Tag: Close

Obamaconomy Update: Walmart To Close 269 Stores, 154 In U.S.

Wal-Mart To Shutter 269 Stores, 154 Of Them In The US – CNS

.
…………….

.
Wal-Mart is closing 269 stores, more than half of them in the U.S. and another big chunk in its challenging Brazilian market.

The stores being shuttered account for a fraction of the company’s 11,000 stores worldwide and less than 1 percent of its global revenue.

More than 95 percent of the stores set to be closed in the U.S. are within 10 miles of another Wal-Mart. The Bentonville, Arkansas, company said it is working to ensure that workers are placed in nearby locations.

The store closures will start at the end of the month.

The announcement comes three months after Wal-Mart Stores Inc. CEO Doug McMillon told investors that the world’s largest retailer would review its fleet of stores with the goal of becoming more nimble in the face of increased competition from all fronts, including from online rival Amazon.com.

“Actively managing our portfolio of assets is essential to maintaining a healthy business,” McMillon said in a statement. “Closing stores is never an easy decision. But it is necessary to keep the company strong and positioned for the future.”

Wal-Mart operates 4,500 in the U.S. Its global workforce is 2.2 million, 1.4 million in the U.S. alone.

Wal-Mart has warned that its earnings for the fiscal year starting next month will be down as much as 12 percent as it invests further in online operations and pours money into improving customers’ experience.

Of the closures announced Friday, 154 locations will be in the U.S., including the company’s 102 smallest-format stores called Wal-Mart Express, which were opened as a test in 2011.

Wal-Mart Express marked the retailer’s first entry into the convenience store arena. The stores are about 12,000 square feet and sell essentials like toothpaste. But the concept never caught on as the stores served the same purpose as Wal-Mart’s larger Neighborhood Markets: fill-in trips and prescription pickups.

Also covered in the closures are 23 Neighborhood Markets, 12 supercenters, seven stores in Puerto Rico, six discount stores and four Sam’s Clubs.

Wal-Mart will now focus in the U.S. on supercenters, Neighborhood Markets, the e-commerce business and pickup services for shoppers.

The retailer is closing 60 loss-making locations in Brazil, which account for 5 percent of sales in that market. Wal-Mart, which operated 558 stores in Brazil before the closures, has struggled as the economy there has soured. Its Every Day Low price strategy has also not been able to break against heavy promotions from key rivals.

The remaining 55 stores are spread elsewhere in Latin America.

Wal-Mart said that it’s still sticking to its plan announced last year to open 50 to 60 supercenters, 85 to 95 Neighborhood Markets and 7 to 10 Sam’s Clubs in the U.S. during the fiscal year that begins Feb. 1. Outside the U.S., Wal-Mart plans to open 200 to 240 stores.

The financial impact of the closures is expected to be 20 cents to 22 cents per diluted earnings per share from continuing operations with about 19 cents to 20 cents expected to affect the current fourth quarter. The company is expected to release fourth quarter and full year results on Feb. 18.

Shares of Wal-Mart Stores Inc. fell $1.12, or 1.7 percent, to 61.94 in morning trading.

.

.

Suicidal Leftists Forcing Last Gun Store In San Francisco To Close

Last Gun Store In San Francisco Closing In Response To Flood Of Gun Controls – Breitbart

.

.
In October, High Bridge Arms – the last gun store in San Francisco – will be closing its doors for good due to gun controls with which the store refuses to comply.

San Francisco has emerged as the gun control capital of California, with laws regulating everything from magazine capacity to allowable types of ammunition to limits on advertising to the manner in which guns must be stored–and beyond. For decades, High Bridge Arms has adapted to the passage of each new gun control, but it views the latest push as a step too far.

According to SFist, the newest control push “comes from Supervisor Mark Farrell (District 2), and proposes to require that all gun sales in San Francisco be videotaped.” It would also “further require that all gun and ammunition buyers’ names, birthdates, addresses and driver’s license numbers be supplied to the San Francisco Police Department. Sup. Farrell proposed the idea in July, and it may be voted on this month.”

