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A Recession for the Rich Could Slam This Department Store

If rich people put their department store charge cards on ice during an uncertain election season, it may wallop high-end department store Nordstrom (JWN) .

"In our view, the high-end consumer appears firmly in recession, and we don't expect this to change given ongoing stock market volatility, rising macroeconomic uncertainty and the looming political election," wrote Morgan Stanley analyst Kimberly Greenberger in a new note to clients. She added, "Such a backdrop elevates top-line risk, which coupled with Nordstrom's limited expense flexibility, likely sets up for further negative earnings per share revisions."

The analyst is one of more bearish on how Nordstrom fared during the quarter, thanks to tepid spending by its wealthy clientele.