How Many Billions of Dollars Did Massachusetts Lose to Shoplifting Last Year?
There is a lot to love about living in Massachusetts. From its iconic Cape Cod beaches to the bustling Boston metro area to the peaceful hills of the Berkshires, there really is something for everyone in Massachusetts.
Whether you were born and raised in Massachusetts, or are a transplant to the best state in New England, you know all it has to offer.
Massachusetts boasts a strong economy, affordable living, excellent public schools, and an overall high quality of life. The state has been highlighted as one of the best states to live in the US several times, but publications like US News and World Reports, Niche, and CBS News.
But, just like anywhere, Massachusetts has its downfalls as well.
Retail theft has become a major issue in Massachusetts, to the tune of well over a billion dollars. The issue is not just Massachusetts, it's nationwide. Shoplifting incidents were 16 percent higher in the first half of 2023 than in the first half of 2019, according to the New York Times.
How Much Did Massachusetts Retailers Lose to Theft Last Year
Recent data released from Capitol One Shopping Research reports that Massachusetts lost $1.656 billion in revenue to theft in 2022, which is about $294.00 per capita. While that might feel high, retail theft per capita in Massachusetts is actually 14.7% lower than the national average.
Money lost to retail theft is obviously harmful to the businesses themselves, which has a trickle-down effect on the statewide economy, but it also greatly affects tax revenue for Massachusetts. The State of Massachusetts lost out on $103.5 million in retail sales tax dollars due to theft, plus another $112 million due to retail return fraud, bringing the total lost sales tax to $216 million
Between retail theft and return fraud, Massachusetts retailers lost an estimated $3.446 billion in sales.