QUOTE AND NEWS
Benzinga  Feb 21  Comment 
The holiday shopping season was disappointing for many retailers, and it showed in the mixed earnings report released by Macy's Inc (NYSE: M) early Tuesday. Three more leading department store operators are expected to share their latest...
Benzinga  Feb 21  Comment 
Baird’s Mark R. Altschwager prefers to remain cautious on J C Penney Company Inc (NYSE: JCP), especially the company’s top line, ahead of its Q4 results announcements, “given cyclical/secular headwinds and potential pressure from additional...
Motley Fool  Feb 15  Comment 
The retailer has shown signs that it can make its comeback stick.
Yahoo  Feb 14  Comment 
U.S. President Donald Trump will meet on Wednesday with the chief executives of eight large retailers, including Target Corp (TGT.N), Best Buy Co Inc (BBY.N) and J.C. Penney Company Inc (JCP.N), to discuss tax reform and infrastructure...
Motley Fool  Feb 14  Comment 
With rivals throwing in the towel, this is how J.C. Penney can take advantage.
MarketWatch  Feb 13  Comment 
Shares of J.C. Penney Co. Inc. climbed 1.1% in morning trade Monday, after Morgan Stanley backed off from the bearish stance it had on the discount department store chain for the past several years. Analyst Kimberly Greenberger upgraded J.C....
Motley Fool  Feb 7  Comment 
All three department store chains reported disappointing holiday sales results, raising questions about the industry going forward.
New York Times  Feb 2  Comment 
Macy's Inc has settled its lawsuit accusing J.C. Penney Co of interfering improperly with its exclusive merchandising agreement with Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia Inc.
DailyFinance  Jan 31  Comment 
Filed under: Congressional Republicans have been touting a corporate tax reform plan that would exempt exports from taxation while preventing companies from deducting the cost of imports when calculating their taxes. The plan would also...




 

J.C. Penney (NYSE: JCP) is a leading department store retailer of apparel, accessories and home furnishings. They produce their own private brands in addition to selling products from other companies.

The company has faced changing consumer tastes in the past years--consumer traffic is being drawn to Wal-Mart (WMT) and Target (TGT) at the expense of department stores such as J.C. Penney and Macy's Inc. (M). In addition, J.C. Penney relies heavily on private labels[1] Although private label products--in order to appeal to as many customers as possible--are not unique enough to compel fashion-conscious consumers to purchase them, they are still a viable option for customers who do not follow trends. JCP also faces lower profit margins in the due to rising commodity costs which will increase its clothing costs.

Business Overview

The company divides its merchandise into several categories which include: men's, women's and children's apparel, accessories and cosmetics; home furnishings; leisure and recreational equipment; jewelry and watches.[2]


Business Growth

Trends and Forces

Private Brands Not Unique Enough to Differentiate from Cheaper Alternatives

Private label brands are produced exclusively for a particular store. For example, J.C. Penney has a number of private label brands including Arizona Jeans Co. and Stafford.[3] Retailers such as Macy's and J.C. Penney find private labels very attractive because the pieces often have higher margins than branded merchandise from other companies. However, the economic crisis of 2008-2009 has made people more reluctant to spend. When consumers have less money to spend, they will be more inclined to spend it on something that excites them. Private label brands, in an effort to appeal to as many consumers as possible, are less likely to spur a person to buy them when disposable income is already scarce.[4] Also, the proliferation of discount retailers such as Wal-Mart, Target and Kohl's (some with their own exclusive brands) means that consumers can trade down to another store if they can no longer afford prices at J.C. Penney. Private label merchandise, by its nature, is not differentiated enough to keep fashion-conscious consumers purchasing them in lieu of lower-priced alternatives.

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Competition

J.C. Penney's main competition is mid-tier department stores such as Macy's Inc. (M) and Kohl's (KSS).

  • Macy's Inc. (M) has a higher price point than J.C. Penney and sells more exclusive brands. Although both companies produce private labels, they make less of a contribution to Macy's total sales than they do J.C. Penney. [5] [6]
  • Kohl's (KSS) is slightly smaller than J.C. Penney, both in terms of sales and locations Kohl's also operates at a slightly lower price point. Kohl's position as a discount retailer makes it more attractive for recession-stricken consumers who are looking to save money. Although it has fewer locations than J.C. Penney the fact the company sells its goods online means it is not at a large disadvantage to the larger retailer in terms of accessibility.[7]


News

  • On July 27, 2011 marketing chief Mike Boylson retired after 32 years working with JCP and 8 years serving in his former position. This will be first time Ron Johnson, who was appointed chief executive of JCP in November 2010, makes a senior-level appointment.[8]

References

  1. JC Penny 2009 10-k p.22
  2. JCP 2008 Annual Report pg. 2  
  3. JCP 2008 Annual Report pg. 2  
  4. Alexandria Sage. ANALYSIS - Private label eclipsed by brands in US retail slump.
  5. M 2009 Annual Report  
  6. JC Penny 2009 10-k p.22
  7. Discount Retailers Thriving in Recession.
  8. [1]
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