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Nordstrom is copying Macy’s in the worst way possible

A woman carries Nordstrom shopping bags at The Grove mall in Los Angeles.
Reuters/Lucy Nicholson
Nordstrom needs every trick in its bag to turn things around.
By Melvin Backman
Published Last updated This article is more than 2 years old.

Yesterday (Nov. 11), Macy’s was the one throwing in the towel on 2015, cutting its year-end guidance before the holiday shopping season even starts. Today it was Nordstrom’s turn.

The upscale department chain just reported earnings, and they’re pretty disappointing. Sales for the quarter increased about 6.5% from a year ago, to $3.2 billion, though profits dropped 42% to $81 million. The company pinned some of the income drop on the sale of its credit card business and its acquisition of Trunk Club. Regardless, both measures failed to meet expectations. To make matters worse, the company cut its full-year guidance across the board. Shares dropped more than 20% in after-hours trading.

Mike Koppel, the company’s chief financial officer, didn’t have particularly reassuring words for analysts on the company’s earnings call: “It appears that there has been a slowdown in the overall demand for the customer that is purchasing what we sell.”

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