Wal-Mart to Close Union-Targeted Store -- Report
Wal-Mart (WMT) said Wednesday that it will close a store in Canada where workers were close to establishing the retail giant's first labor union, according to The Associated Press.
The company plans to close the store in Jonquiere, Quebec, because it says union negotiators are making unreasonable demands that threaten the store's business.
Last week, the United Food and Commercial Workers of Canada asked Quebec labor officials to appoint a mediator in its talks with Wal-Mart in hopes that it would help break a logjam in negotiations.
"We were hoping it wouldn't come to this," Wal-Mart spokesman Andrew Pelletier told the AP. "Despite nine days of meetings over three months, we've been unable to reach an agreement with the union that in our view will allow the store to operate efficiently and profitably."Any success enjoyed by the Canadian union with Wal-Mart could have ultimately impacted the company's business in the U.S. One of Wal-Mart's competitive advantages is low labor costs. That was especially apparent throughout its recent foray into the grocery business, which prompted massive labor strikes across Southern California as traditional grocery chains attempted to cut health and other benefits to their workers in an attempt to compete. "Is Wal-Mart sending a message here [about organized labor in its stores]? It's too soon to tell," said Richard Hastings, retail economist with Variant Research. "It's all about expenses, and Wal-Mart is all about expense controls. The unionization of that store ruins the expense budget for that store, so Wal-Mart definitely looks at it as something to eliminate."
Select the service that is right for you!COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.
- $2.5+ million portfolio
- Large-cap and dividend focus
- Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
- Weekly roundups
Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.
- Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
- Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
- A custom stock screener
- Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.
- Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
- Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
- Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.
- Real Money + Doug Kass + 15 more Wall Street Pros
- Intraday commentary & news
- Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.
- 100+ monthly options trading ideas
- Actionable options commentary & news
- Real-time trading community
- Options TV