Why Retail Stocks Sold Off Today - Motley Fool
Fool.com - Fri 11 Jan 03:23 GMT

Why Retail Stocks Sold Off Today - Motley Fool

Underwhelming holiday sales reports from Macy's and Kohl's pushed the entire sector down today.

  What happened Retail stocks were falling broadly today after Macy's (NYSE:M) and Kohl's (NYSE:KSS) reported disappointing holiday sales numbers this morning, bucking expectations -- Mastercard SpendingPulse had reported that retail sales jumped 5.1% over the shopping season between Thanksgiving and Christmas.

  So what Macy's seemed to be the real culprit here, as the iconic department-store chain said comparable sales increased just 0.7% on an owned basis, or 1.1% on an owned-plus-licensed basis.

  Target (NYSE:TGT) said this morning that its comparable sales jumped 5.7% in November and December, and the company maintained its adjusted EPS guidance for the year at a range of $5.30 to $5.50.

  Macy's is often viewed as a bellwether for the retail industry, especially in the department-store sector, as the company has flagship locations in a number of major cities and a strong presence in malls across the country.

  Despite other reports that showed strong sales growth across the industry, Macy's numbers seem to signal that many brick-and-mortar retailers continue to struggle with the current retail environment.