PowerShares S&P SmallCap Consumer Discretionary Portfolio ETF(PSCD)- NASDAQ
  • Thu, Sep. 15, 9:02 AM
    • Retail sales fell in August on a month-over-month comparison. The drop wasn't a large surprise considering the onslaught of warnings from the retail sector on store traffic.
    • 8 out of the 13 retail categories showed negative growth during the month, with the largest drops recorded in the building material/garden equipment/supplies dealers and miscellaneous store retailers categories. The broad weakness turned on its head the argument that money freed up from a lower level of auto sales would be funneled into other consumer purchases.
    • Food services and drinking places showed a +0.9% M/M and +5.8% Y/Y increase in a somewhat surprising result considering the harsh read from Black Box Intelligence on August same-store sales in the restaurant sector BITE. Is the discrepancy an indication that independent restaurants are taking market share?
    • On a year-over-year basis, retail sales were up 1.9%. As expected the Amazon-influenced nonstore retailers category did the heavy lifting with an 11% gain. Larger U.S. retail chains (WMT, SPLS, TGT, BBY, DG, COST, KR, WBA, CVS, LOW, HD, SWY) have been raising the issue of pricing pressure in recent conference presentations and guidance updates which could be a nagging sales deflator for the balance of the year.
    • Previously: Retail sales disappoint in August (Sept. 15)
    • Retail ETFs: XLP, XLY, VDC, XRT, VCR, RTH, RETL, FXG, PBJ, IYK, FXD, IYC, RHS, FDIS, PEJ, FSTA, PSL, SCC, RCD, UCC, PEZ, PMR, PSCC, UGE, PSCD, SZK, BITE, CNDF, CNSF, IBUY, JHMC, JHMS.
    | Thu, Sep. 15, 9:02 AM | 6 Comments
  • Tue, Aug. 30, 10:16 AM
    • There's more confirmation that consumers are doing the heavy lifting in the U.S. to prop up GDP while business investment falls short.
    • "Consumer confidence improved in August to its highest level in nearly a year, after a marginal decline in July," noted The Conference Board director Lynn Franco.
    • Some analysts think the slowdown in auto sales is freeing up some spending in other areas, although certain sectors that rely on foot traffic (restaurants, department stores) aren't necessarily seeing the bounce.
    • Companies that line up neatly with millennial trends seem to be the ones making the outrageous gains in the retail sector. Ulta Salon (NASDAQ:ULTA), Domino's Pizza (NYSE:DPZ), Burlington Stores (NYSE:BURL), and Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) come to mind -- with the four generating returns ranging from 40% to 60% over the last year.
    • ETFs: XLY, XRT, VCR, RTH, RETL, FXD, FDIS, RCD, PEZ, PMR, PSCD, JHMC.
    | Tue, Aug. 30, 10:16 AM | 2 Comments
  • Mon, Aug. 29, 11:10 AM
    • Consumer spending fell in July to a 0.3% pace on a tail-off in demand for non-durable goods.
    • Still, many analysts, including Stifel Nicolaus Chief Economist Lindsay Piegza, think that consumer spending will be relatively strong in Q3.
    • "American consumers appear to have loosened their purse strings amid a heightened appetite for goods and services, at least for now," notes Piegza in analysis made available to Seeking Alpha.
    • The steady gains in consumer spending stand in contrast to the tight business investment patterns which could whip around to impact wages in the future.
    • "There is little hope of a near-term bounce in compensation as a result of a tight labor market, " notes Piegza.
    • Consumer discretionary ETFs: XLY, XRT, VCR, RTH, RETL, FXD, FDIS, RCD, PEZ, PMR, PSCD, JHMC, CNDF.
    | Mon, Aug. 29, 11:10 AM | 2 Comments
  • Fri, Aug. 12, 8:49 AM
    • Retail sales came in flat for July with weakness in grocery stores, restaurants, and department stores standing out. The U.S. economy had produced three straight months of positive retail sales growth before the disappointment in July.
    • Once again, the nonstore retailers category (primarily e-commerce) led growth with a 1.3% M/M and 14.1% Y/Y gain in July. Sales at health and personal care stores were also solid with a 7.8% Y/Y rise.
