For the four weeks ended Dec. 26, 2015, same store sales decreased 0.1 percent over the prior-year period. December front-end same store sales increased 0.8 percent. Pharmacy same store sales, which included an approximate 207 basis points negative impact from new generic introductions, decreased 0.6 percent. Prescription count at comparable stores decreased 0.4 percent over the prior-year period.
The study, titled “Going Native: Effects of Disclosure Position and Language on the Recognition and Evaluation of Online Native Advertising,” investigated how consumers react to the size and placement of native ad disclosure statements in online news articles. In the first experiment, the researchers asked subjects to read online content with two stories, one editorial and one presenting native advertising. They displayed 12 different versions of the ad, with varying types of disclosure labels (“advertising,” “sponsored by,” “brand voice,” and “presented by”), as well as different positions for the disclosure label including at the top, middle, and bottom of the page. The subjects were made to read the native ad first, followed by the real news story, then asked to distinguish which was which.
Despite delays caused by a record-breaking CyberMonday, FedEx closed out the holiday season with a half-percentage-point improvement over last year for an on-time delivery record of 97.8%. UPS didn't fare as well, meeting one-, two-, and three-day guarantees only 95.5% of the time, according to ShipMatrix. Holiday 2015's opening week proved challenging for shippers as online Christmas shopping continued its upward trend. IBM's Watson measured an 18% increase in CyberMonday sales as compared to last year.
Oil prices jumped over 2 percent in the first trading hours of 2016 as relations between Middle Eastern rivals Saudi Arabia and Iran deteriorated following Riyadh’s execution of a prominent Shi’ite Muslim cleric. Saudi Arabia cut diplomatic ties with Iran on Sunday, responding to the storming of its embassy in Tehran in an escalating row between the two major oil producers over Riyadh’s execution of cleric Nimr al-Nimr. Global oil benchmark Brent climbed over 2.5 percent and more than a dollar to a morning high of $38.50 per barrel on Monday, before easing back to $38.28 at 0136 GMT – still up $1.
Emery Deabay, a paper mill worker for four decades, sees the dismantled pieces of the old Verso mill in Bucksport leaving town by train day after day and knows the trains are taking what's left of the state's fading paper industry with it. The state's once-thriving paper mill industry, like American papermaking at large, continued its downturn in 2015 in the face of closures, digitization, foreign competition and consolidation. Remaining players in the industry, which has declined from 426 mills nationally in 2005 to 326 today, say adaptation to changing consumer trends is needed for survival. Deabay, who works in the still-operational power plant of the former mill, said it's too late for the old Bucksport mill to adapt, but hopefully something will fill its massive footprint.
Print books are making something of a comeback right now, thanks in part to the rise of coloring books and a swelling public interest in children’s literature. Newspapers, catering to hyper-local communities, are faring pretty well, too. In fact, according to a new report from global consulting firm McKinsey, every category of media—from cinema to educational publishing to video games—should see an increase in consumer spending in the next few years. Every category, that is, except magazines.