Posted on 31 May 2011.
U.S. stocks ended an unstable session with moderately higher gains on Thursday. Upbeat earnings on technology, as well as consumer discretionary stocks outperformed the data, which showed that economy grew at a sluggish rate and unemployment rate abruptly increased.
The NASDAQ stock market posted the largest gains after NetApp Inc’s strong profits increased the stock 8.6 percent to $56.19. Meanwhile, Microsoft Corp’s shares rose 2.4 percent to $24.77 following a statement from a top investor that its chief executive should step down.
The Dow Jones industrial average rose 0.13 percent or 15.51 points to 12, 410.17. The S&P’s 500 Index climbed 0.31 percent or 4.13 points to 1,324.60. The Nasdaq Composite Index earned 0.70 percent or 19.5 points to 2,780.64.
However, consumer discretionary division performed best, aided by Tiffany & Co, which was up 8.6 percent at $76.03. The luxury seller increased its outlook after releasing its first-quarter earnings.
Coach Inc., the leather goods company famous for its luxury handbags, released 5 percent increase while clothing-line company Guess reported a 15 percent decrease in quarterly profits. But, stocks rose to 11.2 percent as earnings per share came better than estimated. The S&P consumer discretionary sector index climbed 0.8 percent.
The Goldman Sachs reduced its S&P 500 target for the end of the year from 1,500 to 1,450. It is currently the lowest target decided by the banking firm after Citigroup and UBS increased their profit estimates for S&P companies the previous week.
However, unemployment rate reportedly rose last week and remained at high levels. The gross domestic product in the United States climbed at a 1.8 percent yearly rate in the first quarter. It did not change from the last estimate and is still below the expectations of the analysts for stronger growth.
Posted in Finance
Posted on 10 May 2011.
The parent company of Absolute Poker and Ultimate Bet – websites offering online poker games – said on Monday that they have laid off a total of 11 sponsored poker professionals as two of the company’s executives face charges of processing illegal payments.
Blanca Games, an Antigua-based company, said that it has cut off ties with sponsored professional poker players such as Prahlad Friedman, Joe Sebok, Scott Ian, and Trishelle Cannatella. The Company further said that it was an extremely difficult decision for the company and that they are saddened that they are under circumstances that have pushed them to make such actions.
Blanca’s management said that the indictments that were announced in April mean that the company is no longer capable of paying professional players to play poker. 11 of the company’s executives are the target of the legal actions filed in the federal court in New York. Alleged associates PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker are also included in the indictments.
Reports say that that Brent Beckley and Scott Tom of Absolute are stepbrothers and are the principal decision-makers of Absolute. The stepbrothers are also included in the indictment.
Sebok, one of the laid off sponsored players of Blanca Games, said that he had been talking with upper management since the indictment was released in April. He also said that it was quite obvious that no matter how things will turn out, his presence in the company will not be necessary or less necessary. He said he knew he will be let go.
PokerStars and FullTint announced that they have already formed an agreement with the Department of Justice agreeing to return money to a couple of their players. PokerStars said that the process has begun. Absolute, however, said that they will still review legal actions before they will begin paying back their players.
Posted in Business
Posted on 10 February 2011.
Wal-Mart fights back competitors by emphasizing low prices and adding back thousands of products in store. The company is also planning to expand into cities and neighborhoods where other people dare not to go.
Three years ago, Wal-Mart led several dollar stores for selection, convenience and price. However, it is now losing customers and revenue, including smarting because of some poor decisions.
Although Wal-Mart is not in danger of giving up its place as top of the retail food chain, several competitors have already begun chipping away some parts of its dominance.
According to the International Council of Shopping Centers, revenue at Wal-Mart stores, which are open at least a year, has decreased by an average 0.75 percent each quarter over the last year. But, revenue increased by an average of almost 1.7 percent at Target, 5.9 percent at Family Dollar and 8 percent at Costco.
Wal-Mart CEO Mike Duke said in an interview with The Associated Press that they are running a better business now since competitors brought them to raise their own game. Wal-Mart anticipates that the decline in revenue will stop when it releases results from its fourth quarter this month.
Not like other stores, Wal-Mart thrived in late 2007 when the US when into a reccession. Its primary customers from households bought even more. It became the only place where many people shopped.
The entire $27 billion revenue growth of Wal-Mart for the year ending in January 2009 came from larger demand for basic items such as foods, household goods and pharmacy. That year, shoppers spent almost a quarter more on basics.
The company is also completing a major renovation to address shoppers’ complaints that its stores were messy. It widened aisles, removed clutters, enhanced lighting and lowered shelves.
Posted in Business, Shopping
Posted on 04 February 2011.
The online shopping trend in Malaysia is healthy according to the leading eCommerce marketplace, eBay Malaysia. The country manager Ambareeesh Murty said that it is driven by the high broadband penetration rate in the country.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said the broadband penetration in Malaysia exceeded the original target of 50 percent to 55.6 percent.
Ambareesh told in a recent interview, online shopping in any market has fundamental requirements, and a key requirement is the use of broadband. He added that broadband penetration in the Malaysian market is already surging.
Because of the convenience it offers, online shopping is getting popular in the country. A survey from MasterCard showed that 30 percent of Malaysians made online purchases in 2009, which increased to 50 percent last year. Ambareesh said that the trend is positive and they are very optimistic about online shopping.
Malaysia ranked number three in online shopping based on the 2010 Visa e-Commerce Consumer Monitor. The country has spent an average amount of $2,006 for the past 12 months. They are behind Taiwan with $4,041 and China with $2,557.
EBay Inc, a world’s online marketplace, allows trade on local, national and international basis. It provides an online platform where millions of items can be sold each day.
EBay Malaysia, a completely-owned auxiliary of eBay Inc, offers three ways to sell products or services. Those are auction, fixed-price and classifieds. It offers an easy, safe and trusted trading platform for their customers, Ambareesh said.
He explained that the company will continuously improve and enhance the features and tools on its website to give a better experience for users.
Posted in Shopping