More on Shoplifting Stats – Crime & Consequences

A couple of updates on prior reports of shoplifting statistics:

The National Retail Federation has revised its earlier report on retail losses due to crime, which we reported here. The statistic of $95 billion, noted in our post, stands. However, the NRF withdrew its claim that half of that total was from organized retail crime. The fraction from organized, rather than individual, theft is unknown at present. See this article by Anne D’Innocenzio for AP, in the WaPo. From the article:

The National Retail Federation said Thursday that it stands behind the “widely understood fact that organized retail crime is a serious problem impacting retailers of all sizes and communities across our nation.”

But it said it recognizes the challenges that the retail industry and law enforcement have with gathering and analyzing “an accurate and agreed-upon set of data to measure the number of theft incidents in communities across the country.”

We at CJLF do not regard measurement of the precise fraction that is “organized” to be significant, and our prior post did not mention the now-retracted statistic.

On a related topic, Karol Markowicz has this article on shoplifting and the CCJ study noted in this post. She finds it strange that CCJ publishes two main results for its study, one excluding New York. “But why exclude New York City? Is it because the same Council on Criminal Justice study found a whopping 64% spike in shoplifting since 2019?” She questions whether other cities in the list are cherry-picked to bring the average down. I have no reason to believe that they are cherry-picked and have not made that accusation, but neither can I rule out that possibility.

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