    • Retail sales in June were revised to +0.9% from +0.7% in a positive development for the sector.
    • Retail Sales report (.pdf)
    • The S&P Retail ETF (NYSEARCA:XRT) is up 0.64% premarket to $45.55 as it looks to extend on yesterday's gain.
    • Retail ETFs: XLP, XLY, VDC, XRT, VCR, RTH, RETL, FXG, PBJ, IYK, FXD, IYC, RHS, FDIS, PEJ, FSTA, PSL, SCC, RCD, UCC, PEZ, PMR, PSCC, UGE, PSCD, SZK, BITE, JHMS, IBUY, CNSF, CNDF, JHMC.
    • Related stocks: WMT, TGT, COST, SPLS, HD, LOW, AMZN.
    | Fri, Aug. 12, 8:49 AM | 2 Comments
  • Sat, Aug. 6, 11:33 AM
    • The Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index was a yawner this week, edging up 10 bps to a reading of 43.0. However, within the report a deep divide in the U.S. was tipped.
    • "The index among Republicans has fallen to a nearly two-year low, 35.0, after a steep 12.0-point decline the last two months. In contrast, the CCI held basically steady this week at 50.8 among Democrats, and among independents it’s at a seven-month high, 44.7."
    • Consumer anxiety over politics was cited in dozens of Q2 conference calls by top execs.
    • The pessimistic view of Republicans in comparison to Democrats isn't a shocker, although it leads to the question on if consumer sentiment and consumer spending in the U.S. will improve after November 8 if Donald Trump wins the election?
    • Retail ETFs: XLP, XLY, VDC, XRT, VCR, RTH, RETL, FXG, PBJ, IYK, FXD, IYC, RHS, FDIS, PEJ, FSTA, PSL, SCC, RCD, UCC, PEZ, PMR, PSCC, UGE, PSCD, SZK, BITE, JHMS, IBUY, CNSF, CNDF, JHMC.
    | Sat, Aug. 6, 11:33 AM | 87 Comments
  • Fri, Jul. 29, 9:23 AM
    • Household spending by consumers increased 4.2% in Q2 to mark the best pace for the category since late in 2014.
    • The strong read on consumer spending contrasts with the tightening by businesses amid Brexit fears, F/X pain, and political jitters.
    • Retail ETFs trail broad stock market averages on the year after a May swoon, although most of the damage has been from the mall sector. Companies with a thriving e-commerce business and/or high mix of U.S. sales have held up.
    • Despite the painful headline Q2 GPD miss today, the underlying resiliency shown by consumers could bode well for a variety of retailers such as Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), Target (NYSE:TGT), Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT), Costco (NASDAQ:COST), Kroger (NYSE:KR), Lululemon (NASDAQ:LULU), Dollar General (NYSE:DG), PriceSmart (NASDAQ:PSMT), and Williams-Sonoma (NYSE:WSM) to name a few (add your own ideas in the comments).
    • Retail ETFs: XLP, XLY, VDC, XRT, VCR, RTH, RETL, FXG, PBJ, IYK, FXD, IYC, RHS, FDIS, PEJ, FSTA, PSL, SCC, RCD, UCC, PEZ, PMR, PSCC, UGE, PSCD, SZK, BITE, JHMS, IBUY, CNSF, CNDF, JHMC
    | Fri, Jul. 29, 9:23 AM | 10 Comments
  • Sat, May 14, 11:01 AM
    • The retail sector stays in focus next week with Target (NYSE:TGT), Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT), TJX Companies (NYSE:TJX), and Ross Stores (NASDAQ:ROST) all due to report on Q1 earnings to follow on a week of dismal reports and guidance from the department store sector (Nordstrom, L BrandsMacy's, Kohl's). Home improvement chains Home Depot (NYSE:HD) and Lowe's (NYSE:LOW) are also due to spill numbers.
    • The story from the Commerce Department's April read of retail sales (+3.0% Y/Y, +1.3% M/M) is one of a consumer spending on housing, entertainment, and personal care/fitness over apparel and general merchandise. The 10% Y/Y gain in the nonstore retailer category also tipped that the Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) Effect is magnifying.
