The economic downturn will force retailers to "re-evaluate" factors, including their size and the markets in which they do business, found an annual poll from CIES, a retail trade association based in Paris. The survey of almost 600 CEOs in more than 50 countries found that responding to the challenges presented by the economy ranks as their most important concern.
Retail sales in China jumped 13.8% during the seven-day Lunar New Year holiday that started Jan. 25, compared with the same period last year, according to the Commerce Ministry. Retail sales growth, however, was down and is expected to continue falling, said analyst Xu Xiaofang of Guotai Junan Securities.
Mike Duke, the new chief executive of Wal-Mart Stores, is taking over the largest retailer in the world as the global economy is contracting. Industry observers expect Duke to continue on the path established by H. Lee Scott Jr., Duke's predecessor. He likely will continue the company's expansion into foreign markets, particularly developing nations, and remodel American stores to compete against its leading rivals.