Retail stocks kicked off what should be a busy week with a 1.3 percent decline Monday as investors prepared for first-quarter profit reports.
The S&P Retail Index dipped 4.36 points to 327.87 as the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 1.8 percent, or 155.88 points, to 8,418.77. International markets were also off, with the Hang Seng losing 1.7 percent in Hong Kong and the CAC 40 off 1.9 percent in Paris. Shares of PPR fell 7.1 percent to 59.26 euros, or $80.83, and LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton decreased 2.3 percent to 59 euros, or $80.47.
Two U.S. retailers that are to report quarterly results this week bucked the stock trend: Kohl’s Corp. rose 2.1 percent to $44.84 and Wal-Mart Stores Inc. inched up 1 percent to $50.63.
Also readying their quarterly report cards, but losing ground in the markets, were J.C. Penney Co. Inc., down 5.2 percent to $28.91; Abercrombie & Fitch Co., 4.2 percent to $25.43; Nordstrom Inc., 2.9 percent to $22.42, and Macy’s Inc., 1.1 percent to $12.69.
Retail analysts at UBS Securities said a recent survey of 1,000 consumers found shoppers are still hunkering down.
“Bills and debt are high among consumers’ minds when spending, but gas prices are down considerably [year-over-year], which may be opening the door for more opportunistic purchases,” said the analysts.
The travails of consumers and retailers are hurting the suppliers.
Moody’s Investors Service changed its outlook on about $1.5 billion of the Estée Lauder Cos. Inc.’s debt to “negative” from “stable” as the recession clamps down on the sale of discretionary goods. The debt watchdog affirmed the beauty firm’s debt rating at “A2.”
“[Lauder’s] ability to restore its credit metrics and profitability to historic levels is dependent on its successful execution of a number of key restructuring initiatives, improvement in the U.S. retail operating environment and a stabilization of global economic activity,” said Janice Hofferber, a Moody’s vice president and senior credit officer.
Shares of Lauder dipped 0.2 percent to close at $33.85.
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa's “I-did-it-my-way” ethos stood out starkly at a time when brands are experimenting with consumer-facing fashion shows, coed formats and trans-seasonal collections – anything to perk up lackluster sales of ready-to-wear in an age of Insta-everything. “It’s not creation anymore. This becomes a purely industrial approach,” the late designer told WWD in an interview last year. “But anyway, the rhythm of collections is so stupid. It’s unsustainable. There are too many collections.” Read more about the iconic designer’s life and work on wwd.com, link in bio. #wwdfashion #azzedinealaia (📷: @WWD Archive, 1986) #alaia
Sneaker reselling app @goat’s latest exhibit, "The Greatest: New York," tells the story of New York's sneaker culture. To celebrate the exhibit, an intimate crowd gathered on Thursday night at the pop-up gallery space, located at Platform in Culver City, to hear guest speaker and illustrator @esymai talk about her own rise in streetwear and women in the business. "For me I'm just someone who is creative. I like to create things," said Chang. #wwdfashion
Azzedine Alaïa, one of the most iconic couturiers of the modern era whose body-con designs defined Eighties fashion, has died in Paris. The diminutive Tunisian-born designer, known for his structured knitted dresses with fitted waists and impeccably cut, figure-hugging second skin silhouettes was deeply admired by his peers, and counted supermodel Naomi Campbell - his adoptive daughter - among his inner circle, one of a gang of glamazons including Farida Khelfa, Carla Bruni and Stephanie Seymour who became ambassadors of his style. (📷: Alexandre Guirkinger) #wwdblast