To that point, Janney analyst Adrienne Yih-Tennant said in a note to investors on Friday that although Urban's product mix remains a work in progress, broader issues are playing a role in the company's slow recovery.
"We believe macro issues, including the Ebola crisis, global geopolitical unrest, and market volatility, have likely softened consumer demand across the board, which [Urban Outfitters] is not immune from," she said.
Read MoreWhat's in store for Christmas? Depends who you ask
Britt Beemer, CEO of America's Research Group, sounded a similar note about the broader economy. He not only expects consumers will buy fewer items this year, but said they will continue to be "much more frugal."
"I think it's going to be a very tough Christmas season," he said.
Research from NRF and and PwC has also pointed to the bifurcated recovery as an ongoing issue—a trend that could be partially to blame for weakness at Wal-Mart.
Read MoreWill consumers come to the economy's rescue?
In its holiday forecast, PwC noted the number of consumers who earn less than $50,000 annually increased by two percentage points from last year, to 67 percent. This group, which the firm labeled "survivalists," plans to spend an average $377 per household—a decline of 15 percent compared to the prior year. That compares to an average anticipated drop in spending of less than 1 percent for the set that makes more than $50,000.
"There's still definitely those pockets of consumers that are struggling," said Pam Goodfellow, principal analyst at Prosper Insights & Analytics, which conducted NRF's holiday spending survey.
Still, Grannis said the National Retail Federation is not ready to lower its forecast. Barring any unforeseen incidents, such as continued tensions in the stock market, she said the trade organization remains optimistic heading into the holidays.
"We think that that quote-on-quote 'funk' has passed us," Grannis said.