Apparel Retailing in the United States

Ellen Israel Rosen

in Making Sweatshops

Published by University of California Press

Published in print March 2002 | ISBN: 9780520233362
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520928572 | DOI:
Apparel Retailing in the United States

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This chapter reviews the history of the U.S. retail industry and the role it played in the U.S. textile and apparel trade agenda. It also explains the links between the industry's corporate growth in the 1980s and its dependence on further liberalization of global trade. The growth of private-label clothing blurred the lines between different segments of the apparel industry. The success of discounting intensified the profit crisis facing the perhaps too rapidly expanding U.S. apparel retailing industry. The Agreement on Textiles and Clothing had made it easier for fashion producers to access new sites for the export processing of apparel. Trade liberalization and technological developments in transport and communication have allowed apparel retailers access to low-wage sourcing on a global basis. The limits of global retail expansion are ultimately a function of the demand for consumer goods produced by U.S. textile, apparel, and retail transnationals.

Keywords: U.S. retail industry; apparel retailing; trade agenda; global trade liberalization; discounting; Agreement on Textiles and Clothing; global retail expansion; apparel industry

Chapter.  10123 words. 

Subjects: Occupations, Professions, and Work

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