Fox News reports that High Bridge Arms’ general manager, Steven Alcairo, said the store’s owners are tired of keeping up with the new regulations and equally tired of trying to guess what might come next. Alcairo said, “This time, it’s the idea of filming our customers taking delivery of items after they already completed waiting periods. We feel this is a tactic designed to discourage customers from coming to us.” He added, “This year, it’s this and next year will probably be something else. We don’t want to wait for it.”

Comments from Supervisor Farrell bolster Alcairo’s concern that further gun control is on the way. When Farrell began pushing for the videotaping of all gun sales, he said:
.

Easy access to guns and ammunition continue to contribute to senseless violent crime here in San Francisco and across the country. Even though San Francisco has some of the toughest gun control laws on the books in the country – there is more we can do to protect the public.

.
High Bridge Arms opened in the mid-1950s. It will soon be closed after dying the death of a thousand cuts.

.

.

Tuesday’s Close: Dow Plummets Another 470 Points

New Month, Same Woes: Dow Plummets 470 Points – Daily Freeman

.

.
Stocks plunged again Tuesday, continuing a rocky ride for Wall Street, after an economic report out of China rekindled fears that the world’s second-largest economy is slowing more than previously anticipated.

The sell-off adds to what has been a difficult few weeks for U.S. and international markets. U.S. stocks just closed out their worst month in more than three years. Tuesday’s drop also dashed hopes that, after some relatively calm trading Friday and Monday, the stock market’s wild swings were coming to an end.

“This market remains fragile,” said Jack Ablin, chief investment officer at BMO Private Bank. “There’s nothing fundamentally wrong with the U.S. economy, but we are going through this correction process. We’ve got a rocky road ahead of us.”

Stocks started the day sharply lower and never recovered, with the Dow Jones industrial average falling as much as 548 points. No part of the market was spared. All 10 sectors of the Standard & Poor’s 500 index fell more than 2 percent. Just three stocks in the S&P 500 closed higher.

“Monday’s relatively peaceful markets are a distant memory as Chinese data and shares sparked another severe … reaction from the developed world,” said John Briggs, head of fixed income strategy at RBS.

In the end, the Dow lost 469.68 points, or 2.8 percent, to 16,058.35. The S&P 500 fell 58.33 points, or 3 percent, to 1,913.85 and the Nasdaq composite fell 140.40 points, 2.9 percent, to 4,636.10.

As it’s been for the last several weeks, the selling and problems started in Asia.

An official gauge of Chinese manufacturing fell to a three-year low last month, another sign of slowing growth in that country. The manufacturing index, which surveys purchasing managers at factories, dropped to a reading of 49.7 in August from 50.0 in July. A reading below 50 indicates a contraction.

China’s stocks sank on the news, with Shanghai Composite Index closing down 1.2 percent. The index has lost 38 percent of its value since hitting a peak in June.

The Chinese economy has been a focus for investors all summer, and the concerns have intensified in the last three weeks. China devalued its currency, the renminbi, in mid-August. Investors interpreted the move as a sign that China’s economy was not doing as well as previously reported.

Investors moved into traditional havens like bonds and gold Tuesday. Bond prices rose, pushing the yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note down to 2.16 percent from 2.22 percent on Monday. Gold rose $7.30, or 0.6 percent, to settle at $1,139.80 an ounce.

Faced with the possibility of slowing demand in China, the commodity markets once again took the brunt of the hit.

U.S. crude oil fell $3.79 to close at $45.41 a barrel in New York. Brent Crude, a benchmark for international oils used by many U.S. refineries, fell $4.59 to close at $49.56 in London.

Energy stocks were once again among the biggest decliners. Exxon Mobil fell nearly 4 percent and Chevron fell 2.5 percent. Exxon is down 22 percent this year, Chevron 30 percent.

In a sign of how battered energy companies have been this year, ConocoPhillips announced it was laying off 10 percent of its workers, roughly 1,800 workers, as a reaction this year’s plunge in oil prices.

Along with worries about China, speculation about whether or not the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates as soon as this month continues to weigh on markets. Traders say a lot hinges on the August jobs report, which will be released this Friday. Economists are forecasting that U.S. employers created 220,000 jobs in the month and that the unemployment rate fell to 5.2 percent.