    • Amplify ETFs CEO Christian Magoon tells Seeking Alpha that the traditional retail model appears to be broken. Amplify's Online Retail ETF (NASDAQ:IBUY) is a bet on companies such as Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX), GrubHub (NYSE:GRUB), Blue Nile (NASDAQ:NILE), and Shopify (NYSE:SHOP) that are reeling in millennial dollars.
    • Magoon on retail: "Traditional retailers face the headwinds of higher cost structures including the very real threat of increasing wages in the form of the $15 minimum wage campaign. Less flexible with inventory management, they also are more vulnerable to issues like weather and changing consumer preferences."
    • Retail ETFs: XLP, XLY, VDC, XRT, VCR, RTH, RETL, FXG, PBJ, IYK, FXD, IYC, RHS, FDIS, PEJ, FSTA, PSL, SCC, RCD, UCC, PEZ, PMR, PSCC, UGE, PSCD, SZK, BITE.
    • Apparel stocks: KATE, ANN, LULU, PVH, VNCE, CRI, UA, HBI, VFC, COLM, GIL, SQBG, JCP, KSS, DDS, M, JWN, ARO, AEO, ANF, WTSL, TLYS, CACH, ZUMZ, PSUN, EXPR, BKE, GIII, SQBG, HBI, VRA, ICON, SHOO, PERY, DXLG, BONT, GES, URBN, RL,GIL, NKE, OXM, HBI, VNCE, PERY, ICON, FL.
    | Sat, May 14, 11:01 AM | 38 Comments
  • Tue, Mar. 15, 8:49 AM
    | Tue, Mar. 15, 8:49 AM | 4 Comments
  • Wed, Feb. 24, 2:57 AM
    • Officials in 13 states are getting tired of waiting for Congress to let them collect sales taxes from out-of-state Internet retailers, so they are moving to impose the duties themselves.
    • The states want their moves to be questioned, and therefore lead to litigation, so they can ask the Supreme Court to overturn a 1992 ruling that forbids taxation of Internet sales by retailers that lack a physical location in a state.
    • ETFs: XLP, XLY, VDC, XRT, VCR, RETL, RTH, FXG, IYK, PBJ, IYC, FXD, PEJ, FDIS, RHS, FSTA, SCC, UCC, RCD, PSL, PMR, PEZ, UGE, PSCC, PSCD, SZK, BITE
    | Wed, Feb. 24, 2:57 AM | 21 Comments
  • Wed, Feb. 17, 10:54 AM
    • There's a bottom-up rally firing up in the consumer discretionary sector. Investors are digging deeper into the sector, instead of favoring blue chips like McDonald's, Wal-Mart, and Lowe's.
    • Ascena Retail Group (NASDAQ:ASNA) is up 7.9%.
    • New York & Company (NYSE:NWY) is 8.4% higher.
    • DSW (NYSE:DSW) is showing a 6.1% gain.
    • Vince Holding (NYSE:VNCE) is on fire with a 16.6% gain.
    • Iconix Brand Group (NASDAQ:ICON) is up 8%.
    • Fred's (NASDAQ:FRED) is 4.2% higher.
    • Supervalu (NYSE:SVU) is also moving along nicely with a +5.3% move.
    • Related ETFs: XLY, XRT, VCR, RETL, RTH, FXD, FDIS, RCD, PMR, PEZ, PSCD, BITE
    | Wed, Feb. 17, 10:54 AM | 2 Comments
  • Wed, Feb. 10, 2:28 PM
    | Wed, Feb. 10, 2:28 PM | 2 Comments
  • Sat, Jan. 23, 2:46 PM
    • The economic cost of the blizzard hitting the East Coast could run as high as $850M, according to a forecast from Planalytics.
    • The tally includes lost productivity and a lower level of consumer spending over the duration of the storm - even after factoring in the impact of consumers stockpiling from chains such as Home Depot (NYSE:HD), Lowe's (NYSE:LOW), Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT), and Kroger (NYSE:KR).
    • The storm is broad enough to impact domestic traffic numbers for restaurant chains (MCD, QSR, WEN, CMG, DENN, DNKN, SBUX) and movie theater operators (RGC, CKEC, CNK, AMC).
