Retailers report high holiday earnings

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Thursday, January 05, 2012

Many retailers are reporting solid gains for the holiday shopping season, but consumers focused on discounts took their toll on earnings.

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.
The heavy discounting is also raising concern about what it will take to get shoppers to spend again in coming months.
"Sales were decent, but not great," said Ken Perkins, president of RetailMetrics, "It was a highly promotional environment. There were clear winners and losers in the holiday season. It just tells you how difficult it was to drive traffic against a backdrop of a soft economy."

Read more at StatesmanJournal.com.

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