Same-store sales hit growth target
Home Accents Today Staff -- Home Accents Today, May 24, 2004
Helped by stronger fashion assortments at the nation's department stores, as well as sales of warm-weather merchandise, same-store retail sales came in modestly ahead of plan during the second week of May, rising 4.8 percent from year-ago levels, and improving on a 4.7 percent increase the week before.
For the two weeks month-to-date, May sales are up 4.7 percent from last year's level, slightly ahead of a targeted gain of 4.6 percent, the Johnson Redbook Retail Sales Index reported. Month-over-month, sales so far in May are up 0.7 percent from April levels, compared with a targeted 0.6 percent increase.
The overall index was buoyed by the continued resurgence at the nation's department stores. Sales in that full-price channel of distribution climbed 2.9 percent during the week, improving on a 2.5 percent increase the preceding week.
Measured on a month-to-date basis, department store sales are running ahead of plan, with a 2.7 percent increase besting a target of 2.3 percent.
Sales at the more price-oriented mass-merchant channel increased 6 percent, slightly off their pace of 6.1 percent during the first week of the month. So far during May, discounter sales are on target with a 6.1 percent increase.
"Sales growth continued on, to slightly above, plan at most key retailers in the second week," said Redbook Analyst Catlin Levis. "Several department stores reported minor up-ticks in customer traffic and improved same-store sales gains compared to the previous week, in part due to a positive response to colored fashions as consumers are buying more full-price apparel and footwear."
In addition, said Levis, "Warm-weather categories, such as summer apparel, toys, fans, air conditioners, outdoor merchandise and garden equipment, was the focus of the week of most stores."
Johnson Redbook Retail Sales Index
Second week of May
|*Including chain stores and traditional department stores.
Source: Johnson Redbook Index