Consumer prices continued to drift upward in June, according to the most recent U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics inflation data. But apparel and footwear prices suffered another big decline, pressured by the über-promotional retail environment, continued influence of cheap and chic fast fashion retailers and value-conscious consumers with smart phones who shop around for lower prices before buying anything.
The overall consumer price index, or CPI, increased by 0.1% in June on a year-over-year basis, its biggest rise in six months. Compared to May, the index rose by 0.3%. The core inflation rate, which excludes food and energy, rose by 1.8%, due primarily to increases in housing and medical service costs. The combined apparel and footwear price index fell by 1.8%, its eighth straight month of decline and the largest drop in six months.
The index for clothing dropped by an even steeper 2.6%, larger than May’s 2.3% drop. Footwear prices increased by 1.1% in the month, their smallest increase in 11 months.
The decline in apparel prices was due primarily to a 3.5% drop in women’s prices. Retailers continue to cite women’s apparel as one of the weaker areas in the market. Men’s apparel prices declined by just 1.3%.
Girls’ and boys’ apparel prices fell by 4.5% and 2.6%, respectively, while prices for infants and toddlers apparel rose by 1.1% in the month.
A look at how companies that failed to react and adapt to changing times have allowed new brands that are better tapped into the zeitgeist to steal share.Read more
Print PDFPrint PDFWhen times are tough, companies are more willing to test new ideas and Target, Warby Parker and Amazon are pushing the boundaries of traditional retail. Target gets in bed with Casper After failed attempts at an acquisition, Target has instead invested in Casper...Read more
J.Crew has been shifting in its seat trying to adjust to a new normal of shrinking sales and growing debt, but nothing has quite yet paid off, so the company is cutting its prices.Read more
It’s official. Coach, Inc. is snapping up shares of handbag brand Kate Spade.Read more
This week, consumers called for better children's apparel, retailers turned internally to remedy their financial woes and apparel incubators improved China's manufacturing sector.Read more
Whether and how much consumers care about sustainability may be an ongoing question the industry wants an answer for, but one thing that’s clear is that though some consumers do care, sustainability isn’t the first thing they think of.Read more
Gymboree tapped former Tilly's executive Daniel Griesemer as its new CEO, JC Penney appointed Marci Grebstein as its new EVP and Wolford creative director Grit Seymour is leaving the company.Read more