Meijer will continue to be a toy destination this holiday season, offering customers the lowest prices on the hottest toys and brands by slashing prices on more than 400 popular products in-store and online. [Read more...]
The National Retail Federation has announced that Bill Simon, president and chief executive officer of Walmart U.S. will keynote Retail’s BIG Show, held from January 13 to 16 at the Jacob K. Javits Center in New York City. Simon’s keynote, titled “A Job to Do: Retail’s Role in an American Renewal,” is scheduled for Tuesday, January 15 at 8:30 a.m.
In his keynote address, Simon will make the case that leadership from within the retail industry is needed now more than ever when it comes to issues like the economy and job creation.
Retail’s Big Show and Expo serve as the world’s leading retail event, bringing 25,500 retail executives and vendors from more than 75 countries together for educational and networking opportunities. The convention has been ranked as one of the Top 200 events in North America, as well as one of the 50 fastest-growing events. Other speakers will include executives from Coca Cola, Belk, Sony, and Deloitte.
Consumers are prepared for a holly, jolly holiday season, though it’s evident most will take a conservative approach with their gift-giving budgets. According to NRF’s holiday consumer spending survey conducted by BIGinsight, the average holiday shopper will spend $749.51 on gifts, décor, greeting cards, and more, up slightly from the $740.57 they actually spent last year. NRF is forecasting holiday sales will increase 4.1 percent to $586.1 billion.
According to the survey, the biggest portion of shoppers’ budget this year will go towards gifts for family members with the average person planning to spend $421.82 on children, parents, aunt, uncles, and others. Additionally, people will spend $75.13 on friends, $23.48 on co-workers, and $28.13 on others, such as pets and community members. Consumers will also spend on food and candy ($100.76), greeting cards ($28.66), and flowers ($19.55.) When it comes to decorations, the average person will spend $51.99, up from $49.15 last year and the most in the survey’s history. Total spending on holiday décor will reach $6.9 billion.
Retail sales continued to stall in the month of June as consumers held off on discretionary and non-discretionary spending—marking three consecutive months of retail sales decreases—implying that persistently-high domestic unemployment, stagnant job growth, and international economic unease have taken a toll on American consumers this spring.
According to the National Retail Federation, June retail sales (excluding automobile, gas stations, and restaurants) decreased 0.4 percent seasonally adjusted from May but increased 1.7 percent unadjusted year-over-year. This year-over-year increase marks 24 consecutive months of sustained retail sales growth.
June retail sales, released by the U.S. Department of Commerce, showed total retail and food services sales (which include non-general merchandise categories such as automobiles, gasoline stations, and restaurants) decreased 0.5 percent seasonally adjusted month-to-month but increased 3.8 percent unadjusted year-over-year.
This post was originally written by Gigi Rubin and published by ToyBook.com. For more news, visit www.toybook.com, follow The Toy Book on Twitter, and like The Toy Book on Facebook. The Toy Book is a bimonthly trade magazine covering the toy industry, published by Adventure Publishing Group.
Retailers are reporting organized retail crime (ORC) has become more troublesome than ever before. Of the 125 retail companies surveyed for the National Retail Federation’s (NRF’s) eighth annual ORC Survey, 96 percent say their company has been the victim of organized retail crime in the past year, up from 94.5 percent last year.
“What this tells us is that as retailers and law enforcement become more aware of and more proactive in pursuing organized retail crime gangs, criminals have become more desperate and brazen in their efforts, stopping at nothing to get their hands on large quantities of merchandise,” said NRF Vice President of Loss Prevention, Rich Mellor.
Cargo theft continues to grow at an alarming rate, posing huge problems for retailers and their distribution centers. On average, 52.1 percent of companies say they have been a victim of cargo theft in the past 12 months. A significantly higher percent of companies this year said cargo theft occurs mostly en route from the distribution center to the store (68.1 percent vs. 57.4 percent last year), while 43.5 percent say these incidents also occur en route from manufacturer to distribution center.
When asked what new trends exist in organized retail crime, retailers cited familiar issues involving the economy, returned stolen merchandise, gift card fraud, and increases in violent activity upon apprehension. However, new to the list of trends this year were specific references to digital receipt fraud, increased smash and grab incidents, and collusion with street gangs.
“Though retailers continue to make great strides in their fight against organized retail crime, sophisticated criminals with unending opportunities and anonymous outlets to sell their stolen merchandise are proving to be quite challenging for both retailers and law enforcement agencies working to combat this issue,” said NRF Senior Asset Protection Advisor Joe LaRocca “With the types of organized retail crimes changing in severity and scope every day, and cargo theft and violent instances becoming more troubling, retailers are constantly on high alert.”
