By  on July 25, 2008

1. Speedo
2. Nautica
3. Ocean Pacific/Op
4. Jantzen
5. Mossimo
6. Catalina
7. Anne Klein
8. Billabong
9. Roxy
10. Body Glove
 
Swimwear has exhibited resilience in a turbulent economy that’s thwarted even some of fashion’s hardiest players. Although the relatively small swimwear industry isn’t blowing its sportswear counterpart out of the water any time soon, its steadiness speaks to swim vendors’ ability to offer viable product for a variety of consumers. According to research firm The NPD Group, sales of women’s swimwear in the U.S. rose 1.2 percent to $2.67 billion in the May 2007-April 2008 period from the same period a year earlier.

This year’s top 10 shows the range of swimwear’s portfolio — from sporty to stylish — that has made swimsuit assortments alluring despite retail buyers’ cautious approach to building inventory, given fi nancial reservations. And these leading brands have kept chugging along in the face of license shuffling, store consolidation and, of course, the unpredictability of the weather.

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