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Weekly Insights Dec 31, 2015

Executive Summary

  • Retail’s best performers continue to be concentrated at the high and low-ends, while the middle market remains pinched, as illustrated by the Weinswig Hourglass Model. We expect 2016 to remain another “hourglass year”, with the midmarket segment squeezed by discount chain expansion and a reduction in discretionary spending.
  • UPS delivered on-time at Christmas this year, while its main rival, FedEx, stumbled, leaving some gifts undelivered until after the holiday.
  • The UK saw strong online retail sales on Christmas Day, with a 21% year over year increase.  Footfall declined before Christmas 9%, but then rose 8.9% post-Christmas.
  • Brazil was hit hard – Brazilian retailers saw sales decline 15% from the prior year.  Walmart also said it was considering closing about 30 stores in Brazil.

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