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Takeaway: AMZN monthly comps rip, EBAY lowest growth rate in 3.5yrs. TGT emphasizes 3 key departments, food big omission. UA re-ups with U of MD.

EVENTS TO WATCH

Wenesday (9/10)

FIVE - Earnings Call: 4:30pm

WTSL - Earnings Call: 4:30pm

RH - Earnings Call: 5:00pm

Thursday (9/11)

LULU - Earnings Call: 9:00am

KR - Earnings Call: 10:00am

ULTA - Earnings Call: 5:00pm

COMPANY HIGHLIGHTS

AMZN, EBAY - ChannelAdvisor August Comparable Store Sales

Retail Callouts (9/10): AMZN, EBAY, TGT, UA, KSS, URBN, DG, FDO, DLTR - 9 10 chart4

Takeaway: ChannelAdvisor works with a host of 3rd party sellers who use the AMZN and EBAY marketplaces and uses the sales results from its clientele to back into these monthly comp numbers. Directionally it’s a very good indication of how the two businesses are tracking. AMZN has been on an absolute tear since April, and the divergence between the two is noteworthy. At 5.9% this is the lowest comp for EBAY in over 3.5 years.

TGT- Target Narrows the Bull's-Eye, With Emphasis on Signature Products

(http://online.wsj.com/articles/target-narrows-the-bullseye-with-emphasis-on-signature-products-1410293111)

  • "Target Corp.'s new CEO plans to double down on just a handful of departments like baby products and fashion, a strategic shift as the discounter works to bring shoppers back to its stores and better compete with online rivals."
  • "Just a month into his job, Chief Executive Brian Cornell is seeking to bolster a small number of categories that could help the chain stand out."
  • "'We've got to major in these signature categories and make some bold changes to re-energize those businesses,' Mr. Cornell said in an interview. 'All categories can't be prioritized the same.'"

Takeaway: We don't disagree with Mr. Cornell's approach on this one. The problem is that over 70% of the company's US store base has an expanded grocery department and that was willfully omitted from the list. The company can't hop into the DeLorean and undo the P-Fresh decision. Over a 5yr time frame, TGT went from cool, edgy ‘Tarjay’ where it was the envy of most of its peers, with a relatively defendable customer and would actually compete on the fringes with the likes of H&M, to being the place where a person who cares about nothing but price, or shops there simply because they hate going to WalMart. It went from having a peer group where it had a notable competitive advantage, to putting itself right in the middle of four unique competitors – 1) WalMart, 2) Department Stores, 3) Dollar Stores, and 4) Supermarkets. As a bonus, it has Amazon.com hovering over its head plucking away every last sales dollar it can. Differentiating TGT from the competition is going to take more than mannequins and health conscious cleaning supplies.

UA - Maryland’s helmets and uniforms will feature the lyrics to ‘The Star-Spangled Banner’

(http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/dc-sports-bog/wp/2014/09/09/marylands-helmets-and-uniforms-will-feature-the-lyrics-to-the-star-spangled-banner/)

Retail Callouts (9/10): AMZN, EBAY, TGT, UA, KSS, URBN, DG, FDO, DLTR - 9 10 chart 1

Retail Callouts (9/10): AMZN, EBAY, TGT, UA, KSS, URBN, DG, FDO, DLTR - 9 10 chart2

Takeaway: We're all for patriotism but these new UA unis for the University of Maryland are an eye sore. We take NKE and Oregon's aesthetics over UA and Maryland any day. On another note - UA re-upped its deal with the University yesterday at essentially the same terms as before, $3.4mm per year. Like Nike and Oregon this negotiation was a formality.

OTHER NEWS

KSS - Juicy Couture Now Available Nationwide at Kohl’s Department Stores

(http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=60706&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=1965560&highlight=)

  • "Kohl’s Department Stores today announced the international lifestyle brand Juicy Couture is now available at Kohl’s stores nationwide and Kohls.com/JuicyCouture."
  • "'Customers across the country will be excited by the newness they find at Kohl’s this fall,' said Kevin Mansell, Kohl's chairman, chief executive officer and president. 'Amazing product is a fundamental pillar of our new Greatness Agenda and the proven casual luxury brand Juicy Couture will offer customers a fun, new fashion and home option in addition to Kohl’s existing portfolio of powerful and well-recognized brands.'"
  • "The cross-category collection includes misses’ and girls’ 7-16 apparel, jewelry, handbags, accessories, watches, footwear, bedding and fragrances. Retailing under $100 for fashion and accessories to under $400 for bedding and watches, Juicy Couture delivers confident, relaxed and feminine style at incredible savings."

KSS - Brendan Hoffman Seen on Kohl's Radar

(http://www.wwd.com/retail-news/people/hoffman-seen-on-kohls-radar-7893316?module=Business-latest)

  • "Currently, Hoffman is said to be on Kohl’s radar for a top position. Kohl’s, based in Menomonee Falls, Wisc., has its two top merchant slots open, following the departures of chief merchandising officer Donald Brennan last April, and Peggy Eskenasi, senior vice president of product development, last month. Earlier this year, Hoffman was on J.C. Penney Co. Inc.’s radar, as a possible successor to ceo Myron 'Mike' Ullman 3rd, but that didn’t pan out."

URBN - 3Q Update (10-Q)

(https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/912615/000119312514336729/d765586d10q.htm)

  • "Thus far during the third quarter of fiscal 2015, comparable Retail segment net sales are low single-digit negative."

DG, FDO, DLTR - Dollar General Commences Cash Tender Offer to Acquire Family Dollar At $80 Per Share

(https://investor.shareholder.com/dollar/releasedetail.cfm?ReleaseID=870068)

  • "Dollar General Corporation today announced that it has commenced a tender offer to acquire all outstanding shares of Family Dollar Stores, Inc. for $80.00 per share in cash. The offer is scheduled to expire at 5:00 p.m., New York City time, on October 8, 2014, unless the offer is extended. The full terms, conditions and other details of the tender offer are set forth in the offering documents that Dollar General will file today with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Dollar General also will promptly file for clearance under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Act, which will allow the Company to begin the antitrust approval process with the Federal Trade Commission."

RL - Judge Puts Ralph Lauren, USPA Case in Arbitration

(http://www.wwd.com/business-news/legal/arbitration-in-india-for-ralph-lauren-uspa-dispute-7892271?module=Business-latest)

  • "The 30-year trademark battle between Ralph Lauren Corp. and the United States Polo Association is headed back to India after Judge Thomas Griesa of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York this week rejected a complaint filed last October by Ralph Lauren Corp. against United States Polo Association Inc. and Arvind, its Indian apparel licensee. The complaint alleged unauthorized use of Polo’s single polo player mark and failure to provide the required disclaimers indicating that USPA isn’t affiliated with Ralph Lauren, as set forth in a settlement agreement reached in 2003."

FIVE - Five Below opens new distribution center in NJ to support growth

(http://www.retailingtoday.com/article/five-below-opens-new-distribution-center-nj-support-growth)

  • "Five Below has signed a lease for a new distribution center in Oldmans Township, New Jersey. The 1,045,000-sq.-ft. facility, located at 5 Gateway Blvd. in Pedricktown, will replace the company's existing 421,000-sq.-ft. facility located 12 miles away in New Castle, Delaware."