CE’s Top Retailers
The 101 retailers listed in Dealerscope’s annual registry rang up $198.51 billion in sales during 2007, a 6 percent increase over 2006’s $187.21 billion tally.
There was a bit more good news. Sales of consumer electronics—excluding videogames—increased 5 percent for the three months ending in November of 2007 from the same period in 2006, according to the NPD Group, a market researcher. But then came Black Friday, when America seemed to tighten its collective belt, according to the National Retail Federation. The average shopper spent only $348 that day, down from the $360 they coughed up on Black Friday 2006. On Cyber Monday, retailers across the Web slashed prices and started offering free shipping in order to lure shoppers.
The Wall Street rollercoaster. The bursting of the housing bubble. The sub-prime mortgage mess. The question now is whether consumer consumption—the drive to buy that propels up to 70 percent of the U.S. economy—is on the downswing and, if so, how CE retailers will be affected.