    • The number of cancelled flights tied to the storm is tracking rapidly toward 10K. U.S. airlines (LUV, AAL, JBLU, UAL, DAL) have become more efficient with managing major storms, but will still take a hit to Q1 revenue.
    • Looking ahead: Though harsh U.S. winters have lopped off as much as 1% to 2% from retail sales in the past, the 2015-2016 season still sits comfortably in the historical range used by economists when making their projections.
    • Previously: Blizzard rally for HD, LOW, BGG, TTC, ACAT, COLM, and BDE (Jan. 22)
    • Previously: Storm alert for Shake Shack and Dunkin' Donuts (Jan. 22)
    • Retail ETFs: XLP, XLY, VDC, XRT, VCR, RTH, RETL, FXG, PBJ, IYK, IYC, FXD, PEJ, FDIS, RHS, FSTA, SCC, UCC, RCD, PMR, PEZ, UGE, PSL, PSCC, PSCD, SZK, BITE
    | Sat, Jan. 23, 2:46 PM | 71 Comments
  • Thu, Jan. 14, 8:24 AM
    • Consumer discretionary stocks on watch today include Ethan Allen (NYSE:ETH), La-Z-Boy (NYSE:LZB), Pier 1 Imports (NYSE:PIR), Kirkland's (NASDAQ:KIRK), Select Comfort (NASDAQ:SCSS), and Mattress Firm (NASDAQ:MFRM).
    • The home furnishing/home furniture group is typically seen as benefiting from low gas prices and steady employment trends, but were pummeled yesterday with 4% to 5% losses.
    • The broad consumer discretionary sector has its worst day since last August with the Consumer Discretionary Select Sector SPDR ETF (NYSEARCA:XLP) down 3.37%.
    • ETFs: XLY, XRT, VCR, RTH, RETL, FXD, FDIS, RCD, PMR, PEZ, PSCD, BITE.
    | Thu, Jan. 14, 8:24 AM | 1 Comment
  • Dec. 28, 2015, 10:31 AM
    • MasterCard reports holiday sales rose 7.9% during the holiday season, led by strong growth for big ticket items. The growth rate is much stronger than the 3.7% gain in holiday sales forecast by the National Retail Federation.
    • Online sales were up 20% Y/Y during the period which implies some acceleration in December after some Black Friday and Cyber Monday reports disappointed.
    • The strong read from MasterCard on top of the volume spike at FedEx adds some weight to the theory that the 2015 holiday shopping season was back-half loaded due in part to a higher reliance on online orders. Warm weather also played a factor by pushing back some apparel buying.
    • Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT), Target (NYSE:TGT), Macy's (NYSE:M), and Best Buy (NYSE:BBY) are seen as potential beneficiaries of the late rush, while Amazon may have captured even more market share.
    • Related ETFs: XLP, XLY, VDC, XRT, VCR, RTH, RETL, FXG, PBJ, IYK, IYC, FXD, PEJ, FDIS, RHS, FSTA, SCC, UCC, RCD, PMR, PEZ, UGE, PSL, PSCC, PSCD, SZK, BITE
    | Dec. 28, 2015, 10:31 AM | 25 Comments
  • Dec. 18, 2015, 11:23 AM
    • Black Friday results may have slightly stronger than what was first indicated in largely anecdotal reports last month, observes NPD Group.
    • The research firm says the percentage of shoppers hitting stores on the key shopping day increased slightly year-over-year to 43%. Thanksgiving traffic was also up, although the percentage of shoppers that went out both days actually fell.
    • Best Buy (NYSE:BBY) and Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT) were volume winners during different periods of Thanksgiving Day, while Macy's (NYSE:M) was the peak leader on Black Friday.
    • Target (NYSE:TGT) and Amazon are seen by NPD as big holiday shopper winners when the broader period is reviewed. Target is hitting its stride largely due to solid assortment and inventory management, while the popularity of Amazon Prime has helped the e-commerce beast to gain market share.
    • Discretionary retail ETFs: XLY, XRT, VCR, RTH, RETL, FXD, FDIS, RCD, PMR, PEZ, PSCD, BITE.
    | Dec. 18, 2015, 11:23 AM | 10 Comments
  • Dec. 3, 2015, 1:06 PM
    | Dec. 3, 2015, 1:06 PM | 13 Comments
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