Jan. 15 (UPI) -- Target Co. reported weak sales of toys and electronic items during the holiday season Wednesday, prompting a 7 percent decline in its stock price.
The retailer said that sales rose 1.4 percent in November and December, a lower figure than its forecasts suggested. Toy sales were flat, although the company's market share in the toy category increased. Target warned Wednesday that growth for the quarter, which includes January, will likely be about 3 to 4 percent lower than expected.
The toy industry did not offer a breakout, must-have toy during the holiday season, and there were no popular crossover toys from the entertainment industry. The shopping season, between Thanksgiving and Christmas, was reduced compared to other years. Manufacturers Hasbro, Mattel and Spin Master offered a smaller variety of toys, and the closure of Toys R Us, earlier in 2019, eliminated many toys from the marketplace and reduced the cumulative shelf space given to toys.
The Target report Wednesday preceded declines in the stock market values of Walmart, Hasbro and Mattel. Walmart has not yet released its quarterly report.