The Federal Reserve meets September 16 and 17. Some economists are predicting that policymakers will be confident enough in the U.S. economic recovery to raise interest rates for the first time in almost a decade. While Fed officials are mostly focused on the U.S. economy, they cannot ignore problems in the global economy.

“China’s problems are totally a concern for the Fed,” said Tom di Galoma, head of rates trading at ED&F Man Capital. “With inflation remaining low here, I just don’t a reason why they would raise rates.”

Markets in Europe were broadly lower. Germany’s DAX fell 2.4 percent, France’s CAC-40 lost 2.4 percent and the U.K.’s FTSE 100 index declined 3 percent. Japan’s Nikkei 225 was also volatile, dropping 3.8 percent. The Hang Seng in Hong Kong sank 2.2 percent. Stocks also fell in South Korea and Australia.

The dollar fell to 119.68 yen from 121.20 yen on Monday. The euro rose to $1.1307 from $1.1225.

In other energy markets, wholesale gasoline fell 10.3 cents to close at $1.396 a gallon, heating oil fell 12.3 cents to close at $1.578 a gallon and natural gas rose 1.3 cents to close at $2.702 per 1,000 cubic feet.

Copper lost 4 cents to $2.30 a pound and palladium slumped $23.05 to $578.50 an ounce. The price of silver edged down four cents to $14.61 an ounce and platinum edged down $2.10 to $1,008.40 an ounce.

.

.

New Obama Regulations Will Close Hundreds Of Coal Plants, Block New Ones, Increase Electricity Costs 80%

EPA Regs Will Close Hundreds Of Coal Plants, Block New Ones, Increase Costs 80% – Independent Sentinel

.

.
Obama is to fossil fuels what locusts are to crops.

The administration is coming up with Draconian regulations on coal plants Monday and they are worse than originally planned.

A government official promised on Tuesday that regulations will cost taxpayers as much as 80% more for electricity but the New York Times said the “administration argues that the rules will save the average American family $85 annually in electricity costs and bring additional health benefits.” You read that correctly.

This is the government engineered unFree Market at work. Read on.

We were promised a savings of $2500 a year in our health insurance premiums but they are skyrocketing. This energy debacle appears to be going down the same road. All of this is to control us. Coal is not bad enough to warrant this overreaction but the president wants his ideology in place.

On Tuesday, Julio Friedmann, deputy assistant secretary for clean coal at the Department of Energy, told members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s oversight board that regulations for new coal plants would increase electricity prices by as much as 80%, as reported by the Washington Examiner.

“The precise number will vary, but for first generation we project $70 to $90 per ton [on the wholesale price of electricity],” Friedmann said. “For second generation, it will be more like a $40 to $50 per ton price. Second generation of demonstrations will begin in a few years, but won’t be until middle of the next decade that we will have lessons learned and cost savings.”

In other words, prices are anticipated to go up, then come down as the technology develops but they will never be inexpensive as they were.

The problem is mainly that the CCS technology they are forcing on the coal plants is not ready for prime time and the people will have to shoulder the costs of the premature regulations and the immature technology. The lowered future costs are reliant on their betting on the technology they admit is not ready for use.

Friedman said coal plants would not install the CCS technology without the mandate and the government will subsidize them. That’s another cost to taxpayers so the government can force the technology through quickly.

If the technology is not ready for use, how can it be mandated and how do we know it will work?

Laura Sheehan, senior vice president of communications for the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity accused the Obama administration of trying to drive up energy costs and put Americans out of work.

“Today’s hearing shed further light on how grossly underdeveloped CCS remains and revealed the staggering cost increases American consumers and manufacturers will face if future power plants are forced to operate under EPA’s inane regulations,” Sheehan said. “DOE and EPA are wasting valuable taxpayer dollars by pursuing policies that will do nothing to build economic confidence and create jobs but everything to drive up energy costs and put hardworking Americans out of work.”

The government and their environmental group partners refused to listen to requests for more realistic cost ranges.

The New York Times reported that on Monday, EPA head Gina McCarthy will announce the toughest Obama regulations to date, regulations which will possibly shut down hundreds of coal-fired plants and freeze construction of new coal plants. This is part of the administration’s fundamental transformation of the energy sector which he has basically seized via the EPA.

