retail news in context, analysis with attitude

...with brief, occasional, italicized and sometimes gratuitous commentary…

• Howard Schultz for president?

Multiple media reports say that "high powered friends" of the Starbucks CEO are urging him to run for the Democratic presidential nomination as an alternative to Hillary Clinton, the presumptive nominee who nonetheless seems to be dealing with an erosion in some of her support and questions about her trustworthiness.

The story notes that while Schultz has long expressed opinions about the role of government, he also has suggested that it is unlikely that he would run for public office.

On the other hand, I'd pay real money to see a debate between Schultz and Donald Trump.

Fortune reports that Walmart, Amazon, Sears and Kmart have agreed "to pay more than $300,000 to settle an investigation by New York State regulators into alleged sales of banned toy guns." The story notes that the retailers "had been under investigation after allegedly selling toy guns that were prohibited under state law for being too realistic to New York residents who bought the products online."

The story says that "the retailers sold more than 6,400 banned toy guns in New York between 2012 and December. Walmart will pay the bulk of the fine — $225,000 — because the recent probe found that the company violated the terms of an earlier agreement with the state, in 2003, when the company was found to be selling prohibited toy guns."

• Publix said that its Q2 sales "were $8 billion, a 6 percent increase from last year’s $7.5 billion. Comparable-store sales for the second quarter of 2015 increased 4.1 percent ... Net earnings for the second quarter of 2015 were $482.7 million, compared to $404.1 million in 2014, an increase of 19.5 percent."
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