Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News
Monday, August 07, 2017

An estimated 5,300 retail locations have closed through June 20, according to one estimate -- nearly triple the rate from a year ago. That makes 2017 poised to surpass the number of closings in 2008, in the depth of the Great Recession. Yet it's the decline of industries like coal and manufacturing that get the big attention, especially from politicians. That's surprising, since the closings mean that retail, which employs about 10 percent of all working Americans, is shedding jobs at a rate that dwarfs either of those. The retail sector shed 6,100 positions in June this year alone, according to the Labor Department.

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"I think retail has for a long time been the white noise of the economy," says Mark Muro, the director of the Metropolitan Policy Program at Brookings. "It's taken for granted. While they may not be glamorous, these jobs provide livelihoods for millions of people."

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Thank big box stores, that being said, I would think shipping added jobs for the e commerce.

#1 | Posted by bat4255 at 2017-08-07 12:46 PM | Reply

Thank big box stores, that being said, I would think shipping added jobs for the e commerce.

#1 | POSTED BY BAT4255

Thank Amazon.

#2 | Posted by Sycophant at 2017-08-07 12:51 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 5


Around here, teenagers have had great difficulties finding retail summer jobs this year. The stores just aren't hiring.

#3 | Posted by LampLighter at 2017-08-07 12:55 PM | Reply

Coal has families dedicated to it as a way of life. It has towns based around it. Retail...not so much. So there isn't a movement to save retail.

#4 | Posted by Sycophant at 2017-08-07 01:12 PM | Reply

Coal has families dedicated to it as a way of life. It has towns based around it. Retail...not so much. So there isn't a movement to save retail.

#4 | POSTED BY SYCOPHANT

The entire coal industry employs fewer people than Arby's.

#5 | Posted by qcp at 2017-08-07 01:15 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 3

#4 because retail jobs don't pay as much as coal jobs.
It's not the job, it's the money.

#6 | Posted by snoofy at 2017-08-07 01:18 PM | Reply

Syco is right, Amazon is more to blame than the big box stores, who have also been hit hard by online retail.

#7 | Posted by Rightocenter at 2017-08-07 01:27 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

I don't need coal and I shop online. Buhbye to all of them.

#8 | Posted by bored at 2017-08-07 01:27 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

I have to admit I was shocked by how few people are actually employed by the coal industry. The article has a good point about trying to help the most Americans. Another thing about the retail jobs are that there is no way they are more likely to go to Americans.

#9 | Posted by BruceBanner at 2017-08-07 01:32 PM | Reply

#4 because retail jobs don't pay as much as coal jobs.
It's not the job, it's the money.

#6 | POSTED BY SNOOFY

Not that much more.

#10 | Posted by Sycophant at 2017-08-07 01:33 PM | Reply

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I would think shipping added jobs for the e commerce.

Until driver less trucks come along.

#11 | Posted by 726 at 2017-08-07 01:33 PM | Reply

Amazon is more to blame

Since I joined Prime, I use it almost exclusively. Free shipping. Two day delivery and prices on par with stores.

The upside is it is keeping the USPS afloat.

#12 | Posted by 726 at 2017-08-07 01:35 PM | Reply

Amazon is more to blame
Since I joined Prime, I use it almost exclusively. Free shipping. Two day delivery and prices on par with stores.
The upside is it is keeping the USPS afloat.

#12 | POSTED BY 726

There is a delivery driver where I live. Just leaves it by your door. Honestly, I get a lot of groceries this way. Just easier to order what I need.

#13 | Posted by Sycophant at 2017-08-07 01:57 PM | Reply

My grandfather raised a family and built a nice home on a nice 8 acre plot of land working as a salesman in the clothing department at Sears. My Uncle raised a family and made enough to buy a nice house and a fishing cottage working as a service repairman for Sears. My father started as a salesman and was Store Manager for 2 locations when Reagan began killing unions. Sears told him he had to get rid of his 20 highest paid salespersons. That meant getting rid of his most experienced salespersons. My dad pushed back so they fired him too and brought in a new guy to do what they wanted. Now those sales positions can't support a single person much less let them raise a family

Retail was one of the first places employees were turned from valuable partners in the business to mere line items on the cost side of the ledger to be reduced or eliminated if possible.

Retail was the canary in the coal mine

#14 | Posted by hatter5183 at 2017-08-07 02:04 PM | Reply

Thank big box stores, that being said, I would think shipping added jobs for the e commerce.

#1 | Posted by bat4255

We are talking about the big box stores - they are the ones closing by the hundred counts.

#15 | Posted by GalaxiePete at 2017-08-07 02:27 PM | Reply


@#12 ... The upside is it is keeping the USPS afloat. ...

This Analyst Claims the U.S. Postal Service Is Giving Amazon a Huge Subsidy
fortune.com

...The U.S. Postal Service and Amazon have a special relationship. In 2013, for instance, the USPS agreed to offer Sunday delivery of Amazon packages.

But shipping industry watcher and money manager Josh Sandbulte thinks there's an ugly underside to the USPS-Amazon collaboration. Sandbulte, writing in the Wall Street Journal last week, argued that the USPS effectively subsidizes the price of shipping Amazon's packages.... If package delivery bore its fair share of Postal Service system costs, each box would cost $1.46 more to deliver. ...

#16 | Posted by LampLighter at 2017-08-07 02:28 PM | Reply

The USPS has always provided a massive subsidy for people who mail things. Why do you think you get so much junk mail? Because it's practically free to send. This is thought to be good for business.

In those "socialist" countries you end up paying a lot more for postage.

#17 | Posted by snoofy at 2017-08-07 02:32 PM | Reply

I know there is a deal with UPS and USPS. UPS does much of the back end hauling for the USPS and USPS does the to door delivery. My understanding it USPS has leveraged this relationship to gain the Amazon business. It in effect took a lot of that business from UPS. Wonder when that contract is up for renewal...

#18 | Posted by GalaxiePete at 2017-08-07 04:18 PM | Reply

UPS does much of the back end hauling for the USPS and USPS does the to door delivery.

They have a similar deal with Canada Post, at least for remote locations.

#19 | Posted by REDIAL at 2017-08-07 05:00 PM | Reply

Just wait till 48 million people lose their jobs to automation over the next 10 years. Which president will YOU blame?

#20 | Posted by cbob at 2017-08-07 09:17 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

#17 | Posted by snoofy
The largest subsidy goes to the USPS workers. If they were any good there would be no UPS, FEDEX or any other carrier.

#21 | Posted by Federalist at 2017-08-07 09:21 PM | Reply

#21 You sound like people talking about the DMV 25 years ago. It is so efficient I can't believe it.

The USPS (mandated by the Constitution)(thanks mostly to the guy on the $100 dollar bill which we all love),

I have to send samples of my product, priority mail is ridiculously cheap. If someone wants FedEx or UPS they better give me their account number.

Want to send a letter for 50 cents.

USPS all the way

#22 | Posted by bruceaz at 2017-08-07 09:47 PM | Reply

"The largest subsidy goes to the USPS workers. If they were any good there would be no UPS, FEDEX or any other carrier.
#21 | POSTED BY FEDERALIST"

You lie.
The largest subsidy by far is to customers.
You're also ignorant about how many deliveries UPS can make.
It's maybe 10% of what the USPS can.
And FedEx can't even come close to that.

#23 | Posted by snoofy at 2017-08-08 01:21 AM | Reply

One side of this that also deserves more attention is jobs that haven't gone away but have had their pay and benefits lowered to the point where they don't support the worker. We still need a lot of cashiers and waiters and busboys. Once upon a time you could work your way through school doing those jobs part time. Now even if you work them full time they don't even cover the rent much less rent AND tuition AND transportaion.

When I first moved out on my own I was an usher at a movie theatre. I had a nice little apartment, my own car and my tuition was only $583/semester as a full time student. I got to see all the new movies and had some extra money for pizza and an occasional road trip too.

