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A customer is seen in the parking lot of the Target store at the Paxton Towne Centre near Harrisburg.
Paul Weaver | Lightrocket | Getty Images

Target will report fiscal first-quarter earnings before the bell as pricier groceries, rising mortgage rates and summer vacations weigh on wallets.

The discounter gave a conservative outlook in February, saying comparable sales could range from a decline of 1% to a gain of 1% for the full fiscal year. Its earnings outlook fell below investors’ expectations. Target also warned its margin rate won’t return to pre-pandemic levels until next fiscal year or later.

On Tuesday, Home Depot’s quarterly results sent a troubling signal as retail earnings season gained steam. The home improvement retailer, which missed on revenue and lowered its forecast, could be a warning sign about Target’s quarterly results, too.

Here’s what Wall Street is expecting for Target’s quarter, according to Refinitiv estimates:

  • Earnings per share: $1.76
  • Revenue: $25.29 billion

Target faces tough comparisons following years of significant sales growth during the pandemic. Its annual revenue grew by about $31 billion — or nearly 40% — from fiscal 2019 to 2022. It served as a one-stop shop for customers who wanted to limit store visits or avoid stores altogether with curbside pickup.

Now, the tide has turned. Target missed earnings expectations for three consecutive quarters before eking past its own lowered forecast in the holiday quarter.

The company had to correct course after ordering too much of the wrong inventory. It’s now struggling with weaker sales as shoppers look for value and don’t toss as many fun items into the cart.

Compared with rival Walmart, Target is more vulnerable because it gets only 21% of its annual sales from groceries.

Shares of Target closed Tuesday at $156.98, down about 30% from its 52-week high of $221.65. The company’s market value is $72.42 billion.

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