July Retail Sales All Over The Map

by: Robert Zenilman

Excerpt from our One Page Annotated Wall Street Journal Summary (receive it by email every morning by signing up here):

Most Retailers Post Solid July Sales Despite Some Pockets of Weakness

  • Summary: Goldman Sachs' same store sales index rose 3.1% in July (beating a forecasted 2.8%, but below last July's 3.4%), with the gain concentrated in department stores at the expense of discounters. Discounters: The trifecta of high gas prices, rising interest rates and a softening housing market appears to be having a strong effect on the discount sector. While Costco (NASDAQ:COST) led the sector with same store sales up 7%, retail darling Target (NYSE:TGT) posted a same store sales increase of 3.1%, at the low end of its revised forecast of 3%-4% (the previous forecast was 4%-6%). Same store sales increased 2.4% at Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT) and 1.9% at BJ's Wholesale Club (NYSE:BJ) (including gasoline sales!). Department Stores: July's same store were up 4.9% at JC Penney (NYSE:JCP) , 3.3% at Federated (FD), and 5.3% at Nordstrom (NYSE:JWN). Apparel: Sames store sales in this sector were 7% at American Eagle Outfitters (AEOS) , 3% at Abercrombie & Fitch, with The Gap (NYSE:GPS) bringing up the rear with a 4% decrease. Miscellaneous: Struggling Sharper Image (SHRP) posted a decline in same store sales of 23%
  • Comment on related stocks/ETFs: Despite a back to school bump Rob Black has concerns with discounters, but is more upbeat on the luxury retail sector. Sharper Image continues its ride into the sunset.

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