The painful part of winter has hit us: cabin fever. That itching feeling that screams “I must leave the warm confines of my house!” that is immediately countered by the invasive winter vortex that has been assaulting the Midwest. What is one to do when locked inside the home for what feels like the 1,000th day in a row? I’d say read This Week in Financial Blunders so you can see that the outside world is doing just fine, or not, depending on how you look at it.
The retail industry is getting hit extra hard this winter, according to CNBC. Retail typically suffers during the first quarter of the business year, but multiple popular brands are reporting job cuts, layoffs and declining profits that suggest a dramatic change in the industry. The cause? Online shopping seems to be the main culprit in this downward trend. Over the holiday season, online spending increased by 10% and it’s likely to grow as the year goes on. Experts also attribute the cold weather as a factor in the 15% decrease of foot traffic in stores. Here are the highlights (lowlights?) of the recent decline in retail outlets.
- J.C. Penney has been in financial trouble for a while, but they announced last week that they’re closing 33 stores and cutting about 2,000 jobs.
- Aeropostale is preparing to close 175 stores in the next few years.
- Sears will close their flagship store in Chicago by April, adding to the 300 or so stores Sears has closed since 2010.
- In the wake of their heavily publicized hacking scandal, Target is cutting 475 jobs worldwide and will not fill some 700 empty positions.
The Oakland Raiders disappointed fans with a 4-12 season this year, but they’ve upset their cheerleaders even more. A member of the Oakland Raiders cheerleading squad – AKA the Raiderettes – anonymously filed a lawsuit against the team on Wednesday, according to CNNMoney. The defendant, identified only as “Lacy T.,” claims she was not paid properly at her job. She claims she was paid below the minimum wage, she was sometimes paid late or not at all, and would receive no meal or bathroom breaks on the job. Lacy T. said in a statement released by her lawyer, “I love the Raiders and I love being a Raiderette, but someone has to stand up for all of the women of the NFL who work so hard for the fans and the teams.” She’s trying to make the suit class-action so other Raiderettes may join her in the case.
That’s all the blunders we have for this week. Feel free to comment below with a news story we may have missed.