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Neiman Marcus Chairman Says U.S. Luxury Shopping ’Very Strong’

Sept. 26 (Bloomberg) -- Neiman Marcus Group Inc., the luxury retailer owned by TPG Capital and Warburg Pincus LLC, said U.S. luxury spending continues to be “very strong.”

Consumers “at the top are quite strong, and they are spending,” Chairman Burton Tansky said in an interview today at the World Retail Congress in Berlin. “They went through the recession and were cautious, I think that’s behind them now.”

While the chairman doesn’t expect a “double-dip” recession, he’s concerned about the effect of volatile equity-market share prices on Neiman Marcus customers, who have high net worth.

If stock markets move “down and up like a yo-yo, people get nervous,” Tansky said. “Right now people continue to want luxury and they want quality.”

Sales of items from top-tier designers like Christian Dior SA are doing well, as are lower-cost “option pricing” lines, including products like an $800 handbag from a brand whose bags are typically priced at $1,100, the chairman said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Sarah Shannon in London at sshannon4@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Celeste Perri at cperri@bloomberg.net.

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