SpendingPulse Report: June results mixed
Purchase, N.Y. — A report released Thursday by MasterCard Advisors, which tracked sales activity in the MasterCard payments network coupled with cash and check estimates, said that June sales continued May’s mixed bag with some sectors gaining and some losing momentum.
According to the MasterCard Advisors SpendingPulse report, the luxury and restaurant categories continued to add momentum to their performance in May, while overall year-over-year growth was supported by gasoline and grocery sales. The report also showed that specialty apparel gained while the electronics and appliances, furniture and furnishings and department stores sectors remained in negative territory.
“As we move into the summer, discretionary spending tends to shift to vacation-related categories, usually reflected in Travel sales and particularly in Lodging, although we are seeing some weakness in those areas,” said Michael McNamara, VP research and analysis for MasterCard Advisors SpendingPulse. “At the same time, June is peak season for weddings and graduations, and this may have helped the continuing strong growth of both Luxury and Jewelry sectors.”
Specialty apparel performed well in June, according to the report, although performance was helped somewhat by some easy year-over-year comparisons.
Other key findings from the report included: E-commerce was up 15.2% over June 2010, and the Luxury Index (excluding jewelry) was up 8.2% compared to a 4.7% gain in May. The SpendingPulse Luxury category includes luxury sales at high-end restaurants, food stores, department stores and general apparel categories.
Sheetz to add DC in North Carolina to support expansion
New York City — Convenience-store operator Sheetz will open a distribution facility by 2014 to support its expansion plans and increasing number of stores in the state, according to a report by The News & Observer. The distribution facility also will serve stores in southern Virginia and West Virginia, the report said.
Sheetz currently has 394 stores, with more than half in Pennsylvania. With a goal of 500 stores in three years, the chain is targeting North Carolina and West Virginia its top markets for expansion.
Bob Evans Farms to remodel 44 units
New York City — Bob Evans Farms will extend its “Farm-Fresh Refresh” renovation project to 44 locations in the Detroit and Toledo, Ohio, areas. The renovations are expected to begin in August 2011 and be finished by this November.
The new stores will include a bakery, a carry-out area and a redesigned retail area. The updated design features murals in the entryway depicting the heritage of Bob Evans and more modern furnishings, light fixtures and brighter color schemes in the dining room.
Currently, Bob Evans operates 563 restaurants in 18 states.