Shop Talk

Retailers, consumers and prices

Check Out Line: The retail contraction continues

January 20, 2009

ITALY-FASHION/Check out job cuts in retail spreading across the globe.

Last week, Neiman Marcus and Saks outlined plans to cut jobs. On Monday, it was Europe’s turn to join the fray.

Metro AG,  Germany’s top listed retailer, plans to cut 15,000 jobs or about 5 percent of its global workforce by 2012 amid a broader restructuring program, a source close to the company told Reuters on Tuesday. The company, which owns supermarkets and department stores, employs about 300,000 people in 2,200 stores across 32 countries.

Meanwhile, British luxury goods firm Burberry announced up to $49 million of savings, including 540 job losses in the UK and Spain.

Burberry beat forecasts with a 9 percent rise in third-quarter revenue, helped by deep discounting. But the 153-year-old maker of upmarket raincoats and handbags said double-digit percentage growth in Asia and most of Europe was offset by a double-digit decline in the United States and a fall of over 20 percent in Spain.

“It’s extremely challenging, volatile and difficult,” said Chief Financial Officer Stacey Cartwright. ”It’s not about consumers trading down. It’s more about there being less footfall around and when consumers come in, they’re buying less.”

Also in the basket:

More peanut products recalled as probe continues

Crunched fashionistas still want novelty-experts

Australia’s wine industry at a crisis crossroad

TomTom cuts guidance, still within bank covenants

Centralizing at Hudson’s Bay Trading Co. (WWD, subscription required)

(Photo: Reuters)


True the scenario at present is gloomy…. Hope to see president Obama playing some Heroic role like great Roosevelt.
Everyone need to be positive in such a crisis.


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