Here’s a bit of cheery news about a venerable American retailer: JCPenney’s comparable store sales as calculated so far for the first quarter were up 6% over last year. Unfortunately, the reason why we know this is somewhat less cheery. Someone described as a “senior official” at the company accidentally e-mailed early figures that weren’t yet public for the first quarter of 2015 to a securities analyst. [More]
People aren’t buying: Large appliances, furniture, and durable household goods
What’s up, beer drinkers of America? Bloomberg notes that “take-out sales of alcoholic beverages tumbled 9.3 percent in the fourth quarter, the steepest drop since the U.S. Commerce Department started compiling data half a century ago,” and a drop four times greater than the overall fall in consumer spending. Most of that was due to the 14 percent drop in beer sales.