NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Apparel company Gap (GPS) on Wednesday received high praise from a powerful customer.
President Barack Obama released a statement applauding the San Francisco-based company for its decision to raise the minimum wage of all its U.S. employees to $10 an hour in 2015.
"Today, I applaud Gap, Inc. for announcing that they intend to raise wages for their employees beginning this year a decision that will benefit about 65,000 workers in the U.S.," Obama said in a statement. "In my State of the Union Address, I asked more businesses to do what they can to raise their employees' wages."
The White House early last year endorsed a minimum wage increase to $9 an hour, but increased its aspirations in 2014 to push for a $10.10 minimum. The move comes as the president and Democrats attempt to use the discussion as a wedge issue to help defeat Republicans in this year's midterm elections. The Congressional Budget Office delivered a report on Tuesday that said the $10.10 minimum wage policy, on a central estimate, would cut about 500,000 jobs from U.S. employment. The report said the same scenario would boost the income of families living below the poverty line by $5.89 billion. Shares of Gap closed down 0.09% to $42.19, before the president released the statement. -- Written by Joe Deaux in New York. >Contact by Email. Follow @JoeDeaux
5 Best Dow Dividend Stocks To Watch Right Now: Chesapeake Gold Corp (CHPGF.PK)Chesapeake Gold Corp. is a mineral exploration company focusing on the discovery and development of gold-silver deposits in North and Central America. The Company�� primary asset is the Metates gold-silver project (Metates) located in Durango State, Mexico. The Company also has a portfolio of exploration properties in Mexico comprising 57,067 hectares in the states of Durango, Sinaloa, Oaxaca and Veracruz. The Escorpion property is located 85 kilometers by paved road southeast of Guatemala City. The Metates property is the undeveloped disseminated gold and silver deposits in Mexico. The property is consists of 14 mineral concessions totaling 14,727 hectares. Talapoosa property is a low-sulphidation gold/silver property in the Walker Lane gold trend of western Nevada, approximately 45 kilometers east of Reno. The property consists of 535 unpatented lode mining claims and seven additional fee land sections which cover 10,780 hectares. Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Hebba Investments]
Therefore the situation is still very bullish for investors in physical gold and the gold ETFs (GLD, CEF, and PHYS). Investors interested in leveraging this situation into higher potential profits may also consider buying gold miners such as Randgold (GOLD), Goldcorp (GG), Yamana Gold (AUY), and any of the other gold miners. Finally, those willing to shoulder much larger risks may consider some of the exploration and micro-cap companies that offer significant profits at a high risk such as Chesapeake Gold (CHPGF.PK), Pretium Resources (PVG), Western Copper (WRN), or any other of the junior exploration companies. Though investors should keep in mind that gold mining companies and explorers do not always rise with a rising gold price - do your research before you invest in the miners.
Best Income Stocks To Watch For 2014: Barclays PLC (JO)Barclays PLC (Barclays) is a global financial services provider engaged in retail banking, credit cards, wholesale banking, investment banking, wealth management and investment management services. The Company�� operations include its overseas offices, subsidiaries and associates. The Company operates in eight segments: UK Retail and Business Banking (UK RBB), Europe Retail and Business Banking (Europe RBB), Africa Retail and Business Banking (Africa RBB), Barclaycard, Barclays Investment Bank, Barclays Corporate Banking, Wealth and Investment Management, and Head Office and Other Operations. Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Sean Williams]
Time for a cup of joe
Two years ago I slapped a CAPScall of underperform on the iPath DJ AIG Coffee ETF (NYSEMKT: JO ) following what looked like a rampant speculative run higher. Coffee stockpiles weren't particularly low back then and there didn't appear to be any weather-related production concerns, so the run-up in coffee futures looked unwarranted. Sure enough, two years later that CAPScall is up nearly 90 points. Now, I'm going to turn that frown upside down and suggest it's the perfect time to consider buying this ETF that closely tracks coffee futures!
- [By David Fabian]
Caffeine lovers should note that coffee futures ramped sharply this week, with the iPath Bloomberg Coffee Subindex Total Return SM Index (NYSE: JO) gaining more than 14.7 percent. JO tracks liquid coffee futures contracts as traded on the NYMEX exchange.
