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Lowe's earnings, stock keep improving

November 19, 2012: 12:35 PM ET

Lowe's (LOW) impressed investors with third quarter results Monday that showed the home improvement retailer is following its own slogan to "never stop improving."

Third quarter profits jumped 76% from a year ago. Investors, in turn, pushed the stock up nearly 7% Monday. That had some traders on StockTwits excited.

elliottrexler: $LOW. Is an increase in same store sales oversees an indication of what's to come? #Lowes Beats estimates

Still it's unclear whether a good quarter for Lowe's means that housing is actually rebounding. One StockTwits trader raises the key question of whether profit improvement at Lowe's simply means that home owners are just improving homes they can't sell for what they consider fair value.

etfdigest: The spin about a housing recovery based on $HD & $LOW earnings is more about home improvement than home sales. People are stuck in houses $$

Meanwhile, as the second largest home improvement retailer, Lowe's suffers from the younger sibling complex. Traders will forever compare it to its larger rival, Home Depot (HD). Some traders thought that Lowe's didn't size up well enough.

BrianSozzi: It's still Home Depot over Lowe's, quarter from latter not as grand as early views have expressed $HD $LOW

stephanie_link: Big comp differential $LOW +1.8% vs $HD +4.2%

With Lowe's up 34% in 2012, some traders were simply willing to take profits from Lowe's robust quarter and move on.

BPGAG: $LOW when I can be done for day w/ a nice AM move I take it every time even if I leave money on the table - know your goals & manage risk

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Maureen Farrell
Maureen Farrell
Staff writer, CNNMoney

Maureen Farrell is a staff writer at CNNMoney and covers Wall Street, banking, mergers and the stock and bond markets. Prior to joining CNNMoney, she covered venture capital and entrepreneurs for Forbes, and mergers and bankruptcy for Mergermarket and Debtwire, both divisions of the Financial Times.

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