I spent my first couple of years after retiring from the Navy doing business process mapping and improvement, much of it in the manufacturing vertical in the SE part of the US. When heat and humidity was high rework and failure rates skyrocketed dramatically. A couple of weeks ago I talked to CS at AE and asked her if they were getting the same heat wave we were here. She said yes only worse and the factory floor was not air conditioned, it was brutal for the workers. I've had enough heat strokes and passed out enough times from heat exhaustion in the steam plant of ships in the Gulf and tropics that I totally understand. I asked if the defect rate had gone up and she was quiet for a few seconds and finally said very firmly and simply, yes. They were giving the workers extra breaks and trying to keep them hydrated to help. I strongly suspect the sales on seconds are due to the increased number of seconds due to the heat wave a few weeks ago and business is still good. Although an increased failure rate on the production line is never a good thing, except for us the consumer of AE seconds.
Seconds sales are pretty frequent IMO. The Labor Day and Rediscover America sales are annual occurences, so I think it's business as usual. With volume growth, there probably is (at least) a proportional increase in seconds quantity. Makes sense to unload that inventory to make room for the busy fall season and the new fall styles.
I doubt they're being positioned to be sold...Goldner Hawn is pretty conservative and AE is presumably churning out the profits. They may look to cash out in IPO at some point, but I hope not.
I agree and hope not too.