Entries in Holiday Season (6)


Macy's to Hire 78,000 Workers for 2011 Holiday Shopping Season

Ben Hider/Getty Images(CINCINNATI) -- The economy may be down but at least one department store chain is planning for a robust 2011 holiday shopping season.

Macy's announced Monday that it plans to 78,000 people to work the holidays on sales floors, in call centers and at shipping hubs.  The latest plans marks a 4 percent increase in seasonal hiring from last year's 75,000 workers.

"We always hire aggressively during the holidays to ensure our customers are well-served in this important shopping period.  We expect additional hiring this year given the continued sales growth in our business -- both in-store and online," said Macy's CEO Terry Lundgren.

Macy's will begin hiring for store sales positions next month.  Hiring in distribution centers and store receiving has already begun.

Most of the positions will be part-time, however, the department store notes that some employees hired for the holidays may be offered year-round work depending on their skill and performance levels.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Survey: Consumers Not Planning to Spend Big this Holiday Season

Tim Boyle/Getty Images(SUMMERVILLE, S.C.) -- Don't expect to see shoppers making lavish purchases this upcoming holiday season.

A new survey released Monday by America's Research Group found that just over eight in 10 Americans will spend the same as they did in 2010 or less.

That's certainly not good news for retailers since sales picked up slightly last year, compared to 2008 and 2009, but were nowhere close to what they were in 2006 and 2007.

With slightly more than half of respondents saying the economy will get worse before it improves, consumers say their reasons for acting frugal this year include rising food prices, miniscule raises at work, the weak housing market and worries that Washington can't get its act together to reduce high unemployment.

Meanwhile, traditional discount giants Target and Walmart, which usually do well in times of economic uncertainty, are losing business to dollar stores.  Sixty-eight percent of consumers admit they shop at these cheap shops, with 42 percent claiming the bargains are better than at Target or Walmart.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Poll: Americans Feel They Have Less Money this Holiday Season

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- A third of Americans feel they're in more financial trouble this holiday season than they were last year, according to a new Consumer Reports poll.

The poll found that 31 percent of consumers feel worse off financially than they did in 2009, but that they remain optimistic about the holiday season.

Greg Daughtry, the executive editor of Consumer Reports, says, "It's going to be a good holiday season but people are going to be really, really value conscious."

Americans surveyed said they plan to spend an average of $679, which is down about $20 from last year's average.  But, as Daughtry notes, "In past years, they've tended to exceed what they said they'd planned to spend."

The poll also found that more consumers will be making their purchases with cash instead of credit cards this year.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio


‘Anti-Christmas’ Retailer Gives Up on ‘Holidays?’

Photo Courtesy -- Getty Images(NEW YORK) – Under pressure from other retailers and various organizations, Dick’s Sporting Goods has given up on its use of the phrase “holidays” in place of “Christmas,” according to

The retailer, which had opted to embrace the spirit of the “holiday” season as opposed to “Christmas” when considering its advertising schemes, was put under pressure to change after the American Family Association encouraged all of its 2.3 million supporters to shun the sporting goods retailer.
"In our research of the Top 100 retailers in America, Dick's advertising is likely the most 'anti-Christmas' of all," read the alert sent out to AFA supporters.

"Sure, Dick's wants you to buy their products, but no retailer in the nation has appeared to go out of its way to snub 'Christmas' more than Dick's."

Dick’s was quick to respond to the AFA with a statement that said that changes to their marketing strategy were underway and that “Christmas” would become a major part of their advertising campaign by Nov. 28.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio


Shoppers Loosening Belts this Holiday Season

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(YONKERS, N.Y.) -- More shoppers are planning to loosen their financial belts this holiday season and not necessarily stick to a budget.  According to a new Consumer Reports poll, approximately one in three Americans plan to cut back this year, which is fewer than the 42 percent who said they were going to spend less in 2008.

The poll also shows that nearly half of Americans, 47 percent, are planning to set a budget for the holiday shopping season.  That percentage is down 12 points from the peak of the recession back in 2008.

Todd Marks, of Consumer Reports magazine, says, "A lot of people are cutting back, but they're not cutting back to the extent that they did in previous years.  So that's kind of a little bit of the belt loosening I guess you could say, versus the years that we were in the height of the recession."

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio


The Holidays Are Hiring Time 

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(CHICAGO) -- Chicago outplacement firm Challenger, Gray and Christmas says that prospects for seasonal work are brighter heading into the holidays than in 2009, thanks to stronger retail sales figures.

Things still aren’t close to 2006, when consumer confidence reached a peak and there were some 750,000 year-end jobs. The estimate this holiday season is about 550,000 jobs, which is 50,000 more than last year, but that could increase if business picks up.

Big employers this year include companies like Macy’s, UPS and Toys R Us, which are all adding between 45,000 to 65,000 jobs.

Temp services also recommend job seekers  think outside the box this year because there are businesses other than retailers that look to bolster their year-end deliverables.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

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