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Sarah Halzack

Walmart Just Put Amazon on Notice

With business humming along both in stores and online, the big-box giant is showing the way for the future of retail.

A good quarter is in the bag.

A good quarter is in the bag.

Photographer: Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg

Memo to Jeff Bezos: Walmart Inc. is in fighting shape.

The Bentonville, Arkansas-based big-box giant reported second-quarter results Thursday that were unambiguously impressive. Its U.S. comparable sales rose 4.5 percent over a year earlier, an increase that easily beat analysts’ expectations and made for the retailer’s best performance on this measure in more than a decade. And its e-commerce business — a focus point for investors amid the looming threat of Inc. — delivered a solid 40 percent gain in sales, making its full-year guidance for digital growth look attainable.