The National Retail Federation on Thursday said it expects retail sales during November and December to increase between 3.8% and 4.2% over 2018, totaling between $727.9 billion and $730.7 billion. Online and other non-store sales (included in the total) are expected to increase 11% to 14% to between $162.6 billion and $166.9 billion, up from $146.5 billion last year. In a statement, Matt Shay, CEO of NRF, noted that “there has clearly been a slowdown brought on by considerable uncertainty around issues including trade, interest rates, global risk factors, and political rhetoric.” “Consumers are in good financial shape and retailers expect a strong holiday season,” Shay said. However, confidence could be eroded by continued deterioration of these and other variables.”
1-800-FLOWERS.COM, Inc. (NASDAQ: FLWS), a leading e-commerce provider of products and services designed to inspire more human expression, connection, and celebration, today reported that it had received a new authorization from its Board of Directors increasing funds available for stock repurchase to $40 million. The new authorization replenishes and increases a previous $30 million authorization that had approximately $4 million remaining after the Company had returned approximately $26 million to shareholders by repurchasing shares over the past two years.
Chris McCann, CEO, 1-800-FLOWERS.COM, Inc., said, “We believe our stock is a very compelling investment and repurchasing our shares enables us to return additional value to our shareholders.”