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Target Tightens Shoplifting Rules, Reduces Threshold To $50: Report

Shivani Kumaresan
June 28, 2024

Target Corp. (NYSE:TGT) is reportedly intensifying its efforts to combat shoplifting by lowering the threshold for staff to intervene in thefts.

Employees can now act on theft incidents valued at $50 or more, a reduction from the previous $100 limit. This new guideline will be implemented this summer, according to a report from Bloomberg.

The adjustment is one of several measures Target is taking to address theft, which has significantly impacted its profit margins in recent quarters.

The report added that the company, which operates nearly 2,000 stores across the U.S., expects to stabilize these losses this year.

The report cited a Target spokesperson, who stated that the company is making substantial progress in tackling theft through various in-store actions and collaboration with policymakers and communities.

“Our priority remains ensuring the safety of the team and guests, while maintaining the positive experience Target shoppers expect,” the spokesperson said.

Also Read: Target And Shopify Team Up: New Merchants And Products Coming To Target Plus

Retailers have different policies for handling shoplifters, with thresholds ranging from $25 to $100.

Brand Elverston, an industry consultant and former director of asset protection at Walmart Inc. (NYSE:WMT), noted that staff typically avoid physical confrontation and that response depends on law enforcement capacity, per the report.

Some states have high limits for prosecuting shoplifting, with California decriminalizing theft under $950, which critics argue encourages organized retail crime.

In response to rising theft, U.S. retailers have increased security measures, including hiring guards, installing more cameras, and altering self-checkout systems.

Items prone to theft, such as those easily sold online, have impacted sales and profits. Last year, Target closed nine stores in four states to mitigate losses and has since been locking up frequently stolen products and upgrading self-checkout technology.

Target stock has gained more than 10% in the past 12 months. Investors can gain exposure to the stock via Consumer Staples Select Sector SPDR Fund (NYSE:XLP).

Price Action: TGT shares closed lower by 0.31% at $146.72 on Thursday.

Disclaimer: This content was partially produced with the help of AI tools and was reviewed and published by Benzinga editors.

Read Next: How Target’s Innovative Strategy Resolves A Multi-Billion Dollar Inventory Crisis: Report

Photo via Shutterstock

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