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  • Sep. 8, 2013, 10:12 AM
    • Economists forecast retail sales rose 0.4% in August which will mark a slight acceleration from July's pace, although they note auto sales likely accounted for a good portion of the month's momentum.
    • The early read on September for U.S. retailers is that a continuation of weak mall traffic and a heightened promotional stance is occurring.
    • By sector, retailers with a mix of healthcare products (WAG, COST) or sitting in the sweet spot where consumer "trade down" (TJX, ROST, SIG) to their products are holding up better than many apparel sellers (AEO, ARO, LTD, GPS, M, KSS).
    • Related ETFs: XRT, RTH, PMR, RETL.
    | Sep. 8, 2013, 10:12 AM | 7 Comments
  • Sep. 5, 2013, 10:34 AM
    • The latest round of sales reports from U.S. retailers mostly came in ahead of analyst estimate, but an increase in promotional activity from the sector could be felt down the line when quarterly bottom lines are reported.
    • The general trend of apparel sellers suffering as consumers spend on big-ticket items such as automobiles and home improvements seems to be growing stronger.
    • Related ETFs: XRT, RTH, PMR, RETL.
    | Sep. 5, 2013, 10:34 AM | Comment!
  • Aug. 28, 2013, 10:50 AM
    • Retail traffic to U.S. stores has declined in 8 out of the last 10 weeks, according to data compiled from ShopperTrak.
    • Though a few on-trend firms such as Michael Kors (KORS +0.1%) and Express (EXPR +8.5%) are still firing on all cylinders, and a heat wave in the Midwest has had an effect, the overall trend for the back-to-school season and holiday season looks weak.
    • Analysts also think consumers are likely to pick up their reliance on deals as discretionary spending on housing and automobiles "crowds out" normal outlays.
    • Related ETFs: XRT, RTH, PMR, RETL.
    | Aug. 28, 2013, 10:50 AM | 1 Comment
  • Aug. 21, 2013, 1:40 PM
    • Retail is in a state of "bifurcation" as on-trend luxury retailers (KORS, JWN, TIF) and home improvement specialists (HD, LOW) thrive, while heavyweight merchandise retailers (WMT, TGT, COST), mall-based apparel chains (AEO, ARO, LTD), and discounters (DG, DLTR, FDO) disappoint.
    • As execs with Target noted during the firm's earnings call this morning, consumers seem more than happy to buy new automobiles and fix up their houses - but have tightened up on toothbrushes, socks, and soap.
    • A few companies - through some good luck and solid execution - sit in a consumer demand sweet spot. Ross Stores (RST), TJX Companies (TJX), and Subaru (FUJHY.PK) come to mind.
    • Related ETFs: XRT, RTH, PMR, RETL.
    | Aug. 21, 2013, 1:40 PM | 4 Comments
  • Aug. 15, 2013, 7:37 AM
    • The warning signs have been out for a few weeks, but Wal-Mart's (WMT) Q2 report confirms that consumers in the U.S. have been pulling back.
    • Though the excuses from companies vary - weather, auto purchases, payroll tax hike - the trend toward softer discretionary spending on lower traffic remains consistent.
    • Sector alert: In addition to missing analyst estimates, Wal-Mart also showed a jump in inventory levels in Q2 and warned on emerging markets.
    • On watch: Costco (COST), PriceSmart (PSMT), Target (TGT)
    • Related ETFs: XRT, RTH, PMR, RETL.
    | Aug. 15, 2013, 7:37 AM | 1 Comment
  • Aug. 12, 2013, 11:14 AM
    • Earnings reports this week from Wal-Mart (WMT +0.6%), Nordstrom (JWN +1.9%), and Macy's (M -0.9%) have heightened importance due to the storm clouds which seem to be gathering over consumer spending for the second half of the year.
    • What to watch: Wal-Mart's forecast for Q2 same-store sales is fairly wide at 0% to 2%, a dip into negative territory could turn sentiment south in a hurry. The word "promotional" could spook investors of Macy's and Nordstrom, while commentary from all three retailers on early back-to-school sales trends will be critical for sentiment sector-wide.
    • Related ETFs: XRT, RTH, PMR, RETL
    | Aug. 12, 2013, 11:14 AM | 1 Comment
  • Aug. 8, 2013, 9:51 AM
    • Taken as a group, the retailers reporting July sales figures today missed analyst estimates as lower traffic in stores and a heightened promotional stance in the sector took a toll.
    • Despite the sub-par performance from Costco, Aeropostale, and others - the S&P Retail ETF (XRT) is up 0.7% to take back some ground lost during the tough retail week.
    | Aug. 8, 2013, 9:51 AM | Comment!
  • Aug. 7, 2013, 12:04 PM
    • The slash in profit guidance from American Eagle Outfitters (AEO -3.2%) earlier this week seems to have set off a ripple effect that is still spreading.
    • Yesterday, it was mall-based retailers which took it on the chin and today Deutsche Bank is out with lowered comparable-store sales estimates for Dick's Sporting Goods (DKS -1.2%), Kohl's (KSS -1.2%), Target (TGT -0.4%), J.C. Penney (JCP -3.2%), and Staples (SPLS -1.4%).
