According to an article from the NY Associate Press, clothing giant Macy's will be furloughing nearly 130,000 of its employees.
The article says that the majority of its 130,000, including stock people and sales clerks, will still collect health benefits but the company said that it is transitioning to an "absolute minimum workforce" needed to maintain basic operations. Macy's has lost the bulk of its sales due to the temporary closing of its stores starting March 18.
The move is perhaps the most dramatic sign that even big name retailers are seeing their business evaporate and that the $2 trillion rescue package passed by Congress last week may come too late to help out retailers. Nordstrom said last week it was furloughing a portion of its corporate staff.
More than 190,000 stores, including J.C. Penney and Neiman Marcus, have temporarily closed, accounting for nearly 50% of the U.S. retail square footage, according to Neil Saunders, managing director of GlobalData Retail.
When announcing the temporary closures, most retailers said they would keep paying their workers. But that has now become increasingly untenable as the coronavirus rapidly spreads and forces people to stay cooped up in their homes.
Macy's temporarily closed all 500 its stores this month. To survive, it has suspended its dividend, drawn down its line of credit, frozen hiring and spending, and cancelled orders. Macy's said is now evaluating all financing options.
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