He is fighting global warming which he sees as an existential threat though many believe his nationalization of every U.S. sector is more of an existential threat.

The NY Times reports, “the most aggressive of the regulations requires the nation’s existing power plants to cut emissions 32 percent from 2005 levels by 2030, an increase from the 30 percent target proposed in the draft regulation.”

They added, “That new rule also demands that power plants use more renewable sources of energy like wind and solar power. While the proposed rule would have allowed states to lower emissions by transitioning from plants fired by coal to plants fired by natural gas, which produces about half the carbon pollution of coal, the final rule is intended to push electric utilities to invest more quickly in renewable sources, raising to 28 percent from 22 percent the share of generating capacity that would come from such sources.”

The administration could not get a cap and trade bill passed so the president took out his pen and phone and is putting through a cap and trade bill that will probably negatively impact the lives of the middle class Americans he purports to help. If the president wins in court, it will force every state to implement his cap and trade.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell comes from a coal state and has told governors to refuse to follow the mandates.

The NY Times added that “experts”, who were left unnamed in the article, say that emissions could level off enough to prevent the worst effects of climate change. They are referring to the global warming that is in its 21st year of not warming.

Taxpayers can take small solace in the fact that this is for Mr. Obama’s legacy and he’s ramping up in time for his term’s end.

The administration says this will save the average taxpayer $85 a year but they might be using Common Core math because that’s not what Mr. Friedman said on Tuesday.

Leftist think tanks like ThinkProgress predict lower energy bills but that is not what Barack Obama promised in January 2008.

.

.

.

Commie Lunatic Update: NYC Mayor De Blasio Wants To Close Public Schools For Muslim Holidays

Loony-Left NYC Mayor Bill De Blasio Wants To Close Public Schools For Muslim Holidays – Liberty Unyielding

How many Muslims does it take to close New York City Public Schools? The answer is 69,985 – roughly 21/2500 of the total population of the Big Apple – going by the most recent demographic breakdown (2000 Census).

.

.
The scant size of the Muslim community hasn’t deterred the city’s new absurdly liberal mayor, Bill de Blasio, from pushing to close city schools for two Muslim holidays and the Lunar New Year. The Daily News reports (h/t Weasel Zippers) that hizzoner appeared on WNYC’s “Brian Lehrer Show” on Monday, where he announced his plan to publicly observe the Muslim holy days of Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha, as well as the Islamic New Year, with school closures. Said the mayor:

It is complicated in terms of logistics and school calendar and budget. But it’s something I want to get done in a reasonable time frame.

Reactions were not solicited from the 99% of students who aren’t Muslim, though it is doubtful many of them will complain about extra days off from school. Their parents – especially those in families where both work and need to make special arrangement for school closures – are likely a different story.

Ditto for de Blasio’s predecessor, the extreme (but not nearly as extreme in hindsight) Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who opposed the change, saying kids should not miss more school.

Defenders of the move will point to the longstanding tradition of New York Public Schools closing for the Jewish “high holidays” of New Year and Yom Kippur, but Jews, who number around 1.1 million, make up 13% of the city’s population.

In the meantime, the city’s Hindu population, though not as “heavily” represented as Muslims, feels slighted that de Blasio hasn’t yet taken a firm position on whether schools should close for Diwali, the festival of lights. Dr. Shashi Shah of the Association of Indians in America is quoted as saying:

We are disappointed. We’ve been trying for a long time… It’s very important for the community.

Observers of Festivus have not weighed in.

Click HERE For Rest Of Story

.

President Asshat To Close Commissaries For Poor Military Families (Video)

Obama To Close Commissaries For Poor Military Families (Video) – Gateway Pundit

The Obama administration is looking at closing all US-based commissaries that serve poor military families. The move will not only eliminate the discounted goods but will also result in lost jobs for many military families.

.

.
It’s one of the few perks for military families who sacrifice so much for their country.

FOX News reported:

The Pentagon is floating a controversial plan to close all U.S.-based commissaries in 2015 as part of a massive cost-saving effort after more than a decade of war.

