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Editorial Results (free)

1. These Retailers Could Use Some Holiday Cheer -

NEW YORK (AP) – The holiday shopping season is always a make-or-break period for struggling retailers.

But this year, the fight to grab shoppers has intensified, making it difficult for stores to use the season that accounts for about 20 percent of the retail industry's annual sales to bounce back.

2. Wal-Mart, Amazon Show Changing Shopping Habits -

NEW YORK (AP) – The financial strains and shifting shopping habits of Americans have led to uneven fortunes for retailers.

Traditional consumer companies like Wal-Mart and Mattel have continued to struggle as Americans spend more cautiously in the uncertain economy. Meanwhile, Amazon.com has flourished as shoppers increasingly buy online rather than head to stores.

3. Retailers of All Stripes Sing Holiday Blues -

NEW YORK (AP) – Several major retailers slashed their fiscal fourth-quarter profit forecasts this week in the latest sign that Americans didn't spend briskly during the holiday shopping season.

4. Americans Not Willing to Spend Without Deals -

NEW YORK (AP) – This holiday season, Americans may not spend their green unless they see more red.

Despite signs that the economy is improving, big store chains like Wal-Mart and Kohl's don't expect Americans to have much holiday shopping cheer unless they see bold, red signs that offer huge discounts. As a result, shoppers are seeing big sales events earlier and more often than in previous holiday seasons.

5. Tepid US Retail Sales Raising Doubts About Economy -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Bleaker outlooks at retailers like Wal-Mart and Macy's are raising doubts that consumers will spend enough in coming months to lift the still-subpar U.S. economy.

Though the economy is growing steadily, Americans are being hampered by weak pay, higher taxes and tepid hiring. Sluggish overseas economies are also slowing sales for U.S. retailers. It's a picture the Federal Reserve will weigh in deciding whether to scale back its bond purchases as soon as next month.

6. Retailers See Slow Start to Back-to-School Season -

NEW YORK (AP) – Shoppers are holding off on back-to-school shopping, and those who delay long enough might be rewarded with some steep discounts from desperate retailers.

Revenue at stores open at least a year – an industry measure of a retailer's health– rose 3.8 percent in July, the slowest pace since March, according to a preliminary tally of 10 retailers by the International Council of Shopping Centers. The figure, which excludes drugstores, was below a 5.5 percent increase in June.

7. Retailers Report Higher December Sales -

NEW YORK (AP) – A last-minute surge in spending seems to have saved the holiday shopping season.

Major retailers including Costco, Gap and Nordstrom on Thursday reported better-than-expected revenue in December. That comes as a relief for stores, which can make up to 40 percent of their annual revenue in the last two months of the year.

8. Retailers Report Weak Sales Gains for November -

NEW YORK (AP) – Black Friday was no match for Sandy.

Major retailers such as Kohl's, Target and Macy's on Thursday reported weak sales in November as a strong start to the holiday shopping season – including a good showing on the day after Thanksgiving – wasn't enough to fully offset the damage caused by Superstorm Sandy earlier in the month.

9. Holiday Sales Seen Rising 4.1 Percent in 2012 -

NEW YORK (AP) – Americans are expected to spend more during what's traditionally the busiest shopping season of the year, but they're not exactly ready to shop 'til they drop like they have been in the past two years.

10. Fred’s, Other Retailers Report Tepid Sales -

NEW YORK (AP) – Shoppers, worried about jobs and the overall economy, pulled back on spending in June, resulting in tepid sales for many retailers, including Memphis-based Fred’s Inc.

11. Retailers Report Solid Finale to Holidays -

NEW YORK (AP) – Many retailers are reporting solid sales gains for December, capping a decent holiday season, but shoppers bent on discounts exacted a high price.

Merchants had to mark down coats and other gifts to get shoppers to buy in a challenging economy. A mild winter also didn't help, wilting shoppers' appetite for cold-weather merchandise. That resulted in a string of retailers, including Target Corp., Kohl's Corp., J.C. Penney Co. and The Children's Place Retail Stores Inc., reducing their earnings outlooks.

12. Retailers Report Solid Sales Gains for July -

NEW YORK (AP) – Many retailers posted solid sales during the kickoff to the back-to-school season as discounts and high temperatures in July drove shoppers to air-conditioned malls. But merchants worry that momentum won't continue through the remainder of the second-biggest shopping period of the year as the weather gets cold and the deals dry up.

13. Retailers Post Strong June Sales -

NEW YORK (AP) – Colossal discounts enticed consumers to shop like it was 1999 last month. But higher prices ahead could cause the party to end soon.

Warm weather and discounts of up to 80 percent on summer merchandise helped retailers deliver the best revenue gains since June 1999 in what's typically the second-biggest shopping month of the year. But pressure on stores to pass along higher costs for everything from clothing and handbags to food has raised concerns that the momentum may not continue heading into the busy back-to-school shopping season.

14. Target Raises Quarterly Dividend Ahead of Meeting -

NEW YORK (AP) – Target Corp. raised its quarterly dividend by 5 cents to 30 cents, a 20 percent increase, as it sought to placate investors after a 22 percent decline in its stock price this year.

15. Shopper Spending Surprisingly Strong in March -

NEW YORK (AP) – Shoppers shrugged off higher gas prices and cool temperatures to give retailers a surprisingly solid March.

Revenue reports Thursday from retailers from Costco to Victoria's Secret extend the streak of strong spending from late last year and suggest that an improving economy and recent job growth are outweighing pressure from higher pump prices.

16. Slow Start to Spring Projected for Retailers -

NEW YORK (AP) – A late Easter, lingering cold weather and rising gas prices are squeezing discretionary spending this spring, according to data being released Wednesday.

Figures from MasterCard Advisors' SpendingPulse show sales growth slowed in some categories last month. But consumers spent more on clothing – and most other items from electronics to luxury goods – than they did in March 2010.

17. Consumer Comeback Skips Wal-Mart's Aisles -

NEW YORK (AP) – Wal-Mart is missing out on the consumer comeback.

The world's largest retailer failed to reverse an almost two-year slide in a key revenue measure in its fourth quarter, it said Tuesday, after all but promising in November it would do just that.

18. Retailers Report Surprisingly Solid January Sales -

NEW YORK (AP) – U.S. retailers reported surprisingly solid January revenue gains Thursday that swept away fears that snowstorms in much of the country had chilled sales.

The reports, which are being compared with a respectable January 2010, offer encouraging signs that consumer spending is maintaining the momentum of the strong holiday season.

19. Holiday Shoppers Came Out to Spend in November -

NEW YORK (AP) – Generous discounts lured American to stores and online for holiday gifts in November, providing cheer and delivering the best gains for retailers in four years.

That raises hopes, already buoyed by reports of crowded malls and early numbers, for a strong holiday shopping season and is an encouraging sign for the economic recovery.

20. Wal-Mart Q3 Profit Rises; Pressure Still on in US -

NEW YORK (AP) – Wal-Mart Stores Inc. reported a 9.3 percent increase in third-quarter net income as the world's largest retailer benefited from cost controls and a robust international business. The company also raised its full-year profit outlook.

21. Heavy Discounts Fuel Only Modest Retail Gains -

NEW YORK (AP) – Americans took a pause in shopping in October, leaving retailers with their weakest peformance since April as unsually warm weather depressed their appetite for cold weather items.

22. Americans Likely Took Retail Breather in October -

NEW YORK (AP) – After a last-minute back-to-school buying spree, Americans appeared to have taken a shopping pause in October, resulting in a mixed retail sales picture.

That lull could continue until the day after Thanksgiving, the unofficial start of the Christmas season, as shoppers wait for big bargains, many analysts say.

23. Retailers Report September Boost -

NEW YORK (AP) – Retailers reported surprisingly solid sales gains for September, boosted by back-to-school shopping, much of it pushed into September by parents who had put off trips to the mall.

24. Retailers' Reports Show Tepid May for Shoppers -

NEW YORK (AP) - Americans, uninspired by cool weather and feeling fresh concerns about the economy, spent with caution in May after a tepid April.

Retailers' May sales reports, released Thursday, underscore how fragile the consumer spending recovery remains.

25. Retailers Report 4th Consecutive Month of Gains -

NEW YORK (AP) - Warmer weather and an earlier Easter enticed shoppers into stores for spring merchandise in March, helping retailers post strong sales gains for the month.

Discounter Target Corp., department store Macy's Inc., clothier Gap Inc. and Victoria's Secret parent Limited Brands Inc. posted double-digit increases that beat Wall Street analysts' expectations.

26. Retailers Report Strong Gains for February -

NEW YORK (AP) - Shoppers shrugged off the snow and worries about the economy to buy spring clothing and other items at the nation's malls, resulting in the strongest retail sales gain since November 2007, a month before the recession started.

27. New Data: Most Retail Sectors Saw Gains in Feb. -

NEW YORK (AP) — Most retail sectors including electronics and luxury items saw sales gains in February, data released Wednesday show, though snowstorms that shut in shoppers also chilled sales at women's clothing stores.

28. January Retail Gains as Luxury Rebounds -

NEW YORK (AP) – Stores received a pleasant surprise in January as shoppers spent more at mall stores, delivering solid gains for many retailers and providing hope that a spending recovery that started late last year is being sustained.

29. December Retail Sales Show Signs of Life -

NEW YORK (AP) - Last-minute holiday shoppers brought relief to the nation's retailers, handing them modest sales gains for the season and prompting several chains to raise their fourth-quarter profit outlooks.

30. Wal-Mart: We’ll Keep Customers Gained in Recession -

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) – Wal-Mart Stores Inc. executives pledged Friday to continue making changes to the company to adapt to the economy but to do so in a way that it keeps the new customers it has picked up because of the recession.

31. Retailers Report Sales Declines in February -

NEW YORK (AP) - Tighter inventory control and milder weather helped retailers in February as business at many merchants was not as bad as in January. Wal-Mart's gains far outpaced expectations – but many stores, especially at the higher end, still struggled.

32. US Retailers Report Dismal December Sales -

NEW YORK (AP) – Retailers reported dismal sales figures for December on Thursday as even Wal-Mart Stores Inc., one of the bright spots in the industry, finally buckled under the pressures of the deteriorating U.S. economy.

33. After Sales, Will Shoppers Pay Full Price Again? -

NEW YORK (AP) - Shoppers are getting used to those 75 percent off sale signs, and that's bad news for merchants who worry they will also have to quickly slash prices on spring goods to attract customers.

34. Retailers Report Weak September Sales -

American shoppers went into hiding in September, sticking to buying the bare-bone essentials and leading many retailers to report dismal sales for the month as skittish consumers grappled with the financial meltdown spreading around the globe.

35. Retailers Report Sluggish Sales -

NEW YORK (AP) – Many of the nation’s retailers struggled with a sluggish back-to-school season, though Wal-Mart posted higher August sales Thursday as shoppers focused on buying essentials amid persistent worries about high gas and food prices.

36. July Sales Mixed For Retailers -

The outlook for the back-to-school shopping season seemed grim Thursday, as retailers’ July sales reports showed an increasing shift toward buying necessities

like food and household supplies at discounters and away from discretionary spending on clothing.

37. Retailers Post Mixed June Sales Results -

NEW YORK (AP) – Shoppers, enticed by heavy discounts and armed with rebate checks, spent more freely in June, helping to lift many retailers’ sales. The outlook for the back-to-school season remains tough, though, as consumers confront high gas and food prices, a slumping housing market and tighter credit.

38. Retailers Report May Results Above Expectations -

NEW YORK (AP) – Consumers stepped up their shopping in May after tax rebate checks began hitting mailboxes, giving many of the nation’s retailers stronger than expected sales for the month. Still, there were signs that many people still are focusing on necessities such as food and gas.

39. Retailers Report Mixed Sales Results In Feb. -

NEW YORK (AP) - The nation's retailers got a little reprieve in February, as consumers hesitantly returned to malls and stores after retrenching in recent months. Among the big winners were discounters like Wal-Mart Stores Inc., whose results beat expectations.

40. Retailers ReportSluggish October Sales -      The outlook for the holiday shopping season grew bleaker Thursday after retailers announced disappointing October sales results due to consumers' ongoing worries about housing and higher energy prices.
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41. Retailers ReportSluggish September Sales -      Several of the nation's largest retailers cut their earnings forecasts Thursday after lingering summer weather and an uncertain economy kept consumers from shopping last month and left the big merchants with disappointin