Anti-Trump Protests Impact Weekend’s Retail Business

PROTESTS DISRUPT RETAIL: While retailers remained mum Sunday afternoon about the impact of the anti-Donald Trump protests over the weekend on their businesses, the demonstrations were clearly wreaking havoc all along New York’s Fifth Avenue corridor up to 57th Street, and as far as Central Park. Streets were closed, cars were being diverted to alternate avenues and barricades were blocking storefront entrances, making it difficult for consumers to shop.

Bergdorf Goodman was recommending customers come in through the 58th Street entrance. Another retailer said the protests were drawing onlookers to the area, business was pretty good, and he couldn’t complain. “People love to see what’s going on,” said the Fifth Avenue retailer, who requested anonymity. This all comes as retailers are gearing up for the all-important holiday season.

“Unfortunately, Nike will not be providing a comment on this,” said a spokesman. Other retailers — including Gucci, Louis Vuitton, Henri Bendel, Wempe Jewelers and Burberry — didn’t respond to requests for comment. A spokeswoman for Bergdorf’s said, “Unfortunately, since we have not reported the results of this quarter yet, we cannot discuss sales performance.”

A spokesman for Tiffany said, “Tiffany is in frequent communication with the New York Police Department and U.S. Secret Service regarding safety and security along the perimeter of our Fifth Avenue flagship. We remain open for business with regular hours and welcome customers to enter the store via our 57th Street entrance while any barricades along Fifth Avenue are in place.”

About 2,000 protesters marched up Fifth Avenue toward Trump Tower on Saturday to protest Donald Trump’s election as president. It was the fourth day of anti-Trump protests throughout the country, with demonstrations occurring in cities such as Chicago, Washington, D.C., and Los Angeles.

Starting at Union Square and heading up Fifth Avenue, protesters were chanting, “Hey hey, ho ho, Donald Trump has got to go,” and holding signs saying, “Not my president” and “Love trumps hate.” It was a peaceful demonstration as police lined up both sides of the street and followed along on foot and motorcycle. Police barricades kept marchers contained, but also kept shoppers away from the storefronts.

Saks Fifth Avenue was apparently mobbed with shoppers Saturday who may not have wanted to venture further uptown. Another protest took place Sunday afternoon for the fifth straight day, with protesters speaking out about deportation and other issues. More demonstrations are expected in the coming days and there are preparations being made for a large demonstration during Trump’s inauguration in January in Washington, D.C.