NEW YORK (Reuters) – The biggest retailer in New York State is in a frenzy to sell more furniture and other goods in the face of a $2 billion dollar slump in its U.S. retail business.
Walmart said on Wednesday that it expects sales of mattresses, bedding, clothes and other products to drop to $1.1 billion in fiscal 2017, down from $1,929 million last year.
It said the slump will hurt the retailer’s bottom line by more than $300 million.
Its biggest competitor, Lowe’s, reported a fourth-quarter profit of $5.9 billion, down 13 percent from a year earlier.
It also announced a $600 million investment in a new factory.
Wal-Mart has been selling furniture at an 11 percent premium to its comparable retail price for four years.
That has hurt its margins, which are already struggling to keep up with the rise in the price of goods.
Lowe’s shares fell 4.3 percent to $23.69.
The latest sales data comes as President Donald Trump and congressional Democrats have pressed the Trump administration to ease restrictions on imports and to expand trade.
WalMart said it expects to hire 6,000 workers in the U.A.E. by the end of the year, the biggest hiring in its industry in more than five years.
Its U.K. operations are already up by more over the past year.
The company also said it will open an international distribution center in Singapore, where it will buy and sell goods from other companies, and it will invest $200 million in its warehouse operations.
Walmarts has also announced plans to sell at least a third of its stock through a virtual offering.
The company said it plans to list on the Nasdaq U.F.O. market and plans to offer shares through a Nasdaq-listed ETF.