FINANCE

Disappointing June for Department Stores

BY CSA STAFF

New York City Shares of department stores dropped Thursday after retailers reported largely worse-than-expected same-store sales for June.

Shares of Nordstrom Inc. fell after the luxury department store said its same-store sales dropped 18.6%, due largely to a shift in a sale for women and kids from June into May.

The decline matched the expectations of Wall Street analysts, according to a poll by Thomson Financial. But the company also said its second-quarter profit would be either below or at the low end of its guidance for earnings of 65? to 70? per share.

Saks Inc. reported its same-store sales rose 1.9%, but analysts had expected a boost of 6.5% for the month. Saks blamed slow sales of women’s and men’s clothing for the sales drop.

At J.C. Penney Co. Inc., same-store sales dropped 2.4%, missing analysts’ expectations for a decline of 1.1%.

Dillard’s Inc.’s same-store sales also fell more than analysts expected. The retailer reported a drop of 5% for the month, mainly due to weak sales in the junior’s and children’s departments.

In one bright spot, Kohl’s Corp. beat analysts’ estimates. Its same-store sales rose 2.3% on strong sales of summer clothing. Analysts had expected a rise of just 0.6%.

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Hannah Montana wake up offered by Wal-Mart

BY CSA STAFF

BENTONVILLE, Ark. Continuing to capitalize on the popularity of the Hannah Montana brand, Wal-Mart is now offering children the chance to get a wake-up call from the popular Disney Channel character.

Parents can log on to http://www.hannahmontanacalls.com and set the date, time and theme of their child’s wake-up call. The calls are available anytime through Sept. 15. The calls are free for land lines, but the company noted mobile phone charges may apply.

“Disney’s Hannah Montana series continues to be a top hit among kids and tweens ages nine to 14,” said Ron Johnson, vp of retail sales development for Disney Consumer Products. “Through this promotion, Wal-Mart is adding some extra fun and excitement to the back to school season for all Hannah Montana fans across the country to enjoy.”

Wal-Mart has long established itself as the “Hannah Montana Retail Headquarters” and announced that along with the wake-up calls it would be offering a number of Hannah Montana merchandise for back-to-school including clothing, accessories and school supplies.

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Wal-Mart selects Oracle for data analysis

BY CSA STAFF

REDWOOD SHORES, Calif. Wal-Mart has selected Oracle’s Business Intelligence Suite Enterprise Edition Plus to provide data analysis for its operations, Oracle reported.

According to Oracle, Wal-Mart plans to use the system to administer its logistics, transportation, category management, finance, human resources, real estate, merchandising, store and club operations and other business resources, within Wal-Mart and Sam’s Clubs.

“Technology and analytics are essential to help us be more responsive and effective in serving Wal-Mart customers and Sam’s Club members,” said Rollin Ford, evp and cio of Wal-Mart. “The Oracle solution is very robust and it integrates well with our other applications, particularly as our business continues to grow in scale and complexity.”

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