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Thanksgiving boost for US retail

Wal-Mart and JC Penney post record sales December 2 2002 There are signs of better times ahead for US retailers following high sales over the Thanksgiving… View Article

GENERAL MERCHANDISE

Thanksgiving boost for US retail

Wal-Mart and JC Penney post record sales
December 2 2002
There are signs of better times ahead for US retailers following high sales over the Thanksgiving holiday.

JC Penney, which operates department stores and the Eckerd drug store chain has reported record sales for the Thanksgiving weekend, driven by strong demand for clothing and jewelry. The company said sales were significantly above the same period last year, when the US was still reeling from the September 11 attacks.
The company said it expects like-for-like department stores sales in December to show low single-figure growth, and to rise by 6 per cent gain in Eckerd stores. However, it is also forecasting a 20 per cent fall in catalogue sales.
Wal-Mart has already reported record one-day sales for Friday the day after Thanksgiving. Overall US retail sales on Saturday rose by 9 per cent compared with the Saturday after Thanksgiving a year ago, according to the ShopperTrak survey.
Deaprtment stores were said to be busy, but many are already running special offers and sales. The fact that retailers are already heavily discounting on the weekend that herald the start of the holiday shopping season suggest that consumers are directing their spending toward value for money offers.
Scott Krugman, spokesman for the National Retail Federation said: “Discount retailers were the early winners. The ‘doorbuster’ specials were effective in getting consumers out of the house early on Friday morning and has kept them out ever since. The question is how well will things keep up during the rest of the holiday season?”

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