REAL ESTATE

Upscale outlet mall planned for St. Louis

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Chesterfield, Mo. — Bloomington Hills, Mich.-based mall owner Taubman said Thursday that it has broken ground on a high-end outlet mall in Chesterfield, Mo., in suburban St. Louis.

Taubman Prestige Outlets Chesterfield is slated to open in fall 2013 and will feature 450,000 sq. ft. of retail space with more than 100 stores, an open-air design, dog-friendly grounds, access to a levee-fitness trail and a food court.

“Over the last year we’ve garnered all required approvals, from City, County and State agencies, to the Monarch-Chesterfield Levee District, FEMA and the Army Corps of Engineers and we are pleased to have these specific approvals required for groundbreaking,” said William Taubman, COO.

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FINANCE

IBM forecast: Home furnishings to see big gains in Q2

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Armonk, N.Y. — An IBM analytics-based forecast released Thursday expects that sales of home furnishings in the United States will shoot higher in the second quarter, with in-store sales increasing nearly 8% to $23.2 billion and online sales increasing 28.4%.

Combined in-store and online sales of home furnishings are expected to grow 16.6% in the second quarter.

IBM experts cited a number of important factors that could be driving purchases, including “Year of the Dragon” weddings and the trend toward accessorizing living spaces.

According to Dr. Michael Haydock, chief scientist and retail analytics leader for IBM Global Business Services, April sales are expected to grow 7.3% over the same period last year, to $7.568 billion; May growth is forecasted at $7.825 billion, an 8% year-over-year rise; and June is expected to see an 8.7% rise to $7.829 billion.

Online sales of home furnishings are expected to post a year-over-year increase of 30.7% in April, 25.9% in May and 29.1% in June, with sales for the quarter coming in at 28.4%. This forecast of online sales is based on real-time sales data from the web sites of more than 500 leading U.S. retailers, according to IBM.

  • IBM retail and analytics experts see a number of important trends bolstering home furnishing sales:
  • The concept of “accessorizing” is moving from the apparel market to home furnishings as many homeowners during the past few years have decided to stay put rather than move;
  • Homes are getting smaller, compelling consumers to “resize” their furnishings to accommodate smaller spaces;
  • Disposable income is rising as more people go back to work; and
  • Rental activity is increasing.

“Consumers are opting to give their home a new look by remodeling and accessorizing,” said Jill Puleri, global retail leader for IBM Global Business Services. “Retailers can benefit from this behavioral shift by considering their product mix, promotion and presentation and by marketing home accessories aggressively.”

Puleri noted that the Chinese Year of the Dragon, which began on Feb. 4, is shaping up to be especially popular year for weddings, which could also be boosting home furnishing sales.

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OPERATIONS

Kronos: Fewer people applying for retail jobs

BY Staff Writer

Chelmsford, Mass. — The Retail Labor Index released Thursday by Kronos Inc. indicated that applications for retail jobs are waning.

The April Index, which characterizes the March 2012 state of the demand and supply sides of the labor market within the U.S. retail sector, prepared by Macroeconomic Advisers, was down slightly in March to a still solid 4.3%. (The index is defined as the ratio of hires to applications within a given month, expressed as a percentage. A level of 3% means that for every 100 applications received, three hires occurred).

The latest results were second consecutive reading above 4% and only the third reading of 4.0 or higher since October 2008.


The retailers representing 18,362 distributed locations across the United States that make up the Kronos data sample made 33,684 hires (seasonally adjusted) in March 2012, down 11.6% from February. While the level of hires in March was below the recent pace of hires (roughly 35,000 over the last six months), it was broadly consistent with the 2011 average and remains above levels seen in 2009 and 2010.

The number of applications received by retailers included in the Kronos sample fell 10% to 784,941 in March 2012 from an upwardly revised 872,341 in February 2012, all on a seasonally adjusted basis. The level of applications in March was down nearly 250,000 from its level one year ago, when applications reached a near record high. Applications have been trending downward since the second half of last year, and the sharp decline in March brought them to their lowest level since September 2007, just prior to the onset of the recession.


“With overall labor market conditions improving, potential applicants are likely seeking job opportunities in sectors outside of retail, consistent with the recent declining trend in applications for retail positions,” said Chris Varvares, senior managing director and co-founder, Macroeconomic Advisers.

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K.Wilson says:
Mar-19-2013 11:17 am

Your work is very good and I
Your work is very good and I appreciate you and hopping for some more informative posts. Thank you for sharing great information to us.Market Research Jobs

K.Wilson says:
Mar-19-2013 11:17 am

Your work is very good and I appreciate you and hopping for some more informative posts. Thank you for sharing great information to us.Market Research Jobs

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