Retailers have kept inventories in check, but signs are already emerging that they may not have broken consumers' addiction to discounts just yet.» Read More
Find me an analyst or an investor who's excited about this week's same store sales results. Literally, the expectations are so low for this first month of the first quarter, that any indication of a rosier March may cause volatility around share prices when the nation's biggest stores report same store sales results for the month of February on this Thursday.
Wall Street is shopping for retail bargains. Even before consumers rang up the weakest Christmas in five years, retail shares were beaten down and plagued by worries of just how slow the American consumer will become in 2008.
Anemic growth is still a gain--even if the holiday season was the weakest in 5 years (up just 3 percent according to the NRF.) But try telling one of the CEOs at last night's Financo dinner that they should look on the bright side and you might get a glass of wine spilled over your head.
Som midday observations: 1) Despite being grilled on the weak dollar, higher inflation, and the subprime crises and what he is doing about it, Bernanke has said little new. He says that economic activity has remained "resilient" but that "financial market volatility and strains have persisted." He seems to want to keep all his options open for December.
She's dressed former First Ladies Nancy Reagan and Jackie Kennedy and is a favorite of starlet Renee Zellweger, but designer Carolina Herrera says she would like to do a mass-market line, much like the one her friend Vera Wang recently created for Kohl's.
It's spring cleaning in the summertime for retailers right now and profit taking time for investors in retail stocks (it would seem.) From what I'm hearing, the disappointing sales we saw today from Children's Place may be setting the tone when it comes to retail sales results. Same store sales declined 4% in June coming in below expectations. CEO Ezrah Dabah cited continued declines in mall traffic--NOT the weather, NOT high gas prices, NOT inventory management issues--for causing sales to fall off at the start of the summer.
Here's one of our last looks at the contest stocks. The most active and widely held remained pretty much the same throughout the contest and the finals--for both the Million Dollar Portfolio Challenge and Second Chance Showdown. Most best and worst performers were affected by earnings and M&A's over the weeks as well. Here you go: