Retailers' Profits Miss By Most In 13 Years: "Consumer Is Not Back"

Tyler Durden's picture


"The American consumer is not fully back and remains cautious," is the oddly real tone of Ken Perkins, president of Retail Metrics, reporting that U.S. retailers’ first-quarter earnings are trailing analysts’ estimates by the widest margin
in 13 years amid weak spending by lower-income consumers intensified competition:


While extreme weather is tossed out as the reason for this miss, what is an ugly smoking gun is the expectations the chains are missing had already been significantly lowered. Hope remains strong as "pent-up demand" has analysts projecting a 8.6% surge in profits in Q2... as long as it's not too hot or cold or wet or dry.


As Bloomberg reports,

Chains are missing projections by an average of 3.2 percent, with 87 retailers, or 70 percent of those tracked, having reported, researcher Retail Metrics Inc. said in a statement today. That’s the worst performance relative to estimates since the fourth quarter of 2000, when they missed by 3.3 percent. Over the long term, chains typically beat by 3 percent, the firm said.




“The American consumer is not fully back and remains cautious,” Ken Perkins, Retail Metrics’ president, wrote in the report.




What’s more, the expectations the chains are missing have been significantly lowered. While analysts now project retailers’ earnings fell an average of 4.1 percent, back in January they had estimated a 13 percent gain.


Most retail segments are showing profit declines, with department stores, teen-apparel chains and home-furnishing stores faring the worst, Retail Metrics said. About 41 percent of retailers have missed estimates, while 45 percent have beat.

But faith remains strong that it will all be ok...

Improved weather, pent-up demand and better employment trends may help the industry in the second quarter, Perkins said. Analysts are projecting an 8.6 percent gain in profit for the current three-month period, he said.

Unforntunately, the winter of 2000 was a relatively mild one - so we wonder what they blamed the miss on then...

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Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:13 | 4788586 Seasmoke
Seasmoke's picture

Just about everyone I know is broke......but more important, they are no longer afraid to admit it !!!

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:20 | 4788617 Gaius Frakkin' ...
Gaius Frakkin' Baltar's picture

Just what exactly are these retailers expecting? That the American consumer will suddenly find a +$1000 in discretionary income per month? And then they'll be able to mark up junk at +500% like "the good'ole days"?

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:36 | 4788688 knukles
knukles's picture

Oh, come on...
It's not that bad...
After all, Pelousy just blamed Bush again for some shit or other...
And the MSM is describing Putin as "embattled"...

Fuckin-A's all honkie dorky! 


This whole fucking thing is turning out like a bad Ed Wood movie, Plan 9 from Outer Space or sumptin'

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:47 | 4788754 duo
duo's picture

It's the other way around, $1000 less per month for Obamacare, plus the fear of $6000 deductible.

As I said last year, the Obamacare sudden-stop of our economy will be something for the history books.

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:58 | 4788791 freewolf7
freewolf7's picture

We left and we ain't comin' back. We're busy. Buying precious metals.

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 12:10 | 4788864 dontgoforit
dontgoforit's picture

Helping our kids trying to launch, pay student loans, do the honorable things.  I can't bitch about this stuff if I'm gonna be hypocritical.  'We're not broke, but we're badly bent.'

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 13:42 | 4789178 kchrisc
kchrisc's picture

With respect, but why are you even bothering paying the student loans?!

Just get a deferment, and put the savings into gold/silver, steel and lead.

The TP-dollar and DC US won't even exist in a few years.


"You can also invest in a guillotine."

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 12:25 | 4788931 Al Huxley
Al Huxley's picture

Ha ha, good one, the average American consumer has stopped buying shit on credit and is now buying PMs, right!  Thanks for the laugh.

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 12:51 | 4789029 666
666's picture

Why would I want to go to the store to buy clothes or whatever when I can simply take my money and make monthly ObummerCare payments?

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:48 | 4788758 homiegot
homiegot's picture

I shop at Goodwill. Found a 8 dollar blender after the one I bought for 90 bucks 10 years ago fried (things used to last longer). I'll keep buying the 8 dollar blenders from now on. Fuck retail.

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:20 | 4788620 observer007
observer007's picture

Thai military detains former PM Yingluck



Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:37 | 4788697 NoDebt
NoDebt's picture

I wish our military would detain Obama.  

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:48 | 4788759 corporatewhore
corporatewhore's picture

I understand you're frustration with the awful current economic conditions and i suffer from it also.  However, blaming it all on one person and that person being the duly elected President is ludicrous.  Haven't you heard that the President only proposes?  I would love to blame Bush for everything but that is a complete simplification of the current malaise.  There are so many factors involved in this mess. 


Fri, 05/23/2014 - 12:02 | 4788823 BeetleBailey
BeetleBailey's picture

"duly elected"

duly .............elected

This fuck-chop had more ballot stuffing than a turkey on Thanksgiving

I agree...but the whole Fuckbama administration - and the government overall - is the problem.


Fri, 05/23/2014 - 13:49 | 4789194 kchrisc
kchrisc's picture

The problem is MUCH, MUCH larger than just one administration.

The criminality has been going on for some time. Since Lincoln, in my book, maybe Wilson for some, or for many, since Dallas '63.


"Don't miss the treasonous government, for the treasonous administration."

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 13:52 | 4789212 corporatewhore
corporatewhore's picture

who stuffed Florida in bush v gore?

