Could shoppers finally give apparel retailers the break they so desperately need?
There's no denying that it's been a rough slog for the clothing industry as consumers increasingly shift their spending from things to experiences, opt for lower-price fashions and refuse to purchase an item if it isn't on sale.
On Thursday, Thomson Reuters' preliminary analysis found that although same-store sales ticked slightly higher in July, apparel retailers posted an 0.5 percent decline, while teen apparel retailers saw a nearly 8 percent drop.
Compounding the issue are early forecasts that back-to-school shoppers intend to spend less on the occasion this year, including the National Retail Federation's prediction that parents of K-12 students will spend on average $217.82 on clothing and accessories. That represents a decline of 6 percent.
Despite these headwinds, a few reasons for optimism remain. For one, several new fashion trends have hit the selling floor, which should encourage shoppers to open their wallets.