At The Motley Fool, we know our readers like to be informed. Here's a quick look at today's most relevant financial news, boiled down to what you need to know.

Home Depot beats analyst estimates
Profits increased 12% for Home Depot (NYSE: HD), with third-quarter earnings coming in at $934 million or $0.60 per share, a penny above Wall Street's expectations. The home improvement retailer raised its quarterly dividend 16% to $0.29 a share. Home Depot's sales at stores open at least a year were up 4.2%, putting the company ahead of rival Lowe's (NYSE: LOW) for the 10th consecutive quarter. The stock opened up almost 1% on the news. Read more on this at Bloomberg.

Shares of Wal-Mart down after earnings miss
Third quarter earnings declined 2.9% for Wal-Mart (NYSE: WMT), despite net sales increasing 8.2% to $109.5 billion. The world's largest retailer reported a profit of $3.34 billion, or $0.97 per share, which missed Wall Street's forecast of $0.98 a share. The stock opened down about 1.5%. Read more on this at Reuters

Staples sales fall on weak demand in Europe
Revenue came in short for office supply company Staples (Nasdaq: SPLS), whose stock plunged more than 5% at the open this morning. The company's third-quarter sales were hurt by a 12% decline in same-store sales in Europe and Australia. Sales outside of the U.S. fell 1.9% to $1.3 billion. Rivals Office Depot (NYSE: ODP) and OfficeMax (NYSE: OMX) also missed revenue expectations for the quarter. Read more on this at Yahoo!.  

That's a wrap
So there you have it -- the top financial stories for this morning. If you are interested in getting all the news and commentary on these stocks, sign up to My Watchlist here --it's free!

Fool contributor Tamara Rutter does not own shares of any of the companies mentioned in this article. Follow her on Twitter @TamaraRutter. The Motley Fool owns shares of Wal-Mart. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Staples, Home Depot, Wal-Mart, and Lowe's, as well as writing covered calls on Lowe's and creating a diagonal call position on Wal-Mart. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.