The commissaries are grocery stores that offer food and other necessities at a discount to members of the military, their families and veterans. But as Congress tightens the purse strings, the stores could get caught in the budget battle.

Budget cutters say they don’t yet know how much money the plan would save, but there are 178 commissaries in the United States – and 70 overseas – which receive a total of $1.4 billion in government funds.

The Defense Commissary Agency, responsible for administering all commissaries worldwide, says military families and retirees save an average of more than 30 percent on their grocery bills compared with those who shop at regular retail stores. The agency says those savings amount to thousands of dollars annually per family.

But families could also lose jobs if the stores close. Thirty percent of the employees at the commissaries are military spouses. The director of the Defense Commissary Agency says that they have already cut their budget by $700 million since 1993.

Click HERE For Rest Of Story

.

Another Broken Promise: Obama Planning To Close ICBM Squadron

Despite Promises, Obama Planning To Close ICBM Squadron – Washington Free Beacon

The Obama administration has drafted a plan to shutter an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) squadron three years after it assured hesitant lawmakers that the New START U.S.-Russia arms reduction treaty would not lead to deep cuts in the ICBM force.

.

A new timeline prepared by the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) and obtained by the Washington Free Beacon maps out a strategy to eliminate an ICBM squadron – and destroy its missile silos – by Dec. 5, 2017. An environmental assessment would begin next month.

The document says the reductions are necessary to “meet the New START Treaty compliance date by closing an ICBM squadron and eliminating the associated Launch Facilities.”

Several Democrats on the Senate ICBM coalition voted for New START, vowing that the treaty would maintain a strong ICBM force. Sens. Max Baucus (D.) and Jon Tester (D.), both from Montana, the home of many ICBMs, issued a press release in 2010 backing New START and saying that the missiles would “continue to play a key role in U.S. national security for decades to come.”

“There was some talk around this town about making deep reductions to the ICBM force,” Baucus said in the press release. “We made it clear to the president that was unacceptable, and fought hard to make sure the START Treaty recognized the critical role that ICBMs play in U.S. national security.”

Baucus and Tester did not respond to requests for comment.

According to the OSD timeline, the military would begin removing ICBM missiles from their silos next October, after the environmental assessment is complete. The silo elimination would begin in May 2016 and is estimated to take 19 months.

Analysts say they are particularly troubled by the proposed destruction of the missile silos, a likely permanent move that is not required by New START. They say the silos would be difficult to rebuild if the military needs to bolster its ICBM force in the future.

“If you destroy the silos, it would be much harder to rebuild them […] and very politically difficult,” said Michaela Dodge, a defense analyst at the Heritage Foundation.

Dodge said the New START requirements could be met simply by removing the ICBMs and maintaining the empty silos in reserve status.

The administration’s plan would also shrink the ICBM force below the mandated numbers. The Air Force previously said it planned to reduce its number of ICBMs from 450 to a baseline of 420 under New START.

Shutting down a squadron would eliminate 50 ICBMs, 66 percent more than the prior Air Force proposal.

Republican members of the Senate ICBM coalition said they were alarmed by the proposal.

“America’s nuclear deterrent helps keep Americans safe and our country free,” Sen. John Barrasso (R., Wyo.) told the Free Beacon. “As countries that are not our friends grow closer to modernizing their nuclear weapons programs, it would be irresponsible for us to weaken our own program.”

“If the president is serious about protecting Americans and our allies, he should immediately drop any plans for his Administration to further reduce our ICBMs,” he said.

Sen. Mike Enzi’s (R., Wyo.) office said he “opposes efforts that would impose arbitrary and unilateral reductions in our nuclear force. He believes this would only increase threats to our national security and have a very visible effect on our deterrence strategy. A strong ICBM force is a critical part of protecting our nation. That’s why he opposed the New START Treaty and other attempts to hamstring the role Wyoming plays in our nuclear deterrent.”

The ICBM coalition introduced an amendment on Friday that would block the administration from destroying emptied ICBM silos.

Defense experts say the proposed eliminations would be detrimental to U.S. national security.

