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China Concerned 
Over EU Anti-Dumping Probes
Page 1

Thailand to Protect Bra Exports to US
Page 1

Littlewoods to Cut 1200 Jobs
Page 1

The International Lingerie Show
Page 2

Forplay Party at JET Nightclub
Page 2

Buyers' Best Sellers
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Ask Andy
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McPete Sez
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The International Lingerie Show
Page 3

Pacific Sunwear Down 33%
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Ask Kevin
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The International Lingerie Show
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Light-Up Bikinis and Thongs
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Mango Signs Jovovich
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The International Lingerie 
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Page 5

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  May 15, 2006                                                 Issue #169


             McPete -Sez, 
The Lingerie Newsletter 
       Women's Wear Journal


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China Concerned Over EU
   Anti-Dumping Probes
The EU looks set to start more anti-dumping probes against Chinese goods, this time regarding its textiles and garments, according to Cao Xinyu, vice-chairman of the China Chamber of Commerce for the Import and Export of Textiles.
Cao was reported as saying a number of Europe’s industrial associations, mainly in Southern Europe, have been preparing claims that China is exporting eight categories of goods below-price.
Products are said to include men's shirts, cotton towels, socks and underwear.
Although China and the EU have made a deal to control the growing flow of Chinese textile and garment exports, China is not safe from potential anti-dumping duties.
The EU has already launched anti-dumping duties on Chinese and Vietnamese leather shoe imports, despite an onslaught of criticism from China, Vietnam and European retailers.
Meanwhile, the EU’s executive body the EC began a "public consultation" on EU-China relations as part of a review of bilateral trade and economic relations. 
The EC has invited any "interested parties" to comment on how the EU should deal with its relationship with the Asian giant, whose export abilities it called "a new competitive challenge" for European producers and exporters.


Thailand to Protect Bra
      Exports to U.S.

Thailand's Ministry of Finance is coordinating with the country's Customs Bureau to lock-down the production sources of brassieres, in order to prevent Chinese companies from imitating Thai products. 
Rachain Pajunsunthorn, director-general of the department of foreign trade, revealed that the department will liaison with the Customs Bureau and relevant agencies in circulating government papers to identify companies that are formal exporters of brassieres from Thailand to the United States. 
This was to prevent Chinese companies from imitating Thai products in this area, and to prevent these companies from short-circuiting the Thailand-US supply line for brassieres by supplying imitation products at intermediate points. 
Rachain said that in the first quarter of 2006, the export value of brassieres and underwear made in Thailand was estimated at more than 2 billion baht (US$53.25 million). 

  A model is wearing garment by Delicate Illusions at the 
International Lingerie fashion show in Las Vegas, April 3-5.
             Photo courtesy of Bill Miller – FotosNow

China to Increase Cotton
China, the world’s largest buyer of cotton, plans to increase cotton imports by 2.5% to a record 4.1m metric tons as domestic mill demand rises faster than production, the US Foreign Agriculture Service informs.
Chinese mills are estimated to use 7.9% more cotton by increasing imports mainly from the US, according to a report from US embassy staff in Beijing. 
In addition, farmers will increase plantings, aiming for a 6.1% rise in output to 6.05 tons.
Jim Butterworth and Wu Xinping, US Department of Agriculture analysts in Beijing, said in the report that increased exports and domestic demand for textile and apparel products are fuelling high imports.
Chinese cotton imports for first two months of 2006 reportedly went up to 622,652 metric tons, from 183,675 tons during same period last year.
Over the next ten years, China will continue to exert considerable influence on world cotton textile production, cotton production and trade, with the US losing on the latter and Brazil gaining, according to a forecast by the Cotton Economics Research Institute (CERI) at Texas Tech University.
In the long run, increases in cotton production to meet rising mill use are expected to come primarily from increased yields rather than increased acreage. Worldwide yields are projected to increase by 10.6% by 2015. World cotton trade is expected to increase by about 9m bales by 2015.          

