November 22, 2013 |
Like the Cold War arms race, retailers' assault on Thanksgiving appears to have reached the point of unremitting insanity. Next week Target, Kohl's, K-Mart, Sears and many other retailers will be opening their stores for some Thanksgiving hours starting in the evening or earlier. They join Wal-Mart, which has always been open during Thanksgiving but which this year will be pumping up its holiday discounts to lure determined bargain-hunters into the stores. Plan on consuming a heaping helping of reports and videos of Thanksgiving Day mayhem, some of it possibly lethal, with your turkey leftovers next Friday.
December 11, 2011
It's an increasingly common sight at the mall: shoppers using their smartphones to scan the barcode of an item they like and checking its price online. Some scanning applications go further, letting shoppers buy the item from a competing Web retailer with just a few taps on the screen. The largest online seller, Amazon.com, even offers customers up to $5 off the items they scan in other companies' stores. The brick-and-mortar shops may be able to match their online rivals' discounts, but there's one competitive disadvantage they can't overcome: Many online retailers do not collect sales taxes from customers outside of the state where they are headquartered.
November 1, 2012 |
Shoppers hit the malls and handed retailers a healthy gain in October before Sandy pummeled the Northeast, a positive sign pointing to a decent holiday season head. Major chains posted a 2.7% increase in retail sales in October compared with the same month a year earlier, on par with analysts' expectations, according to Thomson Reuters' tally of 18 retailers. Excluding drugstores, however, retail sales are up 4.7%, exceeding expectations of 4.3%. Retailers are looking ahead to the effects that Sandy may have on consumers in the coming months, especially those in the hardest-hit states who will have to repair or rebuild their homes.
March 1, 2012 |
Drawn by unseasonably warm weather across much of the country, shoppers hit the malls in February with their wallets open and handed retailers a robust start to the spring shopping season. Major chain stores posted a healthy 4.7% sales increase in February compared with the same month a year earlier, beating analysts' expectations of a more modest 3.4% rise. Discounters, teen retailers and apparel sellers all posted healthy sales increases, according to Thomson Reuters ' tally of 18 retailers.
May 31, 2012 |
Despite slower job gains and signs of flagging consumer confidence, consumers hit the malls in May to refresh their wardrobes as the summer shopping season begins. Major chain stores posted a 3.9% sales increase in May compared with the same month a year earlier, beating analysts' expectations of a 3.6% rise, according to Thomson Reuters ' tally of 18 retailers. Top performers were a mixture of high- and low-end stores. Action-sports chain Zumiez Inc. led the way with a 13.7% bump.
August 30, 2012 |
Shoppers hit the malls for back-to-school shopping in August and handed retailers a healthy boost despite continued worries about the job market and a sluggish economy. Major chain stores posted a 3.6% sales increase in August compared with the same month a year earlier, outpacing analysts' expectations of a 2% rise, according to Thomson Reuters ' tally of 16 retailers. "Consumer spending increased for the first time in three months," said Chris Christopher, an economist at IHS Global Insight, "providing evidence that after hunkering down for two consecutive months there are signs of life on the consumer front.