When it comes to offering the best prices on food, Dollar General is the top gun. According to Gordon Haskett analyst Chuck Grom in his "low- and middle-market" pricing study, the dollar store is the clear leader in the low end as it beat out Family Dollar and Wal-Mart Stores Inc.This was the fourth pricing study conducted in the past five months, and revealed a growing gap between Dollar General and other retailers. The standing for Dollar General comes as the company is on track to open 1,000 stores this year as retailers across the market pare down the total number of their doors.It's noteworthy that as Dollar General settles into being a price leader on food, competitors continue to lower prices against it and Wal-Mart — even as consumer spending ticks up and economists see overall retail sales on a "strong footing."In the Gordon Haskett report, Wal-Mart was the price leader in the middle market — although its lead has narrowed. "Based on the most recent data, Dollar General’s pricing lead on Wal-Mart has expanded by 60 basis points sequentially, from 140 basis points in June to 200 basis points in July," Grom noted. "Similarly, Dollar General expanded its lead on Family Dollar from 390 basis points in June to 480 basis points in July."In this most recent report, Grom upped the number of basket items to 67 from 43 used in the earlier studies. In the low, or dollar store, market study, the analyst compares Dollar General, Family Dollar and Wal-Mart. The middle market study includes Wal-Mart as well as Target, Kroger, Amazon Fresh and regional players such as Albertsons, Randalls and Shaw's.In the middle market study, Grom said that compared to the prior report in June, "most players improved their pricing position relative to Wal-Mart, including improvements at Albertsons, Amazon Fresh, Target and Randalls," he said. "As a result, competitor baskets were priced at an 11.5 percent premium to Wal-Mart in the month of July, down from 13.5 percent in June and below the five-month average of 12.6 percent."As food retailers lower prices, spending data from the government showed higher total retail sales. In his most recent consumer study, Chris Christopher, executive director at IHS Markit, noted that in July "consumers came out swinging" after taking a break in May and June. "Retail sales started the third quarter on a very strong footing," he said. "Retail gains were broad-based, highlighted by an unexpected turnaround at department stores."Christopher said the latest data points to ongoing growth of online sales. "E-commerce retail sales are 15.4 percent of retail sales excluding auto dealerships, gasoline stations, food stores and food services, and we expect this share to grow to 16.3 percent by the end of 2017," he said. "In addition, online retailers are expected to take a bigger piece of the pie during the back-to-school retail sales season. Non-store retail sales (mostly online) were up 11.4 percent in July on a year-over-year basis."
The executive director said retail sales data indicates that "consumers remain an engine of U.S. economic growth. We expect consumer spending to be the primary driving force of GDP growth in the back half of 2017, supported by rising employment, real disposable incomes and household wealth."
“I grew up in New York but I hadn’t really experienced the city in any type of touristy way…This was probably the first museum I really explored and took the time to see,” said @haileybaldwin of the @whitneymuseum. On Tuesday night, Baldwin was joined by Jemima Kirke and more at the annual Whitney Museum Gala and Studio Party, which honored Lorna Simpson, Joanne Leonhardt Cassullo and Beth Rudin DeWoody. See more photos on WWD.com. #wwdeye (📷: @lexieblacklock)
Displayed starting this week at the @fashiontextilemuseum: An exhibition on designer @orlakiely titled “Orla Kiely: A Life in Pattern,” which spans two decades and contains more than 150 pieces. “I want people to come away loving pattern and print. It’s something that makes you feel so good,” said the designer during a preview of the exhibit. Also on show are mood boards, samples, sketches and more. Head to WWD.com to see more photos. #wwdfashion
Exclusive: @dsquared2 signs fragrance licensing agreement with Euroitalia, with the first effort of the new partnership being unveiled in September. The brand will launch two scents – one for men and one for women – in Italy. Read our interview with designer Dean and Dan Caten on WWD.com. #wwdbeauty #wwdnews (📷: @zefashioninsider)
@louisvuitton has officially renewed Nicolas Ghesquière’s contract as artistic director of women's collections. "I am very pleased to open the next chapter of the story I started with Louis Vuitton almost 5 years ago," said Ghesquière, who first signed on to design the French luxury brand's women's line in 2013. Get all the details on WWD.com. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @giovanni_giannoni_photo)
“I learned then and there that I had to figure out a way in life to maintain and preserve my sense of pride when I felt good about what I did or what I represented or created,” said @saintrecords on how being bullied for wearing capri pants inspired her to be the artist she is today. Knowles was at the 70th Parsons Benefit last night where she outbid the room for a Dapper Dan customized @gucci experience. #wwdeye (📷: @lexieblacklock)
“There’s this amazing braintrust of people who know the whole universe so well. So we talked to them and they gave us more input,” said actor Alden Ehrenreich on playing the young Han Solo in “Solo: A Star Wars Story.” The cast was at NYC’s SVA Theatre last night for an advanced screening of the film, which hits theaters this week. #wwdeye #starwars #hansolo (📷: @aurorarosedecrosta)
@asaprocky spent nearly two hours in a Plexiglas box Sunday night at @sothebys putting himself through a series of “tests” to demonstrate the process of completing his new album called “Testing.” Get all the details and see all the pictures on WWD.com. #wwdeye
“I’ve struggled my whole life to find a bathing suit that fits me that doesn’t look like a maternity bra. I’m proud of the line because it’s an accurate representation of me rather than me putting on someone else’s clothes,” says @atlantabean of her swimwear collaboration with @piaarrobio, LPA X ATL. The two decided on a swimwear collab and increased the industry standard size for the pieces. Read more about the line — and our interview with de Cadenet Taylor and Arrobio — on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: Dan Doperalski)