The recent cold snap that is impacting most of the continental U.S. crimped retail sales last week, according to The Retail Economist-Goldman Sachs Weekly Chain Store Sales Index.But another report from Wells Fargo Securities analysts released earlier today reiterated what analysts are seeing by way of outlook: the retail sector is better positioned this year than it was in 2017. And in a segment analysis, analysts at the firm see the recent tax reform measures as significantly boosting earnings per share by as much as 15 percent.In the weekly sales report, Michael Niemira, chief economist of The Retail Economist LLC, said the sales index fell 2.3 percent for the week ended Dec. 30. On a year-over-year basis, sales showed a "strong gain" of 3.9 percent. The results follow a report from Mastercard that showed retail sales gaining 4.9 percent this holiday shopping season.Niemira said weekly sales in the post-Christmas period, which includes gift-card redemptions, merchandise exchanges and returns, "were hurt by the arctic freeze affecting the eastern two-thirds of the nation, which in turn caused many consumers to remain in their warm homes." The economist also said when the dust settles, the 2017 holiday season will play out to be one of the best in years.In the Wells Fargo report, senior analyst Ike Boruchow said for the first time in two years, the retail sector is a worthwhile investment. "Following multiple years of challenged fundamentals and increasing investor skepticism, we actually see a somewhat favorable setup for retail into 2018," he noted. "While we acknowledge that the high-level concerns that have cast a dark cloud over the space still exist today (weak store traffic, accelerating e-commerce penetration, Amazon), we are simply saying that there are finally some legitimate reasons to own the space."Boruchow said although 2017 started out lousy for the sector, it ended on a high note with strong fundamentals, robust holiday sales and well-managed inventories. Moving forward, the recently adopted tax reform plan is expected to show an immediate, positive impact on the bottom line — which could include an approximate 15 percent earnings per share gain for domestic companies.In the report, the analyst upgraded Ulta Beauty to "outperform" and raised his price target on the stock to $275 from $220. And under the current scenario he outlined, Boruchow reiterated his top picks, which include PVH Corp., Ulta and Tapestry.
EXCLUSIVE: Two and half months after John Targon, cofounder and codesigner of Baja East, was hired as creative director of the contemporary division at Marc Jacobs, he has left the company, WWD has learned. Marc Jacobs International, which is owned by LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, confirmed Targon’s departure in a statement: “John Targon is a talented designer and we appreciate the work he has done here. Ultimately working together did not make sense for the brand and we wish him the best.” Read the story by @jessiredale, link in bio. #wwdnews
@theluxurycollection is officially launching a collection, tapping Sofia Sanchez de Betak for the capsule. Over 30 styles will be featured in the Chufy x The Luxury Collection, debuting next month at Bergdorf Goodman, The Webster, FiveStory and more. De Betak, known as “@chufy,” drew inspiration for the collection from her trips to Japan in the past year #wwdfashion
@lhd, founder and CEO of @thewebster, has teamed up with @lebonmarcherivegauche for the European launch of her ready-to-wear line, LHD. The launch will come with an exclusive pop-up opening today that’s set to run through May 20. Located on the second floor, it carries her debut Miami-themed resort collection, launched in November as see-now-buy-now. #wwdfashion
@longchamp, which marks its 70th anniversary this year, just opened its biggest U.S. store on Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue. On the lower level there’s a floor-to-ceiling display of the brand’s iconic Le Pliage bag – in all of its different colors, shapes and sizes. Customers can also have their product personalized in-store by imprinting names, initials or emblems. #wwdfashion (📷: @ericmtownsend)
“Whenever I’m in that place of sound and music, I don’t have fear or nervousness…This album has a lot of themes of courage and boldness and I want to be the soundtrack for people’s lives. I’ll be so happy if [my songs] evoke strength in people, which I know music has done for me,” says @kimbramusic of her newest album “Primal Heart.” The New Zealand-born singer sat down with WWD to talk about her music, newest tour and connecting with hear fans — read more on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
Luxury handbag resale company @rebagofficial is planning to sell a rare collectible for $70,000: the @hermes White Crocodile Himalayan Birkin. The exclusive Birkin sold for about $100,000 in 2008, when @davidbeckham bought one for his wife @victoriabeckham to add to her collection. Read more about the rare Birkin on WWD.com #wwdaccessories
With her costume pearl necklace and what-you-see-is-what-you-get style, Barbara Bush, who died Tuesday at age 92, was a straight-shooter from start to finish.
Born Barbara Pierce in New York City, Bush served as the 37th first lady, as well as the country’s second lady from 1981 to 1989. In addition to being part of the longest presidential marriage — 73 years — Bush also had the unlikely distinction of having one son, George W., become the 43rd president and another son, Jeb, run unsuccessfully in 2016. Having served as second lady during the Reagan administration’s two terms and lived all over the world during her own husband’s ascending political career, Barbara Bush made it clear that literacy — not fashion — was her priority. Read more from Rosemary Feitelberg’s obituary on the late First Lady in WWD.com, link in bio. #barbarabush #wwdnews
Western and ’90s trends have influenced denim for fall 2018. Think raw, dark and coated jeans mixed with bold prints and tough leather. #trendtuesdays #wwdfashion (Styled by @thealexbadia;📷: @ryanplett)