Sad but true:
New Jersey’s got a whole lot of vacant retail space right now, as big and small stores have closed down and skipped town – we’re pretty sure this is happening in other cities, too.
Barney’s has officially suspended spring orders until it gets its financial act together.
The National Retail Federation predicts that the average American consumer will spend $117 on Easter candy, gifts, food, and decorations, and that’s a bad thing because they spent $135 last year.
Nike’s reorganizing into six geographical focuses (rather than four), which is probably music to the ears of shareholders. It will mean a 4% workforce reduction, though.
Light at the end of the tunnel:
While most retail profits have plummeted, Ross has experienced record growth and plans to “increase its square footage by 5%” in 2009, eventually becoming a 1200-store chain.
The juggernaut of juggernauts, Wal-Mart, continues to make everyone else look like a fool. It’s giving thanks to its hard-working US hourly employees – or specifically, giving them two billion bucks, in the form of bonuses, 401K contributions, profit sharing, and in-store discounts. That’s probably Wal-Mart’s best attempt at good PR, well, ever.
Even Hermes, a luxury firm, is saving face in this economy. In nearly every market but Japan, profits are up. So, Hermes is opening up 20 new outlets in Asia and the US primarily. It seems that upscale brands/designer fashions have a fighting chance if they’ve got a global edge.