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Walmart Posts Disappointing 2Q

So does its UK subsidiary, Asda

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Walmart Stores Inc. (Bentonville, Ark.), the world’s larges retailer and a touchstone for the ebbs and flows of the industry, has announced a 0.3 percent decline in same-store sales for its Walmart U.S. units in the second quarter.

Wall Street analysts were expecting a 1 percent gain.

Net sales rose 2.4 percent and quarterly profits rose 1.3 percent, both considered disappointing figures.

The retailer blamed the disappointing results on higher payroll taxes and gas prices.

At the same time, Asda Stores Ltd. (Leeds, U.K.), Walmart’s British subsidiary, said its sales growth had slowed in the second quarter amid restrained shopper spending.

Same-store sales increased just 0.7 percent as the country’s second-largest grocery chain struggles to maintain its share of the market against German discounters Aldi Einkauf GmbH & Compagnie, oHGs (Essen, Germany) and Lidl Stiftung & Co. KG (Neckarsulm, Germany) and more upscale British competitors such as Waitrose Ltd. (Bracknell, U.K.) and J Sainsbury Plc. (London).

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Aldi’s share of U.K. grocery spending slipped to 17 percent in the 12 weeks ended July 7 from 17.3 percent a year earlier.

Aldi, Lidl and Waitrose now have a combined 11.5 percent of the U.K. grocery market, 3.2 percentage points more than four years ago.

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