COLUMBUS, OH--(Marketwire - February 24, 2010) - Month-over-month, forecasts for same store sales growth look brighter for many retailers, according to the February ForecastIQ® (a service from Prosper Technologies, LLC). The predictions, however, include sales for March and April and with Easter on April 4th this year, the positive outlook could turn out to be a dead cat bounce in light of the fact that the BIGresearch consumer confidence reading dropped to 27.2%. This is nearly three points lower than last month (30.0%) and the lowest recorded since Jul-09 (also 27.2%).

Of the twenty-seven retailers ForecastIQ tracks every month, five have improved from the "almost certain decline" column, leaving six total in the category (the lowest number since ForecastIQ started tracking in October of 2008). However, fifteen retailers still remain unlikely to see growth, and with seasonality a factor, it doesn't look like the industry is out of the woods just yet.

Total Number for Retailers Tracked
                                        FEB-2010        JAN-2010
Almost certain increase*                4               4
Likely increase                         8               4
Flat                                    0               4
Likely decline                          9               4
Almost certain decline                  6               11

*An "almost certain increase" indicator for February means that in March and April, retailers are almost certain to experience same store sales growth from the same period a year ago. January indicators were for February and March.

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Forecasts for American Eagle, Nordstrom and Old Navy have inched up over the last couple months and are all likely to see an increase in same store sales through March and April. Abercrombie & Fitch experienced the sharpest improvement in outlook; after fifteen months of projections to almost certainly see a decline, they are likely to see an increase as well.

A partial list of retailers covered in the ForecastIQ® and expectations
for same store sales year-over-year growth/decline through April follows:

Almost certain to see increase:         Almost certain to see decline:
Aeropostale                             Bonton
BJ's                                    Dillard's
Ross                                    Hot Topic
TJX                                     JCPenney

Likely to see increase:                 Likely to see decline:
Abercrombie & Fitch                     Banana Republic
American Eagle                          Children's Place
Buckle                                  Fred's
Cato's                                  Gap
Costco                                  Neiman Marcus
Nordstrom                               Saks
Old Navy                                Wet Seal

About ForecastIQ®

ForecastIQ® was developed by Prosper Technologies and Greg Allenby by analyzing over 8 years of data from the BIGresearch monthly Consumer Intentions & Actions (CIA) surveys based upon future spending plans of consumers and the same store sales of over 27 publicly held retailers, by applying Bayesian quantile analysis to the data. The results are accurate and provide a forecast of consumer spending 75 days in advance. Same store sales forecasts are provided by percent growth over the next 45 and 75-day period. Short-term forecasts are also available via enhanced consensus estimates.

About Prosper Technologies

Prosper Technologies develops software applications that provide consumer-centric analytics to marketers/retailers for better forecasting consumer demand, allocating marketing dollars, tracking consumer behaviors and understanding cross-shopping patterns.

Contact Information: Contact: Phil Rist 614-846-0146