and air conditioners.
The strong second quarter results, helped in part by spring weather conducive to big home projects, prompted Home Depot to raise its outlook for fiscal 2017 for the second time, and it now projects comparable sales will increase 5.5%. (Company wide, comparable sales rose 6.3% at Home Depot, which also operates stores internationally.)
In the quarter, Home Depot's profit came to $2.25 a share, compared to a Wall Street profit forecast of $2.22 per share. Overall revenue was $28.11 billion, also besting analyst projections for $27.84 billion.
Home Depot has been spared the carnage hitting other areas of retail—notably department stores and specialty apparel—because of its wise decision last decade not to open stores on a big scale and focus instead on getting more out of each store. During the quarter, the number of customer transactions—a proxy for shopper traffic—rose 2.8%, suggesting why sales per square foot were up 5.9% from a year earlier.
The company was helped by more spending on big ticket items, including appliances, an area where one-time leader Sears Holdings has been practically donating market share.
In June, U.S. consumers signed more contracts to buy homes and in the spring, home prices reached a fresh high for the sixth consecutive month.