NEW YORK — Walmart is counting on $1 ketchup bottles and sub-$4 cases of Coke to get its low-price mojo back.

NEW YORK — Walmart is counting on $1 ketchup bottles and sub-$4 cases of Coke to get its low-price mojo back.

The sharp cuts at its U.S. Walmart stores, which came ahead of Memorial Day weekend, have already pushed rivals such as Target into price wars.

And the markdowns are expected to keep coming throughout the summer. They're one of the boldest moves the world's largest retailer is making to turn around sluggish business at its U.S. namesake chain and win back shoppers from rivals. The cuts aren't across the store but target 22 foods and other essentials at an average savings of 30 percent — splashy enough to get attention and perhaps change perceptions.

The world's largest retailer is also restoring items such as certain soups and laundry detergent it stopped carrying when it tried to declutter its stores. It's also pushing more basic clothing such as socks and underwear after putting too much focus on trendy items that didn't sell.

Walmart was one of the few beneficiaries when the Great Recession began, as shoppers traded down to save money. Now it's having trouble keeping customers in a slowly recovering economy. Cash-strapped shoppers are looking elsewhere for better deals such as dollar stores and local grocery chains.

Walmart, which generated more than $400 billion in revenue in 2009, has blamed stubbornly high unemployment and tight credit for adding even more financial strain on its blue-collar customers.