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Retail Apocalypse Hitting America - More Jobs Lost to Automation

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posted on Mar, 24 2017 @ 09:53 PM
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The service sector jobs, ie retail, are some of the last left for people. The malls close, strip malls, and smaller chain stores. Big box chain stores, the fewer and fewer left are heavy on competition for hiring as it is.
The only thing that possibly could counter balance that, but likely only a bit, is more Amazon and other internet shops packing/shipping warehouses?

There's a cycle here, less work, less full time jobs lead to people having less spending money. At the same time less people are going out to eat, less going out for entertainment instead are using the internet.




posted on Mar, 25 2017 @ 01:21 AM
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Malls were overbuilt and over expanded, and now they are old.

Better selection, better price and no effort to buy online.

People also have other things to do like go online, than kill an afternoon at the mall, or even shopping. Grocery shopping is plenty work for me.

Also, people spend more on their homes and cars these days, also cell phones. I think the retail market peaked with the mortgage re-fi and real estate overvaluation boom...the activity of shopping itself was popular as was collecting new stuff like iPods and video games.

It's not so specific to retail either....people do home entertainment systems rather than go out to the movies....etc etc. I think pro sports are down too....people's taste has changed to social media and fake news.



posted on Mar, 25 2017 @ 08:21 AM
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More and hmmm... Wonder when they're going to buy up a drone manufacturer?



In recent months, Walmart has purchased a number of trendy, online retailers, including hip fashion brand ModCloth, outdoor gear retailer Moosejaw, and shoe store ShoeBuy.

…Walmart's e-commerce sales have been spurred on by recent acquisitions, growing 29% in the most recent quarter compared to the same period last year. However, the retailer has a long way to go until it catches up with rival Amazon — especially as the e-commerce giant expands its own apparel offerings.

Amazon is predicted to exceed Macy's as the biggest apparel seller in America this year. Prior to Walmart's recent acquisitions of trendy ecommerce brands, Amazon similarly ventured into more high-end fashion, selling products by designers such as Zac Posen and Stuart Weitzman.

Walmart's market value is now $298 billion, compared to Amazon's $356 billion. In February, Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway sold off $900 million of its Walmart stock, the last of Buffett's shares in the company, after saying in 2016 that Amazon's competitors had not figured out a way to counter the e-commerce company.




posted on Mar, 25 2017 @ 09:04 AM
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a reply to: Olivine

Actually UPS has drones that fly out from the truck, deliver to the house and then come find the truck that has moved on to dock. Just waiting on FAA approval.



posted on Mar, 25 2017 @ 09:23 AM
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a reply to: FlyingFox

Outside entertainment, food, and retail venues (outdoor malls) are also still popular. I'm not talking strip malls. I'm talking about the little shopping districts like we have two of in KC - Zona Rosa and The Plaza. They have a mix of upscale shopping and sort of mall style retail with lots of little restaurants where you can dine out or in in fine weather and some anchor stores. Those two zones are always busy in the summer.

I think part of the problem with malls is that they become popular teen hangouts and then the wrong kind of teen moved in to hang out and people no longer felt safe in them.

Unfortunately, The Plaza district is starting to have these problems with packs of roaming teens lately. There have been fights, shoppers being threatened and beat, and there was even a shooting or stabbing incident. Zona Rosa isn't having these problems yet, but it is still pretty new and far enough away from where the teens live that it's not as accessible.

People aren't going to want to go shop in a place if they can't feel safe doing it ... no matter how trendy or upscale it might be. But fundamentally, people still do like getting out and being out and about. And some people still do like buying certain things (like clothing and shoes which are tough to fit based on measurement alone) in a store. I know I recently bought a very nice pair of jeans for myself and they are a shade too large because I trusted measurements and went online for them.
edit on 25-3-2017 by ketsuko because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 25 2017 @ 09:36 AM
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a reply to: imwilliam

Another good point with the Just In Time inventory system. Warehousing inventory is a drain on financial resources of any business. In retail, long gone are the days of asking if they have one in the back. That lack of service has cost customers but was a calculated risk.

