Macy’s is in trouble.
The retailer’s same-store sales growth has been weakening over the last several years, and Deutsche Bank analysts expect things to only get worse for the department store chain.
Deutsche Bank analyst Paul Trussell on Monday downgraded Macy’s from “buy” to “sell,” saying he has “low confidence that the company can bust out of its same-stores sales rut.”
Sales declines at Michael Kors, one of Macy’s key vendors, were cited as a primary reason for the downgrade.
“We are especially concerned as we see no obvious juggernaut to replace the lost dollars, and we note ongoing challenges at other key vendors as well,” Trussell wrote, specifically naming Coach, Guess, and Ralph Lauren, as additional venders that could cause problems.
Michael Kors’ same-store sales declined 6.7% in North America during its most recent quarter. The company’s shares are down 43% since the beginning of the year and nearly 52% in the last 12 months.
Michael Kors’ downfall isthe result of its widespread popularity. The name became too ubiquitous to remain cool, analysts say.
But Michael Kors isn’t Macy’s only problem.
Trussell also cited concerns about declining revenue from tourists, as well as a major shift in discretionary spending from products (like clothing) to experiences and technology.
Macy’s is also suffering from a shift toward direct-to-consumer business models, in which brands use their own websites to sell directly to customers without going through a department store like Macy’s.
At a recent conference, Bloomingdale’s Chairman and CEO Tony Spring said this changing landscape keeps him up at night.
“Our vendors are our partners and suppliers. But many have also become our competitors,” Spring said at the Retail Marketing Society’s “Reinventing the Store” conference in June, according to Trussell.