Berlin (Jun. 13)
All department stores, most of which are owned by Jews, will be closed after October 1, it was indicated today in Government circles, in reply to a demand by many organizations of small merchants and traders that the small merchant and retailer be given a better chance to earn a living through the elimination of department store competition.
The demand of the retailers’ organizations was made upon the Minister of Economics. Although no reply was made formally, the businessmen were given to understand that the problem would be solved by October 1.
Many petitions received by the government protesting against the department stores, are believed to have stimulated activity in the direction of prohibiting that form of merchandising, but failure to take definite action to that end has been due to the fear of enormously increasing unemployment which would inevitably follow a sudden closing of the stores, since they employ hundreds of thousands of men and women throughout the country.
Government circles expect to devise by October 1 some means of employing those now working in the stores. Meanwhile, the department stores may be forbidden to sell such articles as tobacco, books, foodstuffs and shoes. This would strike them a severe financial blow.