Retail Detail. High End Department Stores Showing Signs of Struggle

June 16, 2011 • Fashion Blog, Luxury, Retail Detail, Shopping

Since the economic recession officially ended, retailers are slowly showing signs of recovery as well. But is the luxury still profitabel as well? According to the latest quarterly ranking from Unity Marketing. Barneys New York, Nordstrom, and Bergdorf Goodman are the three top luxury department store brands among ultra-affluent consumers.

But the Stevens, Pa.-based market research firm also reports that among these shoppers, defined as the 2% of Americans with incomes of $250,000 or more, high end stores are still struggling. Of the seven measured, only Saks Fifth Avenue gained share in the quarter.

“These top retailers can serve as both a model and a cautionary tale for others who would like to operate in this space,” noted Pam Danziger, Unity’s president and author of Putting the Luxe Back in Luxury. “While the popularity of each store waxes and wanes quarter-to-quarter, the overall trend is that ultra-affluents are slowing their pace of shopping in the luxury department store sector.” So now that everyone else is starting to recover, will the luxury market start to plummet?


-Alia Rajput


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