Discount Department Stores Thriving In Recession

Frugal living seems to have become a more common trademark of the American consumer in the last couple of years.  Since the beginning of 2008, 20% less and 35% less US adults report to have purchased merchandise at the upscale stores Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s respectively. By contrast, 8% more and 62% more US adults report to have purchased merchandise at Marshall’s and Ross Stores, respectively.

Discount stores appear to be weathering the recession better than some of their full-price counterparts, as they carry first-quality designer merchandise at competitive prices, often advertised at up to 70% below department store prices. However, many of these designer discount retailers would be in a difficult position without the existence of department stores, since the designer discount business model is primarily based on purchasing close-outs from the very department stores that they compete against.

Discount stores appear to be weathering the recession better than some of their full-price counterparts

Since the beginning of 2008, an average 54% of US adults shop around a lot to take advantage of specials and bargains. Also, from January 2008 to August 2009, 7% more US adults tend to hold out on buying things until the go on sale and 13% more head right for the clearance rack when they enter a store. In conclusion, the past 2.5 years have seen the American consumer become a more serious discount shopper – a trend that is likely to continue in this current, uncertain economic environment.

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