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 14:18 | 4789304 kchrisc
kchrisc's picture


Fri, 05/23/2014 - 12:09 | 4788854 Osmium
Osmium's picture

I believe he did more that propose Obama care.  The insurance company's wrote the law and he pretty much rammed that shit through on his own.  Then after it was signed into law, have made several changes to it with the stroke of a pen ignoring the constitution.

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 12:50 | 4789028 john39
john39's picture

obama is not competent enough to ram anything through.  its all a set up, by people hiding in the shadows, and they will throw obama to the dogs at some point, but only to sucker the american people for the next trap they laid.

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 12:11 | 4788873 dontgoforit
dontgoforit's picture

No, I believe you can blame obama.  If Romney had won the election it would, IMHO, be a very different world.

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 12:18 | 4788899 pods
pods's picture

Yeah, for starters we wouldn't be making wookie jokes.

Wait, that's all I got.


Fri, 05/23/2014 - 13:30 | 4789145 earnyermoney
earnyermoney's picture

jokes about SpongeMit MagicUnderpants

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:29 | 4788660 Relentless101
Relentless101's picture

American consumer is dead. Its demographics and psychology. People who got wacked in 08' are trying build retirement and those who are less concerned with retirement still have a horrible taste in their mouth. The only people buying are well off and we all know that even though they have way more money, it'll never last.

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:40 | 4788718 Never One Roach
Never One Roach's picture



"The American consumer is not fully back...."


Baaawaaaahhaaaaaaaa! He qualifies for the next pres of the NAR with his euphemisms and double speak.

But, then again, it is "The Summer of Recovery!"

Yes, another one.

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:45 | 4788739 homiegot
homiegot's picture

I suggest we start digging mass graves. Know what I mean?

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 13:54 | 4789219 kchrisc
kchrisc's picture

We should leave that to the Ready Reserve Corps when they set up shop at the FEMA camps.

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 12:13 | 4788879 Richardk888
Richardk888's picture

I am sure they are counting on everyone spedning their tax refunds to boost sales, but seeing as how taxes went up and so many deductions are gone I think they are going to be dissapointed.

Not to mention the rise in cost in everyday items.

Obviously the only thing that can fix this is more government

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 12:20 | 4788904 pods
pods's picture

It is like bloodletting or AIDS "therapy."  The sicker the patient got, the more they had to do.  


Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:14 | 4788590 BeetleBailey
BeetleBailey's picture

Yet...the fucking casino is up, yet again......insanity

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:16 | 4788594 TheRideNeverEnds
TheRideNeverEnds's picture

Terrible economic data you say?  Well that explains why the market hasn't had a down tick all day and we are making new highs.

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:16 | 4788602 Tenshin Headache
Tenshin Headache's picture

More worry! Bullish!

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:16 | 4788605 starman
starman's picture

My 9 year old daughter; dad I really want to go to China, me with disgust; why China , my daughter; because that's where they make all the toys.


Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:20 | 4788622 jbvtme
jbvtme's picture

you sure it wasn't that melamine formula you fed her as a kid?

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 14:11 | 4789271 malek
malek's picture

I hope you're proud of your daughter: she understands that producing things counts (and no, production of fiat currency doesn't count)

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:18 | 4788611 orangegeek
orangegeek's picture

You have to wonder how Ken Perkins and the like get up in the morning to write this garbage.


Hey Ken!!!!!!!!!  50M Americans on food stamps.  Any questions dumbass???

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 13:37 | 4789165 SheepDog-One
SheepDog-One's picture

These people have their heads so far up their own asses that they're connoisseurs of their own farts!

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:19 | 4788612 wmbz
wmbz's picture

Now that summer is here it is bound to get hot somewhere. That plus fires and thunder storms "they" will have plenty of weather to blame it on.

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 16:01 | 4789612 SDShack
SDShack's picture

And then hurricanes in the fall... don't forget the hurricanes.

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:19 | 4788615 ParkAveFlasher
ParkAveFlasher's picture

Not "cautious", "dead".  Upcoming generation shops at thrift stores and LOVES IT.  Complete and utter socio-economic DOWNSHIFT. I don't care what any of my fellow late X-ers say, these kids are the TITS.  I love them.

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:45 | 4788747 CrazyCatLady
CrazyCatLady's picture

This late x er says they got it from us.  Been shopping thrift since high school.  Only way to get quality stuff with character

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 12:16 | 4788892 ParkAveFlasher
ParkAveFlasher's picture

I love you, man!

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:48 | 4788757 homme
homme's picture

Thrift stores rock! About the only things I buy "new" anymore, is food and underwear.

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 12:17 | 4788894 ParkAveFlasher
ParkAveFlasher's picture

And a bro hug for you too, homme. 

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 13:08 | 4789083 edifice
edifice's picture

Millennials are great, by and large--especially the ones born after 1985. Some are schlubs, some are a little naive and weird from overparenting, but overall they're good kids just looking to get by.

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:20 | 4788619 optimator
optimator's picture

Factor in price increases due to (real) inflation and its even worse.

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:20 | 4788623 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

     If coke and hookers works so well for the GDP caugh...caugh numbers, then maybe we should include pork & prescription meds. in retail sales numbers.

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:22 | 4788628 tommylicious
tommylicious's picture

my inbox is stuffed with promotion after promotion from retailers.  big discounts.

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:22 | 4788634 pound the vix
pound the vix's picture

No money for clothing and furniture because everyone is buying a Caterpilar.  Or is that the stock used to juice the market??

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 11:23 | 4788637 madcows
madcows's picture

earnings don't matter.  market is still up.

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 12:15 | 4788885 dontgoforit
dontgoforit's picture

QE comrades.

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