NEW YORK — With the exception of J.C. Penney Co. Inc.’s out-of-the-ballpark expectations for October same-store sales, most stores are trending within their modest plans.
Shares of retailers, though, had a tough day on the equity markets. The Standard & Poor’s retail index dropped 6.39 points, or 2.2 percent, to close at 290.60 Monday. This compared with the broader S&P 500, which was off 7.43 points, or 0.8 percent, at 890.22 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average, which slid 75.95 points, or 0.9 percent, to 8,368.04.
Shares of retailers projecting comparable-store sales in line with expectations weren’t shielded from the selloff. Included in this group were: Wal-Mart Stores Inc., down 2.2 percent to $56.07; Federated Department Stores Inc., 6.6 percent to $30.69 and ShopKo Stores Inc., 2.3 percent to $13.28.
Wal-Mart said its comps, overall and in its namesake division, remain on plan for a 2 to 4 percent uptick in October. The Sam’s Club division’s same-store sales were tracking below plan. Wal-Mart’s fiscal month ends Friday. Overall, sales in apparel, especially men’s and boys’ wear, were strong last week, putting the category on plan for the month. Halloween candy and costumes remain behind plan, but Wal-Mart noted they are coming back quickly.
Federated said sales trends for the third week of October were “mixed.” The parent of Bloomingdale’s and Macy’s continues to expect comps for the month to be down 1 to 2 percent.
ShopKo also still expects October comps to produce a low single-digit percentage decline. Most retailers will report sales for the month on Nov. 7.
Other retailers enduring declining market capitalizations Monday were American Eagle, down 5.6 percent to $14.43; Limited Brands, 5.4 percent to $15.46; Urban Outfitters, 5.4 percent to $24.79; Aeropostale, 5.2 percent to $11.21, and Nordstrom, 5 percent to $19.93.
This story first appeared in the October 29, 2002 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.