Nathan's Feed
Oct 10, 2014

Lower US gas price could pump up Wal-Mart, other discount chains

Oct 10 (Reuters) – Lower gasoline prices are expected to
fuel higher retail sales this winter, especially at Wal-Mart
Stores and other chains that cater to low- to
middle-income shoppers, analysts said.

The average price at the pump dropped to $3.24 a gallon on
Friday, down 11 percent from three months earlier and the lowest
level in October since 2010, according to AAA. The motorist
group predicts the price will fall below $3 in the coming
months.

Oct 7, 2014

Wal-Mart raises healthcare costs, cuts benefits for some part-timers

By Nathan Layne and Siddharth Cavale

(Reuters) – Wal-Mart Stores Inc, the biggest U.S. private sector employer, said on Tuesday that its 1.3 million workers would have to pay more for healthcare and it would end benefits for some part-time staff in a move that could prompt other companies to follow suit.

The world’s largest retailer said it would raise health insurance premiums for its entire U.S. workforce beginning in January. In addition, Wal-Mart will end coverage for employees who work fewer than 30 hours a week, a change that will impact 2 percent of U.S. workers, or about 30,000 people.

Oct 5, 2014

Sears: Why the troubled chain’s vendors are worried

CHICAGO, Oct 5 (Reuters) – Sears Holdings Corp.’s
deepening financial troubles have forced insurers and banks to
raise the cost of guaranteeing payment to vendors, rattling the
retailer’s supply chain as the company heads into the key
holiday season.

The move by these financial intermediaries — in an opaque
but vital quarter of the retail business where makers of goods
ranging from apparel to TVs seek to insure they get paid –
comes in the wake of unusual steps Sears has taken to raise cash
for operations. In the past three weeks, the retailer twice has
turned to its billionaire CEO Eddie Lampert’s hedge fund for a
cash infusion — first as the anchor on a $400 million loan and
then again Thursday as a buyer for most of its stake in the
ailing Sears Canada. Sears aims to raise $380 million
with that deal.

Oct 2, 2014

Sears to sell down Canada stake, turns to CEO again for cash

Oct 2 (Reuters) – Sears Holdings Corp is turning to
its chief executive for cash for the second time in three weeks
in a sign that its efforts to sell off assets are coming up
short.

The retailer announced Thursday that it would raise up to
$380 million by lowering its stake in Sears Canada to
12 percent from 51 percent through a rights offering. It said
Chief Executive Eddie Lampert and his hedge fund, which together
own 48.5 percent of Sears Holdings, would buy about half of the
offering.

Sep 26, 2014

Sears Canada CEO resigns, parent company shares keep sliding

TORONTO/CHICAGO, Sept 25 (Reuters) – The turnaround
specialist who had signed on to run Sears Holdings Corp’s
Canadian business is resigning for personal reasons,
the struggling U.S. retailer said on Thursday, the same day a
major shareholder said it was no longer interested in
contributing to a loan.

Chief Executive Officer Douglas Campbell will resign by the
end of 2014 to tend to family matters, said Sears Canada, which
is majority owned by Sears Holdings. Campbell had taken the helm
of the unit just a year earlier.

Sep 25, 2014

Sears Canada CEO to step down by year-end

TORONTO/CHICAGO, Sept 25 (Reuters) – Department store chain
Sears Canada Inc, which has had six consecutive years
of declining revenue, said on Thursday that Chief Executive
Douglas Campbell will resign by the end of this year so that he
can tend to family matters.

Sears Canada, which is majority-owned by Sears Holdings Corp
, is facing intense competition and has seen its market
share erode for years.

Sep 2, 2014

Home Depot says probing ‘unusual activity’ after data breach report

By Nandita Bose and Nathan Layne

(Reuters) – Home Depot Inc said on Tuesday it was working with law enforcement to investigate “some unusual activity” related to customer data but that it could not confirm if it had become the latest retailer to be hit by a large-scale security breach.

Shares of the home improvement chain closed 2 percent lower at $91.15 on the news, which highlights growing scrutiny of data security in the retail industry following a massive breach at Target Corp last year.

Jul 16, 2014

Court sentences ex-Deutsche Japan banker for bribery, judge says practice “condoned”

TOKYO, July 16 (Reuters) – A Tokyo judge on Wednesday handed
a former Deutsche Bank salesman a suspended prison sentence for
bribing a pension fund official with dinners and golf outings,
and said more senior officials at the bank had “tacitly
condoned” the practice.

Akira Ando, the judge overseeing the case at the Tokyo
District Court, gave Shigeru Echigo, who worked at the Japanese
investment arm of Deutsche Bank, a 10-month prison sentence,
suspended for three years.

Jul 16, 2014

Ex-Deutsche salesman gets sentenced in Tokyo for bribery

TOKYO, July 16 (Reuters) – A former Deutsche Bank salesman
in Tokyo was handed a suspended prison sentence on Wednesday for
bribing a pension fund official in a case that has put a
spotlight on the compliance practices of the Japanese arm of
Germany’s largest bank.

In a ruling at the Tokyo District Court, Shigeru Echigo was
given a 10-month prison sentence, suspended for three years.
Suspended sentences are common in Japan for white-collar crimes,
although the prosecution had sought imprisonment of one year.

Jun 26, 2014

Caesars CEO eyes debt deal, says can finance Japan foray

TOKYO, June 26 (Reuters) – Caesars Entertainment Corp
will likely agree to a debt restructuring with
bondholders within a year and should have no problem financing a
foray into the Japanese market, the debt-strapped casino
operator’s chief executive said on Thursday.

Gary Loveman said he believed Caesars’ finances – its debt
carries a speculative grade rating – would not put it at a
disadvantage as it seeks a licence in Japan, where a bill to
legalise casinos could be put to a vote in parliament this year.