“We see that Russia is modernizing and building up its nuclear weapons program; we don’t have that good of an understanding of how many weapons China has; we had recently a North Korea nuclear weapons test,” Dodge said. “So international trends are against us and we are sending the wrong signal by continuing reduction despite these international developments.”

John Noonan, spokesman for House Armed Services Committee Republicans, said there does not appear to be any strategic justification for the proposed reductions, adding that the United States has a responsibility to maintain a large and disperse ICBM force that will deter large-scale enemy attacks.

“Nuclear deterrence is about balance,” he said “This is something that would put the deterrence equation out of balance.”

Click HERE For Rest Of Story

.

Bolivian President Threatens To Close U.S. Embassy After Snowden Plane Row

Bolivian President Threatens To Close U.S. Embassy After Snowden Plane Row – Haaretz

Leaders of South American countries held an angry and combative meeting Thursday night in Cochabamba, Bolivia – after Bolivian President Evo Morales’ plane was rerouted Tuesday due to suspicions that NSA leaker Edward Snowden was on board.

.

Morales’ plane was prevented from entering French, Spanish, Italian and Portuguese airspace after false rumors circled that Snowden was onboard his plane, and he was forced to land in Austria.

During the meeting, Morales threatened to close the American embassy in Bolivia and to expel American diplomats, saying: “We do not need them.”

Because of the general atmosphere, the American embassy in La Paz canceled their July 4 celebrations.

Latin American leaders were outraged by the incident, calling it a violation of national sovereignty and a slap in the face for a region that has suffered through humiliations by Europe and several U.S.-backed military coups.

Morales blamed Washington for pressuring European countries to refuse to allow his plane to fly through their airspace on Tuesday, forcing it to land in Vienna, Austria, in what he called a violation of international law. He had been returning from a summit in Russia during which he had suggested he would be willing to consider a request from Snowden for asylum.

“United we will defeat American imperialism. We met with the leaders of myparty and they asked us for several measures and if necessary, we will closethe embassy of the United States,” Morales said in the city where he started his political career as a leader of coca leaf farmers. “We do not need the embassy of the United States.”

A joint statement issued by the leaders said that an insult to Morales was an insult to them all. Some of those present included Argentinean President Cristina Kirchner, Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa, Uruguayan President Jose Mujica and Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro. The Brazilian president, Dilma Rousseff, said that she wanted to attend but was unable.

Ecuadorean President Correa said: “We’re not going to accept that in the 21st century there’s first, second and third rate countries,” Correa said. “The leaders and authorities in Europe have to take a lesson in history and understand that we’re not 500 years behind. This Latin America of the 21st century is independent, dignified and sovereign.” Argentinean President Cristina Kirchner said:

Speaking to supporters in Cochabamba, where a number of South American leaders were meeting to show solidarity with the Bolivian president after his delayed return home, Morales was quoted as saying “We do not need the US embassy.”

Click HERE For Rest Of Story

.

Minnesota Public Schools Close So Teachers Can Play With Dolls To Promote “Diversity,” Learn About Teaching Islam

Minnesota Public Schools Close So Teachers Can Play With Dolls To Promote “Diversity,” Learn About Teaching Islam – Weasel Zippers

Liberal gobbledygook at its finest.

Via Townhall:

Each year, Minnesota government schools close for two days (just before the weekend, of course) so teachers’ union members can gather at a conference organized by their union.

It’s meant to “inspire teachers,” EAGnews.org reported, and the conference includes a session titled, “Using Persona Dolls to Promote Social Emotional Intelligence and Acceptance of Diversity.”

The union describes it this way: “Used around the world, persona dolls are lifelike dolls with personalities and stories you create. The dolls become members of your classroom community and children learn by empathizing with the dolls and giving them heartfelt advice on the same kinds of situations they struggle with daily in the classroom and on the playground.”

That’s weird. Teachers are taking time away from the classroom to learn how to play with dolls?

The conference also includes a workshop on how to teach about Islam. The union says about the session:

“An expert panel will present information on teaching about Islam in the context of social studies and world religion. They will share perspectives on how educators can help improve intercultural communication and well-being for immigrant and refugee students and families from Muslim countries.”

Keep reading

Click HERE For Rest Of Story