The Retail Apocalypse is Alive and Well

Giving Walmart workers an extra $8 or $9 a day might have little or no impact on the economy. Walmart clerks can now afford to buy lunch at In-N-Out Burger; rather than at McDonald’s, how does that benefit the wider economy? Much higher wages will be needed for a real economic stimulus.

It remains to be seen if the $1,000 bonus and wage hike will have any effect on Main Street. Giving average families an extra $1,000 to pay off $1,000 of their credit card debt, might not do much for the economy. The average U.S. household now owes $15,654 in credit-card debt, Nerdwallet estimated.

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Is UPS Making Money?

Currently, I’m leery of both UPS and FedEx because of the danger they are in, in a changing retail market. Threats to these companies abound from both new businesses and new technologies.

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Can Sprouts Farmers Market Survive without Acquisition?

The most obvious buyer for Sprouts would be Kroger, which has been aggressively trying to attract more organic and high-end grocery business.

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Is Dollar Tree Making Money?

Even with a good holiday season, Dollar Tree may lack the resources to survive or even remain competitive. It reported revenues of just $21.52 billion in October 2017.

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Walmart is Growing but is it Making Money?

Mr. Market certainly noticed that growth, Walmart’s stock price shot up from $90.26 on November 8 to $96.40 on November 22, 2017. If Walmart has a good Black Friday that price will exceed $100 a share by December 1.

Now for the astounding news, Walmart’s revenues will clear a half a trillion dollars sometime next year if the current growth rate continues. Walmart reported $495.10 billion in revenues for October 31, 2017, up from $490.01 billion in July 2017.

If that performance is repeated in the next quarter; Walmart will report around $500 billion or half a trillion dollars in revenue early in 2018. History seems to support this conclusion; Walmart’s revenue has been growing for the past seven quarters. It has posted growth for every quarter since January 2016.

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It is not Amazon that CVS Health is Afraid of

The real reason why CVS Health wants Aetna is to expand its vertically-integrated business model. Vertical integration means that one company controls as much of the production, financing, marketing, and distribution of a product or service as possible.

CVS Health is already partially vertically-integrated because it operates both drugstores and prescription-management plans. CVS operates clinics in some of its stores for the exact same reason. Buying a health insurance company would give CVS, even more, control over the process.

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Walgreen Boots Alliance Struggles to Survive

Medicare for All would be a boon for Walgreens by financing millions of new pharmacy customers and creating hundreds of thousands of new customers for its in-store clinics. That alone makes WBA a really good value investment to add to portfolios for the future but is it a value investment for the present.

Therefore a good wa

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Retail Apocalypse Heats up 6,700 stores have closed in 2017

2017 has become the worst year for store closings in the United States possibly since the Great Depression. There is a strong possibility that the actual number of store closings might exceed 10,000. Such a number is possible because analysts like Credit Suisse may not be counting franchisees and mom and pop stores that will also be going under.

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The Ever Growing List of Doomed Retailers

Expect to see a mass die-off of sick retailers in January and February of 2018 as the dust from the 2017 holiday season settles. If it is anything like last year’s numerous retailers are likely to report losses and more than a few will shut down.

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Kroger Gets no Respect from the Market

Finally, Kroger’s low price raises an intriguing possibility that will creep some people out. What would happen if Amazon bought Kroger?

It’s not probable; and might not pass muster with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), but it is a possibility we need to consider right now. Kroger is such a tremendous bargain right now, that it might attract Jeff Bezos’ attention.

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