By  on January 8, 2009

TOKYO--Deutsche Bank has initiated coverage of three leading department store operators in Japan and warned that the retailers are heading into a “prolonged and unprecedented sales downturn.”

The bank has initiated coverage of Isetan Mitsukoshi Holdings Ltd. and Takashimaya with a hold rating. It forecasts that the retailers’ 2009 sales will drop 4.2 percent and 5.1 percent respectively. Deutsche Bank also initiated coverage of J. Front Retailing Co. Ltd., the parent company of Daimaru and Matsuzakaya Holdings, with a sell rating.

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