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Posted November 15, 2012 by

Retail Workers, Consumers Upset With Thanksgiving Day Hours

John Challenger of Challenger, Gray & Christmas

John Challenger of Challenger, Gray & Christmas

Facing increased competition from online retailers, a growing number of brick-and-mortar stores, including Target, Sears and Walmart, have announced that they will begin Black Friday sales on the Thursday of Thanksgiving, with some stores opening as early as 8pm, a time many employees might otherwise spend with family.  The move, according to one workplace authority, is likely to pay off for both retailers and job seekers, but warns there is the risk of negative fallout in the form of decreased employee morale and consumer backlash.

“Retailers are under immense pressure to get the holiday shopping season off to a strong start.  It is the busiest time of the year for them and Black Friday is so named because it is the day when most retailers’ sales move ‘into the black’ for the year.  As big box chains face growing competition from discounters like Target and Walmart, not to mention the fierce competition from online retailers like Amazon.com, they are all compelled to find whatever edge they can to get shoppers into their stores,” said John A. Challenger, chief executive officer of global outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc. (more…)

Posted January 27, 2012 by

Unemployment Penalty Applied to Student Loans by Sallie Mae

Stef GrayStudent loan giant Sallie Mae defended itself from a popular campaign on Change.org demanding the company stop charging jobless borrowers a $50 fee on their student loans, drawing a sharp response from the campaign’s creator Stef Gray. More than 60,000 people have joined the campaign since its launch.

In Sallie Mae’s response to Gray’s petition, spokesperson Patricia Christel described the fee as “a good faith deposit that acknowledges the importance of and commitment to resuming payments in the future.” (more…)