Shop Talk

Retailers, consumers and prices

Check Out Line: Earnings encouraging, but still hard to peg

February 8, 2010

HasbroCheck out how hard it is to figure out how well the economy is progressing, based on the earnings of consumer goods companies.

Toymaker Hasbro had a stellar fourth quarter, handily beating Wall Street’s expert forecasts, and said it expected its streak to continue in 2010. Hasbro got a lift from toys tied in with the hit “Transformers” movie and is expected to get even more help from characters such as Elmo, Cookie Monster and Big Bird under a 10-year deal signed last month with the Sesame Workshop.

On the other hand, drugstore chain CVS Caremark also reported better than expected profits ,but its sales fell short of Wall Street. Still, CVS did much better at its stores open at least a year than rival Walgreen, which posted back to back sales drops in December and January.

Also in the basket:

- Barnes & Noble’s Nook finally in stores this week
- Zale hoping for some love on Valentine’s Day

(Reuters photo)

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