MasterCard Advisors: Q4 sales momentum continues into January
NEW YORK — January saw strong growth across most retail categories, continuing the positive performance from fourth quarter 2010, albeit at a slightly slower pace, according to MasterCard Advisors SpendingPulse, a report on national retail and services sales that is based on aggregate sales activity in the MasterCard payments network and survey-based estimates for such payment forms as cash and check.
With the January closing of the retail year, sectors that were up for the year outnumbered those that were down by a ratio of 3-to-1. However, even among those which were up for the year, about half have yet to reach their pre-recession peak levels of 2006 and 2007.
“A combination of rising consumer demand and strong pricing continued to drive retail sales in January,” said Michael McNamara, VP research and analysis for MasterCard Advisors SpendingPulse. “Although less robust, the trends we observed were similar to those recorded in the fourth quarter of 2010. Most sectors continued to post positive year-over-year results during the month despite consumers taking a pause in spending and repeated snow storms affecting the East Coast.”
Briarpatch to debut five new I Spy games
MILLBURN, N.J. — Briarpatch is bringing five new riddle-solving I Spy games to the market.
New to the I Spy lineup are:
The two new I Spy Mini games are clip-on games that are perfect for on-the-go kids. The titles in the set are I Spy Mini Shadow Match and I Spy Mini Memory. I Spy Mini-Games are designed for ages 4 years and up, and one or more players;
I Spy Wonder Tubes Collectible games feature floating pictures. Each Wonder Tube also features riddles for I Spy fans to solve. Wonder Tubes are available in five different colors with three different groups of riddles. Wonder Tube games are designed for ages 5 years and up;
I Spy Ready to Read game helps children on their ready-to-read journey by teaching them to identify both words and pictures of objects. The Ready to Read game contains six double-sided game boards, 24 double-sided tokens and rules for several ways to play. The game is designed for ages 4 years and up, for one to six players; and
I Spy Spectacular game contains one three-level spinner, which sets the I Spy pictures in motion and sends kids ages 5 years and up over the edge looking for matches. The game also includes 36 double-sided cards, 50 scoring tokens and rules for different ways to play.
Weis posts 2010 sales gain
SUNBURY, Pa. — Weis Markets on Thursday reported an 8.7% increase, to $68.3 million, in its fiscal-year 2010 net income for the 52-week period ended Dec. 25, and said its earnings per share for the year increased 21 cents, to $2.54 per share, compared with the same period a year ago.
The central Pennsylvania grocer reported a sales increase of 4.1% for the year to $2.6 billion. Comparable-store sales were up 1%.
"We’ve achieved our 2010 goals and have generated strong earnings increases for two consecutive years while maintaining our sales base and increasing our cap ex investments in markets impacted by cautious consumer spending and lower consumer confidence," stated Jonathan Weis, Weis Markets’ vice chairman and secretary. "Our results are due to increased productivity and improved cost controls at store level, supply chain improvements, efficient procurement and a disciplined go-to-market strategy."