Saks Revises Store Closure
Saks has decided to keep a Saks Fifth Avenue store in Mission Viejo, California, that it previously said it planned to close.
Saks will retain the location because it believes it can meet its profitability aims.
The company also said it would shut a store in Palos Verdes, also in California, on the13th of this month. It expects a resultant charge of US$2m. 
Employees from the Palos Verdes store will have the chance to move to other stores or take severance packages.
Littlewoods to Cut 1,200
Britain’s leading home shopping seller Littlewoods will lay off about 1,200 jobs as it shuts down three warehouses, corporate communications manager Stephen Bray stated.
Littlewoods, which is owned by the Barclay brothers, will closed down the Eccles, Wigan and Worcester sites in early 2007.
"There were a number of factors behind the decision", Bray said, "but mainly we became a larger company after with merger of Shop Direct, and the business had an overcapacity. This was combined with a general slowdown in retail."
Littlewoods will move operations to its most modern site in Shaw, Oldham, which will create about 300 new jobs. The company is "willing to relocate" some of those laid off from its Wigan and Eccles sites to Shaw, where the business already employs 650.
"We will do everything we can to help those affected", Bray said.
The group has recently appointed a new management team under CEO Mark Newton-Jones, who moved up from his role of stores CEO last July.
It is now working to reposition its catalogue brands to concentrate on the core markets of "young, inspirational fashion", 'big book' department store brands and the growing over-40s market.
The company also wants to expand online sales, and foresees them doubling to about GBP750m (US$969.14m) annually over the next three 
Littlewoods merged with Shop Direct, formerly GUS Home Shopping, in 
2005. The company sold off its 119 shops to focus efforts on its catalogue and home shopping operations.


May Integration Causes
  Federated's Q1 Loss
Federated Department Stores posted a US$52m first-quarter loss, caused by expenses from buying May Department Stores.
Net loss totaled $52m in the first quarter, while sales grew 62% 
to $5.93bn from $3.64bn a year ago. Same-store sales were flat, 
beating expectations of a 0.5% to 1.5% decrease.
Chairman, president and CEO Terry J Lundgren said: "Considering this was the initial quarter of physically bringing together the Federated and May Company organizations, we were very pleased with first quarter results that were ahead of our expectations.
Federated bought May last year in a $11bn deal, creating the US’ 
biggest department store group.

Wacoal's Profit Drops 59%
Wacoal makes underwear for the US, Asian and European markets Intimate apparel producer Wacoal Holdings reported a 59% slump in full-year net profit despite raking in sales of JPY164.1bn (US$1.48bn).
Net income was JPY2.8bn during the year as sales increased 2%. 
Japanese sales totaled JPY143.51m.
Wacoal said it sought to improve its product strengths, developing new lines "focused on consumer needs".
It also said it worked on "new points of contact with customers" by way of directly managed stores and internet sales.

  A model is wearing garment by Tia Lyn Lingerie at the 
Lingerie Classique fashion show in Las Vegas, April 3-5.
             Photo courtesy of Bill Miller – FotosNow
If you missed the photos from the Lingerie Classique Show, 
  you can see them in the May 1st issue of McPete Sez.


Vitamin-Enriched Apparel
Two more Japanese textile makers have launched "bio-function" apparel that use nanotechnology to deliver doses of vitamins through the skin.
Following the lead of Fuji Textiles in 2003, which introduced a brand of T-shirt that was spiked with vitamin C, the textile arm of cosmetics company Kanebo now has its own line of blouses and underwear using microscopic films of oil containing vitamin E.
The company claims that Vitamin E is bound very strongly to the fabrics, and that up to 40% of the implanted vitamin E remains even after garments have been washed 30-50 times.
Meanwhile hosiery maker Atsugi Co has released a line of stockings that have vitamin C and E, and other components suffused in the fabric.
Developed jointly with a pharmaceutical manufacturer, nanotechnology was used to incorporate vitamins and moisturizing elements into the weave of the stockings. The company said each pair of stockings retain up to 50% of their ‘functional’ food-type benefits after five washes - the average life of nylon stockings in Japan - and cost about the same as conventional stockings.

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