Shop Talk

Retailers, consumers and prices

Check Out Line: The battle for lower prices


Check Out the competition in the mall.GENERALGROWTH/

As retailers tried to attract consumers for some post-Labor Day shopping, apparel retailers Aeropostale and Charlotte Russe beat Gap Inc’s Old Navy chain in the pricing war this month, according to Eric Beder,  associate director of research for Brean Murray Carret & Co.

While Aeropostale has “never looked better” with its combination of good merchandise and prices, Arden B owner Wet Seal remains the “low price leader,” Beder said.

Consumers have continued to seek lower prices for items like clothes and some surveys have predicted that although they might be willing to open up their wallets a little, they will still favor discounts as they draw up shopping lists ahead of the holiday season.

Another teen retailer Abercrombie, which usually has higher prices, may be realizing that consumers are likely staying cautious spenders and is offering more promotions, Beder said in  the research note.