Retailers reported July same-store sales Thursday. Collectively, the month was a weak one for the sector. On average, retailers missed the forecasts of analysts surveyed by 1.5%, with almost 75% of retailers posting below-estimate sales gains. Notable beats include Nordstrom, which doubled analyst estimates of 4.5% same-store sales growth, and Saks, who posted a 14.9% gain vs. a 5.6% loss in June. Big losers included Abercrombie & Fitch, which saw same-store sales fall 4.0% vs. expectations of a milder -0.9%; Aeropostale lost 11.9% vs. forecasts of a 1.6% gain; American Eagle, who was expected to gain 3%, lost 6%; and Pacific Sunwear missed forecasts of a 3.6% gain, dropping 4.6%. Much-watched retailers Costco and Wal-Mart both bested expectations. Retail sales from February through June climbed 2.3% vs. 3.9% in 2006, according to ICSC chief economist Michael Niemira. Some consumers don't feel as wealthy because of declining home values, he said. "We're just not at a stage where there's anything compelling for the consumer to buy, and the consumer doesn't really feel like buying much," said Brean Murray Carret & Co. analyst Eric Beder. "The fall season will be very difficult outside of back-to-school."
In the following table, arrows indicate whether a retailer beat (up), missed (down) or was in line with analyst expectations. Analyst estimate are based on Reuters' survey, or, when not available, Thomson.
Sources: Reuters, MarketWatch, Bloomberg
Commentary: June Same-Store Sales Roundup • May Same-Store Sales Roundup • April Same-Store Sales Roundup
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