THE head of one of the country’s best-known retailers has sounded the alarm as major troubles are hurting business.
Macy’s CEO Jeff Gennette’s warning comes as many stores struggle with theft and falling profits.
According to a Wall Street Journal report, sales at Macy’s are down 8 percent compared to the same period last year.
The retailer found that along with declining sales, more customers were also late paying their credit card bills.
According to the Wall Street Journal, late payments serve as an indicator of consumer health, and unpaid bills pose a major threat to Macy’s sales.
“We expect the pressures consumers are facing will continue through the rest of the year,” Gennette told the outlet.
“Consumers still have good savings, but they are spending more cautiously,” he added.
“More of their money goes into services and experiences.”
But Gennette also admitted that shoplifting is a big problem for Macy’s.
On-chain thefts could reach record levels in 2023 for the second straight month.
Because of this, Macy’s removes high-theft items from its store aisles and takes other measures to prevent inventory losses.
The department store isn’t the only big business struggling with theft.
According to Axios, retailers saw a more than 25 percent increase in thefts in 2021.
In many cases, thieves resell the stolen items on the black market.
Big, well-organized heists have begun to dominate this part of the criminal underworld.
“It’s pretty alarming what’s going on,” said Lauren Hobart, CEO of Dick’s Sporting Goods.
“Increased inventory shrinkage,” which includes theft and other types of inventory loss, is “an increasingly serious problem affecting many retailers,” she said.
Other companies like Target, CVS, and Walgreens also partially blame the trend for disappointing earnings reports.
But the fact that shoppers are spending less is also an important factor.
Gennette is also concerned about the resumption of student loan payments and sluggish international tourism numbers amid the pandemic.