Retailers Not Optimistic About Black Friday Sales

WEAKER BLACK FRIDAY SALES EXPECTED; ONE MORE REASON FOR LOWER SEASONAL HIRING

A new survey of retail chief marketing officers by BDOUSAfound that they are less optimistic about Black Friday sales growth than they were in 2010.  The survey provides further evidence that holiday hiring is likely to remain flat or come in lower than a year ago, as estimated by global outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc. in its annual holiday hiring outlook released in September.  Indeed, the pace of retail hiring in October was about the same as a year ago, with retail employment increasing by 141,500, compared to 144,100 in October 2010.  Over the final three months of 2010, retail employment saw a net increase of 627,600 workers.  “Unfortunately, recent news of a softening economic recovery came just as retailers were making decisions about the number of seasonal workers to add to their staffs.  The outlook on Black Friday is just one more reason for retailers to limit the number of extra workers they add for the holidays,” saidJohn A. Challenger, chief executive officer of Challenger, Gray & Christmas.

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