Top 20 Most Profitable Retail Stocks

|
 |  Includes: ANF, BBY, COH, DECK, DLTR, FDO, FOSL, GME, JCP, KSS, LULU, LUX, NKE, NWL, PVH, RL, SHLD, SHW, TGT, VFC, XRT
by: Kapitall

The following is a list of retail stocks that have been more profitable than their competitors over the last five years, when comparing gross and net profit margins.

Will these companies continue to be more profitable than their industry competitors? What do you think? Perhaps more importantly, considering their track record of profitability, is most of the good news already priced into these stock prices?

We're not going to go into detailed analysis for each company. The goal here is to offer an interesting starting point for your own analysis.

Profitability data and industry comps sourced from Reuters, short float and performance data sourced from Finviz.

Interactive Chart: Press Play to compare changes in analyst ratings over the last two years for the top six stocks mentioned below. Analyst ratings sourced from Zacks Investment Research. Note: The numbers on top of items represent the forward P/E ratio, if available.

)

The list has been sorted by market cap.

1. Target Corp. (NYSE:TGT): Discount, Variety Stores Industry. Market cap of $39.46B. 5-year average gross margin at 30.71% vs. industry average at 24.38%. 5-year average net profit margin at 4.17% vs. industry average at 2.97%. Short float at 1.46%, which implies a short ratio of 1.71 days. The stock has gained 12.4% over the last year.

2. Nike Inc. (NYSE:NKE): Apparel Footwear & Accessories Industry. Market cap of $39.38B. 5-year average gross margin at 44.88% vs. industry average at 41.9%. 5-year average net profit margin at 9.26% vs. industry average at 5.24%. Short float at 1.29%, which implies a short ratio of 2.21 days. The stock has gained 32.66% over the last year.

3. Coach Inc. (NYSE:COH): Apparel Footwear & Accessories Industry. Market cap of $15.71B. 5-year average gross margin at 74.78% vs. industry average at 45.31%. 5-year average net profit margin at 22.1% vs. industry average at 5.92%. Short float at 2.06%, which implies a short ratio of 1.69 days. The stock has gained 57.64% over the last year.

4. Kohl's Corp. (NYSE:KSS): Department Stores Industry. Market cap of $15.13B. 5-year average gross margin at 36.7% vs. industry average at 23.%. 5-year average net profit margin at 6.21% vs. industry average at 1.14%. Short float at 7.59%, which implies a short ratio of 3.99 days. The stock has gained 2.58% over the last year.

5. Best Buy Co. Inc. (NYSE:BBY): Electronics Stores Industry. Market cap of $13.84B. 5-year average gross margin at 24.41% vs. industry average at 21.25%. 5-year average net profit margin at 3.15% vs. industry average at 1.51%. Short float at 4%, which implies a short ratio of 1.73 days. The stock has lost -4.04% over the last year.

6. Luxottica Group SpA (NYSE:LUX): Specialty Retail Industry. Market cap of $13.82B. 5-year average gross margin at 66.95% vs. industry average at 40.22%. 5-year average net profit margin at 8.34% vs. industry average at 6.21%. Short float at 0.34%, which implies a short ratio of 3.46 days. The stock has gained 18.11% over the last year.

7. Polo Ralph Lauren Corp. (NYSE:RL): Apparel Clothing Industry. Market cap of $9.88B. 5-year average gross margin at 55.09% vs. industry average at 40.22%. 5-year average net profit margin at 8.8% vs. industry average at 6.21%. Short float at 4.26%, which implies a short ratio of 2.96 days. The stock has gained 27.28% over the last year.

8. V.F. Corporation (NYSE:VFC): Apparel Clothing Industry. Market cap of $8.9B. 5-year average gross margin at 43.06% vs. industry average at 40.22%. 5-year average net profit margin at 7.93% vs. industry average at 6.21%. Short float at 6.28%, which implies a short ratio of 6.53 days. The stock has gained 16.83% over the last year.

9. Sherwin-Williams Co. (NYSE:SHW): Specialty Retail Industry. Market cap of $8.88B. 5-year average gross margin at 44.26% vs. industry average at 18.69%. 5-year average net profit margin at 6.75% vs. industry average at 6.6%. Short float at 4.99%, which implies a short ratio of 4.93 days. The stock has gained 44.8% over the last year.

