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Posts tagged: Walmart stores

Swami says: You can’t go wrong with gift cards from Walmart, Target, McDonald’s

Holiday Gift Cards, anew.  We posted yesterday about federal efforts to eliminate expiration dates on gift cards.

Today, we list the top 20 favorite gift cards, by retailer. This list comes by way of GiftCardRescue.

You can see the list yourself in this graphic, from GiftCardRescue.

The website, which sells gift cards, said it's conducted surveys over the past five years to arrive at this list.

It said it relied on roughly 20,000 gift card wish lists to produce this listing.

On top this year is Wal-Mart, followed by Target, McDonald’s, Amazon.com and Home Depot.

“What has been remarkable to watch is the steady rise of McDonald’s gift cards in the rankings over the last few years to claim the No. 3 spot in 2012,” says Kwame Kuadey, CEO of GiftCardRescue.com. “Other than that, the top five most wanted gift cards have remained consistent.”

Walmart and Target workers raising concerns about Thanksgiving sales

So the retail season has a little drama developing this week.
It's the increasing concern by some parts of the business world that stores that open on Thanksgiving are turning into Scrooge, forcing employees to give up one of the entitled holidays most Americans enjoy.

To continue the literary analogy, the players taking the role of Bob Cratchit are employees from Target and Walmart.

Here is a summary of the two similar efforts gaining steam as the Thanksgiving drama unfolds:

Some Walmart workers across the country are considering either striking or takingother actions during Thanksgiving week.

Those workers are predicting as many as 1,000 protests at Walmart stores leading up to Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday. Workers announced upcoming strikes and protests in Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, Miami, Milwaukee, Washington, D.C., as well as workers' plans to walk off the job in Oklahoma, Mississippi, Louisiana and Minnesota. 

The Walmart concern goes beyond early shopping. Reports say concerned Walmart workers are protesting poor working conditions, higher benefits costs, efforts to block people of color, and retaliation against workers advocating for changes in these areas. Some also have said the “Black Thanksgiving” early shopping start before Black Friday is disruptive for many families wishing to enjoy the holiday with relatives.

Then there's the ongoing effort by workers to urge Target to change plans to open at 9 p.m. on Thanksgiving eve.

One Target employee, Casey St. Clair, recently delivered more than 350,000 signatures from her Change.org petition to the company's headquarters in Minneapolis. Along with several local Target customers and community faith leaders, St. Clair brought the signatures to the office of Target President & CEO Gregg Steinhafel in several boxes.



  

Walmart announces it will finally break ground on new E. Sprague store

We asked recently when Walmart would get around to breaking ground on a new store in Spokane Valley.

In March 2010 the company first announced it had plans for the store, west of the Costco at 5200 E. Sprague.  Our first story said: 

Walmart says it will square off with Costco Wholesale Corp. in the Spokane Valley.
The Bentonville, Ark., retail behemoth announced Thursday it will build a 151,000-square-foot retail center on a parcel of land due west of Costco’s store at 5601 E. Sprague Ave.
Jennifer Spall, the Bentonville company's director of public affairs and government relations, said: “Walmart plans to break ground this November on its new full-service store in Spokane Valley. A specific ground-breaking date has not yet been set.  Construction will be completed approximately 12 to 14 months after ground-breaking.”

How soon is Wal-Mart building its newest Spokane Valley store?

About a year ago the SR published news that Wal-Mart would put another new store in Spokane Valley, about six blocks east of the Costco, about 5601 E. Sprague.

There hasn't been a lot of progress so far on that project, which we wrote about first here. Why not?

We tracked down Wal-Mart's regional contacts to find out when the project will get going. Here's the reply:

  • Construction will start in late summer or early fall. Think August or September.
  • It will take 12 to 14 months after groundbreaking before the new Wal-Mart opens. 
  • A Spokane Valley hiring center will be set up roughly 90 days before the doors open. That hiring office will have an online component for job applicants. It's here.  

The store will include a garden center with outside sales area covering about 4,700 square feet (very large). 

It is slated to include an indoor pharmacy, a full-service grocery and a Subway sandwich store inside.

When finished, it will be about 155,000 square feet.

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