Trump Tower Protesters Costing Retail Store Millions of Dollars

Donald Trump’s primary residence, Trump Tower, stands at the corner of Fifth Avenue and 57th Street in NYC. It just happens to be smack dab in the middle of the wealthiest retail district in the world (rents for commercial space are $3,000 per square foot a month). Re-vamped security and the sheer volume of protesters coming back day after day to rail against the President-elect have all but closed off stores like Tiffany & Co., Bergdorf Goodman, Saks Fifth Avenue, and Harry Winston from potential shoppers.

Though it has only been a week since America elected its 45th president, heightened security and the enormous number of protesters gathering there have taken a big financial toll. According to Women’s Wear Daily, the stores have already lost millions of dollars.

This pattern emerged directly after Election Day, when protection around Trump Tower tightened. CBS News reported that due to increased security, sales at the Giorgio Armani Boutique a block south of Trump’s residence on Nov. 9 were “tragic.”

Retailers in this area pay the hefty fees because it’s typically worth it. Eight percent of Tiffany & Co.’s annual sales come from its Fifth Avenue locationBut this new activity, which is driving potential buyers away, could spell disaster for this store. It is the holiday season, after all — when most brands make up for the rest of the year in profits.

Because protests are not likely to scale down any time soon, this is bad news for all stores along Fifth Avenue. But, honestly, screaming crowds with signage are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the potential for declining sales.

Trump has reportedly said he wants to spend as much time in NYC as possible, even after his inauguration. Sources told the New York Daily News that the Secret Service plans to shut down Fifth Avenue to traffic every time Trump visits. That means an endless amount of street closings, and, in turn, more lost revenue for retailers in the area for the foreseeable future.

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