The News is (Nearly) All Good
It’s hard to look anywhere online this morning without finding
a story about how good a month November was for retailers. Same-store sales
at retailers tracked by Thomson Reuters were up six percent.
The International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) had the number at 5.8
percent. The consensus going into the month was that sales would be up three
percent and change.
sales, which were expected to be up for the month, didn’t disappoint, with
IBM’s CoreMetrics, comScore and others reporting double-digit increases over
last year. Cyber Monday generated over $1 billion in revenues.
"It’s a cheerful holiday start — for most," Alison Kenny Paul,
vice chairman and leader of the U.S. retail team at Deloitte, told The Wall
Street Journal. "People are back in spirit, shaking off the recession
and spending on themselves, as well as for gifts."
Another positive for
retailers is that consumers still have a lot of shopping to do. The Journal,
sourcing ICSC, reported fewer than one-in-three consumers had completed their
holiday season shopping by the beginning of this week. That is below the 42
percent for the same period last year.
Pretty much everywhere you look, retailers
reported better-than-expected results. In fact, it’s probably easier to list
the few that fell below expectations. The poster child for the under-performers
appears to be Aeropostale. The teen retailer appears to be behind the curve
on current fashions and had to resort to aggressive discounting (50 – 75 percent
off) to get consumers into its stores. The company announced a c-suite shakeup
this week with co-CEO Cindy Meads leaving the company and Thomas Johnson taking
over the role solo.
Discussion Questions: Are you surprised by the results of the holiday selling
season so far? Do you expect December’s results to be similarly positive?
What retailer(s) have surprised you most so far for either good or bad?
- Shopper Splurge Buoys Hopes – The Wall Street Journal
- U.S. November Chain Store Sales Outperform Industry Expectations – International
Council of Shopping Centers
- ICSC Shopping Center Executive Barometer Shifts Course in November as Business
Conditions Significantly Improve – International Council of Shopping Centers
- Sector Snap: Teen stores report split November – The Associated Press/Forbes.com
Names Thomas P. Johnson Chief Executive Officer; Announces Departure of Mindy
C. Meads, Co-Chief Executive Officer – Aeropostale, Inc./PRNewswire
- Aeropostale Reports Record Third Quarter 2010 and November Sales Results – Aeropostale,
Inc./PRNewswire via COMTEX