Check out the mixed results at women’s clothing retailer Talbots.
The company posted a higher-than-expected quarterly profit as tighter inventory management boosted margins, but demand lagged analysts’ expectations.
Check out the power plays going on in the consumer world.
Walgreen said it will buy Duane Reed for $618 million in cash, catapulting the largest U.S. drugstore operator into the top spot in the New York City area. The deal price also includes the assumption of $457 million in debt.
Check out the deeper-than-expected quarterly loss at Talbots.
The women’s apparel retailer posted a fourth-quarter loss of $1.17 a share, excluding one-time items. That was far worse than what analysts polled by Reuters Estimates had expected. Sales fell 16 percent, while sales at stores open at least a year tumbled 25 percent.
Check out the not-so-chipper news in the retail world.
Restaurant chain Burger King reported lower profits and cut its full-year forecast due to the currency fluctuations, while cosmetics and perfume companies Estee Lauder and Elizabeth Arden rang up lower, albeit better-than-expected, profits and said they would cut jobs.
The Paris-based Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development says the U.S. economy has probably slipped into a recession that will last through the middle of 2009.
Check out Talbots’ sales forecast.
The struggling women’s apparel retailer said it expects same-store sales to be flat at its namesake stores in the current quarter and down low-to-mid single digits at its J. Jill stores.
That looks like progress, especially at the Talbots’ brand.
But, wait. Hasn’t the weakness in women’s apparel has been going on for some time now. So the glass-half-empty view would be to look at how that forecast compares with a year ago.
Same-store sales at Talbots’ stores fell 8.2 percent last year (and J. Jill same-store sales fell 6.5 percent).
So there might be some improvement coming at Talbots’, but it is off a weak comparison.
Then again, with how women’s apparel has gone lately, flat same-store sales might be a welcome new fashion trend.
Also in the basket:
Dollar Tree posts higher quarterly profit
Brown Shoe 2nd-quarter profit down; cuts outlook
Urban Outfitters Fashion Growth Plan (Wall Street Journal)
Check out the majority owner of Talbots exerting more control.
The women’s apparel retailer, which has endured hardships in recent months including falling sales, job cuts, an executive departure and a credit problem, said on Thursday that Tsutomu Kajita would become chairman of its board.