Unable to Stretch Further, Apparel Makers Raise Prices
(Wall Street Journal) — Shoppers will have to pay more for clothing next year as skyrocketing cotton prices force companies to take their chances with price increases even as consumer demand remains sluggish. Hanesbrands Inc, Jones Group Inc. and VFCorp. 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.