Shop Talk

Retailers, consumers and prices

Check Out Line: Bringing back discretionary spending


costco-shopperCheck out analysts’ calls on middle and upper income shoppers.

Thursday’s sales reports showed that some consumers have started to buy their little luxuries again, a trend retail industry experts say is crucial for sales to rebound this fall and winter.

Michael Koskuba, Portfolio Manager for Victory Capital Management‘s Victory Large Gap Growth Fund, recommended that investors look into discount names with a discretionary bent, such as Target, which he owns in his fund.

“We thought, well, if things do start to improve they’ll be a beneficiary of that, and clearly we’ve seen the outperformance in the stocks,” Koskuba said of Target shares compared with those of Wal-Mart¬†Stores Inc so far this year.

“The discounters in general, especially the ones that do have the discretionary component to them, I think are the one that will continue to do well,” he said, citing companies such as Target and off-price retailer TJX.¬† “I think those are sort of the areas that investors should be focusing on.”