November retail sales drop, investors dream of bottom

posted by Nima

December 4, 2008 · Posted in General Economics 

Reuters writes November retail sales drop, investors hope for bottom:

CHICAGO (Reuters) – Many retailers posted sharply lower November sales at stores open at least a year, prompting some investors to pour into the sector on hopes the dismal results signaled a bottom for share values.

Discounter Wal-Mart Stores Inc (WMT.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) bucked the trend with a bigger-than-expected rise, helped by lower gasoline prices and record sales of grocery items close to the U.S. Thanksgiving holiday.

Overall, same-store sales fell 2.1 percent, not quite as bad as the 2.4 percent average forecast, according to Thomson Reuters data.

Excluding results for Wal-Mart, the world’s largest retailer, same-store sales fell 7.8 percent, worse than the 6.9 percent decline forecast by analysts, according to Thomson Reuters. That was the worst monthly performance since it began tracking sales data in 2000…

and

…But in a sign for the better, nearly half of the 35 retailers reviewed by Thomson Reuters beat bleak sales estimates.

“The reaction is that worse than this, we’re unlikely to see. And when you think in those terms, you begin looking forward positively,” Gilford Securities retail analyst Bernard Sosnick said…

Yes, when you close your eyes and phase out into la-la land, you may actually see a bottom here. Not if you look at the numbers and the facts. This is only the beginning of the end of consumer borrowing and spending. Consumer credit is peaking. It’s only downhill from here.

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