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Macy's CEO Talks Trade War, Augmented Reality, Confidence In Retailer's Outlook

Macy's CEO Talks Trade War, Augmented Reality, Confidence In Retailer's Outlook

The potential of a global trade war has some investors concerned as it could impact multiple sectors, especially retail. But much like President Donald Trump's proposed border tax in 2017, the retail industry is unified and ready to make the case why a trade war should be avoided, according to the CEO of one retail name. 

Trade War Concerns

Trump proposed a border tax in 2017, which was opposed by multiple companies in the retail sector, Macy's Inc (NYSE: M) CEO Jeff Gennette told CNBC from the sidelines at the Shoptalk Conference. Macy's, along with other companies in the National Retail Federation, lobbied the Trump administration at that time to scrap a tax that it said would harm consumers. "Cool heads prevailed," and a similar outcome is achievable with Trump's potential declaration of a global trade war through tariffs, Gennette said. 

February Sales Data

The U.S. government's February retail sales figures showed a deceleration in department store sales, but Gennette said he sees no reason to revise the full-year outlook for Macy's from its current flat-to-1 percent growth. The retailer's inventory remains in a "healthy position," and new merchandise for the spring season is already seeing "robust sell-through," the executive said. 

Augmented Reality

Macy's augmented reality technology gives consumers the ability to see what Macy's furniture products would look like in their own homes. While this new offering is still being tested, early results are encouraging based on return rates for online purchases, which fell from over 5 percent to 1 percent, the CEO said. 

Related Links:

Cramer: Macy's Is Run By A 'Miracle Worker'

Trade-Exposed Companies Contain Their Relief As GOP Scraps Border Adjustment Tax Plan

Photo by lngfbruno/Wikimedia. 


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