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Discounters Drag on October Comps

Same-store retail sales picked up by 3.2% during the third week of October, off from the 3.4% increase the preceding week, with sales for the three weeks month-to-date also beneath plan, rising by 3.4%, and just missing a goal of 3.5% growth, the Johnson Redbook Index reported.

For a third straight week consumers turned their backs on the nation's mass merchants for all but the most basic consumables, instead doing their apparel and discretionary spending at the nation's department stores. The upstairs segment saw comps by rise 4.1%, while discounters showed just a 2.6% gain.

For the three weeks month-to-date, department-store sales improved by 4.1%, besting a target of a 3.8% increase. Discounters, on the other hand, put up a disappointing 2.9% increase, well behind a targeted gain of 3.4%. HTT

Johnson Redbook Index
Third week of October, year-over-year % change

Week ended 10/7 10/14 10/21 10/28 Month Target
*Including chain stores and traditional department stores
Source: Johnson Redbook Index
Department stores* 4.1 4.2 4.1 4.1 3.8
Discounters 3.0 3.1 2.6 2.9 3.4
Redbook Average 3.4 3.5 3.2 3.4 3.5


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