Shop Talk

Retailers, consumers and prices

Check Out Line: Spirited Sales

July 1, 2008

wine1.jpgCheck out rising spirits sales at Constellation Brands.

Today’s winner in the consumer products arena is wine, which looks to be a must-have item as higher gasoline prices demand more of consumers’ paychecks.

Constellation Brands, which makes Robert Mondavi wine and Svedka vodka, reported better-than-expected quarterly profit on strong sales, and backed its full-year outlook.

Brands such as Simi and Kim Crawford helped Constellation achieve double-digit growth in the United States.

While consumers are willing to buy finer wines, they are trading down with rental cars. Dollar Thrifty Automotive cut its full-year profit forecast on Tuesday, citing tough operating conditions. Competitor Hertz said in an interview that while consumers were still renting cars, they are opting for smaller ones that are more fuel-efficient.

Also in the basket:

Rhode Island court overturns lead-paint ruling

InBev sticks to Anheuser-Busch offer

Italy’s Barilla plans no more pasta price increases for now

Post Your Comment

We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see