I find it hard to fault the workers when the pay is only twice what I made but rent and tuition are 10 times what I paid.

#24 | Posted by hatter5183 at 2017-08-08 11:44 AM | Reply

Not that much more.

#10 | POSTED BY SYCOPHANT

Around here, coal jobs pay about $80k per year. Retail jobs pay about $25K. Big difference.

Just 10 years ago coal was our largest employer. The largest employers in our county now are healthcare and education. The Republican plans for healthcare would have gutted this county.

#25 | Posted by Whatsleft at 2017-08-08 12:16 PM | Reply

Retail is gone because of the internet and automation. Automation saves employ costs and the internet eliminates bricks mortar. This will continue unless somebody ever hacks something like Amazon to the point that people are scared to use it.

#26 | Posted by bogey1355 at 2017-08-08 05:38 PM | Reply

#26

I often wonder, when practically nobody has a job that provides disposable income or most people are replaced by automation, who is going to be left to purchase the consumables?

#27 | Posted by Whatsleft at 2017-08-08 08:22 PM | Reply

Walmart and Amazon are successful because the do what they do better than their competition. It isn't about service, it is about the cost of each item. Like it or not, I can buy the same item at Wallyworld cheaper than at Wholefood, but they have a bigger selection of hot sauce. Of course the clientele at Walmart isn't nearly as white but much more interesting. Sam is long dead, Walmart used to be a good place to work. It didn't pat that well, but only "associates" received Walmart stock. Amazon is a sweat shop, never claimed to be more. But automation is changing that- what do we do with all the "useless eaters" after Mr. Robot takes the last job? Bit of advice, learn a skill. A collage education is getting to be worthless.

#28 | Posted by docnjo at 2017-08-09 08:17 AM | Reply

"Walmart and Amazon are successful because the do what they do better than their competition. It isn't about service, it is about the cost of each item. Like it or not, I can buy the same item at Wallyworld cheaper than at Wholefood, but they have a bigger selection of hot sauce."

That isn't even true. The company I work for sells some items on Amazon and also on our own web site. Customers can buy those items cheaper on our web site. Amazon succeeds because people think they are saving money by shopping there, usually they aren't.

#29 | Posted by danni at 2017-08-09 08:49 AM | Reply

"Retail is gone because of the internet and automation. Automation saves employ costs and the internet eliminates bricks mortar. This will continue unless somebody ever hacks something like Amazon to the point that people are scared to use it."

One can only hope. The idea of killing the retail industry is horrible. Jeff Bezos is the devil.

#30 | Posted by danni at 2017-08-09 08:51 AM | Reply

#29 | Posted by danni, true, most of the time, but exposure and name recognition is a factor. Most people are lazy, and will not do the research to buy the best deal for small items. They go where they can find what they want quickly with as little effort as possible.

#31 | Posted by docnjo at 2017-08-09 09:02 AM | Reply

Walmart and Amazon are successful because the do what they do better than their competition.

#28 | POSTED BY DOCNJO

I also wonder how well the likes of Walmart would do without their government subsidized labor force.

www.forbes.com

#32 | Posted by Whatsleft at 2017-08-09 11:47 AM | Reply

The thing with Walmart and Amazon is that their size allows them to manipulate the market in ways that competitors cannot. When talking to a manufacturer or supplier a small retailer says I need 40 widgets to put on my shelves how much will it cost, and has to choose to either pay that amount or not have it on their shelves. The supplier doesn't lose much by not having it in ONE store. Walmart on the other hand can say Sell it to me for X or it wont be on any of our 4000+ stores.

Often the manufacturer or supplier is forced to cut costs to meet Walmart's price which may mean cutting quality, cutting worker pay, or moving production overseas.

#33 | Posted by hatter5183 at 2017-08-09 11:53 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

#33 | Posted by hatter5183 And when mom does the grocery shopping, she doesn't care in the least. She goes where the ever her budget buys the most.

#34 | Posted by docnjo at 2017-08-09 01:48 PM | Reply

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