Best Income Stocks To Watch For 2014: Etablissements Delhaize Freres et Cie le Lion SA (DEG)
Delhaize Group is Belgium-based food retailer, which operates in six countries and on three continents. The principal activity of the Company is the operation of food supermarkets in the United States, Belgium and Greece, with operations in Romania and Indonesia. The Company�� retail operations are conducted by its consolidated subsidiary, Delhaize America, LLC (Delhaize America); its businesses in Belgium and the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg (Delhaize Belgium), and the business of Alfa Beta Vassilopoulos S.A. (Alfa Beta) in Greece. On May 12, 2010, Delhaize The Lion Nederland B.V. (Delned) acquired approximately 90.83% interest in Alfa Beta. On July 7, 2009, the Company, through its wholly owned subsidiary, Mega Image closed the acquisition of four supermarkets in Romania previously operated under the Prodas name. On November 23, 2009, the Company, through Alfa Beta acquired the Greek retailer Koryfi, which operated 11 stores and a distribution center in the Northeast of Greece. On January 2, 2009, the Company completed the acquisition of Knauf Center Schmett SA and Knauf Center Pommerlach SA.
The store format consists of retail food supermarkets. The sales network also includes other store formats such as proximity stores and specialty stores. In addition to food retailing, the Company is engaged in food wholesaling and non-food retailing of products, such as pet products and prescription drugs. Delhaize Group SA is the parent company of a number of direct and indirect subsidiaries.
The Company is engaged in one line of business in the United States, the operation of food supermarkets in the southeastern, mid-Atlantic and northeastern regions of the United States under the banners Food Lion, Hannaford, Sweetbay Supermarket, Bloom, Bottom Dollar Food, Reid�� and Harveys. During the year ended December 31, 2009, the Company opened 30 new stores in the United States, closed and relocated seven stores, and decided to close 17 other stores. As of De! cember 31, 2009, the Company operated 1,607 supermarkets in 16 states in the eastern United States. In 2009, it re-opened 53 supermarkets in the United States. It included 35 Food Lion renewals in the Columbia, South Carolina market and five in the Daytona Beach, Florida market.
The Company�� United States-based supermarkets sell a range of groceries, produce, meats, dairy products, seafood, frozen food, deli/bakery products and non-food items, such as prescriptions, health and beauty care and other household and personal products. The stores offered nationally and regionally advertised brand name merchandise as well as products manufactured and packaged under private brands. Food Lion offers between 15,000 and 20,000 stock-keeping units (SKUs) in its supermarkets, Harveys between 15,000 and 20,000 SKUs, Bloom between 21,000 and 25,000 SKUs, Bottom Dollar Food between 6,500 and 8,000 SKUs, Sweetbay between 28,000 and 40,000 SKUs and Hannaford between 31,000 and 45,000 SKUs.
Belgium and the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg
In Belgium and the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, the sales network consists of several banners, depending on the specialty, the store size and whether the store is company-operated, franchised or affiliated. At December 31, 2009, the sales network consisted of 792 stores in Belgium and the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. The network included 369 supermarkets under the Delhaize Le Lion, AD Delhaize and Red Market banners, 287 stores primarily under the Proxy Delhaize, Delhaize City and Shop �� Go banners. It also included 136 pet food and products stores operated under the Tom & Co. banner. At December 31, 2009, the Company operated 41 stores in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. In 2009, the Company divested its German operations, which consisted of four stores.
The supermarkets operated by the Company in Belgium and the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg carry the Delhaize Le Lion banner. At December 31, 2009, there were 144 company-operated supermarket! s of whic! h 14 supermarkets were remodeled. The AD Delhaize supermarkets have an average size of 1,142 square meters and offer approximately 12,000 SKUs.
In 2009, the Company opened the first two Red Market stores. At December 31, 2009, the Company�� network of proximity stores in Belgium and the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg consisted of 287 stores under the Delhaize City, Proxy Delhaize and Shop �� Go banners. Proxy Delhaize stores have an average selling area of approximately 500 square meters and offer approximately 6,500 SKUs.
Caddy-Home, the food products home delivery banner in Belgium, sells food products to customers for which orders can be placed by the Internet, telephone or fax. As of December 31, 2009, Caddy-Home delivered in 17 cities throughout Belgium, offering approximately 5,500 SKUs to customers. In 2009, Delhaize Belgium launched Delhaize Direct, allowing customers to order their groceries through the Internet and pick them up at their local store.
Tom & Co. is a specialty chain focusing on food and accessories for pets. At December 31, 2009, the stores were operated under franchise agreements with independent operators.
