H&M: Speed Matters

03/26/09 10:29AM EDT
Here’s a great example as to why a solid retailer that is structurally set up for speed to market will perennially outperform just about everybody else. Earlier today H&M printed 3Q interim results. By no means were the results good – how could they be with comps down 5% (see the first chart below). But in that context, inventories were down 8% as the company proactively cleared inventory and printed gross margins down 5 points. Again, not good. But most US retailers would have slipped into one of the lower quadrants of the SIGMA chart below – which is very defensive in nature. The market rewards offense over defense. The stock is down about 5% on the quarter, but still stands out as one of the better performing global retail stocks year-to-date.
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