98 days till Christmas and Macy's will increase by 20% the number of workers it hires during the holiday shopping season to fill online orders. They will hire 18,000 holiday workers to fulfill online orders, an increase of about 3,000 from last year. Total hiring for the holiday season will be 83,000 workers. Target said it will hire 43% more seasonal workers, or a total of 100,000, for the holiday season. Staffing firm Radial expects retailers, to hire 35% more workers this holiday season.
The Commerce Department says retail sales fell in August by 0.2%. The hurricanes put the brakes on shoppers as motor vehicle sales tumbled 1.6%. Consumer spending accounts for more than two-thirds of U.S. economic activity and has increased at a 3.3% rate through the second quarter. Sales at building material stores fell 0.5%, receipts at service stations increased 2.5%, sales at electronics and appliance stores fell 0.7% and receipts at clothing stores dropped 1.0%.
People are cutting the cord at a faster rate according to eMarketer. There will be 22.2 million cord cutters this year. That is up more than 33% over 2016. As a result, TV ad spend expectations for 2017 are expected to expand by only 0.5% to $71.65 billion.
The S&P 500 is up 4 and the NASDAQ is up 10. The MSCI international index is higher.
Oil is down 30cents at $49.59 a barrel.
Gold is down $9 at $1316 a Troy ounce.