'This Stock Is A 9.5!' Says Analyst


Which stock does Citigroup’s Deborah Weinswig think is nearly a perfect 10?

We won't keep you in suspense. It's Wal-Mart! Here's why.


On Tuesday, Wal-Mart posted a profit that beat Wall Street forecasts and said it expects to outperform rivals as a global downturn forces shoppers to seek low prices.

Wal-Mart's sales have been outpacing direct competitors like Target and Costco as well as lower-priced department stores like J.C. Penney in recent months as consumers stretch limited budgets by shopping in its stores for necessities like food and medicine.

"Our performance relative to competitors was exceptionally strong in the fourth quarter and throughout the year," Chief Executive Mike Duke said in a statement. "We expect this momentum to continue."

The retailer pegged some of that strength on the fact that families are eating at home more often, sparking demand for groceries as well as items used for home cooking and entertaining.

"The business model that Sam Walton created is perfectly positioned for the environment we live in now," Duke said, referring to the company's founder. "I do believe this is Wal-Mart's time."

That may be, but is it the stock’s time? For insights we asked the #1 Wal-Mart analyst as rated by Institutional Investor magazine; Citigroup’s Deborah Weinswig.

As you might have guessed from the headline, Weinswig is very bullish on the stock. “It’s been one of my top picks for 2009.” And she concurs that Sam Walton created the ideal store for this environment.

“Wal-Mart with their buying power is able to offer better value and they’ve increased their spending on advertising so more people are hearing about their low prices,” she says.

What’s the bottom line? “On a scale of 1-10, I’d give them a 9.5, she says.

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For Weinswig:

Citi Has Acted As Manager or Co-Manager Of An Offering Of Securities Of (WMT)
Citi received compensation from (WMT)
Citi Has Had (WMT) As A Client In The Past 12 Months

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