Discounters Rescue July Comps
Home & Textiles Today Staff -- Home Textiles Today, August 11, 2008
While department store operators finished July lagging comparative store sales goals, discounters ramped up comps each week and finished well ahead, resulting in an overall on-target retail month, the Johnson Redbook reported.
The Index was up 3.5% in the final week of July, for full-month comp gain of 2.9%. Discounters posted a sturdy 5.3% rise – as department store comps fell 1.1%.
"Closing out the month and the second quarter, some retailers reported a firmer tone in sales toward the weekend, especially in apparel and school-related purchases, which they attributed to the beginning of back-to-school demand and shoppers taking advantage of sales tax breaks which some states had in effect since Friday," said analyst Catlin Levis.
"Merchants reported that the tax-free holidays drew more store traffic than on a normal weekend in states including: Alabama, District of Columbia, Georgia, Iowa, Louisiana, Missouri, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia," she noted.
August is a four-week retail month ending August 30. "Our preliminary target for August is for 2.8% same-store growth, leaving the month about 0.6% behind July," Levis said.
Johnson Redbook Index
Fourth Week of July, year-over-year % change
|*Including chain stores and traditional department stores
Source: Johnson Redbook Index