Chain Store Sales Fall in Latest Week
New York City, U.S. chain store sales fell 1% for the week ended May 28, compared to a 0.2% dip the previous week, according to a joint report from the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) and UBS. Cooler weather slowed consumer purchases of seasonal goods, taking the index to its lowest reading in nine weeks, according to the report. Sales for the same week a year ago rose 3.1%, after a 3.7% increase the preceding week.
“With the industry facing a tough comparison in May 2005 against May 2004’s 5.7% increase and less-than-favorable weather, the industry performed reasonably well over the past four weeks,” said Michael Niemira, ICSC chief economist and director of research, in a statement.
Conn’s Posts Strong 1Q
Beaumont, Texas, Conn’s Inc., a regional retailer of home appliances, consumer electronics, mattresses, and lawn-and-garden products, reported a 26.1% increase in net income to $9.8 million in the first quarter. Total revenues grew 17.3% to $158.2 million on a same-store sales increase of 7.3%.
Wal-Mart Steps Up Hispanic Marketing
New York City, Wal-Mart is beefing up its efforts to target Hispanics, according to a report in today’s Wall Street Journal. In addition to printing ad circulars in both English and Spanish and publishing a Spanish-language magazine, the retailer also is teaming up with Sprint to offer a new prepaid wireless service specifically geared to Hispanics, the paper reports.