3 of 4 Major Japan Dept. Store Firms See Sales Drop in Dec.

Economy

Tokyo, Jan. 4 (Jiji Press)--Three of Japan's four major department store operators logged year-on-year falls in same-store sales in December, their preliminary data showed Friday.

Sales were down 1.5 pct at Isetan Mitsukoshi Holdings Ltd. <3099>, 0.2 pct at J. Front Retailing Co. <3086>, which operates Daimaru and Matsuzakaya stores, and 1.3 pct at Sogo & Seibu Co., a unit of Seven & i Holdings Co. <3382>.

The decreases reflected sluggish sales of winter clothing as temperatures remained high in the first half of the reporting month.

On the other hand, Takashimaya Co. <8233> enjoyed a 0.5 pct increase in sales, thanks to robust sales to foreign visitors to Japan.

In New Year sale events that were held until Thursday, J. Front Retailing and Takashimaya saw declines in sales, while sales at Sogo & Seibu were flat. Sales doubled at Isetan Mitsukoshi, which moved up the start of its New Year sale.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press