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Earnings Insights 1Q20, Week 1: What US Retailers Are Reporting on the Coronavirus Impact and Outlook

Our weekly Earnings Insights reports feature highlights from recent management commentary at major US retailers as they report first-quarter 2020 earnings. We condense what retail companies are reporting with a focus on the impact of the coronavirus crisis. This week, there are highlights from companies that reported in the weeks ended May 17 and May 24, including Best Buy, Kohl’s and VF Corporation.

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Coronavirus Tracker: Retail Metrics and Key Developments

Coresight Research’s Coronavirus Tracker includes a timeline of key developments; details temporary US store closures and reopenings; charts weekly data on shoppers' purchasing behaviors; and notes US retail hirings, US states' reopening dates for businesses and furloughs by major retail companies. Recently added are details of capital raising, management changes, financial guidance updates and bankruptcies in retail.

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Coronavirus Insights: China Launches New “55 Shopping Festival” To Give Retail a Post-Lockdown Boost

To stimulate the economy and encourage consumers to release pent-up demand post Covid-19, the Shanghai Municipal People’s Government co-launched a new, large-scale shopping holiday with the retail industry at the beginning of May 2020. We discuss the scale and impact of the omnichannel 55 Shopping Festival, exploring how it is driving purchasing behavior in retail and tourism.

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US and China Quarterly Economic Update: Coronavirus Inflicted Economic Harm to Both Countries in 1Q20

Recently released data from the US and China show both economies being impacted by the global coronavirus pandemic in the first quarter of 2020. US GDP declined to the lowest level since the Global Recession in 2008, and China’s GDP contracted for the first time in nearly 30 years. Furthermore, due to the Covid-19 crisis, industrial output in both nations fell significantly.

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Coronavirus Insights: US Drugstore Chains and Big-Box Pharmacy Retailers Roll Out Drive-Thru Coronavirus Testing Sites

As some US states begin to reopen businesses and lift stay-at-home orders, the need for increased testing has become a focal point to slow the spread of the coronavirus. We discuss how the concept of drive-thru testing is undergoing mass expansion across the nation, due to the efforts of drugstore chains and pharmacy retailers.

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RFID Update: Mature Technology Finds New Applications in CPG, Analytics and Inventory Tracking

We explore the use of RFID in retail, with applications of this 70-year-old technology still expanding due to recent innovations. This report highlights key developments in the field that enable loss prevention, frictionless returns, predictive analytics and inventory tracking. We also discuss a major initiative in Japan, through which major convenience-store retailers are introducing RFID tags across their entire product inventory.

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