Consumer and retail news: 10 things you need to know today

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Daniel Goodman / Business Insider

1. Dead man walking Sears is in a ‘perpetual state of decline’

Sears said Thursday that its same-store sales fell 7.1% in the fourth quarter and revenue dropped 9.8% to $7.3 billion. Sears said earlier this month that it would accelerate planned closures of 50 stores to cut costs.

2. This chicken chain says it’s going after McDonald’s and Burger King

Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen announced plans to increase its global restaurant count from 2,500 to 4,000 in the next seven to ten years. This comes after the chain opened a record-setting 219 new restaurants in 2015.

3. JCPenney made its most desperate move in history to win back customers

A new marketing scheme called “Get Your Penney’s worth” promotes heavy discounts, going as low as one literal penny, The Dallas Morning News reports.

4. The new Dunkin’ Doughnuts menu design ignores millennials in one major way

Dunkin’ Doughnuts new menu features classy photos of products, including dark-roast coffee, Coolatta drinks, and egg sandwiches, Bloomberg reports. It also features cursive font, which is an odd choice for a company targeting young consumers.

5. Kohl’s is closing stores as the department store industry collapses

Kohl’s is closing 18 stores following a disappointing fourth quarter. The department store chain reported a 20% drop in fourth quarter profit on Thursday, and said it expects relatively flat sales for the year.

6. Best Buy admits Q4 sales were terrible… just like everyone else

America’s largest electronics retailer wants shareholders to know that it’s been ugly across the consumer-electronics-industry board. Best Buy reported a 1.5% decline in domestic revenue.

7. Chain restaurants in New York can now be fined for not posting salt warnings

Large chain restaurants and fast-food eateries in the nation’s most populous city can be fined up to $600 beginning next week for not posting salt warnings on menu items that contain more than the recommended daily dose of sodium, a judge ruled Wednesday.

8. Target’s risk to slash prices during the holiday season is slowly paying off

Target’s shares increased 3% in the fourth quarter after heavy discounting during the holiday season. The results show Target has made solid progress in reinvigorating its business and winning back shoppers.

9. Here is everything Restoration Hardware’s CEO blamed for its terrible fourth quarter

Restoration Hardware’s CEO Gary Friedman threw out every excuse in the book to explain what is shaping up to be a dismal quarter for the company including supply issues, oil, and Canada.

10. Millennials aren’t eating cereal because it’s too much work

Almost 40% of millennials surveyed by Mintel said that cereal was an inconvenient breakfast choice, because they have to clean up after eating it, reports the New York Times.

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