Shares of 12 stocks in the SPDR S&P Retail ETF (XRT), including department store Dillard’s (DDS), fuel seller Murphy USA (MUSA) and women’s apparel seller Chico’s FAS (CHS), are up more than 10% this year, says an Investor’s Business Daily analysis of data from S&P Global Market Intelligence and MarketSmith. And shares of Amazon? They’re down nearly 41%, shredding hundreds of billions of dollars in market value.
Talk about a role reversal — and one worth noting ahead of a busy week for retailers to report their quarterly profit. For years, shares of Amazon.com soared while most other retailers’ stocks sputtered at best. But the roles changed this year. The “Death By Amazon” index, tracking the performance of retailers that compete with Amazon, pulled ahead of Amazon this year, says Bespoke Investment Group, creator of the index. But some retailer’s stocks are doing even better still.
“It’s an interesting question whether the Death By Amazon … (index is) being punished along with Amazon instead of benefiting from the e-commerce giant’s equity price woes,” said Bespoke.
Sizing Up Retailers In The S&P 500 And Beyond
Finding winning retailers isn’t easy. Only 12% of the 97 stocks in the SPDR S&P Retail ETF are up 10% or more this year. It’s a tough environment for retail stocks in general.
Uncertainty in holiday shopping outlooks is dampening spending plans. Inflationary pressure hurts, too. Additionally, fears a recession is looming or here already don’t help, either. The SPDR S&P Retail ETF is down 28.3% this year, lagging the nearly 17% drop by the S&P 500.
And Amazon is one of the ugliest in the index. Not only are shares crashing this year, analysts think the online retailing giant will post a loss this year of 8 cents a share this fiscal year. Last fiscal year it made $3.24 a share. Big physical store rivals are doing better, but hardly great. Shares of Walmart (WMT) are down more than 4% this year. And Walmart’s profit this fiscal year is seen falling nearly 10%.
So, who are the winning retailers?
Department Stores Aren’t Dead?
Online retail has gotten so much attention, no one noticed grandma still goes to the mall. Shares of Little Rock, Ark., based Dillard’s, an old-school department store with an online presence has seen its shares soar more than 47% this year to 361.66.
And it’s not just a speculation play. Analysts think Dillard’s profit this fiscal year will rise more than 6%. And that’s after a powerful boom in profit in 2022, when it reversed a year earlier loss.
Some top-performing retailers are easier to understand. With gasoline prices soaring, it’s little surprise to see shares of Murphy USA up more than 45% this year. The company, which also runs convenience stores at gas stations, is expected to put up more than 80% adjusted profit growth per share this year.
And then there’s Chico’s FAS, a hot Florida-based retail chain known for its garb for middle-aged women. Wall Street must have rediscovered the look, sending shares up more than 25% this year. Unlike Amazon.com, drowning in red ink, Chico’s is on pace to earn 85 cents a share this fiscal year, more than double its profit in 2022.
If anything, 2022 proved to S&P 500 investors that retail is more than just Amazon.
Better Than Amazon?
Top retail stocks this year in SPDR Retail ETF
|Name||Ticker||Retail type||Stock year-to-date % ch.|
|Murphy USA||(MUSA)||Automotive Retail||45.2|
|Chico’s FAS||(CHS)||Apparel Retail||25.8|
|Casey’s General Stores||(CASY)||Food Retail||18.9|
|Penske Automotive Group||(PAG)||Automotive Retail||18.4|
|O’Reilly Automotive||(ORLY)||Automotive Retail||16.8|
|BJ’s Wholesale Club||(BJ)||Hypermarkets & Super Centers||13.7|
|Sprouts Farmers Market||(SFM)||Food Retail||13.3|
Sources: S&P Global Market Intelligence, IBD
Follow Matt Krantz on Twitter @mattkrantz
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