In business during a crisis, there are winner and losers.
CNBC reports that Walmart stock is up sharply during the coronavirus pandemic; in the time it's taken the Dow Jones and other indexes to lose nearly a third of their value, Walmart's stock has risen 13%.
Walmart generates more than two-thirds of its revenue from within the United States. Total sales are expected to climb by 3% in its April-ending quarter, according to FactSet estimates.
“When you have this type of panic and movement into hoarding and stockpiling groceries in this … countrywide quarantine, it’s not a surprise that Walmart is outperforming the market,” said Petrides.
JC O’Hara, chief market technician at MKM Partners, said Walmart could continue to outperform, given the shock to the consumer.
Mr. Maguire: I want to say one word to you, Benjamin. Just one word.
Benjamin Braddock: Yes, sir.
Mr. Maguire: Are you listening?
Benjamin Braddock: Yes, I am.
Mr. Maguire: Business cloud storage and office management services and solutions. Read the rest
In Tampa, Florida, Emily Stallard, 37, was arrested for attempting to make a bomb inside a Walmart using materials she grabbed from the store shelves. From CNN:
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"A security guard with Walmart noticed the woman ... roaming the aisles of the store and opening unpaid items. The items included flammable materials, projectiles and matches," the sheriff's office said...
"This woman had all the supplies she needed to cause mass destruction at her disposal," Sheriff Chad Chronister said.
"Had it not been for an alert off-duty law enforcement officer and a watchful security staff at Walmart, she may have followed through with her plans to cause an explosion inside the store..."
Stallard had a child with her at the time of the incident, authorities said. She was arrested on charges of attempted arson of a structure, fire bombing, contributing to the delinquency of a minor, child abuse and battery on a law enforcement officer. Deputies said she spit on them while she was being arrested.
I've spent a lot of time in the Mexican state of Quintana Roo. It's a beautiful place, filled with friendly people and an insanely low cost of living... if you're from somewhere further north in North America. In my experience, Mexicans are a hard-working people. They want to earn their way. That's not easy to do in a nation where many citizens, when they can find work are forced to work for pauper's wages. In some cases, the only compensation for doing your job in Mexico comes in the form of tips from those willing to help you get by. The folks that bag groceries and other consumer goods in big box stores like Walmart? Nothing but tips, baby. With any luck, at least in Cancun, this could soon change.
From Riviera Maya News:
With the support of la Confederación Revolucionaria de Obreros y Campesinos (CROC) workers at Walmart stores including Sam’s Club, Bodega Aurrerá, Superama and Walmart demanded a salary for their work.
The workers, who are grocery baggers at the various Walmart outlets, are not paid anything beyond tips. El Comité Ejecutivo Nacional of CROC says that the Walmart chain has refused talks to solve the lack-of-pay issues with its workers.
El Comité Ejecutivo Nacional says the American chain store violates their labor rights. The workers protested outside a 24-hour Cancun Walmart where they demanded a salary and legal benefits for the packers since their tips have drastically decreased due to the ban on plastic bags.
Hard work for a fair wage? Read the rest
America's largest retailer will stop selling electronic cigarettes. Walmart announced the news today in response to a growing number of unexplained deaths involving vape devices throughout the US. Read the rest
After two shootings in their El Paso, Texas and Southaven, Mississippi stores, the CEO of Walmart has announced major changes to the chain's gun sale policies, including no longer selling ammunition for assault-style weapons and discontinuing the sale of handgun ammunition. Read the rest
Police banned a woman from a Walmart in Wichita Falls, Texas after she allegedly ate half a cake while shopping and then, at check-out, insisted that she should only pay half-price for what was left. This follows on another unusual Wichita Falls Walmart incident a few months back when a different woman spent several hours zipping around the store parking lot while gulping wine from a Pringles can. She, too, was banned.
(My9nj) Read the rest
Without generous financial support of six companies (AT&T, Eli Lily, Walmart, Pfizer, Coca-Cola, and Aetna), the politicians who are enacting bans on legal, safe abortion would not have attained office; these companies don't fund these politicians because they want women to die; they fund them because they're indifferent to the death of women, provided that they get tax breaks and other favorable treatment -- the garden variety get the turkeys to vote for Christmas strategy that exchanges unlimited oligarchy for performative acts of grotesque cruelty against brown people, sexual minorities and (of course) women.
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Walmart self-insures its workforce, rather than relying on an outside insurer like Cigna or Blue Cross; this means that it gets to make judgment calls that other firms cannot, and that has led the retail giant to a pretty weird place: for certain procedures that it believes to be overused by local hospitals, it flies its employees (even front-line, low-waged employees) to see the nation's top specialists in out-of-state facilities where they receive "concierge, white-glove care that was reserved at other companies only for highly paid executives."
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Last week, Jackson Racicot, a 17-year-old employee of Walmart for over a year, was fed up with his job and the way Walmart's management treated him. But instead of just walking out, he let them – and everyone else in the store – know he was quitting by announcing it on the store intercom. And he didn't just stop there. Not only did he announce that he was finished, but he let the store and its shoppers know exactly why.
"Attention all shoppers, associates and management, I would like to say to all of you today that nobody should work here, ever. Our managers will make promises and never keep them. Not only that, they will preach to us about how they care about their employees, but about a month ago..." Racicot begins. After explaining what happened and lodging his complaints about the company, he ends his announcement with, "Fuck management, fuck this job and fuck Walmart," to cheers from the shoppers.
