Retailers are Facing a $62B Problem That Has Nothing to Do with the Pandemic

Retail theft is surging to record highs, despite an expanded use of new technologies designed to catch thieves, according to a new survey.

Retailers’ losses due to theft, fraud, and other causes totaled nearly $62 billion in 2019, up from nearly $51 billion the previous year, said the survey, which was conducted by the National Retail Federation and the retail consulting firm Appriss Retail.

On average, these losses — which retailers refer to as shrink — represented about 1.6% of sales last year, up from 1.4% the previous year.

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“Between an increase in incidents and new ways to steal, shrink is at an all-time high,” said Mark Mathews, NRF vice president for research development and industry analysis. “Loss prevention experts are facing unprecedented challenges from individual shoplifters to organized gangs to highly skilled cybercriminals.”

The survey polled a total of 69 retailers with sales volumes ranging from less than $99 million to more than $50 billion. About a dozen of the survey participants were large chains with more than 2,000 stores…  Business Insider

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