Despite the increase in incidents, more companies this year believe law enforcement is aware of and understands the severity and complexity of the issue (40.0% vs. 32.3% in 2011). More than half say top management at their company is aware of the problems associated with organized retail crime. NRF strongly believes that organized retail crime must be addressed through Federal legislation by amending the Federal Criminal Code to effectively address the organized and serious nature of this issue, properly defining it as a federal crime with appropriate sentencing guidelines, and providing Federal law enforcement the resources needed to combat this crime.
This post was originally written by Leah Rocketto and published by ToyBook.com. For more news, visit www.toybook.com, follow The Toy Book on Twitter, and like The Toy Book on Facebook. The Toy Book is a bimonthly trade magazine covering the toy industry, published by Adventure Publishing Group.
As part of its “Retail Means Jobs” campaign, an initiative by the National Retail Federation (NRF) that aims to raise awareness of the retail industry’s economic impact, NRF has launched the “This is Retail” video contest. “We’re on a hunt to find the best retail stories in America—from marketing geniuses to customer service superstars to small business owners,” said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay in a press release.
To participate, retail employees or business owners submit a two-minute video that shares their retail story for a chance to win up to $25,000. NRF will accept video submissions from March 5-16. A panel of retail executives will narrow the videos down to the top 20, and finalists will be prominently featured on RetailMeansJobs.com. The winners will be chosen based on votes, and announced during NRF’s Washington Leadership Conference in May. For more information, visit www.retailmeansjobs.com/contest.
The National Retail Federation (NRF) has released its 2011 Holiday Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey, conducted by BIGresearch, and the report predicts a slight decrease in the average amount each shopper will spend this holiday season. According to the survey, shoppers say they plan to shell out an average of $704.18 on holiday gifts and seasonal merchandise, down slightly from last year’s $718.98. NRF still forecasts overall holiday retail sales to grow 2.8 percent during November and December to $465.6 billion.
Holiday shoppers also plan to take advantage of sales and discounts to purchase goods for themselves. Nearly six in 10 holiday shoppers (59.9 percent) say they plan to purchase additional non-gifts for themselves and their families during the holiday season. The largest portion of a consumer’s holiday budget will go to family members, with the average person spending $403.26 on kids, parents, and other family members. Additionally, an average of $68.23 will be spent on friends, followed by $21.06 on co-workers, and $23.39 on other gifts. Consumers will also spend on decorations ($46.73), greeting cards ($26.52), candy and food ($96.75), and flowers ($18.23.) Gift cards will be popular with consumers again this year, with 57.7 percent of shoppers saying they’d like to receive a gift card this holiday season.
The National Retail Federation (NRF) is expecting this year’s holiday season to be just average. Although last year’s holiday season outperformed most analysts’ expectations, NRF expects 2011 holiday retail sales to increase 2.8 percent to $465.6 billion, close to the 10-year average holiday sales increase of 2.6 percent. Last year, retailers experienced a 5.2 percent increase.
For the first time this year, NRF used its holiday forecasting model to create a projection for seasonal hiring in retail. According to NRF, retailers are expected to hire between 480,000 and 500,000 seasonal workers this holiday season, which is comparable to the 495,000 seasonal employees they hired last year.
More people than ever are expected to partake in traditional Halloween festivities, according to a new survey by the National Retail Federation (NRF). Results from NRF’s “2011 Halloween Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey,” conducted by BIGresearch, show that seven in 10 Americans (68.6 percent) plan to celebrate Halloween this year, up from 63.8 percent last year—the most in NRF’s 10-year survey history.
According to the report, those celebrating are expected to spend slightly more, too; the average person will spend $72.31 on decorations, costumes, and candy, up from $66.28 last year. Total Halloween spending is expected to reach $6.86 billion.
More people plan to dress in costume (43.9 percent vs. 40.1 percent last year), throw or attend a party (34.3 percent vs. 33.3 percent last year), and visit a haunted house (22.9 percent vs. 20.8 percent last year). Additionally, half of respondents (49.5 percent) said they will decorate their home/yard, and 14.7 percent will dress their pets in costume. Other traditional activities include handing out candy (73.5 percent), carving a pumpkin (47.8 percent), and taking children trick-or-treating (32.9 percent).
Although spending is expected to increase, nearly one-third of respondents (32.1 percent) said the state of the U.S. economy will impact their Halloween plans. To compensate, most say they will try to spend less overall (87.1 percent). Others will make a costume instead of purchasing one (18.9 percent), use last year’s costume (16.6 percent), or buy less candy (40.2 percent).