The Economy: Doesn’t Winter Come At The Same Time Every Year?

Lately, whenever there is an earnings miss or a disappointing number concerning consumer spending, the cold and harsh winter will typically be blamed!

As an example Kohl’s same-store sales missed analyst numbers this morning rising 1.4% when expectations were for a rise of 2.6%. Why?

Predictably, they were ‘hurt by colder-than-usual weather in February.’

Yesterday Macy’s also missed the same-store sales expectations of analysts as well as revenue and bottom-line earnings results for the same reason stated as  ‘fewer customer visits due to unusually cold weather in February’.

Add to that, according to that company, the more viable sounding West Coast port slowdown and a weakening in tourist spending further explains the tepid performance.

Why Blame The Weather And, If It Was The Reason, Why Didn’t Analysts Know That?

Now don’t get me started on analysts and their same-store sales or earnings estimates because seemingly, unless spoon-fed by the company in question, they seem to be right about as often as a broken clock.

But getting back to the scapegoat for same-store sales and earnings misses, don’t we get cold and harsh weather in certain parts of the country every winter?

And for those regions hit harder than usual, is the weather a valid excuse for a soft consumer?

Or is the greater than normal snow accumulations and other weather anomalies potentially an excuse that’s trying to explain away an overall malaise in an economy that may not be all that strong?

I sincerely hope for my business and everyone who reads this who either owns or works in a business that the actual reason is what the analysts have said and that I simply don’t understand weather patterns and should instead stick to the title insurance business.

That in fact the economy is on track for 3% GDP growth this year and the consumer is going to be just fine.

I suppose, however, that we all will just have to wait and see and hope for the best!


Michael Haltman, President of Hallmark Abstract Service, New York.

HAS is a provider of title insurance in New York State for residential and commercial real estate transactions.

And, for anyone either buying a property or refinancing, remember that although your attorney will likely recommend a title insurance provider you always have the right to choose your own (click here to learn more)!

If you have any questions you can reach Michael by email

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