Even in the ever popular Walmart, what you see on the shelves is what you get. And everyone can agree that the selection isn't as varied as it was 10-15 years ago. Sears/Kmart has been in a death spiral for nearly 30 years by only providing products that no one wanted. The quality of those products were also inferior to those from the 70's and 80's. And the cardinal sin was failing to provide wanted products. My local, now closed, Kmart had radios and shower curtains but no USB thumb drives or quilted overalls for winter. Work boots were glued together rather than properly sown. When they closed, there was a clearance sale of course. My best purchase was a Coleman bottle opener that you would mount on a wall or cooler that was listed at $12. I spent maybe $2, but when is the last time you absolutely had to use an opener to remove a bottle cap? Home brewed and bottled beer?



posted on Mar, 25 2017 @ 10:24 AM
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originally posted by: ketsuko
a reply to: FlyingFox

Outside entertainment, food, and retail venues (outdoor malls) are also still popular. I'm not talking strip malls. I'm talking about the little shopping districts like we have two of in KC - Zona Rosa and The Plaza. They have a mix of upscale shopping and sort of mall style retail with lots of little restaurants where you can dine out or in in fine weather and some anchor stores. Those two zones are always busy in the summer.

I think part of the problem with malls is that they become popular teen hangouts and then the wrong kind of teen moved in to hang out and people no longer felt safe in them.

Unfortunately, The Plaza district is starting to have these problems with packs of roaming teens lately. There have been fights, shoppers being threatened and beat, and there was even a shooting or stabbing incident. Zona Rosa isn't having these problems yet, but it is still pretty new and far enough away from where the teens live that it's not as accessible.

People aren't going to want to go shop in a place if they can't feel safe doing it ... no matter how trendy or upscale it might be. But fundamentally, people still do like getting out and being out and about. And some people still do like buying certain things (like clothing and shoes which are tough to fit based on measurement alone) in a store. I know I recently bought a very nice pair of jeans for myself and they are a shade too large because I trusted measurements and went online for them.


Nice I lived in KC for a decade.. in independence!!!

You will have a few places that keep real people.. mainly highend products, such as fine dining..

The problem comes in when EVERYTHING but high end retail goes automated..

The highend tier is by definition the smallest percent of the total..

For example..

If all the corporate and casual dining places go automated, and fine dining only makes up say 5% of total restaurants..then you have 100% of restaurant people competeing for 5% of those jobs..

We were always gonna reach a point where humans were no longer needed for labor. It is the natural progression of technology.

But where a future where robots do all the work should be a eutopia. We have been raised to hate anyone who works less than we do.. hate them so much they don't even deserve food or shelter...



posted on Mar, 25 2017 @ 10:26 AM
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a reply to: Ahabstar

I think it has more to do with loss of market share..

With the internet, there has only been room for one Walmart type big corporate entity, where without online shopping there was room for more.



posted on Mar, 25 2017 @ 03:52 PM
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sadly if we get a Universal Income, I guarantee some folks will complain and whine because "Oh my god, so and so now makes the same as I DOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!"

I will say to the poor folks pov, any Universal Income will be gold.
To the Have's and Upper Echelon, any UI won't 'be enough' and they'll sobfest, all 'woe is me'.

I think UI would be great: everyone on the same page, no more "I did college and you didn't so suffer" kind of evil tripe. Man will be equal in income.
No one will be above or below another.
I think as of right now, I'm all for it. time to be with family, travel, truly LIVE instead of working most of the day away.

It'd be beautiful.



posted on Mar, 25 2017 @ 05:30 PM
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originally posted by: sarra1833
I will say to the poor folks pov, any Universal Income will be gold.
To the Have's and Upper Echelon, any UI won't 'be enough' and they'll sobfest, all 'woe is me'.

I think you have the wrong idea about UBI. It isn't an upper limit.

You get UBI and are still free to work in order to have more money.



posted on Mar, 25 2017 @ 11:48 PM
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Take my recent Sears experience. I discovered I needed a new style XZN Triple Square driver to work on the chassis of my German car. They are in fact incredibly commonplace in all brands of new cars. It's just one of those new tools you must have, like tamper-proof Torx.

It seemed like a perfect item for Sears, I needed it right then and was willing to pay full retail for it. I looked on their site to check, they were listed but in Sears confounding website the item was only available online....sort of thru Sears, sort of not.

I even tried going to the store, thinking they were maybe ahead of the website....nope, never even heard of XZN Triple Square. I settled for Amazon Prime, dirt cheap $15 for a complete set delivered in 2 days "free". I wondered, how in the world does Sears, a LEADER in the tool industry not stock them??? They relied on their business model of pushing the same old stuff....tool kits with 100s of pieces, something I'd buy once in a lifetime. Heck, I even some of Grandpa Clark's tools from the 1950s....what I need is the newer bits, not ~another~ SAE socket set.




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