Everyone wished for a Black Friday and a Cyber Monday successful enough to lift retailers out of the red and push retail ETFs into the black. A little more than a week later, how’s the holiday shopping season looking for those retailers and how can you capitalize?
One bright spot for retailers so far this holiday has been the sales of electronic goods such as HDTVs, digital cameras and Blu-ray movie players. Jeffry Bartash of Marketwatch reported that the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) said sales of technology products increased by about 6% over Thanksgiving weekend, in line with forecasts. According to a CEA survey of consumers, 80% of adults surveyed expect to buy technology as a gift this holiday season, which the CEA said is the “highest figure in the history of the study.” The SPDR Select Sector Technology Fund (NYSE: XLK) is up 46.1% year-to-date.
For the retailers, there are still hopes for a strong December. Where can investors find the bargains in retail stocks? According to Teresa Rivas, for Barrons , stocks that are worth a look include: Walmart (NYSE: WMT) and Macy’s (NYSE: M), but specialty retailers such as The Gap (NYSE: GPS) and Abercrombie & Fitch (NYSE: ANF) might be in for tough times. Macy’s is 1.8% of the SPDR S&P Retail (NYSEArca: XRT), which is up 72% year-to-date.
Another stock to watch is Amazon.com (NASDAQ: AMZN), since more and more consumers are avoiding those holiday crowds at the mall and taking to their laptops instead. Amazon has already said that its holiday sales are surpassing expectations. The First Trust Dow Jones Internet Index Fund (NYSEArca: FDN) has a 6.8% weighting in the online shopping behemoth.
For full disclosure, Tom Lydon’s clients own shares of XLK.
Tony D’Altorio contributed to this article.