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October 5, 2012News for the retail industry

  Top Story 
  • Layaway drives early surge in toy sales
    Consumers are doing their holiday toy shopping earlier than usual, driven in large part by hot toy promotions and low- or no-fee layaway options, say retailers and manufacturers. Chains including Toys R Us, Wal-Mart, Kmart and Sears have made changes this year to make their layaway programs more attractive to cash-strapped shoppers. The Wall Street Journal (10/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
Thinking Outside the Box
To stay relevant, companies need to spend as much time generating ideas for the future as they do running their businesses today. Read Boomtown: Think Like a Startup

  Industry Watch 
  • Microsoft invests $300M in Barnes & Noble's Nook Media
    Microsoft paid $300 million for a 17.6% share of Nook Media, a newly created subsidiary of Barnes & Noble that includes Nook e-readers and tablets, along with the chain's 667 college bookstores. The financing will allow the company to expand its digital bookstore to 10 global markets by June and reach a goal of $3 billion in annual revenue, Barnes & Noble CEO William Lynch said. The Wall Street Journal (10/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Retail Trends 
  Retail Technology 
  • Sears touts greater efficiency heading into holiday hiring
    Sears Holdings plans to hire about the same number of seasonal staffers this holiday season as last at its Sears and Kmart stores. The retailer, which began arming workers at about half its 800 Sears stores with tablets last year and launched mobile checkout capabilities in May, says tech tools have increased efficiency and allow the stores to do more with fewer staffers. Chicago Tribune/The Associated Press (free registration) (10/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Main Street 
  • Amazon offers small-business merchants financing help
    Amazon's loan program for successful sellers helped Yankee Toy Box co-owner Lisa Zerr find capital to stock up on merchandise for Halloween and Christmas without taking on high-interest credit card debt. "Our goal is to solve a difficult problem for sellers," a spokesman said of Amazon Capital Services. The Wall Street Journal (10/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Policy & Government Affairs 
  • Retailers gear up to do battle over swipe fees
    Banks and retail interests are lobbying hard on both sides of an effort to limit credit-card swipe fees, similar to the NRF-backed measure that capped fees on debit-card transactions. Lawmakers have had time to see that the Durbin amendment that limited debit-card swipe fees wasn't a disaster, said NRF General Counsel Mallory Duncan. "They realize that the credit card market is even bigger and suffers from greater problems than the debit card market.” Politico Pro (subscription required) (10/5) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Will retail's seasonal hiring give Obama a boost?
    Retailers plan to hire about 600,000 temporary workers this holiday season, with much of the hiring expected to happen in October, said NRF spokeswoman Kathy Grannis. The seasonal spurt doesn't address long-term employment issues, but it may still have an impact on voters' perception of the economy. “I don’t think that people’s understanding of economics is sophisticated enough to draw a distinction between season changes and the corrected figure,” said political scientist John Frendreis. Politico Pro (subscription required) (10/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Starbucks CEO: Economic fixes can't wait for Washington
    Small businesses are in dire need of credit to grow and create jobs, and it's tougher to get than ever before, making it clearer than ever that politicians need to put aside their differences and solve the problems in a bipartisan way, says Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz in this CNBC interview. CNBC (10/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  NRF News 
  • Past, present and future: How ARTS has changed retail IT
    The Association for Retail Technology Standards (ARTS) is just shy of two decades young, but in that time has led the development of multiple technology standards and schemas on everything from point-of-sale to mobile -- with more innovation ahead. In a presentation at the ARTS Users’ Conference earlier this week, former ARTS executive director Richard Mader explained how the organization has evolved into an invaluable resource in retail IT across the world, and how ARTS plans to be an integral force in NRF’s Integrated Mobile Imitative and the future of retail technology. Read more. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
 
  • Shop.org outlook: Online holiday expectations are high for 2012
    E-commerce sales have been a growing piece of the holiday pie for years, and 2012 is no exception. In a post on the Shop.org blog, Executive Director Vicki Cantrell explains the online sales outlook for 2012 -- a 12% increase expected to reach $96 billion -- and how online retailers should be preparing their sites now for the uptick in traffic and sales. Read more. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  Chain Restaurant News 
  • Chipotle tops list of favorite fast-casual Mexican chains
    Chipotle Mexican Grill ranked first on a Market Force survey of consumers' favorite fast-casual Mexican chains, followed by Baja Fresh and Moe’s Southwest Grill. Taco Cabana, Qdoba, El Pollo Loco, Taco John’s, Taco Bell and Del Taco rounded out the top 10 in the survey of 7,600 U.S. consumers. "[C]hains that are satisfying consumers' taste for fresh ingredients, friendly service and a comfortable setting are emerging as the category leaders," Market Force's Janet Eden-Harris said. FastCasual.com (10/4), MediaPost Communications/Marketing Daily (10/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
 
Position TitleCompany NameLocation
Retail Associate Merchandise ManagerHallmarkKansas City, MO
Senior Vice President of MarketingTotal Wine & MorePotomac, MD
Director of MarketingSaks Fifth AvenuePalm Beach Gardens, FL
Brand Ambassador - Chanel Ready-To-WearSaks Fifth AvenueMiami - Dadeland, FL
Regional Human Resouces ManagerSpencer Gifts/Spirit HalloweenSan Francisco Bay Area, CA
Director of Business IntelligenceGolfsmith International Austin, TX
Executive AssistantTracyLockeWilton, CT
Associate Buyer, Children's BooksBarnes & Noble Inc.New York, NY
BuyerBarnes & Noble Inc.New York, NY
Associate BuyerFloor and Decor Smyrna, GA
Corporate Safety ManagerOfficeMaxNaperville, IL
Click here to view more job listings.

  SmartQuote 
The lure of the distant and the difficult is deceptive. The great opportunity is where you are."
--John Burroughs,
American naturalist and essayist


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