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Are Manhattan Residents Flocking to Walmarts in the 'Burbs?

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Today, Crain's New York writes that a lot of New York City dollars are being spent at Walmarts in the suburbs. According to the company, city shoppers have spent 10% more this year at Walmarts outside of the five boroughs, since of course, there isn't a Walmart in the five boroughs.

So who's spending the most? Crain's reports: "The largest jump came in sales to Manhattan residents, which were up 26% to $65.1 million, company figures show." If things keep going like that, they add, "New York City residents are nonetheless on pace to spend $215 million at the retailer's area stores."

Here's where those figures came from:

The estimate is based on an analysis of sales figures from January through May and comes from a combination of credit card information and other data at stores in the suburbs of New York City. It does not include purchases on Walmart's website, where the five boroughs remain the top market for sales.

So has it worked—has Walmart successfully bought our love? Naturally, the consensus is still split. Steven Restivo, senior director of community affairs for Walmart, says, "New Yorkers continue to look to Walmart to help them stretch their family budget and save."

On the other side of the argument is Black Institute President Bertha Lewis, who says, "If Walmart makes so much money from New York City residents, it can obviously afford to give workers bathroom breaks, to fight blight and crime at its stores and to sign legally binding community benefit agreements. It just chooses not to."
· More city dollars flowing to suburban Walmarts [Crain's New York]
· Walmart Tries to Butter Up NYC With a $4M Donation [Racked NY]
· All Walmart Coverage [Racked NY]