Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Shopping Mall Anchors (Musical Tribute)

Anchor Store

Malls with anchor stores have consistently outperformed those without one, as the anchor helps draw shoppers initially attracted to the anchor to shop at other stores in the mall.

The following chart shows real monthly department store sales (excluding leased departments) per capita (October 2014 dollars).

Click to enlarge.

October set a new record low. Score one for anchor stores.

The legend lives on from the JCPenney on down
Of the big mall they call King of Prussia
The mall, it is said, never gives up or dreads
When the sales of November turn gloomy
With a load of Chinese goods twenty-six thousand tons more
Than this famous shopping mall weighed empty
Those discounts were true, just some bones to be chewed
When the sales of November came early

The mall was the pride of the American side
Was located in our Philadelphia
As the big malls go, it was bigger than all
With so many employees well seasoned
Concluding some terms with a few investment banks
Meant it was fully loaded for Christmas
But later that night when out went the lights
Could it be a last gasp they'd been feelin'?

The desperate sales made a tattle-tale sound
When Thanksgiving traffic was flailing
And every bank knew, and consumers did too
Was the loot of November worth stealin'?
The dawn came late so the turkey had to wait
When the prices of November came slashin'
When afternoon came it was squeezing pain
In the bills of a credit card headwind

When suppertime came, the old mom said her peace
Sayin' "Fellas, don't leave, I can't feed ya."
At seven PM the main meal was just cooked
She said, "Fellas, just where the @#$% are you?"
The son called and said, "Have a TV comin' in!"
But the good son and friends were in peril
And later that night with extreme trampling and fright
Came the wreck of that famous shopping mall

Does anyone know where the love of greed goes
When the raves turn the minutes to hours?
The searchers all say they'd have made this debt pay
If they'd had fifteen dollars behind it
They might have bought more or they might have all tried
They may have gone broke, underwater
But all that remains is the faces and the names
From the moms of their sons and their daughters

Tiffany has more platinum rings
In the rooms of that ice-water mansion
Deflation it screams like a young man's dreams
Its aisles and halls are for gamblers
And farther below, must Sears really go?
Takes in what few shoppers can send her
But the anchor stores go as the mariners all know
With the sales of November remembered

In a musty old mall in Detroit they prayed
In the big store once called Sears Cathedral
The church bell chimed 'til it rang twenty-nine times
For each advertised sale in the flyer
The legend lives on from the JCPenney on down
Of the big mall they called King of Prussia
"Superior!", they said. "Never gives up or dreads!"
When the sales of November turned gloomy

Source Data:
St. Louis Fed: Custom Chart


Anonymous said...

Ok, now THAT was good.

Stagflationary Mark said...


Thanks! I really appreciate it!

It took me more than an hour I'd guess. Glad to see the effort wasn't wasted. :)

Stagflationary Mark said...

I just noticed this.

King of Prussia Mall

Sears (215,252 sq ft.) Opened 1983 Closing November 2014 due to being sold

Sears couldn't survive in the biggest mall in America? Ouch.

That' was almost 10% of the total retail area. Poof. :(

mab said...


Brings back memories. I still listen to that song when it's on the radio. What a story.

And my mom used to drag my brothers and I to the KOP mall when we were kids. I've hated malls ever since!

The traffic around KOP is dreadful. People don't seem to care though. Apparently, size matters!

Stagflationary Mark said...


The traffic around KOP is dreadful.

I can only imagine! I was out filling a prescription for my girlfriend this evening. Didn't even have the courage to go to a grocery store. I had to wonder if War of the Worlds had begun and I was the only one on the planet who didn't get the news, lol. Sigh.