NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- It struck me kinda funny to see Wal-Mart (WMT) use a Canadian band, Rush, to promote the merits of American workers (and the company's apparent commitment to them) with a warm and fuzzy Winter Olympics television advertisement:
At one time, WMT might have been the stock you buy, hold, accumulate, forget about and leave to your grandkids. Like McDonalds (MCD).
But that's probably no longer the case. Wal-Mart provides what could be a cross-industry case study for competing on little more than price. It's probably not the best route to take if you're a tech company attempting to challenge Apple (AAPL). And, as Sterne Agee recently outlined, via Business Insider, the strategy of being the low price leader appears to be backfiring on Wal-Mart:
Family Dollar (FDO) shoppers paid 2.7% less on purchases than Wal-Mart shoppers in January ... Dollar General (DG) shoppers paid .2% less ...
The cost of the baskets has dropped by $9.37 and $4 at Family Dollar and Dollar General, respectively, since May 2013. By comparison, the cost of the baskets has increased $2.36 at Wal-Mart.
Wal-Mart never had a viable exit plan from the slums. Now, it's in trouble. And it's aiming for a nostalgic shot to the heart by way of the dulcet tones of the great Geddy Lee.
--Written by Rocco Pendola in Santa Monica, Calif.