Seeking Alpha

Retail trend watch: Consumers trading down and buying online

  • Wells Fargo bangs the same drum as other firms on the promotional fervor being seen in retail with its warning today that Q4 margins may disappoint.
  • Analysts with the investment firm cite data showing mall traffic was off 9% for the first two weeks of December and think that even a late-month pickup in sales won't be enough to rescue the quarter.
  • The consistent read on the sector has been that discounters (DG, FIVE, DLTR, FDO), e-commerce retailers (AMZN, OSTK, EBAY, NILE, BIDZ, SFLY), and membership warehouses (COST, PSMT, WMT) may have held up the best as consumers either traded down or shopped via devices.
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