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Wal-Mart says ObamaCare may Hurt Holiday Spending

usa xmas sales yearly fines poverty level low confidence on-line shopping

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#1 Hum

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Posted 19 November 2013 - 12:16

Looks like the Affordable Care Act has another potential critic: Wal-Mart (WMT).

The discount retail giant mentioned the ACA as a potential factor that will hurt consumer spending this holiday season on an analysts press call Thursday.

"While it is not coming through in customer research, we do know that some of our customers are concerned about the impact of the Affordable Care Act," Carol Schumacher, vice president of investor relations said, according to the Wall Street Journal. "For many of our customers, having to afford health care and insurance may be another line item in their personal budget that they may not have had to cover previously."

The retailer listed many reasons consumers might pull the purse strings tight this shopping season, and specifically pointed to the individual mandate requirement of the ACA as having the potential to weigh on consumers’ budgets.

Come 2014 all Americans are mandated to have health insurance or they will face a fine of $95 per year or 1% of their annual salary, starting April for every three consecutive months they are not covered.

And while those making up to 400% of the federal poverty level, which comes to about $45,000 for individuals and $94,000 for a family of four, are qualified to receive subsidies, according to the Kaiser Foundation, others could be facing a hefty bill for the care they are now federally mandated to have.

Sales projections for the 2013 holiday season have been less than jolly before Wal-Mart’s accusation. Last week, new figures from Gallup showed consumers plan to spend an average of $704 this year on gifts compared to $786 last year. Back in Septmeber, store traffic measurement firm ShopperTrak, predicted 2013 was supposed to be the weakest shopping since 2009.

Peter Galvin, senior vice president of marketing for SOASTA, a company that performs cloud and mobile testing for brands, says consumers’ lack of confidence in the government has shoppers preferring to shop online over brick-and-mortar shops.

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#2 Co_Co

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Posted 19 November 2013 - 15:26

while its not in any research, I'm a biased person so I'll spew lies anyway. -walmart

 

how can you take walmart seriously, their entire business model is to shift costs to the government by keeping wages low



#3 Lord Method Man

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Posted 19 November 2013 - 15:30

This law is insane. People are now being advised to lower their income in order to qualify for subsidies. There's never been anything more economically-depressing passed in this history of this country.



#4 Astra.Xtreme

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Posted 19 November 2013 - 15:30

Sure it's going to hurt spending, but not this year since people don't have to pay into it yet.

Next year undoubtedly consumer spending will be down.  Higher expenses = less money to spend.  Pretty simple concept.



#5 Nick H.

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Posted 19 November 2013 - 15:34

"While it is not coming through in customer research, we do know that some of our customers are concerned about the impact of the Affordable Care Act..."

Wait, that isn't customer research? Asking a customer and getting a response?

What does it matter, though? What will change between now and the holiday spending time that would change this? I would say the best bet is to keep quiet, and let the statistics be the proof after the holidays.

#6 +LogicalApex

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Posted 19 November 2013 - 15:43

This law is insane. People are now being advised to lower their income in order to qualify for subsidies. There's never been anything more economically-depressing passed in this history of this country.

I'm not sure what your point is here... If you lower your income there are all kinds of subsidies you can qualify for and this has been the case since before I was born...

 

If I lower my income I can qualify for:

 

  • Food Stamps
  • Utility Rate Subsidies
  • Home down payment grants
  • College grants
  • Etc...

Obviously, if you put any government subsidy in place for a poor person than a non-poor person could also qualify if they too became poor. Again, I fail to see your point here...



#7 OP Hum

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Posted 19 November 2013 - 15:59

Wal-Mart depressed me -- I'm suing for emotional distress. :cry:



#8 COKid

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Posted 19 November 2013 - 16:07

while its not in any research, I'm a biased person so I'll spew lies anyway. -walmart

 

how can you take walmart seriously, their entire business model is to shift costs to the government by keeping wages low

So I assume you feel the same way about Target, since they pay their employees less than Walmart. Well... other than the CEO, that is. He makes 28 million a year.

 

I lived in Minnesota, where Target is based, for 30 years. They have done an excellent job creating the illusion that they are better to their employees than Walmart. They're not.

 

http://www.huffingto..._b_4254981.html

 

Oh, and Walmart will be fine. Not many people are signing up for the ACA anyway, so holiday sales should be brisk this year.



#9 Co_Co

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Posted 19 November 2013 - 16:11

So I assume you feel the same way about Target, since they pay they employees less than Walmart.

 

http://www.huffingto..._b_4254981.html

 

why wouldn't i

 

i don't shop at stores where you can buy tv's and groceries in the same spot.  though i don't know if target is as politically involved in killing minimum wage laws or union formation 



#10 +_Alexander

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Posted 20 November 2013 - 04:28

An enemy of my enemy is my friend