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How Sherwin-Williams Stock Has Gained Ground Through the Pandemic

By Demitri Kalogeropoulos - Aug 17, 2020 at 1:38PM

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Shareholders have seen lots of volitilty this year, but the paint giant's broader growth picture is positive.

What happened

Sherwin-Williams (SHW -2.72%) stock has outperformed the market through mid-August, with shares up about 15% compared to a 5% increase in the S&P 500. The global paint giant has benefited from a surge in demand for many of its products, but investors haven't pushed its shares up as much as some industry peers like Home Depot and Lowe's, which are both up by nearly 30% in 2020.

So what

The COVID-19 pandemic had a mixed impact on Sherwin-Williams' business, but the gains appear more durable than the losses. Unlike Home Depot or Lowe's, the company closed many of its retailing locations during shelter-in-place orders in March, April, and May. That contributed to a 6% sales decline in the fiscal second quarter.

A couple paint a room together.

Image source: Getty Images.

But Sherwin-Williams saw strong demand from its retailing partners during that time as consumers shifted spending toward home projects. This segment of sales jumped 21% through June.

Now what

CEO John Morikis and his team now see sales in 2020 landing at about where they were last year despite the temporary COVID-19 closures. With profitability set to improve, too, there's a lot for investors to like about this business if they're seeking exposure to the home improvement niche.

Demitri Kalogeropoulos owns shares of Home Depot and Sherwin-Williams. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Home Depot. The Motley Fool recommends Lowe's and Sherwin-Williams and recommends the following options: long January 2021 $120 calls on Home Depot and short January 2021 $210 calls on Home Depot. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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