Luxury merchants may not battle for customers as hard as discounters such as Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and department-store chains like Macy’s Inc. Still, Saks and Neiman have been pushing pre-sales and flash sales online and ramping up targeted e-mails to shoppers, said Hana Ben-Shabat, a partner at A.T. Kearney Inc., a consulting firm.

“They’ll do well this season,” said Ben-Shabat, who is based in New York. “But they have to work hard for it.”

Coach, Nordstrom and Ralph Lauren Corp. have all trailed the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index’s 27 percent gain this year. While Tiffany shares have risen about twice as much as the S&P, the world’s second-largest jeweler last year generated 38 percent of its revenue in Asia, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Representatives for Tiffany, Coach and Nordstrom declined to elaborate on the companies’ previous comments.

‘Two Percenters’

Unity Marketing, a Stevens, Pennsylvania, research firm, divides American luxury consumers into “two percenters,” with household incomes of $250,000 and more, and Henrys, who earn $100,000 to $249,999 a year.

Even the wealthiest aren’t outspending Henrys the way they used to. Before the recession, the $250,000-plus crowd was spending as much as four times more on luxury goods than Henrys, said Pam Danziger, Unity Marketing’s president. Now they’re spending twice as much, she said.

“They’re very restrained and feeling very uncertain about their personal prospects and the economy at large,” she said.

In early October, Unity Marketing conducted an online survey of 1,200 affluent shoppers. Twenty five percent said they’ll spend less on holiday gifts this year than they did in 2012, while 60 percent said they plan to spend the same. Just 13 percent said they would spend more.

Half the respondents said the financial health of the country is worse now than it was three months ago.