Walmart shares close lower on Friday, retailer instructs personnel to take displays of violent video games out of stores

August 12, 2019 7:55 am

Walmart Inc has instructed workers at its US stores to remove signs and playable demos of violent video games.

Walmart’s move came after the mass shootings in Ohio and Texas, which led to the death of 31 people. One of the incidents occurred in a company store.

However, the company did not change its policy regarding sales of firearms.

Walmart shares closed lower for the sixth time in the past twelve trading sessions in New York on Friday. The stock went down 1.14% ($1.24) to $107.28, after touching an intraday low at $106.71, or a price level not seen since August 7th ($105.92).

Shares of Walmart Inc have risen 15.17% so far in 2019 compared with a 16.43% gain for the benchmark index, S&P 500 (SPX).

In 2018, Walmart’s stock went down 5.67%, thus, it outperformed the S&P 500, which registered a 6.24% loss.

Last week the American Federation of Teachers said that the retailer should discontinue selling firearms and it should not make political contributions to lawmakers receiving donations from the National Rifle Association.

”Given our nation’s incredibly loose and permissive gun laws, we are asking you to do everything you can to ensure the safety of your customers, employees and the communities you serve every day,” Randi Weingarten, President of the Federation, was quoted as saying by Reuters.

According to a report by the same media, however, Walmart has made no changes to its policies regarding sales of guns and violent video games across its store chain. The retailer discontinued selling assault rifles in 2015, while the minimum age for firearms purchases was raised to 21 last year.

Analyst stock price forecast and recommendation

According to CNN Money, the 28 analysts, offering 12-month forecasts regarding Walmart Inc’s stock price, have a median target of $115.00, with a high estimate of $130.00 and a low estimate of $95.00. The median estimate represents a 7.20% upside compared to the closing price of $107.28 on August 9th.

The same media also reported that at least 14 out of 31 surveyed investment analysts had rated Walmart Inc’s stock as “Buy”, while 10 – as “Hold”. On the other hand, 1 analyst had recommended selling the stock.

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