Job Cuts at JCPenney (JCP) in FY12 Were More than Double CEO Johnson's Claims

March 21, 2013 9:02 AM EDT
Housecleaning at JCPenney (NYSE: JCP) may have been more rigorous than previously expected.

According to a 10-K filed Wednesday night, JCPenney reported 116,000 full-time employees working at the company at the end of its fiscal year. That's down 43,000, or 27 percent, over the prior year, when JCPenney reported having 159,000 employees.

Further, as noted by the NY Post, that's more than double the 19,000 cuts Johnson testified to under oath earlier this month during the Macy's (NYSE: M)/Martha Stewart (NYSE: MSO) trial earlier in March, when he was asked how many employes were lost while he was CEO.

Johnson said in the past that JCPenney employed 134,000 full-time workers when he took over in November 2011, meaning the retailer must have added 18.7 percent more people when the company reported 159,000 for the period ended January 28, 2012.

JCPenney also recently stated during an interview with Charlie Rose that the company have about 100,000 full-time employees, hinting that more job cuts could be in the works.

Though JCPenney cut about $386 million in overhead tied to salaries, benefits, and other compensation, the amount as a percentage of revenue moved from 29.6 percent the prior year up to 34.7 percent last year. The move higher in gross percentage only highlights how far JCPenney revenue has fallen under Johnson.

Shares are indicated for a higher open Thursday.

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Johnson MUST go
John Rambo on 2013-03-21 10:12:50
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Again - it needs to be pointed out Ron Johnson was/is paid well over $50 Million and to date has fired more than 46,000 dedicated and hard working employees. Many of these employees were pressured to work 50 to 55 hour weeks since Ron Jonson took over (though not receiving one dime more than their normal modest 40-hour salary dictated). It would be one thing if the drastic changes he made worked - but they have been a complete disaster and even Johnson himself now admits he has made many many mistakes (he has been quoted by several sources) that cost JC Penney's their loyal customers. So my question to Mr. Johnson is this – how do you even have the audacity to show your face at work when your mistakes have cost so many their jobs and you get paid regardless of your absolute dismal performance?

Now several of his backers (they are getting harder to find these days) are trying to say things like “4-year turn-around plan”. 4 years??? No one, I repeat NO ONE, gets 4 years to turn around a company. Nowhere in Johnson's original strategic mission statement and plans does he mention "4-year turn around". Now that company stock and sales are in an absolute death spiral – he wants to say “we need more time”. Sorry – it doesn’t work like that. Nothing at JC Penney’s is getting turned around till Johnson leaves - period - end-of-story. You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to understand Ron Johnson is simply clueless regarding what makes things sell at JC Penney’s.

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