Brocker.Org: Target, Wal-Mart endure the aftermath of Amazon’s Whole Foods buy; stocks still falling

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The fallout from Amazon announcing plans last week to acquire Whole Foods is still very evident in the equities market Monday.

And it’s anyone’s guess as to how long the so-called ripple effect among retailers will continue.

Shares of Target, Wal-Mart and Costco were all trading in red territory by late Monday morning, down around 3 percent, 0.5 percent and 2 percent, respectively.

Just last Friday, shortly after Jeff Bezos and his team announced Amazon’s big vision to shake up the grocery industry and acquire grocer Whole Foods, these big-box retailers’ stocks tumbled, with shares of Target falling more than 10 percent at one point.

Traditional grocers such as Kroger and Supervalu also took significant hits on Friday but were not trading nearly as low by Monday morning. In fact, shares of Kroger were inching back into green after tanking more than 15 percent in a day.

Deutsche Bank on Monday lowered its rating for Costco specifically to hold from buy, saying the competitive advantage from its food business is at risk due to Amazon.

“The WFM acquisition represents a game changer with COST’s competitive moat in grocery under greater threat while its digital platform lags peers, putting membership renewal at risk for decline,” Deutsche Bank analyst Paul Trussell wrote in a note to clients.

“The pipeline of positive catalysts has played out and the competitive backdrop is intensifying with AMZN… accelerating in-store and online efforts and innovation.”

The online threat is “real and intensifying” for what have — for the longest time — been some of the biggest names in the retail sector, Trussell went on.

Representatives from Target, Wal-Mart and Costco didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.

Meanwhile, Amazon’s stock jumped to a fresh all-time high of $1,017 a share Monday.

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