The power of conferences can never be underrated. This week we have the J.P. Morgan Healthcare conference in San Francisco, where I am, and ICR, the consumer conference in Orlando.
These are elaborate showcases where companies tell you about themselves and what they are up to.
They are also the places where you need to preannounce if you are having a better-than-expected quarter because you cannot possibly tell a story that's strong if the company is doing much better than analysts expected.
And that's why Lululemon (LULU) had to tell its story of an upside surprise here on Monday.
It's a bit of a shock if only because apparel has been very weak and we know that anything sold in the mall could be bad news.
The impact: the squeeze continues. So many of the companies in this industry have reported weak trends in apparel, particularly at the department store level -- think Kohl's (KSS) -- that it is surprising this company should be doing much better than expected. However, I suggested last week that this company is a different, better animal. It is apparel for the rich, like high-end Nikes (NKE) , like what Columbia Sportswear (COLM) has.
To me, the power of rich people to spend is a big part of this move. It's a continual theme and I bet it plays out in boats, in Jordans, vacations, Tesla (TSLA) , Beyond Meat (BYND) and any store that caters to the very rich.
The rich are not like you and me.
Or maybe they are.