Retail warning: Apparel sellers at ground zero of promotional frenzy

|By:, SA News Editor

Warnings on slow store traffic at retailers are being heard far and wide from analysts as more channel checks disappoint.

Ground zero for promotional activity in the sector appears to be mall-based apparel sellers which are throwing "shocking" deals at consumers to stoke sales and clear inventory.

Weather has been a factor, but forward-looking insiders also see a paradigm shift. Consumers enabled with mobile devices have taken a hatchet to the amount of their holiday season impulse buying which typically helps retailers drive margins higher on select items at stores.

On watch: AEO, ANF, ARO, JCP, JWN, KSS, URBN, APP, TLYS, GES, BKE, CHS, ASNA, CWTR, ANN, CBK, NWY, CACH, BODY, WTSL, CATO, BEBE, DDS, LB, PSUN, EXPR.