Theft Takes a Toll on Retailers’ Bottom-Line Profits, According to Jack L. Hayes International’s 29th Annual Retail Theft Survey

Over 438,000 shoplifters and dishonest employees were apprehended in 2016 by just 23 large retailers who recovered over $120 million from these thieves, according to the 29th Annual Retail Theft Survey conducted by Jack L. Hayes International, the leading loss prevention and inventory shrinkage control consulting firm.

“In 2016, dishonest employee apprehensions increased almost 10 percent, with the dollars recovered from these dishonest employees up nearly the same amount (9.3 percent). While shoplifting apprehensions and the dollars recovered from these shoplifters decreased ever so slightly, 0.2 percent
and 0.9 percent respectively”, said Mark R. Doyle, president of Jack L. Hayes International. “The seriousness of retail theft is a much greater problem than most customers realize. These theft losses are stealing profits from retailers’ bottom-line, which results in consumers
having to pay higher prices for goods.”

Highlights from this annual theft survey include:

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  • Participants: 23 large retail companies with 16,038 stores and over $370 billion in retail sales (2016).
  • Apprehensions: 438,082 shoplifters and dishonest employees were apprehended in 2016, up 1.0 percent from 2015.
  • Recovery Dollars: Over $120 million was recovered from apprehended shoplifters and dishonest employees in 2016, up 2.5 percent from 2015.
  • Shoplifter Apprehensions: 384,296 shoplifters were apprehended in 2016, down up 0.2 percent from 2015.
  • Shoplifter Recovery Dollars: Over $78 million was recovered from apprehended shoplifters in 2016, a decrease of 0.9% from 2015. An additional $163 million was recovered from nonapprehended shoplifters.
  • Employee Apprehensions: 53,786 dishonest employees were apprehended in 2016, up 9.9 percent from 2015.
  • Employee Recovery Dollars: Over $42 million was recovered from employee apprehensions in 2016, up 9.3 percent from 2015.
  • One out of every 27 employees was apprehended for theft from their employer in 2016. (Based on over 1.4 million employees.)
  • Shrink: 56.5 percent of survey participants reported an increase in shrink in 2016, with 21.7 percent reporting a decrease in shrink, and another 21.7 percent reported shrink stayed about the same.

Full survey results are available at: http://hayesinternational.com/news/annual-retail-theft-survey/.

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