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Published December 08, 2010, 08:22 PM

Sluggish Economy Slowing Sales, Hurting Holiday Bonuses

A sluggish national economy has hurt profits of many local manufacturers including Marvin Windows of Warroad. For the second year in a row, Marvin will not give out its regular employee bonuses. But it's not just the workers who will miss that extra income.

By: David Schwab,

A sluggish national economy has hurt profits of many local manufacturers including Marvin Windows of Warroad. For the second year in a row, Marvin will not give out its regular employee bonuses.

But it's not just the workers who will miss that extra income.

Streiff Sporting Goods has been doing business for more then a decade just outside of Warroad. They have grown, now selling everything from fishing equipment to hockey equipment.

Manager Wade Boroos says Christmas sales are good but they could be better this year. A suffering national housing market has cut into the profits of Warroad's biggest employer Marvin Windows and Doors. As a result for the second year in a row.. there will be no bonuses for its workers. That's extra spending money some local retailers count on for bigger Christmas sales.

"When the bonus checks were coming in, people would come in and people would pick out what they wanted and have us put it on lay away until people got their checks," Boroos said.

Boroos says the impact will be small and is hoping things will turn around next year.

The Vice President of Warroad's only bank believes retailers have made some adjustments to the missing bonuses.

"On the other hand, they are employed straight through. There are no layoffs. Marvin has been spectacular about not laying people off," Vice President of Security State Bank Gary Boekelheide said.

Boekelheide says sometimes there can be a kind of financial lesson bonus for those people who have never been through a tough economy. Lessons learned could be staying away from a big ticket item when you have the extra cash.

"It's not always the best thing because sometimes that down payment increases that debt load versus using it to pay off bills, and saving for a rainy day," Boekelheide said.

A salesperson at local car dealership in Warroad says over the last ten years, they have seen less people buying bigger ticket items with year-end bonus money.

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