The changing shopping habits of a pressured middle class continue to boost the fortunes of one group of U.S. stocks in particular - discount retailers.
Almost all discount retailers have profited from the Great Recession, but those on the lowest rungs, such the dollar stores, have gained the most.
The recent same-store sales retail report for June confirmed this trend as the U.S. economy continues to falter.
Same-store sales for several mid-tier retailers got hit hard, while most discount retailers outperformed. Notably, most high-end retailers, such as Nordstrom Inc. (NYSE: JWN) and Saks Inc. (NYSE: SKS) also continued to do well.
"The high-end consumer has fared particularly well throughout this recovery,"Ken Perkins, president of Swampscott, MA-based Retail Metrics, told Bloomberg News. "On the low end, a lot of middle-income consumers have traded down."
As a result, two discount retailers fared better in June than analysts expected.