US fashion retailers are suffering since the trade war with China escalated. Most of these fashion retailers work with factories in China, and investors are worried about tariffs pushing up their costs. They are struggling to retain customers in the face of intensifying competition. The sector has fared far worse than tech, chip and automaker stocks.
J. Jill, the women’s clothing and accessories retailer, saw a 3.3 per cent decline in first-quarter same-store sales. Its share price has plunged 83 per cent cumulatively over the last year. The retailer expects a two to four per cent drop in same-store sales for the full fiscal year. Gap’s same-store sales fell four per cent in the first quarter. It expects full-year same-store sales to contract further. A&F’s same-store sales rose by one per cent in the first quarter, far below the nine per cent growth in the same period of last year. Its share price has plunged by 43 per cent over the last month. Americans spent 1.3 per cent less on apparel last year. It was the only category that reported a decline among all consumer products. Millennials in America spend around 18 per cent less on clothing than those born in 1960s and 1970s.