Retailers Withholding Figures from Investors?

Last Updated Apr 17, 2008 12:31 PM EDT

Monthly sales figures and annual profit forecasts have long been a staple of the information train that retailers supply to investors and Wall Street. But now many large companies - including Starbucks, Macy's, J.C. Penney and CVS - are backing off on one or both of these practices, arguing that the figures confuse investors and can lead to short-term decision-making, according to an article in the New York Times.

There is nothing illegal about the decision, but many analysts and investors are crying foul. Who's right here? The investors who want information that can allow them to turn on a dime in this unstable economy, or the companies who want to stress the long term?[poll id=40]Have some thoughts on this issue? Get involved in the discussion in the comments section.

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  • William Baker

    William Baker is a freelance writer living in Cambridge, MA. His work has appeared in Popular Science, the Boston Globe Magazine, the New York Daily News, Boston Magazine, The Weekly Dig and a bunch of other places (including Field & Stream, though he doesn't hunt and can't really fish). He is a regular contributor to the Boston Globe, where he writes the weekly column, "Meeting the Minds." He holds a master's degree from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, and is at work on his first book.