Retail has a great story to tell in Minnesota!

Minnesota Retailers Are Optimistic About Holiday Spending After Sales & Traffic Met Expectations Thanksgiving Weekend

Trends lead retailers to be optomistic about shopper spending this holiday season

Minnesota's retailers are optimistic about shopper spending this holiday season following a Thanksgiving weekend that mostly met or exceeded sales expectations.  The Minnesota Retailers Association solicited feedback from retailers around the state through an informal, non-scientific survey last week.

In that survey, 50 percent of respondents expect this holiday season to be better than last year, with the balance generally anticipating this season to be about the same as 2013. Those responses correlate with 44 percent of retailers reporting stronger than expected sales, foot traffic as anticipated, and slightly elevated online visits for the Thanksgiving weekend.

What might be fueling consumer spending this holiday season? Several retailers cited low gasoline prices as a factor in boosting the potential that consumers will spend more this year.  Other factors mentioned include timely Winter weather to get consumers a gift-giving mood.

Before-The-Store-Opens Elections Results

A customers stop by your store today, the election is sure to be the topic of many conversations

As customers stop by your store today, the election is sure to be the topic of many conversations.  Here are a few results of the polls closing a short 13 hours ago across Minnesota.     

Governor

  • DFL Governor Mark Dayton won reelection last night, garnering about 50 percent of the vote.

Minnesota House of Representatives

  • Republicans won control of the Minnesota House of Representatives, picking up a likely 10 or 11 seats.
  • Greater Minnesota played a pivotal role in the seat pickups.
  • Republicans campaigned on a theme of bringing balance to Minnesota government.
  • The DFL controls the Minnesota Senate and Governor's office.

Statewide Offices

  • DFLers kept all their statewide office seats last night.
  • DFL Representative Steve Simon won his bid for Secretary of State.

U.S. Senate

  • U.S. Senator Al Franken retained his seat in his first reelection bid.
  • Republicans took control of the U.S. Senate last night, winning more than six seats.

U.S. House of Representatives

  • All of Minnesota's incumbent U.S. House of Representatives members won reelection, including the highly watched 8th Congressional District where Rick Nolan defeated Republican challenger Steward Mills.
  • Republican Tom Emmer won his the race to succeed Congresswoman Michelle Bachmann in the 6th Congressional District.
  • Republicans retained control of the U.S. House in elections last night.

Voter Turnout

  • Voter turnout in Minnesota has been estimated to be lower than recent mid-term elections by around 200,000 voters.

Make The Retail Vote Count: Encourage Employees To Vote

Now is the time to remind employees of the importance of voting.

Election day (Tuesday, November 4) is just over three weeks away.  Now is the time to remind employees of the importance of voting.  For younger employees and those working their first job, this may be their first opportunity to go to their polling place.  Support the retail vote and Minnesota's traditionally high voter turnout by encouraging your employees to vote.

The Minnesota Secretary of State hosts several resources to make it easy for first-time and long-time voters.  As a first step, consider reminding your employees of their opportunity to vote and encourage them to do so!

Provided below is a sample memo to employees:

"Election Day is approaching, and we encourage all eligible employees to participate in our democratic process and vote on Tuesday, November 4.

This is a significant election year: Minnesotans will elect a U.S. Senator, U.S. House Representatives, Minnesota House representatives, Governor and state officers, and many important county and local officers.

A source for your all voting needs is the Office of the Minnesota Secretary of State's mnvotes.org - where you can register to vote, request an absentee ballot, view your sample ballot, find your polling place location, and more. Another resource to guide you through the voting process in Minnesota is this two minute video, Election Year in Minnesota,.

Employees have certain rights when it comes to voting and their schedule.  If needed, please discuss your work schedule with your supervisor. Most polling places are open 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. You also may vote early with an absentee ballot and avoid the lines at your polling place on Election Day.

The voting pre-registration deadline is October 14 for the November 4 General Election. You can register or update your registration online at mnvotes.org. You may also register at your polling place on Election Day.

Thank you for keeping Minnesota number-one in the nation for voter turnout."

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