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The numbers are out and the verdict is in: Target is in trouble.
The retail giant saw a staggering 13.9% drop in store traffic over the final week of May in the wake of last month’s controversy over the store’s pride display for kids.
According to Yahoo! Finance, a top Wall Street firm is sounding the alarm about Target’s outlook, too, downgrading the chain’s status from buy to neutral.
“Considering the competitive landscape, we believe Walmart is likely to continue gaining market share (including from Target), and Target’s high exposure to discretionary sales (55% of sales) will not serve them well in the current macro backdrop (which became more evident this earnings season),” Citi analyst Paul Lejuez said.
“Despite the recent stock pressure, we cannot recommend investors buy the stock given these dynamics and now believe the risk/reward is more balanced, but risk is more to the downside near term.”
Target and Bud Light continue to plunge across the board
It’s been a rocky few weeks for Target ever since videos went viral of the chain’s Pride display in the front of stores across the country. Several customers accused the chain of child grooming with transgender shirts and pride onesies, while “tuck bathing suits” also went viral.
Figures weren’t great late last month, either, when data showed Target had already lost nearly $9 billion in the week since the videos started going viral.
Reports also surfaced of an “emergency meetings” held by top execs that may or may not have led to the eventual moving of the displays to the back of several locations.
According to Yahoo!, Target shares are down about 17% since mid-May as investors worry about potential third-quarter sales and profit hits from the high-profile fallout.
Target’s current situation comes just two months after Bud Light began spiraling after plastering trans TikTok star Dylan Mulvaney on a can to celebrate her first full year as a woman.
Bud Light sales have steadily plunged every week since, and it was recently overtaken by Modelo Especial as the top-selling beer for the month of May.