The Week Ahead: NRF Big Show, Inflation, Albertsons earnings

Check out what's ahead in ecommerce for Jan. 9-14.

The Week Ahead: NRF Big Show, Inflation, Albertsons earnings

Welcome to a new week. We’re just over seven days into the new year, and a host of layoffs and warnings are already clouding the retail picture. The Current will have the latest insights, data and results for the industry as we make our way through it. This week, there’s plenty in store, with the NRF Big Show kicking off the tradeshow year in New York, the latest inflation numbers and a closely-watched Bed Bath & Beyond earnings call. Here’s a look:


ICR Conference: More than 200 consumer brands and companies will gather in Orlando to meet with investors and analysts. (Jan. 9-11)

NRF Big Show: Retailers gather in New York for the National Retail Federation’s kickoff to the year. CEOs and top leaders from Walmart, Target, Macy’s, Lowe’s, Express and Neiman Marcus will headline a host of speakers throughout keynote sessions and breakouts. Plus, an expo features innovation and technology trends coming to the industry. (Jan. 14-17)

Economic Indicators

Fed Chair speaks: Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell will give a speech at the Sveriges Riksbank International Symposium on Central Bank Independence in Stockholm, Sweden. While the topic is central bank independence, Powell’s remarks will be parsed for any thoughts about the Fed’s plans for its next meeting on interest rates, which is scheduled for Feb. 1. (Tues., 1/10, 9 a.m.)

Consumer Price Index: The U.S. Commerce Department releases the inflation rate and price data for December 2022. Inflation slowed in November to 7.1%. We’ll see if the cooling continued amid substantial holiday discounting in December. (Thurs., 1/12, 8:30 a.m.)

Consumer Sentiment: The University of Michigan Survey of Consumers issues its preliminary reading for January on consumer buying conditions and expectations for various economic categories, including inflation. After falling in November, this measure bounced back in December to end the year in a slightly more optimistic mood. (Friday, 1/13, 10 a.m.)


Monday, Jan. 9: WD-40

Tuesday, Jan. 10: Albertsons, Bed Bath & Beyond

Friday, Jan. 13: Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Citigroup, Delta Air Lines

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"There's no Bed Bath & Inbetween," writes CI&T's Melissa Minkow. (Photo by Flickr user JJbers, used under a Creative Commons license).

The recent Bed Bath & Beyond news has begged many questions, but the unbranded, overarching question that should be getting asked, is “What is the future of specialty retail?”

Every day, big box retailers bring another DTC brand under their roof and add even more categories to their assortment. What’s more, the increase in marketplace models and constant debut of new DTC brands paint a vivid picture of a challenging landscape for specialty. Over the last decade, and especially over the last year (thanks to inflation), retail has bifurcated from a price standpoint, matching the widening gap between high and low income. Now, it seems successful specialty retail is following a somewhat similar suit: either you’re DTC or you’re big box, there’s no Bed Bath & Inbetween.

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