A Breakdown of Retail Sales From the 2019 Holiday Season
During this past holiday season and the one prior, retailers were faced with some rather unique circumstances. In 2018, the government shut down for an entire month and delayed the collection of data. On top of that, the country was facing stock market turmoil and the beginning stages of the trade war. In the end, retail sales missed their mark, and came in at a growth rate of 2.9 percent instead of the National Retail Federation’s (NRF) predicted 4.3-4.8 percent.
The 2019 season faced a few different giants, the first being the U.S. tariffs on Chinese goods. Half of the tariffs went into effect in September while the other half (originally slated for Dec. 15) has since been suspended. The calendar also wasn’t on retail’s side this year with Thanksgiving falling at the tail end of November. Still, the NRF has high hopes for the 2019 shopping period and placed their bet on sales increasing some 3.8-4.2 percent over 2018. While we’re still waiting on official numbers from the NRF, we did get some input from individual retailers that shared their holiday earnings as well as Bank of America. Individually, it seemed like retailers struggled, but as a whole Bank of America thinks that the holiday shopping season could see a growth of around 5 percent, based off of credit and debit card analysis.
Let's dive into a few consumer electronics retailers, some of which we'll likely be seeing in our upcoming Top 101 report.
Decrease (holiday sales): 27.5%
Stock market shares for GameStop dropped as much as 16 percent amidst the struggling holidays sales. Declining sales from 2019 as a whole caused massive store closures and layoffs nationwide.
Increase (same store sales): 1.4%
Increase (digital sales): 19%
Despite experiencing growth, Target had one of its weakest holiday seasons, especially compared to last year. In 2018, same store sales grew 5.7 percent while digital sales saw a 29 percent increase. Target pointed at slowing toy and electronics sales as the reason for the low numbers.
Decrease (same store sales): 7.5%
Same store sales over the nine-week period ending on Jan. 4 dropped 7.5 percent and premarket trading dropped 3 percent on the Thursday following the news. Adjusted store sales, which exclude the exit from major appliance and furniture brands, were down 5.3 percent.
Decrease (comparable sales): 0.2%
On Jan. 9, Kohl’s reported that November to December holiday comparable sales fell 0.2 percent year over year. The previous year, comp sales were up 1.2 percent. And while their Amazon return program has boosted store traffic, it’s not necessarily boosting sales.
Decrease (store comps, owned): 0.7%
Decrease (owned plus licensed): 0.6%
Increase (licensed to third parties): 0.1%
Store comps on an owned basis fell 0.7 percent whole comps on an owned plus licensed basis fell 0.6 percent. Departments licensed to third parties grew 0.1 percent according to a company press release.
Increase (year over year): 13.4%
Decrease (comparable sales): 2.6%
With a 13.4 percent year over year sales increase, Five Below raked in some $596.6 million over the holiday period. But, comparable sales fell by 2.6 percent which President and CEO Joel Anderson blames on the six fewer days in the season.