The Phaserl


Retail Woes: They Shopped Till They Dropped

by Wolf Richter, Testosterone

Men’s apparel retailer Jos. A. Bank Clothiers warned that sales in the quarter ending August 3 had plunged 11% from a year ago. OK, so it suffered from management foul-ups, goofy marketing, obnoxious ads, and – at least at the store I looked at – dusty shirts on the shelf. But it wasn’t an outlier. Instead, it was the latest entry on the laundry list of revenue-challenged retailers whose woes are spreading relentlessly across the US.

Walmart saw its same-stores sales in the US skid by 0.3% last quarter, down for the second quarter in a row, as nothing seemed to work for it anymore. Its customers, whose real wages had been declining for years, were struggling. So it lowered its sales forecast. “Our expectations for the back half of the year are through a lens of cautious consumer spending,” CFO Charles Holley explained gingerly.

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