retail news in context, analysis with attitude

Bloomberg News reports that in the wake of the ongoing investigation of Walmart, which is accused of bribing Mexican officials as a way of greasing the wheels for its expansion there, which would be a violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), it is possible that federal watchdogs are going to get a lot tougher on this issue.

According to the story, "A just-published Bloomberg Government Study by Global Business Director Sandy Reback and Quantitative Analyst Miguel Garrido suggests that the Wal-Mart investigation may be part of a longer and larger trend in FCPA enforcement. The study details the growing number of enforcement actions and the increasing size of settlement amounts, as well as the U.S. industries and countries targeted in recent years by the DOJ and SEC. The study also highlights the measures the U.S. government says that businesses can take to prevent and mitigate FCPA liability."

• The Los Angeles Times this morning reports that Best Buy plans to cut 400 headquarters employees in the hopes that this will save the company $150 million.

Best Buy says that no store employees will be affected by the cuts, and that this is a result of the chain "enhancing the focus on the company’s core business, removing management layers and eliminating operational inefficiencies."

More cuts are expected as Best Buy tries to reverse its market share, sales and profit declines.
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