"We knew it was going to be difficult, but we may have been more overly optimistic," Niblock said during an interview with The Associated Press Monday.
Niblock said he thought shoppers would embrace the pricing plan more quickly because he expected the economy to recover more quickly.
"Housing has bottomed, and that makes home owners feel better," he said. "But to have a significant ramp up (in housing), you have to have better macroeconomic conditions."
Lowe's earned $747 million, or 64 cents per share, for the period ended Aug. 3. That's down from $830 million, or 64 cents per share, a year ago. Fiscal 2012 has one less week than last year. The timing shift lowered earnings by about 3 cents per share. Removing a charge tied to previously announced job cuts and the impact of the timing shift, earnings were 68 cents per share.
Revenue fell 2 percent to $14.25 billion from $14.54 billion. Lowe's said that the timing shift accounted for 1.8 percentage points of the decline.
Analysts polled by FactSet expected earnings of 70 cents per share on revenue of $14.44 billion, on average.
For fiscal 2012, Lowe's now expects earnings of about $1.64 per share and revenue to be about flat with 2011's $50.21 billion. It previously predicted earnings of $1.73 to $1.83 per share, with revenue rising 1 percent to 2 percent. Wall Street foresees full-year earnings of $1.80 per share on revenue of $50.58 billion.
Lowe's Cos. shares fell almost 6 percent, or $1.78 to $26.09 on Monday. Home Depot's shares slipped 54 cents to $56.19.
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