FINANCE

RetailNext: July shopping trends show some improvement

BY Dan Berthiaume

San Jose, California – U.S. shopping trends showed some improvement in July 2014, although not all metrics experienced positive change, compared to the same month a year earlier. According to the RetailNext Insights Report of more than 13 million shopping trips in July 2014, sales per shopper increased 3.5% from July 2013.

However, brick-and-mortar retailers experienced an average year-over-year decline of 7.8% across traffic, which translated to a drop in sales of only 4.3%. Average transaction value (ATV) improved 6.7%, while conversion remained flat at -0.05%

In addition, Saturday, Aug. 2, when temperatures across the U.S. were the coolest since 2009, limiting demand for warm-weather categories, marked the highest levels of traffic, transactions, sales, and ATV. Monday, July 21, when weather patterns were relatively dry and warm across the U.S., marked the lowest traffic, transactions, sales/shopper, and ATV.

Regionally, consistent upticks in sales per shopper (SPS) allowed physical retailers to limit sales declines despite reductions in traffic and flat conversions.

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REAL ESTATE

Phillips-Edison acquires Colorado shopping center

BY Dan Berthiaume

Cincinnati — Phillips Edison-ARC Grocery Center REIT II Inc. has acquired Kipling Marketplace, adding a property in Colorado to the company’s portfolio. Kipling Marketplace is a 90,124-sq.-ft. grocery store-anchored shopping center located in Littleton, Colorado, part of the Denver metropolitan statistical area.

Kipling Marketplace is anchored by a Safeway grocery store, the number two grocer in the Denver area. Other national and regional tenants at the center include Sylvan Learning, Dairy Queen, Cost Cutters, and H&R Block.

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FINANCE

Survey: Most back-to-school shoppers won’t buy computers

BY Dan Berthiaume

Boise, Idaho – More than half of back-to-school shoppers will not purchase computers this year. According to the Crucial.com Back-to-School Shopping Report, which includes responses from 1,000 adults in the U.S., found that 57% of respondents do not plan to purchase laptops, desktops, tablets, or mobile devices for school this year, as a vast majority of consumers are increasingly concerned with becoming more frugal.

The research showed U.S. consumers, and back-to-school shoppers in particular, are seeking ways to cut back where they can. Seventy-three percent of respondents said they were very concerned with saving money, a number that increased to 82% for back-to-school shoppers. In general, 82% of respondents said it was more important to save money than save time, and 81% said they would be most inclined to put money toward savings or paying off bills if given $1,000 to spend.

Back-to-school shoppers cited several ways they save money, including clipping coupons (82%), do-it-yourself projects (57%), and buying generic brands (57%). In addition, 61% of back-to-school shoppers said they would try to fix a slow computer themselves to save money, rather than spend money on expensive repairs. Fifty-eight percent said they expected a computer to last at least five years.

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