Total Golf Apparel sales thru the On/Off Course channels for February were down nearly 3%, leaving the category off less than 1% on a YTD basis. Most of the issue in Golf Apparel is being driven by lower sales thru the Green Grass, likely impacted by far fewer rounds played on the West Coast. Buffeted by temperatures 5 degrees below average and more than twice as much rain as normal, the Western States saw a huge drop in rounds played during the first two months of 2017, surely making a significant dent in golf apparel sales. Particularly hard hit has been the men’s shirt business, sales of which were down nearly double digits in units On Course Nationally. However, higher Average Selling Prices partially offset some of the unit decline.
Looking at the big picture, sales in three of the apparel categories went up (Men’s Bottoms, Women’s Bottoms, and Women’s Shirts), three went lower (Men’t Shirts, Men’s Bottoms, and Women’s Tops), and one was level (Outerwear).
Trade inventories, with the exception of Outerwear and Shirts, are up significantly from YAG and unless sales pick up sharply in March and April, there may be an inventory glut as we hit the summer months.