10. Sears Holdings Corporation (NASDAQ:SHLD): Department Stores Industry. Market cap of $8.2B. 5-year average gross margin at 27.8% vs. industry average at 23.%. 5-year average net profit margin at 1.67% vs. industry average at 1.14%. Short float at 11.47%, which implies a short ratio of 14.95 days. The stock has lost -24.14% over the last year.

11. J. C. Penney Company, Inc. (NYSE:JCP): Department Stores Industry. Market cap of $7.18B. 5-year average gross margin at 38.6% vs. industry average at 23.00%. 5-year average net profit margin at 4.26% vs. industry average at 1.14%. Short float at 9.94%, which implies a short ratio of 5.21 days. The stock has gained 23.58% over the last year.

12. Dollar Tree, Inc. (NASDAQ:DLTR): Discount, Variety Stores Industry. Market cap of $6.5B. 5-year average gross margin at 34.63% vs. industry average at 24.38%. 5-year average net profit margin at 5.2% vs. industry average at 2.97%. Short float at 3.89%, which implies a short ratio of 3.24 days. The stock has gained 57.99% over the last year.

13. Family Dollar Stores Inc. (NYSE:FDO): Discount, Variety Stores Industry. Market cap of $5.54B. 5-year average gross margin at 34.31% vs. industry average at 24.38%. 5-year average net profit margin at 3.72% vs. industry average at 2.97%. Short float at 4.78%, which implies a short ratio of 2.72 days. The stock has gained 46.49% over the last year.

14. Newell Rubbermaid Inc. (NYSE:NWL): Housewares & Accessories Industry. Market cap of $5.14B. 5-year average gross margin at 33.77% vs. industry average at 7.39%. 5-year average net profit margin at 5.25% vs. industry average at 1.29%. Short float at 5.1%, which implies a short ratio of 4.38 days. The stock has gained 23.95% over the last year.

15. Lululemon Athletica Inc. (NASDAQ:LULU): Apparel Clothing Industry. Market cap of $4.75B. 5-year average gross margin at 50.88% vs. industry average at 40.22%. 5-year average net profit margin at 10.72% vs. industry average at 6.21%. Short float at 16.44%, which implies a short ratio of 4.35 days. The stock has gained 122.87% over the last year.

16. Fossil, Inc. (NASDAQ:FOSL): Recreational Goods, Other Industry. Market cap of $4.5B. 5-year average gross margin at 52.51% vs. industry average at 40.22%. 5-year average net profit margin at 8.33% vs. industry average at 6.21%. Short float at 2.91%, which implies a short ratio of 1.88 days. The stock has gained 96.15% over the last year.

17. Abercrombie & Fitch Co. (NYSE:ANF): Apparel Stores Industry. Market cap of $4.45B. 5-year average gross margin at 66.46% vs. industry average at 45.31%. 5-year average net profit margin at 10.27% vs. industry average at 5.92%. Short float at 6.47%, which implies a short ratio of 1.89 days. The stock has gained 72.21% over the last year.

18. Phillips-Van Heusen Corp. (NYSE:PVH): Apparel Clothing Industry. Market cap of $3.81B. 5-year average gross margin at 46.82% vs. industry average at 40.22%. 5-year average net profit margin at 6.22% vs. industry average at 6.21%. Short float at 5.72%, which implies a short ratio of 3.77 days. The stock has gained 37.27% over the last year.

19. GameStop Corp. (NYSE:GME): Electronics Stores Industry. Market cap of $3.16B. 5-year average gross margin at 26.54% vs. industry average at 21.25%. 5-year average net profit margin at 3.96% vs. industry average at 1.51%. Short float at 26.38%, which implies a short ratio of 10.58 days. The stock has gained 2.35% over the last year.

20. Deckers Outdoor Corp. (NASDAQ:DECK): Apparel Footwear & Accessories Industry. Market cap of $2.81B. 5-year average gross margin at 45.06% vs. industry average at 41.9%. 5-year average net profit margin at 12.65% vs. industry average at 5.24%. Short float at 13.01%, which implies a short ratio of 2.59 days. The stock has gained 117.22% over the last year.

Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.