Just out from Macy's, which first said the following: "The 2013 holiday season was successful for Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s as we offered fresh and distinctive merchandise, delivered great value to the customer and provided a robust omnichannel shopping experience... Even in a questionable macroeconomic environment with challenging weather in multiple states, the positive response from our customers during the holiday season is yet another vote of confidence that our well-established strategies continue to work for us." What well-established strategies one may ask? Why the following of course, which was also just disclosed in a separate news release "outlining cost reduction initiatives to support continued profitable sales growth": "Approximately 2,500 employees are expected to be laid off and are eligible for severance as a result of these organizational changes. Other associates are being reassigned with new duties or transferred; some open positions will not be filled."
And just in case the message was missed, "The company is announcing today that it will close the following five Macy’s stores in early spring 2014:
- Fiesta Mall, Mesa, AZ (159,000 square feet; opened in 1979; 98 associates);
- Metcalf South Shopping Center, Overland Park, KS (216,000 square feet; opened in 1967; 88 associates);
- Jamestown Mall, Florissant, MO (200,000 square feet; opened in 1994; 88 associates);
- Medley Centre, Irondequoit, NY (129,000 square feet; opened in 1990; 96 associates);
- Fashion Place Mall, Murray, UT (26,000 square feet; opened in 1988; 42 associates).
Luckily, JCP and Sears are both hiring.
What can one say but a truly vibrant economy, and a consumer that has never been stronger.
As for M stock, it's up 6% after hours.