The supermarkets in Belgium and the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg sell a range of groceries, produce, meats, dairy products, seafood, frozen food, deli/bakery products and nonfood items, such as health and beauty care and other household and personal products. Delhaize Belgium is also selling a basic offering of lottery and postal products in part of its network.
In 2009, the Company operated a total of 216 stores in Greece. As of December 31, 2009, Alfa Beta directly operated 142 supermarkets under the Alfa Beta banner, 10 cash and carry stores under the ENA banner, 13 AB City stores and served 39 affiliated stores operated under the AB Food Market and AB Shop & Go banners and 10 Koryfi stores.
Rest of the World
As of December 31, 2009, Mega Image operated 51 super! markets i! n Romania. The stores offer private brand ranges, including 365, Care and the house brands available at Delhaize Belgium and Alfa Beta. In 2009, Mega Image introduced a private brand for Romanian products called Gusturi Romanesti. As of December 31, 2009, the Company operated 66 stores in Indonesia.
The Company competes with Wal-Mart, Kroger, Harris Teeter, Bi-Lo, Lowes Food, Save-A-Lot, Supervalu, Price Chopper, DeMoulas, Royal Ahold, Publix, Winn-Dixie, Carrefour, Louis Delhaize-Cora, Aldi, Makro-Metro, Lidl, Intermarche, Colruyt and Mestdagh.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By patokehoe]
Traditional grocers such as Kroger Co (KR) and Delhaize Group SA (DEG) are having an increasingly hard time dealing with competition from nontraditional grocers. Both of these firms have tried to adapt to the pressure stemming from rival discounters, with varying degrees of success. Whereas Kroger has been able to utilize its scale to leverage fixed costs, Delhaize has struggled to maintain margins, and is being forced to lower prices.
Fending off competitors Investment gurus John Hussman of Hussman Economtrics Advisors and Joel Greenblatt of Gotham Capital own considerable positions in Kroger, one of the largest retailers in the U.S. The firm currently operates over 2,400 supermarkets, 750 convenience stores, and 325 jewellery stores across 31 states. Shareholders have reason to be optimistic, as the company recently acquired Harris Teeter Supermarkets Inc (HTSI). The $2.44 billion deal means Kroger will be looking at an 8% increase in its store base and a 4% boost in revenue.
- [By Brian Pacampara]
What: Shares of Brussels-based supermarket operator Delhaize Group (NYSE: DEG ) climbed 10% today after its preliminary quarterly results and outlook topped Wall Street expectations.
Best Income Stocks To Watch For 2014: Spdr S&P Homebuilders Etf (XHB)
SPDR S&P Homebuilders ETF (the Fund) seeks to replicate as closely as possible, before expenses, the performance of the S&P Homebuilders Select Industry Index (the Index). To accomplish this, the Fund utilizes a passive or indexing approach and attempts to approximate the investment performance of its Index, by investing in a portfolio of stocks intended to replicate the Index.
The S&P Homebuilders Select Industry Index seeks to provide a representation of the homebuilders��sub-industry portion of the S&P Total Market Index. The S&P TMI tracks all the United States common stocks regularly traded on the NYSE, American Stock Exchange, NASDAQ National Market and NASDAQ Small Cap Exchanges. The Homebuilders Index is an equal weighted market cap index.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Jon C. Ogg]
1. The U.S. economy grows 3% as housing starts surpass one million and private employment hits an all-time high – All time high on private employment? 1 million housing starts?Homebuilder ETF: SPDR S&P Homebuilders ETF (NYSEArca: XHB) as it is tied to homebuilders and building products rather than including other sectors that only overlap in building. At $32.57, its 52-week range is 426.94 to $33.38. Housing Starts were always well over 1 million on an annualized basis each month before the recession, but they only reached that in two months of 2013 (St. Louis Fed data).
2. 10-Year Treasury yields move toward 3.5% as the Federal Reserve completes tapering and holds short-term rate near zero – This may sound bad, but it is actually good and fits in line with rates not rising too much. Keep in mind that the 10-year Treasury is at 2.94% now and ended at 3.03% on the last day of 2013. Elsewhere on the yield curve, Doll sees many parts of the fixed income market to end 2014 with negative total rates of return.
- [By Ben Levisohn]
The SPDR S&P Homebuilders ETF (XHB) has dropped 10.5% during the past three months, or about when all the talk about an end to the Fed’s bond buying really picked up, compared to a 2.7% return for the S&P 500.