BTS Sales Bode Well for Holidays: Analyst

NEW CANAAN, Conn. — Despite a preponderance of gloomy holiday shopping forecasts, Customer Growth Partners on Friday said it expected sales this season could exceed modest estimates — as they did for back-to-school season.

Craig Johnson, president of CGP, in a news release said BTS sales of $466 billion represented a 5.9% gain from 2010 and the biggest percentage increase since 6.2% growth 2006. Growth during the period was best in luxury and value categories, which saw respective gains of 12.2% and 7%, while mid-tier stores lagged at 4.4% growth. These figures strongly outperformed estimates and bode well for the holiday season, Johnson said.

“Despite weak-kneed worriers among economists and experts, American households propelled the back-to-school season was the best since 2006’s +6.2%. For the holidays, BTS is at best an imperfect predictor, but these results have teed up what may be a very merry Christmas for retailers,” Johnson said in a statement. CGP said it would release its holiday forecast later this month.