Today Show Calls J.C. Penney’s New Price Policy “Misleading”

J.C. Penney, it seems, is damned if it doesn’t, and damned if it does.

After its former CEO’s plans for “everyday pricing” led to a dramatic drop in sales, the company’s return to sales and discounts is drawing flack—including from NBC’s Today show.

On July 24, the morning show broadcast a piece claiming that some of J.C. Penney’s price changes were “misleading” to consumers.

According to the report, Penney is now selling a Dyson vacuum cleaner advertised as $649, marked down from the regular price of $725. 

“It sounds like a great deal,” the show said, “but we checked with the manufacturer: Turns out that sale price is the same as the suggested full price.”

The show also spoke to two former employees who didn’t like the new changes.

“All of a sudden, the rack of $7 shorts became $14, and then they were 50 percent off,” one said. 

Another current employee said he saw price teams going through the store “doubling” prices.

“Not only was it a fake sale, but [consumers] were actually paying more than they would have been previously,” he said.

In a statement to the Today show, J.C. Penney called its promotion pricing a policy that’s “employed often in the retail industry.”

“Any time an item is put on sale the item must have been previously sold at its original or regular price for a reasonable period of time,” the retailer said. 

JCK News Director