Shop Talk

Retailers, consumers and prices

Check Out Line: Modest gains expected for U.S. retailers

August 3, 2010

shop1Check out the modest gains expected for U.S. retailers in July.

U.S. retailers look set to report a small improvement in same-store sales for July as anxious consumers cut back on spending and big chains returned to discounting to lure them into stores.

Analysts are expecting same-store sales growth of 3.1 percent, compared with a decline of 5.1 percent last year, with department stores and discounters showing the biggest gains, according to Thomson Reuters.

July would be the 11th straight month of improving sales, but analysts warn beating last year’s weak results isn’t anything to crow about and new threats are on the horizon as consumer sentiment in July sagged to its lowest level since November.

“The consumer confidence numbers are hideous, and the promotions we’re seeing in the malls are pretty intense,” said Cowen & Co analyst Laura Champine. 

Most retailers will report same-store sales on Thursday. 

Meanwhile, in the consumer world, Procter & Gamble posted a weaker-than-expected quarterly profit as higher spending on marketing offset sales growth, while leather goods maker Coach reported better-than-expected earnings as demand picked up in North America and China.

Also in the basket:

OfficeMax sales miss estimates; sees weak Q3

MillerCoors Q2 income up as beer prices rise

Molson Coors profit rises

ADM profit tops Street view on improved margins

Fresh Del Monte Q2 profit beats Wall Street view

Dean Foods Q2 profit tops market, Q3 view lags

Kay Jewelers eyes glamour to boost sales

Starbucks says Via coffee sales hit $100 mln in 10 months

US lawsuit claims Toyota ignored safety issues

(Reuters photo)

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