Best Buy Earnings Still Falling

Moneybox
A blog about business and economics.
May 22 2012 11:18 AM

Best Buy Earnings Still Falling

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CHICAGO, IL - APRIL 16: A person walks up to a shuttered Best Buy Store on April 16, 2012 in Chicago, Illinois.

Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images

Best Buy's shares got a bounce this morning because profits came in "above expectations" but the numbers they released today still show falling earnings and reduced same-store sales even as the number of stores outstanding continues to fall.

Broadly speaking, this is all part of the large End of Retail trend. But I particularly endorse Farhad Manjoo's insight that Best Buy's give 'em the broadest possible selection approach to retailing is badly unsuited to the e-commerce age. The Internet is happy to give you all the options you want in terms of gadgets. A physical retailer could still add value by reducing search costs and offering friendly staff, but that implies slimming down the range of products and not just the number of stores.

Matthew Yglesias is the executive editor of Vox and author of The Rent Is Too Damn High.