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Target’s holiday forecast disappoints, sending shares lower | CNBC

Target is also growing its private-label brands and expanding in grocery. Some of those brands that have already launched in the apparel and home goods categories include “Joy Lab,” “A New Day” and “Hearth & Hand.” Meantime, the company is re-evaluating its pricing strategy, telling customers in September it will slash prices on thousands of items and focus on only the most “compelling” sales. But those investments could also eat into profit margins, analysts have warned. “Q3 results for Target reflect the impact of its short-term investments for long-term benefit, with margins softening slightly as a result of Target’s tactical price investments, as well as the persistent market share battles with Amazon and Walmart in multiple categories,” Moody’s lead retail analyst Charlie O’Shea wrote in a note to investors. But, he added: “Margin erosion is being mitigated to an extent by private and exclusive brands, which are resonating with shoppers.” The number of customer transactions climbed during the third quarter, but shoppers’ average transaction amounts fell. The company has said its goal is to lure people into its stores more frequently, picking up fewer items all at once.

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Target’s holiday forecast disappoints, sending shares lower.