SOURCE: Five Star Equities

Five Star Equities

July 18, 2012 08:20 ET

J.C. Penney Shares Fall After New York State Supreme Court Sides With Macy's -- Retail Sales in June Fall for Third Straight Month

Five Star Equities Provides Stock Research on Macy's and J.C. Penney

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - Jul 18, 2012) - The markets began the week in the red Monday after the Commerce Department's Census Bureau reported that retail sales in June unexpectedly fell for the third consecutive month. The last time consumer spending declined for three consecutive months was in the fall of 2008, during the great recession. Five Star Equities examines the outlook for companies in the Retail Industry and provides equity research on Macy's, Inc. (NYSE: M) and J.C. Penney Company, Inc. (NYSE: JCP).

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According to the report retail sales in June fell 0.5 percent; economists had predicted a 0.2 percent rise. A weak U.S. jobs market and concerns of a global recession appears to have consumers spending more cautiously. The slowdown has raised some major concerns among investors as consumer spending is accountable for roughly 70 percent of the U.S. economy.

"Recent weak jobs data have certainly done nothing to alter our view that consumer spending growth will be very modest at best in the quarters ahead," said Joshua Shapiro, chief U.S. economist at MFR Inc. "A silver lining in the economic clouds is that lower gasoline prices are helping to cushion the consumer."

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Shares of J.C. Penney fell after the New York State Supreme Court sided with Macy's to block an agreement that would've allowed J.C. Penney to sell certain products made by Martha Stewart Living. Macy's argued that they had exclusive rights to the products until 2018. J.C. Penney had previously acquired a 16.6 percent stake in Martha Stewart Living with plans to sell their products in separate stores built within J.C. Penney's retail stores.

"This is another blow to J.C. Penney, which was likely assuming that the shop-in-shop format within J.C. Penney would allow them to carry whatever they wanted (since the Martha agreement with Macy's did allow for Martha to open standalone stores)," wrote Paul Lejuez of Nomura Equity Research.

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