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"I got fed up," he said later in an interview with the Edmonton Journal, revealing that he already had a new job lined up before he quit. "I don't regret what I did, I went into this knowing what will happen."
Living in what’s essentially a tiny house on wheels, I love eBooks and eBook readers. They allow me to maintain a complete and growing library without the space and weight gains that owning shelves full of dead tree editions come with. I own over 2,000 eBooks. I review eBook readers and provide tips on using them for one of the other outlets that I write for.
None of this prepared me for the news that Rakuten Kobo has paired with Walmart to sell eBooks and at least one of its lower-end ebook readers at Walmart.
According to The Digital Reader, Walmart will be selling Kobo’s base model Aura reader and possibly some of the company’s other excellent E-Ink reading devices as well, in store and online. This, to me, makes a lot of sense.
Given the issues that Walmart is having with Amazon drinking their fiscal milkshake these past few years, making a bit of space for eBook appliances seems like an easy way to attempt to take a bite out of a market that Amazon pretty much owns in North America—dedicated electronic reading devices. It makes sense for Kobo too: despite their making some really great hardware, they’ve been having a hell of a time making in-roads against Amazon’s Kindle eBook readers and the massive scope of content that Amazon provides. Having their gear in a national chain might help to move Kobo’s pieces a little further across the board.
What I am surprised by, however, is that, in addition to Kobo’s eBook readers being available in-store, Walmart will also be selling gift certificates for particular book titles. Read the rest
Walmart has been whining about Amazon drinking what it considers to be its milkshake for some time. Sucking cash out of the pockets of the same low-income earners that you pay just enough to keep alive is a seriously competitive business. With Amazon's online shopping dominance in North America has left Walmart’s brick-and-mortar empire only capable of making Scrooge McDuck money when it’s really Jeff Bezos money that they’re after. In an effort to top off their coffers, Walmart’s been pushing, hard, into catching up to Amazon in the area of online sales. Earlier this week, they announced a partnership with Microsoft that’ll ensure that Walmart’s online shopping experience is faster, more secure and a lot more reliable. Maybe it’ll help!
If not, plopping out yet another online video streaming service to compete against Amazon Prime video and, perhaps you’ve heard of it, a little thing called Netflix, will totally help them to make the crazy-hunting-man-because-he’s-the-most-dangerous-game cash that they’re so horny for.
From The Information (subscription required):
Discussions are still ongoing, and the retailer may eventually decide against offering a service. But Walmart executives believe their customers, particularly in the middle of America, would be interested in a lower-cost option than what is currently available, the person said. Netflix and Amazon are seen as more popular with people on the East and West Coasts of the U.S., one of the people said.
Yeah. No matter what middle America’s viewing habits might be, or how little they opt to charge for the privilege of watching Highway to Heaven on-demand, I don’t know that I trust Walmart to pull this off. Read the rest
This video by YouTuber Alex Berman lays out how retailers like Walmart profit even when they are pricing goods, like milk and eggs, well below cost. It comes down to volume and convenience. If they get enough customers buying items with a high profit margin for convenience sake, they can afford to price many items below cost to lure them into the store.
(reddit) Read the rest
UPDATE BELOW: Walmart says it was a "prank" but doesn't say what evidence they have or identify the prankster.
Someone snapped this astounding photo at a Walmart where one of their "Own the school year like a hero" marketing campaign signs was displayed on a case of rifles.
Walmart's Charles Crowson told CNNMoney that they're "not happy" about this and is "working diligently" to make sure the sign is gone.
The company initially stated that they identified the store location and removed the sign but according to Crowson, they were mistaken and actually still trying to find it.
UPDATE from the Associated Press:
“We have definite proof it was a prank,” Walmart spokesman Charles Crowson told The Associated Press on Friday evening...
Crowson wouldn’t say what proof the company had: Was an image manipulated? Did a customer move a sign for a joke? Did an employee deliberately or inadvertently place the “Own the School Year” sign on the wrong display?
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The National Enquirer's circulation peaked in 1988 at 4 million, while today it averages 325,000 copies sold, mostly to low-income, over-80-year olds. Its best retailer is Wal-Mart. It does not publish any material critical of Donald Trump. Read the rest
Walmart is recalling a product described as "Organic Marketside Spring Mix salad" after decomposing vegetable matter was found around a dead bat it sold to a Florida customer.
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The company said it worked quickly with officials to remove the entire batch of salads from store shelves, and only one line of its products had been affected.
"Fresh Express takes matters of food safety very seriously and rigorously complies with all food safety regulations including the proscribed Good Agricultural Practices," a company statement said.
Firefighters were able to douse the flames within minutes, but not before smoke filled the Princeton, Texas Walmart and forced shoppers to evacuate. Four were treated for minor injuries and a suspect, Jario Briceno-Barrientos, will face the heat in court after allegedly using lighter fluid to set fire to a pile of clothing.
Princeton police were able to arrest the suspect after posting surveillance video of him on their Facebook page. "Due to the overwhelming support from the citizens we were able to capture the suspect," the Facebook post read. "Thank you, everybody, for your continual help and support!"
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