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  • JCG--sell ahead of earnings (May28 after the bell)

    On May 26, I wagered JCG earnings will not justify the vol boost.

    JCREW (JCG): closed $19.89. average volume, 2.7 million shares.

    Sell-short the stock ahead of earnings, Thursday May28 after the close (4:30pm eastern).
    Earnings estimate is $0.11/share, a sharp $(-0.36) lower than last years Actual earnings number.

    Michelle Obama loves JCREW twinsets and smart tailored skirts--clearly a champion for THAT merchandise mix. Mrs. President, you look snappy.
    However, she is NOT seen wearing the other 98% of the JCREW merchandise assortment.

    Open question to Mickey D(rexler): Who's the champion for all that skinny pant, square-top (no breasts)and junk jewelry assortment?

    While I am waiting for Mr.JCREW to comment, my answer: NOBODY.
    Need proof? Just visit a local JCREW store--racks and racks of horrible clothes, marked down 3 times, plus an additional in store 30% off--and still no one at the register buying.
    The website—even worse, crowded and disorganized.

    Bottomline: even if you put poop in a bag, and mark-it down to $15.99, it’s still poop. With so much poop, JCREW should open a garden nursery.

    TRADE: go short in front of Earnings. Expiration is 18 trade days out. Pocket the cash, and hit the beach. Bikini optional.

    JCG stock closed  $19.89 (May 26):
    --Jun 25c $0.25
    --Jun22.5c $0.70
    --Jun 20c (at-the-money) $1.60
    --Jun 17.50c (in-the-money) $3.10
    --Jun 20p $1.80 (at-the-money)
    --Jun 17.50c $0.80
    --Jun 15c $0.25

    Need color? Check in tomorrow for a good-look book of JCG historical earnings analysis.


    ***DISCLOSURE: short JCG***

    Tags: JCG
    May 27 5:55 PM | Link | Comment!
  • GPS (The Gap,Inc) $17.36: Three ways to piss off a customer. Richard Jaffe has it wrong.

    Richard Jaffe, analyst at Stifel Nicolaus, has got it wrong about Gap Stores. (May 27, 2009) reports Memorial Day Sales were measly, however analysts anticipate the May Same-Store-Sales numbers (release date June1) will be brighter than the April numbers. TheStreet mentions Richard Jaffe's outlook:

    "Richard Jaffe, analyst at Stifel Nicolaus, expects Gap(GPS Quote) TJX(TJX Quote), Ross Stores(ROST Quote) and Kohl's(KSS Quote) to deliver the biggest gains during the month, with their value-oriented merchandise."

    Let me ask: When was the last time you Richard Jaffe shopped at the Gap?

    Over Memorial Day weekend, I visited all three flagship stores in San Francisco: Banana Republic, The Gap, and Old Navy, and my experience can be summed up as: F for Frustrating.

    Gap does not value customers. Proof: Gap does not care if they piss off customers. I am a customer, and I was pissed at the price problems I experienced.

    Here's the story of three items from Banana Republic:
    Style#648404 Petite Solid Pintucked Faux-Wrap Dress, silk-cotton blend, original price $130.00.
    The Store experience--In the Petite area,dress was hanging in a niche area, crowded and crushed on a bar with dozens of the same dress. The rack was not sized, so I tore three fingernails fishing my hand-in to locate a size tag. Almost the last dress was my size, Petite XS. The price tag said: $74.99. Odd.
    The Online price--$59.99. (customer cheated of $15.00)
    I asked the cashier to honor the online price. Her response: "You need to bring us proof of this different price, and a manager will review the situation." The Cashier only has a number,1947167.

    Style#633751 Petite Shiny Pleated Sweater Dress, viscose, original price $150.00.
    The Store experience--In the Petite area, I looked and looked over every rack,nothing. I asked 3 salespeople (none who wearing BR clothes, just a tag to identify them as staff), and they insisted it was NOT a BR item: "Maybe you saw that at Bebe." What?? I had originally fallen in love with the item online, and wanted to try it on. I went downstairs to the Women area. I discovered 6 rooms (more than 2700 sq. feet of retail space) of ONLY SALE merchandise. After 20 minutes, two attempted phone calls to, I found the dress. No line for the dressing room, because no one was shopping, so I tried on the XS. Not bad, I need the Petite XS.
    The price tag said: $30.00. Odd.

    I carried the dress upstairs, and asked a salesperson to help me locate/buy the Petite Dress--I got passed onto the Concierge, Shannon. Shannon was helpful, and told me that the dress was only online and I had to buy it there. What about the price--online the item is $99.00. (customer cheated of $69.00)? She told I must buy-it online, then bring the item and receipt back to the store, and a manager will review the situation. I bought it online, and hopefully the manager will give me the price adjustment.

    Style#606551 BR Monogram Cashmere Long Cardigan, cashmere, original price $275.00.
    In Store experience--BR Monogram is the new premium line. On a table next to a busy door, there was a big messy pile of sweaters--like at Filene's Basement--in the heart of this disarray I found this lovely sweater. The size S fits beautifully as a dress, really--it hits me at the knees. If this is supposed to be a "cardigan" I guess BR designs for NCAAA volleyball players and not everyday women (the average American women is only 5ft4in)--no wonder earnings are so limp. The price tag: $41.99. Odd.
    The Online price--$129.99. (customer cheated of $88.00). I bought the sweater in-store, and asked the cashier about the price difference. The Cashier simply said: "Well, why are you asking? you got the good price, the online people are too lazy to come into the store, so why care if they need to pay more." What???

    Richard Jaffe, I invite you to openly share your Gap shopping experience. I’m sure your clients would like to read all about it.


    ***DISCLOSURE: no position***

    Tags: GPS
    May 27 5:50 PM | Link | Comment!
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