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By
Reuters
Published
Jan 17, 2017
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Jeweler Tiffany holiday sales down, flagship hit by "Trump Traffic"

By
Reuters
Published
Jan 17, 2017

Upscale jeweler Tiffany & Co said on Tuesday that its sales during the November-December holiday period were "somewhat lower" than it had expected, hurt by lower consumer spending and a drop in sales at its flagship store in New York.

Tiffany said it suffered a 14 percent drop in sales at its Fifth Avenue location in November and December due in part to "post-election traffic disruptions."


Trump has spent much of the post-election period at Trump Tower near Central Park. The venue is also a target of organized protests against the controversial real estate magnet who takes office Friday.

Tiffany said on Tuesday that its worldwide net sales rose 0.5 percent, while worldwide comparable sales fell 2 percent during the holiday season as sales growth in Asia-Pacific and Japan was offset by lower sales in the Americas and Europe.

The company's net sales and comparable sales in the Americas fell 4 percent. Sales at its flagship store on Fifth Avenue in New York declined 14 percent, partly as store traffic in Manhattan took a hit following the U.S. election.

The luxury retailer, whose flagship store is next to Trump Tower, had warned in November that sales in the quarter ending January 2017 could be hurt by protests and stepped-up security in the area since the election.

Several retailers, including department stores, apparel retailers and Signet Jewelers Ltd, have reported weaker-than-expected holiday sales as customers shift to online retailers and spend lesser on apparel and accessories.

Tiffany said that excluding the effect of the strong dollar, its worldwide net sales rose 1 percent in the holiday period and comparable store sales declined 1 percent.

The company said it does not anticipate a significant improvement in economic conditions in 2017.

Tiffany said it will take a $25 million charge in the quarter ending January 2017 related to a replacement for its inventory management and merchandising system.

The company also named Reed Krakoff to the newly created position of chief artistic officer.

Krakoff, who has held senior roles at Coach and Ralph Lauren, will direct design for the company's brand jewelry and luxury accessories.


 

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