Will Malls, retailers give an off on Thanksgiving Day?

The America’s largest shopping malls decision to close on Thanksgiving may exert pressure on major retailers following suit. Most retail chains including Sears and Walmart, besides large mall operators have not announced the holiday schedules. Certainly, they must be having an eye on the reaction to this decision to close giving the employees in vast numbers a day off. The mall has 520 stores and to keep it open or not is left as their own decision.

In the past years, the pressure is continuously on these chains to make the masses start earlier, on Thanksgiving Day itself, instead of sitting at home and shopping from their computers. For instance, Walmart, since 1988 is keeping its stores open on Thanksgiving. Its doorbuster specials start typically at 6 p.m., but the chain has not announced its schedule this year.

Retailers have very little incentive to alter this schedule. Their stores are opposing against online sellers. The annual survey last year of National Retail Federation’s showed 41 million shoppers said they began their gift buying adventures on Thanksgiving Day online.

Visiting stores has become normal on the holiday. The same survey observed that half of the people who shopped on Thanksgiving in the stores reached only by midnight. In 2013, Walmart says, on Thanksgiving Day 22 million customers shopped.

General Growth Properties that is operating the nation’s toniest malls and he says the same will remain as last year’s schedule. The holiday hours will be posted later with timing, said a senior vice president, Kevin Berry.