>> For Target, this is no way to be going into the most important time of the year. The second largest discount retailer Wednesday, giving a ho-hum outlook for the upcoming holiday shopping season that was far below Wall Street expectations. Target, predicting sales at its existing stores will remain flat in the holiday quarter, or rise by 2% at best.
Leaving it with not other choice than to predict profits that will be more Grinch-like than jolly. The lackluster outlook paling in comparison to Target's solid results for the just ended quarter, also released on Wednesday. Better than expected sales and smaller that expected drop in profits. However, not enough to sooth investors worried about how difficult, and competitive this holiday season will be.
Target's battle plan to make it through and beyond the holidays, lure back customers by slashing prices. Double the number of small format stores, invest heavily in e-commerce, and keep prices low in the grocery aisle. In what is shaping up to be a big fight involving Walmart, Kroger, and Amazon's Whole Foods.
Investors however, showing a lack of confidence in Target's turn around plan. Shares slumping 10% Wednesday in an already down year for the stock.