Wal-Mart's U.S. chief executive is stepping down

Greg Foran, Wal-Mart's CEO in Asia, will replace U.S. chief Bill Simon

The chief executive of Wal-Mart's U.S. operations, Bill Simon, is stepping down, the retail giant said Thursday.

The company said current Wal-Mart Asia CEO Greg Foran will replace Simon, who has guided the retailer's U.S. division since June 2010. The change is scheduled for Aug. 9.

Foran, a 35-year retail veteran, took the top Asia job last month. He came to the Bentonville, Ark., company in October 2011 and rose to CEO of its China division less than a year later.

In a news release, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. said Simon will be "transitioning out of the company," but did not give a reason for the shake-up.

Wal-Mart's U.S. sales growth has been meager lately. In the first quarter, the company reported that sales were flat at stores open at least a year.

Simon will "be available" as a consultant for six months to help with the transition, the company said.

Wal-Mart shares fell 64 cents, or less than 1%, to $76.35.

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