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BUSINESS NEWS JANUARY 15th 2016


U.S. RETAIL SALES MARGINALLY DECLINE IN DECEMBER

U.S. stocks closed sharply lower today, marking their worst 10-day start to a calendar year ever. Oil prices crashed to close below $30 a barrel for the first time in 12 years, as Chinese stock markets fell further and traders braced for a rise in Iran's oil exports. Sales at U.S. retailers declined marginally in December, as 2015 recorded the slowest pace of gains since 2009. Retail sales dropped a seasonally adjusted 0.1% last month according to the Commerce Department. For the entire year 2015, retail sales grew just 2.1% even though job creation remained strong. Sales at apparel outlets was hurt by unseasonably warm weather towards the end of the year.

For more on the story log on to

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/retail-sales-fall-in-december-end-2015-with-whimper-2016-01-15?dist=countdown

WALMART ANNOUNCES 269 STORE CLOSURES

Walmart will close all 102 of its smallest stores, Walmart Express, as part of a store reorganization announced today. The closures are part of a total 269 store closures that include four Sam’s Clubs, 12 Supercenters, and 115 stores internationally. The closures will impact 16,000 employees, about 10,000 of them in the U.S. The retailer will focus its efforts on Neighborhood Markets and Supercenters.

For more on the story log on to

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/wal-mart-to-close-walmart-express-stores-as-part-of-reorganization-2016-01-15?dist=countdown

CHIPOTLE TO CLOSE ALL STORES ON FEBRUARY 8TH FOR FOOD SAFETY MEETING

Fast food restaurant chain Chipotle Mexican Grill will close all of its eateries nationwide for a few hours during the morning of February 8th for an all-staff meeting on food safety. The satellite session will feature Chipotle officials thanking the company's roughly 60,000 staffers for their efforts to address recent food-borne illness issues linked to the chain. The meeting would also feature a discussion of new safety measures implemented by Chipotle. The chain recently disclosed that sales at stores open at least a year dropped 30% in December.

For more on the story log on to

http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/2016/01/15/reports-chipotle-close-stores-feb-8-food-safety-review/78841420/

GE TO SELL APPLIANCES BUSINESS TO CHINA'S HAIER

General Electric (GE) is selling its appliance business for $5.4 bn to China's Haier Group. Haier has a negligible presence in the U.S. consumer durable market, dominated by Whirlpool, Sweden's Electrolux and GE. The news comes just weeks after GE walked away from a deal to sell the business to Electrolux for $3.3 bn, following months of opposition from U.S. antitrust regulators. The deal with Haier is unlikely to draw intense antitrust scrutiny but could involve scrutiny from the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS).

For more on the story log on to

http://in.reuters.com/article/us-ge-divestiture-haier-elec-idINKCN0UT0AG


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