Retail: The Quiet Crisis
from CNN Money
There's a major American industry that lost 522,000 jobs last year and is on one of the longest sales losing streaks in its history. But the retail industry's crisis isn't getting the kind of government attention being showered on the nation's automakers. Monthly store sales have declined for six straight months. More
Shell-Shocked Retailers Seek Stimulus
By his own admission, eBay Chief Executive John Donahoe is "frustrated." With good reason. Fourth-quarter results reflect the company's first-ever quarterly revenue decline, a sign that Donahoe's effort to reignite growth has yet to take effect. On Jan. 21, the company said sales dropped 6.4 percent, to $2.04 billion, amid weakness in consumer spending and strength in the U.S. dollar, which reduces the value of overseas sales. More
Retailers Cut Inventory to Address Shift in Consumer Spending
from The Associated Press via The Los Angeles Times
Stung by the worry that shoppers − who cut spending by the most dramatic amount in at least 39 years this holiday season − may not start spending again for a long time, stores are making drastic changes. They are cutting out marginal suppliers, hiring outside experts to keep inventory lean, holding special events for those who are still buying and making extraordinary efforts to gauge customer satisfaction. More
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HyVee Aims to Simplify Healthy Shopping
Grocery store Hy-Vee has begun an effort to apply a nutritional rating system to all of its products within the next year. The rating system aims to give consumers quick and unambiguous information at the point of purchase on the nutritional value of any product. More
Circuit City Collapse Could Hit Real Estate Investors
The collapse of electronics retailer Circuit City could drive down shopping and strip mall rents, and deal another blow to commercial mortgage-backed securities' investors who have already seen their bond prices slide. Circuit City recently announced that it would close all its 567 U.S. stores and liquidate its assets. The move left 30,000 employees of the Woodland Hills, California-based company without work. More
Economy Makes Consumer Behavior Erratic
from the MediaPost News
If marketers and retailers are feeling at loose ends about how to adapt to consumer behavior, there's very good reason. Consumer attitudes are shifting noticeably within short time frames, heavily influenced by key events such as the financial meltdown of early October and the presidential election, as confirmed by week-by-week data now being released in reports by Experian Simmons. More
Wal-Mart Cuts Ribbon on Giant PV Array in Mexico, Canadaís First Green Store Prototype
from Greener Buildings
Wal-Mart's international operations have installed the largest photovoltaic solar power system in Latin America and opened Canada's first store to serve as a high-performance prototype for green building. More
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The World's Largest Malls
Thanks to the bum economy, not many people are hitting the malls these days. But that hasn't stopped developers from building them bigger and better than ever. In Asia, where land is cheap and labor costs are low, enormous shopping malls are popping up in Dubai, China, and the Philippines, with India expected to jump into the fold soon. More
Apple Sets Revenue Record on iPod Sales
Apple posted its first-ever quarter of more than $10 billion in revenue, in part due to sales of the iPod, which proved a popular holiday gift worldwide despite the U.S. recession. The company said that its revenue rose 6 percent to $10.2 billion in the fiscal first quarter ended Dec. 27, while earnings rose 2 percent to $1.6 billion. More
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Obama Girls Crash Retailer's Web site
The fashions of Michelle Obama weren't the only threads being reviewed Inauguration Day. It turns out that the first daughters did some success dressing, as well, and interest in their attire led to the crash of the J.Crew Web site, as shoppers tried to grab duplicates of the head-to-toe outfits. More
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