business news in context, analysis with attitude

…with brief, occasional, italicized and sometimes gratuitous commentary…

Business Insider reports that "Sears is laying off hundreds of corporate employees less than a week after announcing a new round of store closures … The total number of laid-off employees is fewer than 300, according to a source with direct knowledge of the staffing changes." The layoffs will affect Sears' headquarters in Hoffman Estates, Illinois, as well as offices in San Francisco.

Happy freakin' Holidays.

I feel bad for these employees, but they had to know that this was coming eventually, no matter what management was telling them. Reminds me of when I worked for a magazine that seemed consistently in trouble … we always knew when there would be layoffs when the publisher told us that we'd turned the corner, that things were going to get better, and that there would be no more layoffs. He might as well have come into the room and said, "Start updating and cranking out your résumés," because that's exactly what we all did.

• From Morning Consult: "Despite earlier estimates, U.S. consumers are looking more likely to  open their wallets this holiday season, according to a special edition of Morning Consult's Economic Intelligence report on U.S. consumer confidence … For the most part, U.S. consumers are planning to spend about the same on holiday shopping as they did last year. Just under half (49 percent) of respondents said they plan to spend the same, while 29 percent said they plan to spend less and 14 percent said they plan to spend more.

"Those who said they plan to spend less cited a desire to save money (49 percent) and pay down debt (38 percent) as top reasons. Five percent said they would spend less money because they were worried about the economy, and 12 percent blamed expected loss of income or job."
KC's View: