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News Release

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Lowe's Announces Growth Strategies at 2005 Analyst and Investor Conference
         -- Reiterates Guidance for Third Quarter and Fiscal 2005 --

                   -- Provides Outlook for 2006 and 2007 --

CHICAGO, Sept. 26 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Lowe's Companies, Inc. (NYSE: LOW) will discuss how the company's strong customer service culture and focused execution of its key strategic initiatives is providing a bright outlook for the future when Lowe's meets with analysts and investors tomorrow in Chicago at its annual conference.


In an update to current sales and earnings trends, the company will indicate it remains comfortable with its previous guidance of 4 to 6 percent comparable store sales growth and earnings per share of $0.76 to $0.78 for the third quarter of 2005, and approximately 5 percent comparable store sales growth and earnings per share of $3.31 to $3.37 for the fiscal year.

"Opportunities for Lowe's lie in our ability to continuously enhance our stores, our product and service offering, and most importantly the service required to meet the needs of our customers," commented Robert A. Niblock, Lowe's chairman, president and CEO. "Our disciplined approach to utilizing consumer research has allowed us to design what we believe is the best shopping experience in the industry, and will be the cornerstone of our ability to identify evolving consumer trends and preferences in the future," continued Niblock.

Robert F. Hull, Jr., executive vice president and CFO, will provide an outlook for fiscal years 2006 and 2007 and share Lowe's future store growth plans.

"We are well positioned to leverage our asset base to continue our profitable growth," said Hull. "We plan to add 150 stores in 2005 and 150 to 160 new stores per year in fiscal 2006 and 2007, equating to approximately 12 percent square footage growth in 2006 and 10 to 11 percent in 2007. We expect this square footage growth to drive a sales increase of 13 to 14 percent for the 52-week period comprising fiscal 2006 versus the 53-week period of fiscal 2005 and an additional 14 to 15 percent increase in 2007. This planned sales growth, when combined with operating margin improvement is expected to drive diluted earnings per share growth of 17 to 20 percent for fiscal 2006 and 16 to 20 percent increase in 2007."

Lowe's executives will focus on key programs and initiatives to improve operations, increase market share and continually enhance customer service. Highlights of those presentations include:

     - Maureen K. Ausura, senior vice president of human resources:
       "Our employees are the foundation of our continued success.  At Lowe's
       the key priorities of human resources are to recruit, motivate, develop
       and retain outstanding employees. As one of the largest private
       employers in the country, we are working every day to make Lowe's a
       great place to work with engaged employees committed to customer
     - Steven M. Stone, senior vice president and chief information officer:
       "Lowe's information technology is continuing to build the
       infrastructure the company needs to drive sales well into the future.
       We are investing in technology to support our objectives of simplifying
       and streamlining the store process and enhancing the customer
     - Larry D. Stone, senior executive vice president of
       "Our merchandising organization will continue to emphasize innovation,
       great value and everyday low prices showcased in inviting stores with
       great customer service to drive traffic and average ticket.  Our
       marketing message continues to resonate with consumers by highlighting
       how even a small project can enhance the enjoyment of their homes.  I'm
       convinced that with a continued focus on what matters most, our
       customers, we will continue to deliver solid results, while building
       the Lowe's brand."
     - Mike Mabry, executive vice president of logistics and distribution:
       "Rapid response replenishment or R3 is designed to better leverage our
       industry leading distribution and logistics infrastructure.  Lowe's
       three objectives with this strategy are to improve customer service,
       improve total supply chain profitability and better leverage inventory.
       With the major accomplishments behind us, I'm happy with our progress,
       and I think we are well on our way to achieving our objectives."
     - Nick Canter, executive vice president of store operations:
       "Lowe's Building Blocks for Success is our foundation for operational
       efficiency.  An integral part of these blocks are our cornerstone
       disciplines of exceptional service, merchandising standards, inventory
       management and corporate standards.  Being customer focused is not just
       a slogan at Lowe's; it's core to the culture that enables us to execute
       our vision of being our customers' first choice for home improvement."
     - Gregory M. Bridgeford, executive vice president of business
       development: "Our approach to our core strategic focus is to turn
       customer knowledge and insights into opportunities.  We follow the
       customer and lead the market with solutions.  Three key strategies that
       will drive our future growth include continuing to pursue domestic
       storing opportunities, developing solutions for do-it-for-me customers
       and exploring international growth opportunities.  We are interested in
       those opportunities where an optimal business model will capitalize on
       our strengths and afford us profitable growth."

Lowe's fiscal third quarter ends on October 28, 2005 with operating results to be publicly released on Monday, November 14, 2005.

This news release includes "forward-looking statements" within the meaning the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 (the "Act"). Statements of the company's expectations for sales growth, comparable store sales, earnings and performance, capital expenditures, store openings, demand for services, and any statement of an assumption underlying any of the foregoing, constitute "forward-looking statements" under the Act. Although the company believes that the expectations, opinions, projections, and comments reflected in its forward-looking statements are reasonable, it can give no assurance that such statements will prove to be correct. A wide-variety of potential risks, uncertainties, and other factors could materially affect our ability to achieve the results expressed or implied by our forward-looking statements including, but not limited to: (i) changes in general economic conditions which can negatively affect our customers' spending patterns; (ii) decreases in the number of new housing starts and the level of repairs, remodeling, and additions to existing homes, as well as general reduction in commercial building activity; (iii) ability to secure, develop, and otherwise implement new technologies and processes designed to enhance our efficiency and competitiveness; (iv) ability to attract, train, and retain highly-qualified associates; (v) ability to locate, secure, and develop new sites for store development; (vi) fluctuations in the prices and availability of services, supplies, and products; (vii) growth and impact of competition; (viii) ability to address legal and regulatory matters; and (ix) impact of unanticipated weather conditions. Additional information regarding these and other risks and uncertainties are provided in our periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The forward-looking statements contained in this news release speak only as of the date of this release and the company does not assume any obligation to update any such statements.

With fiscal year 2004 sales of $36.5 billion, Lowe's Companies, Inc. is a FORTUNE(R) 50 company that serves approximately 11 million customers a week at more than 1,125 home improvement stores in 49 states. Based in Mooresville, N.C., the 59-year old company is the second-largest home improvement retailer in the world. For more information, visit

SOURCE  Lowe's Companies, Inc.
    -0-                             09/26/2005
    /CONTACT: Shareholders'-Analysts' Inquiries, Paul Taaffe, +1-704-758-2033,
or Media Inquiries, Chris Ahearn, +1-704-758-2304, both of Lowe's Companies,
             AP Archive:
             PRN Photo Desk,
    /Web site:

CO:  Lowe's Companies, Inc.
ST:  North Carolina, Illinois

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0835 09/26/2005 17:30 EDT