Brace for higher clothes prices

In “Unable to Stretch Further, Apparel Makers Raise Prices“, the WSJ notes that surging prices for cotton will force apparel companies to hike clothes prices next year even if consumer demand remains sluggish:

“Hanesbrands Inc, Jones Group Inc. and VF Corp. said they will raise prices for clothing set to hit stores early next year by as much as 10%. When cotton prices began their climb a year ago, retailers and manufacturers were unclear how much—if any—of the cost would be passed along to consumers. But with benchmark cotton now up about 80% since the beginning of the year, apparel companies say they no longer have a choice.”

…and polyester will not provide any pricing relief:

“Companies can’t blend their way out of the problem. Polyester prices are also rising, climbing between 20% and 25% this year driven by oil prices and higher demand from manufacturers switching away from cotton.”

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