business news in context, analysis with attitude

A new survey done by the National Retail Federation (NRF) reports that retailing CEOs believe that current business conditions are the best they've seen in the past year, and suggest that there is reason to be optimistic about the fall and holiday shopping seasons.

"The back-to-school shopping season appears to have given the retail industry a much-needed sales boost," National Retail Federation President Tracy Mullin said Wednesday. "We are hopeful this is a sign of good things to come as retailers prepare for the holiday season."

While sales may be up, however, the survey also reported that pricing has gotten no better. Only a third of the CEOs surveyed said their companies are engaged in "normal" pricing, with the balance using "moderate discounting" or "considerable discounting."

Staffing also isn’t expected to get any better. None of the CEOs surveyed said they would be doing any hiring for the last quarter of the year.
KC's View:
Forgive us, but we tend to be pretty cynical about the state of the economy. Gas prices that are more than two bucks a gallon, mortgage rates that are going up, and an unstable global political situation tend to have that effect on us.

Sure, it's possible that things could get better fast. But it seems a lot more likely that things could very quickly go to hell in a handbasket.

But maybe we're just reading too many newspapers…