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Halloween Provides Retail Boost

BY CSA STAFF

New York City, An International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) and UBS Securities report showed that Halloween shopping contributed to a slight increase in chain-store sales for the week ending Oct. 27. Sales grew 0.1% from the prior week, according to the report. On a year-over-year basis, sales grew by 2.5%.

“Although it is always difficult to assess what the most important drivers of sales are in any given week, Halloween is the likely cause for the latest week’s lift since the warm weather, fires in California and higher gasoline prices were clearly negative factors,” said Michael P. Niemira, chief economist for ICSC. “Overall, ICSC Research continues to expect that October sales will increase by about 2% on a year-over-year basis,” Niemira added.

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Event experts bring exclusive line to HSN

BY CSA STAFF

NEW YORK HSN today announced that it will be the exclusive retailer of a new lifestyle line from celebrity event planners Lara Shriftman and Elizabeth Harrison.

The Party Confidential Collection, which will be available on HSN in November, features candles, crystal candlesticks, glasses, decanters, barware, stainless steel serving trays and white porcelain platters. The collection also includes guides to help create the ideal cocktail party: the Party Confidential book, Fete Accompli and Fete Accompli workbook.

“Lara and Elizabeth are the force behind some of Hollywood’s best parties,” said Mindy Grossman, ceo of IAC Retailing. “Their distinctive style and voice is reflected in The Party Confidential Collection and we’re thrilled to share that with our customers.”

The items in the collection are priced under $100.00.

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Gap Inc. investigates child labor claims

BY CSA STAFF

SAN FRANCISCO Gap Inc. Sunday responded to media reports on the use of child labor in an unauthorized facility, that was responsible for a single product for Gap.

According to the company, last week it learned of an allegation of child labor at a facility in India that was working on one product for GapKids. An investigation was immediately launched. The company noted that a very small portion of a particular order placed with one of its vendors was apparently subcontracted to an unauthorized subcontractor without the companys knowledge or approval. Gap Inc. added that was in direct violation of the companys agreement with the vendor under its Code of Vendor Conduct.

We strictly prohibit the use of child labor. This is a non-negotiable for us and we are deeply concerned and upset by this allegation. As weve demonstrated in the past, Gap has a history of addressing challenges like this head-on, and our approach to this situation will be no exception,” said Marka Hansen, president of Gap North America.

Hansen added that in 2006 Gap Inc. ended business deals with 23 factories due to code violations.

As soon as we were alerted to this situation, we stopped the work order and prevented the product from being sold in stores. While violations of our strict prohibition on child labor in factories that produce product for the company are extremely rare, we have called an urgent meeting with our suppliers in the region to reinforce our policies,” Hansen said.

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