Retail giant Walmart Inc. (WMT) is waiving April rent for shops inside its stores across the U.S. as the fast spread of the coronavirus pandemic has forced some to shut down.
Walmart has more than 10,000 leased spaces inside its stores, which are rented to businesses such as hair and nail salons, optometrists, restaurant franchises, veterinary clinics, local and regional banks.
Overall, Walmart stock carries a Strong Buy consensus rating from the analyst community, based on 14 Buy ratings and 4 Holds. Shares are priced at $109.40 as of Wednesday, and the $129.21 average price target suggests an upside potential of 18% to the stock. (See Walmart’s stock analysis on TipRanks)
“This is a trying time for many of these establishments,” Walmart said in a statement. “Some have had to temporarily close – or significantly reduce hours and services.”
In addition, Walmart is encouraging impacted employees to apply for the 150,000 temporary jobs the company is planning to fill in the coming months. The retailer is also making changes to its supply-chain financing program to help its suppliers with payments.
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