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Sears to host Invite A Veteran To Work Day

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Sears Holdings Corp. announced its plan to host its first-ever Invite a Veteran to Work Day on Nov. 6. The event will take place at its headquarters in Hoffman Estates, Ill., as well as 1,800 other Sears and Kmart locations across the nation.

The event is designed to honor vets, provide them with an educational tour of the company’s operations and offer support for transitioning into the civilian workforce. Additionally, attendees will be encouraged to apply for various career opportunities with Sears.

"We recognize the key role the veteran community plays in the workforce as evidenced by our 30,000 veteran associates, many of whom are still serving in the National Guard and the Reserve forces," said Sherry Nolan-Schultz, VP talent acquisition and diversity. "We invite all veterans to join us on this unique day to learn more about our company, career opportunities and workforce re-entry strategies."

Veterans will be able to participate in sessions on transition strategies, as well as LinkedIn, resume and interviewing workshops. Additionally, the six-hour event will include a campus tour and lunch with a senior executive.

The event was created in support of the White House’s Joining Forces initiative, as well as to provide additional opportunities for spouses through the Military Spouse Employment Program and Joining Forces.

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Survey: Open-concept kitchens resonate in 2013

BY HBSDEALER Staff

A new Fall Houzz Kitchen Remodeling Survey demonstrated that open-concept kitchens are trending this year, though homeowners aren’t necessarily looking for increased square footage.

Of the 7,500 Houzz users surveyed who are planning a kitchen remodel, only a third are expanding, though three-quarters are opening up their kitchens, and 3-in-5 are incorporating kitchen islands.

An overwhelming number of respondents (94%) also said they were changing their countertops, with granite and quartz being the popular choices (86%). 

Other trending items were stainless steel appliances (preferred by two-thirds of respondents), with many choosing to combine them with appliances integrated into the cabinetry. "Soft and neutral" colors also prevailed (75%), and nearly half said they valued eco-friendly appliances and materials.

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Survey: 40% of consumers curb spending in midst of government shutdown

BY HBSDEALER Staff

A consumer survey conducted Oct. 10-13 by ORC International on behalf of ICSC and Goldman Sachs found that 40% of consumers have tightened their belts in the face of the federal government shutdown.

Of the demographically representative sample, lower-income households were more affected than their upper-income counterparts: Those with income of $35,000 or less were 15% more likely to curb spending than those making at least six figures.

Of the 40%, the majority (70%) said they were only scaling back "a little," with 13% making "considerable" reductions in spending.

"As Congressional leaders optimistically predict a budget deal may soon be reached, it is clear that the fallout of the past two-week impasse in Congress has affected consumers’ willingness and maybe their ability to spend," said Michael Niemira, VP research for ICSC. "Hopefully, if the end of the government shutdown truly is in sight, this is likely to restore consumer confidence quickly and well ahead of the holiday season."

A recent Gallup survey also found that consumer confidence had dipped to 2008 levels during the shutdown.

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