CEPR

For Immediate Release: December 28, 2018
Contact: Karen Conner, 202-281-4159, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Washington, DC ― Today is the deadline for a bidder to buy Sears out of bankruptcy. If that fails to happen, the remaining 68,000 employees of Sears and Kmart will be out of a job without any severance pay. “Requiring firms to make severance payments to workers terminated through no fault of their own benefits workers. But…makes the economy more productive as well,” writes Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR) Co-Director Eileen Appelbaum in today’s CEPR Blog.

Appelbaum calls on Congress to “end the ability of employers to get rid of workers without incurring any costs and should enact a national severance law.” Appelbaum, a private equity expert, witnessed the recent demise of another iconic retail outlet, Toys “R” Us, due to schemes that drain the company for the benefit of investors. “Borrowing from private equity’s standard ploy, [Eddie “Hedge Fund King”] Lampert loaded the [Sears] chain with debt and sold off its stores for the benefit of his hedge fund investors,” writes Appelbaum. “It is unfortunate that it is necessary for Sears workers, like the Toys “R” Us workers before them, to launch a national campaign to get the severance payments that are due to them.”