Shop Talk

Retailers, consumers and prices

Check Out Line: More signs of recovery everywhere

March 19, 2010

BOOZECheck out better retail sales in Canada and big booze makers anticipating improvement worldwide.

Looks like the United States is not the only place where retail sales are perking up or are set to.

Canadians buying home renovation supplies to take advantage of a temporary tax credit helped boost retail sales north of the border by 0.7 percent in January for a 6 percent year-on-year increase. The news comes a week after the U.S. Department of Commerce said retail sales in February showed better than expected improvement. (Not sure why the Canadians need that much more time to tally their sales, but no matter, the trend appears clear.)

Apparently spirits makers are seeing that too, and think it will extend beyond North America. At the Reuters Food and Agriculture Summit in Chicago this week, two of the world’s biggest spirits groups — Britain’s Diageo Plc and U.S.-based Fortune Brands Inc — said they are ramping up marketing spending ahead of an anticipated pick-up in global demand. Cheers to that.

Also in the basket:

Organic foods finding a niche, but that’s all

Perry Ellis profit beats view

Flamboyant Congolese bring dandy chic to Paris

(Reuters photo)

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