Retail sales unexpectedly rose in January as shoppers took advantage of aggressive price cuts to stock up on new clothes, books and CDs in the post-Christmas sales, official data showed on Friday. The Office for National Statistics said sales rose 0.
As the relentless downturn in the economy drives shoppers to buy less and hold out for extreme deals, U.S. department store operators can wave goodbye to any marked improvement in their fortunes before 2010.
South African food and clothing retailer Woolworths (WHLJ.J) reported an 11.5 percent rise in first-half diluted headline earnings per share lifted by higher prices and new stores, but warned trade would be difficult for the rest of its financial year.
French retail and luxury group PPR (PRTP.PA) did not give an outlook for 2009 but said it was to cut costs to boost competitiveness in the downturn, when posting a drop in fourth-quarter sales and underlying full-year profit.
South Africa's biggest listed clothing retailer Truworths International Ltd (TRUJ.J) reported a 16 percent rise in interim headline EPS but forecast slower sales growth ahead given tough economic conditions.
A year and a half after introducing its MoneyCard, Wal-Mart Stores Inc is slashing the price of the reloadable, prepaid Visa debit card to $3 from almost $9, aiming to attract shoppers who may have grown wary of the pitfalls of credit card use.
From dresses, to handbags, diamonds and music downloads, consumers in Asia are taking to Internet shopping like never before as the region becomes one of the world's fastest growing e-commerce markets.
The nation's biggest sporting goods retailer, Sports Direct International (SPD.L) forecast full-year earnings in line with market hopes as it reported a 12 percent increase in third-quarter sales, sending its shares 6 percent higher.
Fashion retailer Hennes & Mauritz AB posted a smaller-than-expected 1 percent year-on-year fall in January sales at established stores. The mean forecast in a Reuters poll of 12 analysts had been for sales to fall 2.