Women’s apparel prices fell 0.9 percent, with all of the categories declining, except dresses, which increased 0.9 percent in the month. Prices for outerwear were down 2.5 percent, while prices for suits and separates fell 1.5 percent and prices for the combined underwear, nightwear, sportswear and accessories category dropped 0.5 percent. Girls’ apparel prices rose 0.8 percent last month.
Men’s apparel prices fell 0.5 percent in December. Prices for the combined suits, sport coats and outwear category fell 3.1 percent, while prices for pants and shorts declined 1 percent. Prices for furnishings rose 1.4 percent and prices for shirts and sweaters increased 0.1 percent. Boys’ apparel prices were up 1.5 percent.
“Consumer prices were flat in December, thanks to falling pump prices and heavy holiday discounting by retailers,” said Chris G. Christopher Jr., senior principal economist at IHS Global Insight. “If one takes out food and energy prices, the picture is very subdued. Consumer goods prices excluding food and energy have declined on a monthly basis since August, due to retailers cutting prices to gain volume.”
Jeet Dutta, senior economist at Moody’s Analytics, noted that pricing was weak for retailers despite strong retail sales.
“For pricing to have weakened in the face of fairly strong demand suggests that a lot of input costs [such as cotton] have fallen and are finally being passed through to consumers,” Dutta said.
He noted that apparel prices peaked in 2011, reaching close to a 5 percent gain and moderated in 2012 with a 2 percent increase.
Based on that moderation, Moody’s is forecasting further moderation in apparel prices this year, Dutta said.
“Some of the moderation is again because input prices are coming down, but globally there is also quite a bit of weakness and while that has happened there have not been a lot of price gains on imported clothing,” Dutta said. “We expected the global economy to be on stronger footing in the second half of the year but the improvement will be gradual.”
The overall CPI was flat in December, following a slight decline in November. Core prices, excluding volatile food and energy prices, edged up 0.1 percent.
“Looking ahead, there is little threat of deflation, but far more signs of very modest consumer price inflation,” Christopher said. “The cooling in inflation is noticeable for most households; however, consumer confidence is suffering due to political bickering over the debt ceiling crisis.”
In his new book “Hollywood Royale,” Andy Warhol’s Protégé Matthew Rolston celebrates the Eighties revival of Hollywood glamour. Featuring more than 100 portraits taken by Rolston from 1977 to 1993, the book contains photos of icons like Michael Jackson, Cyndi Lauper, and @drewbarrymore, pictured here in 1991. “Hollywood Royale,” out today, will be accompanied by an exhibition opening at Los Angeles’ Fahey/Klein Gallery on March 1. #wwdeye
"Nowadays when life is not so happy with everything going on in the world, I think people come to me for a little bit of whimsy and color and fun." - Designer Rebecca De Ravenel on her cult-favorite jewelry line. (📸 : @vsteves) #wwd40
“Everyone is talking about how the retail industry is struggling, but I think it’s an incredible time because brands who are doing something different and innovative are setting themselves up for the future,” said @adamgoldston, who founded the luxury athletic brand @apl with his brother @ryangoldsten. The Goldston’s are part of WWD’s 40 under 40: a group of industry notables. See the rest of the list on WWD.com. (📷: @vsteves) #wwd40
@eyeswoon blogger Athena Calderone debuted her first-ever cookbook, “Cook Beautiful,” which is heavily centered on the presentation and visual expression of food. Pictured here are her miso glazed carrots from the book. Get the recipe on WWD.com. (📷: @johnny_miller_) #wwdeye
“It’s passion that helps get anybody to a certain point and it’s what’s propelled me,” said Kith founder @ronniefieg, one of WWD’s 40 under 40: a group of industry notables who are changing the face of retail, fashion and beauty. Fieg, who opened a Manhattan flagship on October 7, began his career at age 13 as a stock boy and salesman for footwear chain David Z. “I think staying true to [my] beliefs, hard work and passion have gotten me to where [Kith] is today.” See the rest of the 40 at WWD.com. (📷: @vsteves) #wwd40
25-year-old @samweaving is about to break out this fall, starring in Netflix’s horror film “The Babysitter,” fittingly out today on Friday the 13th. That’s not the only place you’ll be seeing her, though — Weaving’s got a role Showtime’s “SMILF” and another alongside Frances McDormand and Woody Harrelson in “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.” Though she’s got a full plate at the moment, there’s one role she’s got her eye on: Marilyn Monroe. “I’m a little too young at the moment, but it’s on my bucket list,” the actress told WWD (📷: @dandoperalski) #wwdeye
BFF's Poppy Jamie and Suki Waterhouse celebrated the launch of their bag line Pop x Suki at Nordstrom last night. "The line is really about our friendship, and how we are so different but complement each other," said Waterhouse. 👯 (📷: Katie Jones) #wwdeye
After designing the new @louisvuitton and @bulgariofficial flagships and a @chanelofficial boutique opening in Japan, @petermarinoarchitect has another project on his plate: The Lobster Club. Located in the Seagram Building, it’s the famed architect’s first restaurant project in New York, serving up modern Japanese brasserie-style cuisine. Bronze hues, bespoke material detailing, blush and chartreuse tones and a heavy emphasis on Picasso can be seen throughout. Mark your calendars for Nov. 1 for the much-anticipated opening. (📷: @clint_spaulding) #wwdeye
Did you know: @carlychaikin of "Mr. Robot" has been painting for about a decade? The actress, who plays Darlene on the show, is a self-taught artist who lists Salvador Dalí and Chuck Close as some of her idols. Chaikin told WWD that painting is a form of meditation for her — A much-needed one given the intensity of "Mr. Robot." See a piece Chaikin is working on at WWD.com (📷: @jilliansollazzo) #wwdeye