Macy’s shares COLLAPSE 18 percent: Christmas retail APOCALYPSE hits US and UK high street

Thursday, January 10, 2019
By Paul Martin

MACY’S shares have plunged by 18 percent in pre-market trading after the department store giant slashed its sales guidance off the back of weak December sales.

Thu, Jan 10, 2019

The department store giant recorded a meagre 1.1 percent gain in same-store sales and online sales during the festive season between November and December. As a result, Macy’s downgraded their profits outlook in a statement released on Thursday in which the company revealed sales were now expected to grow about 2 percent. This is down from a previous outlook of at least 2.3 percent. The gloomy forecast from Macy’s sent shivers running through traders as shares plunged in pre-market by around 18.5 percent.

Chief Executive Officer Jeff Gennette said the holiday season started off positively but failed to pick up after a slump in the middle of December.

He said: “The holiday season began strong – particularly during Black Friday and the following Cyber Week, but weakened in the mid-December period and did not return to expected patterns until the week of Christmas.”

Sales at Macy’s said was largely impacted by underperformance in women’s sportswear, fashion jewellery and cosmetics.

Macy’s weak holiday forecast follows downbeat numbers from rivals J.C. Penney Corp and Kohls Corp.

It has not just been the US high street which has suffered from weaker than expected sales during the festive season.

In the UK, Debenhams and Marks and Spencer led the losses on British soil with both retailers confirming falls in sales.

Debenhams recorded a dip of 3.4 percent in like-for-like sales in the six weeks to January 5.

Marks and Spencer said like-for-like clothing and home sales dropped 2.4 percent over the 13 weeks to December 29 while comparable food sales fell 2.1 percent.

Both John Lewis and Halfords also issued a profits warning as the pair join other shops in battling tough trading conditions.

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