Wal-Mart and the Recession

Profits are up at Wal-Mart according to the Globe and Mail which is a sign of a growing global recession:

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. [WMT-N] reported a 10 per cent increase in third-quarter profit Thursday but trimmed its profit outlook because of the troubled global economy and the renewed strength of the U.S. dollar.

The world’s largest retailer said its renewed focus on low prices was attracting financially squeezed shoppers and that it was pleased with the results of early holiday price promotions.

The Bentonville, Ark.-based retailer said it earned $3.14-billion (U.S.), or 80 cents a share, in the quarter ended Oct. 31. That’s up from $2.86-billion, or 70 cents per share, a year earlier. Earnings from continuing operations were 77 cents per share.

When times are tough, Wal-Mart profits. I confess, I do shop at Wal-Mart from time to time. However, I prefer other options: buying good quality used clothing; buying much less but buying better quality elsewhere; learning to go without.

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One Response to Wal-Mart and the Recession

  1. Steve Matthews says:

    Walmart executives have likely been thanking their lucky stars for the economic downturn we’re experiencing; they’re reaping all the benefits. Not only have they been draining our economy for years, but now they’re benefiting from our economic loss.

    From a Wall Street Journal article today:

    “Behind the figures is a confluence of trends fueled by the downturn. As strapped consumers look for cheaper goods, and weaker retailers go out of business, Wal-Mart is using its unmatched economies of scale to drive down prices, undercut competitors and squeeze costs out of suppliers ever more dependent on the Bentonville, Ark., behemoth.”

    All these companies must now pray at the altar of Walmart; to borrow a phrase, they are suppliers at the hands of an angry retail giant.

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