Monday Tipsheet: Wmart PAC Probed | Kroger PL = $20 Bil | ‘Savings Catcher’ Critique


“Labor Groups Seek Probe of Wal-Mart’s PAC” by Shelly Banjo at WSJ (Subscription). “Labor and advocacy groups are seeking an investigation into whether Wal-Mart violated federal election laws by soliciting employees for donations to its political-action committee in exchange for charitable contributions to a fund that helps Wal-Mart employees in need…Wal-Mart spokeswoman Brooke Buchanan said the company is confident its matching program is lawful and that the FEC will find the complaint lacks merit.” Read more


…HuffPo’s Take: “Walmart’s Plan To Encourage Political Donations Violates Election Law, Groups Claim” by Jillian Berman. “Walmart’s program is particularly controversial for two reasons, according to Holman. For one, it offers a 2-for-1 match instead of a 1-for-1 match…Also, Walmart doesn’t give workers a choice of charities for the company to send the matching funds…“Walmart came up with the entirely new scheme,” said Holman, who has written several studies on campaign finance. “This type of matching fund program goes way beyond anything the FEC has ever approved before.” Read more


“Kroger Private Label Business Approaches $20 Billion Annually” by Alexander Coolidge at “Just two years after its introduction, the Cincinnati-based supermarket chain predicts its Simple Truth natural brand will become a $1 billion-a-year business…Kroger executives say its private label business now accounts for one quarter of all its sales excluding gasoline and pharmacy receipts – approaching $20 billion annually.” Read more


Fox 13 Tampa Bay: “How Walmart’s ‘Saving Catcher’ app drops the ball” by Chris Chmura. “Here’s the rub: our dollar-for-dollar price matches worked perfectly…We spent $15.36 in all, and we expected a credit of $7.03. Savings Catcher calculated $4.22. We had to contact Walmart headquarters to sort out the discrepancy. Through multiple phone calls, we discovered BOGOs are Savings Catcher’s Achilles heel. As it turns out, Savings Catcher calculates BOGO savings differently from the store…” See the video / Read more


NY Post: Auction of a majority stake in Sears Canada failed to attract any acceptable bids by James Covert. “Indeed, a flopped auction of the 62-year-old Canadian chain early this month was a key reason that the corporate parent of Sears and Kmart was forced last week to take out a $400 million loan as it prepares for the crucial holiday season, sources said.” Read more


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“Home Depot Emails Customers to Inform Them of Credit Card Hack” at Mashable. “Home Depot told Mashable that the emails “started going out on Friday as part of the standard notification process,” but that they are being sent out “in batches to ensure they flow smoothly.” Which explains why some customers only received it on Sunday.” Read more


“Whole Foods CIO Invests to Satisfy Shopper Data Cravings” by Steven Norton at WSJ. “Mr. Buechel said capturing consistent, accurate and in-depth information “is not an easy task, but one we take very seriously.” He declined to go into specifics, but added that “it’s an area we also think technology will help streamline and automate the process going forward.” Read more


“Tesco Starts Accounting Probe of Inflated Profit Forecast” by Gabi Thesing at Bloomberg. “The shares plunged as much as 12 percent to their lowest in more than a decade after Tesco said that some income was booked before being earned and costs were recognized later than incurred. The result was that the company’s 1.1 billion-pound ($1.8 billion) projection for first-half operating profit was about 250 million pounds too high.” Read more


USA Today: “Grab these tech gadgets at the dollar store” by Marc Saltzman. “Yours truly spent some time rummaging through various dollar stores — including Dollar Tree, Family Dollar, Dollar General, 99¢ Depot and Dollarama (in Canada) — and the following are a few of the best tech bargoons.” See the Top 7 List


“German union calls strikes again at Amazon warehouses” at Reuters. “Verdi said in a statement it had called out workers to strike at distribution centers in Bad Hersfeld, Leipzig, Graben and Rheinberg.” Read more



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