Eye on Retail: NRF retail loss decreased in 2017
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Eye on Retail: Retail loss decreased in 2017

Retailers are making progress when it comes to fighting criminal activity and lowering their shrink rates.

BY Deena M. Amato-McCoy

Retailers are making progress when it comes to fighting criminal activity and lowering their shrink rates.

Thefts, fraud and losses from other retail “shrink” decreased to $46.8 billion in 2017 from $48.9 billion the year before, according to the annual National Retail Security Survey released today by the National Retail Federation and the University of Florida.

According to the data, shrink averaged 1.33% of sales, down from 1.44% the year before. A total of 59% of retailers surveyed said shrink was flat or decreasing, up from 51%. Only 41% said shrink was growing, down from 49%.

“Retailers are making progress in combating criminal activity, but there are still many challenges,” NRF VP of loss prevention Bob Moraca said. “Whether the threat is coming from cybersecurity, organized retail crime or employee theft, the job for retail security teams continues to become more difficult every day, especially when resources and staff are limited.”

Shoplifting and organized retail crime continued to be the leading causes, accounting for 36% of losses. This was followed by internal employee theft (33%), administrative paperwork errors (19%) and vendor fraud or mistake (6%).

The most substantial losses per incident came from retail robberies, at an average $4,237.02 each (down from $5,309.72 the year before), followed by employee theft at $1,203.16 (down from $1,922.80) and shoplifting/ORC at $559 (down from $798.48).

For the first time in the survey, retailers were asked about their role in combating cybercrime. Two-thirds of LP executives said they meet at least quarterly with IT/cybersecurity counterparts to discuss potential threats, and 86% said their companies have a cybersecurity incident response plan in place.

Cybersecurity concerns are top-of-mind for retailers today as criminals continue to become more sophisticated in this area,” said Richard Hollinger, a veteran University of Florida criminology professor and the lead author of the report. “This is a growing threat that will require more resources going forward. Retail executives need to invest more in loss prevention to reduce these losses to their bottom line.”

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Simpson Strong-Tie MPBZ Moment Post Base

The patent-pending MPBZ is ideal for freestanding outdoor structures, such as pergolas, patios, carports and decks.

BY HBSDealer Staff

Simpson Strong-Tie has introduced the MPBZ Moment Post Base. The product is the first in the industry to receive an ICC-ES code listing for moment resistance.

The MPBZ, which is the first off-the-shelf product to provide moment resistance for wood columns or posts, is now code listed under ICC-ES ESR-3050 for its 4×4 and 6×6 sizes. The MPB44Z and MPB66Z are also code listed for uplift, download and lateral resistance.

The patent-pending MPBZ is ideal for freestanding outdoor structures, such as pergolas, patios, carports and decks. It features an innovative, overlapping sleeve design, which completely encapsulates the post, keeping it from rotating around its base when lateral loads are applied at the top of the post.

Built-in standoff tabs provide the required 1″ standoff to protect against post rot while eliminating multiple parts and assembly. In addition, the MPBZ has a ZMAX finish to provide corrosion resistance in many environments.

“We are very excited to be setting a new standard in the industry for moment-resisting post bases. We received many requests over the years for a product like this, so it was a high-priority project for our engineers to solve. Our team had to not only design the part, but also figure out how to properly test for moment resistance,” said Sam Hensen, vice president for connectors and lateral systems at Simpson Strong-Tie. “The MPBZ is a game-changer for designers whose clients — both residential and commercial — want outdoor structures with little to no bracing. And the full code listing gives them the confidence to specify it.”

The MPBZ’s ability to withstand lateral loads greatly reduces or eliminates the need for additional bracing. The post base is engineered and tested to save engineers, architects and contractors the time and expense involved in designing, calculating and ordering custom-fabricated parts. In addition to the 4×4 and 6×6 sizes, the MPBZ is also available for 8×8 posts.

Based in Pleasanton, Calif., Simpson Strong-Tie designs and manufactures structural connectors, fasteners, fastening systems, lateral-force-resisting systems, and anchors among other building solutions.

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Cemex launches online store

Constructurama.com is designed to enable quicker, simpler order placement 24 hours a day.

BY HBSDealer Staff

Cemex has launched a new digital tool for the online sale of construction materials.

An online store, Constructurama.com, is available on all digital devices and is designed to enable quicker, simpler order placement 24 hours a day, along with exclusive promotions and better building materials’ supply management, Cemex said.

“Cemex’s launch of the Construrama Online Store builds on our efforts to transform the construction industry into a more efficient model: Our clients will now enjoy easy access to a wider catalog of products and be able to select, purchase, and follow up on their online order, generating significant savings in productivity for our Construrama network of retail stores, builders, and final customers,” said Sergio Menéndez, vp of distributor sales of Cemex in Mexico.

The Construrama Online Store is part of the company’s commercial digital vision which, together with other recently announced digital platforms such as Cemex Go, aims to offer clients a seamless experience for placing orders, live tracking of shipments, and managing invoices and payments.

Based in San Pedro, Mexico, Cemex manufactures and distributes cement, ready-mix concrete and aggregates in more than 50 countries.

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