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Report: September same-store sales ekes out gain

BY CSA STAFF

Columbus, Ohio Retail same-store sales results improved in September, but shoppers also signaled that they would continue to restrain their shopping plans going forward, according to a Retail Forward report

Same-store sales, excluding Wal-Mart Stores, increased 0.8% in September among 32 retailers — most of them apparel retailers. The results were better than the decline of 2.5% last month and 0.5% in September 2008 for the same composite measure calculated without Wal-Mart. Including Wal-Mart, same-store sales were up 1.3% in September 2008.

Despite the improvement, shoppers reported in September’s ShopperScape survey by Retail Forward that they will keep their spending plans restrained for the month ahead, as well as for Halloween and the December holidays.

According to the ShopperScape survey, shoppers that said they plan to spend less in the next month climbed back up to 47% in September, up from 38% in August, which was the smallest share of shoppers planning to cut back since February 2008.

Halloween spending should not see a major letup, according to the survey. About one-third of shoppers (34%) said they plan to spend about the same as last year on Halloween. That’s the same percentage as last year, although that remains down significantly from 2007 and 2006.

About 28% of shoppers said they plan to spend less than last year on Halloween.

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Staples working to protect the forests

BY CSA STAFF

Staples and Dogwood Alliance are teaming up with other conservation groups, wood products companies and landowners to announce a new project that will protect forests, combat climate change and help develop sources of paper and wood products certified to the high standards of the Forest Stewardship Council, FSC.

The Carbon Canopy is focused on forests in the Southern U.S., the largest paper and wood-producing region in the world where 90% of the forests are privately owned. The Carbon Canopy’s goal is to create financial incentives for landowners to increase forest conservation and restoration efforts and to certify management practices to the high standards of FSC.

Carbon Canopy partners include: Staples, Dogwood Alliance, Columbia Forest Products, Pacific Forest Trust, FSC US, Rainforest Alliance, Green Press Initiative, Domtar, The Home Depot, Environmental Defense, Interface, The Forestland Group and The Keystone Center.

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Target’s dropping the prices on hot toys

BY CSA STAFF

MINNEAPOLIS , Minn. Target is cutting prices on top toys this holiday season.

As of Oct. 1 through the holiday season, a selection of toys will be discounted up to 50%.  Some of these discounted items include Barbie Fashion Doll, GI Joe Tough Troopers Figure and the Fisher-Price Little People Play ‘N Go Farm Set 50th Anniversary edition.  The full assortment of discounted toys can be found online at Target.com/weeklyad.

If Target does not offer the lowest price, Target stores nationwide will match locally advertised prices from other reatilers on identical single items.

For more information on Target and Target’s Low Price Promise, visit Target.com.

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