New York City Black Friday weekend failed to give retailers the big boost they had hoped as many chains reported weak results in November. As of Thursday morning, Thomson Reuters, which tracks monthly same-store sales for 30 chains such as Target, Gap and J.C. Penney, said 15 of the retailers in its Same Store Sales Index have reported their results. Of those 15, 85% missed analysts' sales estimates while 15% beat expectations.
The much softer-than-expected early numbers prompted Thomson Reuters retail analyst Jharonne Martis to say that November's performance will most likely be worse than expected.
Apparel retailers were hit especially hard as consumers continue to hold back on discretionary spending. Among the bright spots was Limited Brands, whose same-store sales rose 3% in the month ended Nov. 28, beating the 2.5% estimated decline in an analyst survey by Thomson Reuters. Victoria's Secret stores posted a 3% gain, compared with analysts' estimate of a 5.3% drop. Total sales climbed to $781.1 million from $755.6 million.
Abercrombie & Fitch Co. said Thursday that sales in its stores that have been open at least a year fell 17% in November, worse than analysts predicted.
In other apparel specialty same-store sales results for November:
Gap said its Old Navy North America same-store sales climbed 6%, while Gap North America and Banana Republic North America both fell 4%. Same-store sales at international stores declined 5% for the four weeks ended Nov. 28. Analysts expected a decline of 3.8%. Total monthly sales edged up 2% to $1.42 billion.