    • Boutique firm Cleveland Research - which has a solid history of calling out moves in Wal-Mart's (WMT -0.8%) sales trends - is reported to have turned negative on the retailing giant.
    • The S&P Retail ETF (XRT) is off 1.7% after falling back yesterday too.
    | Aug. 7, 2013, 12:04 PM | 6 Comments
  • Jun. 27, 2013, 9:28 AM
    Money poured into the S&P Retail SPDR (XRT) yesterday, the fund seeing AUM rise more than 28% to nearly $2.8B. Also seeing big inflows was the Barclays 1-3 Month T-Bill SPDR (BIL) with AUM up more than 27% to about $1.5B. Seeing a big exit was the First Trust S&P REIT ETF (FRI) with AUM off 18% to about $375M - not surprisingly, trading volume for the product was about 15x the norm.
    | Jun. 27, 2013, 9:28 AM | Comment!
  • Jun. 25, 2013, 10:43 AM
    Short interest in S&P 500 stocks has virtually disappeared, but what few remain are concentrated in Telecom (IYZ), Commercial Services, Semiconductors (XSD), Consumer Durables (XLY), and Retail (XRT). Where they're not are in Household Goods (XLP), Autos (CARZ), and Utilities (XLU, IDU).
    | Jun. 25, 2013, 10:43 AM | Comment!
  • May 31, 2013, 8:45 AM
    A below par reading on personal spending for April was affected by lower gas prices and home heating bills and isn't a biting indictment on retail spending (AEO, ANF, ARO, BBBY, BBY, BJ, CHS, COH, COST, DG, DLTR, GPS, HD, JCP, JWN, KSS, LOW, LTD, M, NDN, NKE, ODP, PIR, PLCE, RSH, SKS, SPLS, TGT, TJX, URBN, WMT, WSM, ZLC), according to economists. Auto sales also cooled off just a bit in April which had an impact. So far, retail trends have been largely favorable in May as the height of the spring selling season shifted a few weeks later.
    | May 31, 2013, 8:45 AM | 4 Comments
  • May 10, 2013, 12:32 PM
    A number of retailers are seeing some speculative buying after True Religion TRLG lands a takeover offer and Gap puts in a powerhouse month for sales to help lift sentiment. The S&P Retail ETF (XRT) is up 1.1%, but might be doing better on the day if not for its heavy weighting currently into drugstore and grocery stocks. Gainers: FNP +4.1%, JOEZ +2.3%, VFC +1.5%, JNY +1.9%, GES +2.1%, APP +2.2%, BKE +1.5%.
    | May 10, 2013, 12:32 PM | 1 Comment
  • May 9, 2013, 11:55 AM
    Retail stocks (XRT) were bid up a bit too much, according to AlixPartners' Steve Nevill. High-profile misses on April sales from Limited Brands (LTD -1.8%) and Costco (COST -0.3%) - as well as the soft Q1 numbers from Ann (ANN +4.3%) and Wet Seal (WTSL +5.7%) show that Wall Street might have been expecting too big of a bounce in consumer spending too soon. The price-aware climate appears just right for TJX Companies (TJX +0.8%) and Ross Stores (ROST +0.3%) though, as the pair kept up its winning ways during the month.
    | May 9, 2013, 11:55 AM | Comment!
  • May 6, 2013, 7:27 AM
    The S&P 500 (SPY) is fairly valued, says Goldman, but opportunity lies in cyclicals (XLY, XLE, XLI, XLB) which are more undervalued vs. defensives (XLU, XLP, XLV, XTL) than at any time in the last 15 years. "Given the 4 P/E multiple point head start, even a slight valuation normalization should translate into outperformance of cyclicals over defensives during the next 12 months."
    | May 6, 2013, 7:27 AM | 1 Comment
  • May 3, 2013, 8:00 AM
    "We don't want to sell in May and we continue to prefer cyclicals (XLY, XLI, XLB, XLE) ," says JPMorgan's Tom Lee, fully returned to his normal bullish stance. He notes client positioning is "dramatically different" from the heavily long stance of the last 3 years at this time. More, the downturn in gasoline prices could ad 50 bps to GDP in Q2, and the rally in high-yield suggests the economy is set to get stronger.
    | May 3, 2013, 8:00 AM | 1 Comment
  • Apr. 23, 2013, 6:19 AM
    The Senate yesterday voted 74-20 to limit debate on legislation that would force retailers to collect taxes for online sales, opening the way for a final vote on the measure, which could take place this week. The White House officially backed the bill for the first time, although its prospects in the House are uncertain even if its passes the Senate.
    | Apr. 23, 2013, 6:19 AM | Comment!
XRT Description
The SPDR® S&P® Retail ETF seeks to replicate as closely as possible, before expenses, the total return performance of the S&P Retail Select Industry® Index. Our approach is designed to provide portfolios with low portfolio turnover, accurate tracking, and lower costs.
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Sector: Services
Country: United States
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