Factors negatively affecting our fourth quarter earnings outlook arise largely from inflation, particularly as to energy costs. They include a significantly greater-than-anticipated LIFO charge; an anticipated negative swing in year-over-year profitability in our gasoline operations; and slightly lower-than-planned merchandise profits related to holding selling price points to help drive sales and maintain the confidence of our members.
JC Penney (JCP 31.49), Kohls (KSS 42.91), Target (TGT 45.96) and Sears (SHLD 75.57) are just starting to come off of their bottoms along with Macy's (M 18.55).
If you must buy retail stocks, you should get an opportunity off the COST warning. COST will probably do what Apple did yesterday. Make it's low in the first 15 minutes, and then trend higher.