Wal-Mart Stores, Federated Department Stores and The Home Depot reported healthy quarterly earnings on deep discounts during the holiday season and store improvements. Wal-Mart reported a profit of $3.6 billion, up 13% from a year earlier; Federated posted a profit of $699 million, up 59% from a year earlier; and Home Depot earned $1.3 billion, up 23% from a year earlier.

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