SOURCE: The Bedford Report

The Bedford Report

August 17, 2011 08:16 ET

Lululemon and Nike Continue to Impress Despite Economic Headwinds

The Bedford Report Provides Equity Research on Lululemon & Nike

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - Aug 17, 2011) - Volatile price swings in commodities such as cotton and oil have caused noticeable movement in the shares throughout the Apparel Retail industry. While cotton prices have weakened in recent weeks, they are still up considerably year-on-year -- narrowing margins for many companies in the sector. The Bedford Report examines the outlook for companies in the Retail (Apparel) Sector and provides stock research on Lululemon Athletica, Inc. (NASDAQ: LULU) (TSX: LLL) and Nike, Inc. (NYSE: NKE). Access to the full company reports can be found at:

Expectations for retailers are falling as the global economy weakens. Fears of unemployment, low wages for those with jobs, high energy prices, and rising food costs will all continue to affect US consumers.

Lower cotton prices could help both retailers and consumers. The latest U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates for 2011/12 project global cotton consumption at approximately 115.2 million bales. After August reductions in both 2010/11 and 2011/12, cotton consumption for the current season is now forecast to grow about 1 percent after a decline of nearly 4 percent in 2010/11. releases investment research on the Apparel Retail Industry so investors can stay ahead of the crowd and make the best investment decisions to maximize their returns. Take a few minutes to register with us free at and get exclusive access to our numerous analyst reports and industry newsletters.

On a positive note, retailers such as Lululemon Athletica did benefit from same-store sales improving from May to June by 7.2%. During the most recently posted quarter, Lululemon's comparable stores sales rose 16 percent. Net income in the quarter to May 1 rose to $33.4 million, or 46 cents a share, up from a year-earlier profit of $19.6 million, or 27 cents a share.

Despite headwinds, Nike's total revenue grew 14 percent to $5,766.0 million from $5,077.0 million in the prior-year quarter, primarily driven by growth in North America and Greater China regions. Earlier this week, Nike declared a quarterly cash dividend of $0.31 per share on the company's outstanding Class A and Class B Common Stock payable on October 3, 2011.

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