AARP/Walgreens Wellness Tour rides again
DEERFIELD, Ill. — Beginning in mid-March, the AARP/Walgreens Wellness Tour will embark on another 10-month tour to provide an expected $14 million worth of free health tests.
The national mobile tour will conduct free health-testing events in communities throughout the United States and Puerto Rico. The free tests — which include total cholesterol levels, blood pressure, bone density, glucose levels, waist circumference and body mass index — are valued at $100 per person and may help provide adults with a critical foundation for early disease detection and prevention.
"During previous tours, I’ve seen how these free tests can be a life-saving resource," stated Greg Wasson, Walgreens president and CEO. "This campaign will help a tremendous number of people improve their lives through greater access to health resources, particularly for those most in need."
The AARP/Walgreens Wellness Tour is comprised of nine custom-equipped buses with a dedicated trained staff that travels separate routes canvassing the country. Each bus will spend several days in designated cities providing free services at local events, community centers, Walgreens store locations and other select locations to make health tests more accessible to the community.
Tests are available to adults ages 18 years and older. After the tests are performed, a pharmacist or trained staff member will provide the results and review them with the consumer. Visitors also will have access to free educational information on a variety of health-and-wellness issues available in both English and Spanish. Consumers are encouraged to report their test results to their doctor or healthcare provider so they may discuss any concerns with them.
More good economic news
NEW YORK — The Deloitte Consumer Spending Index offered some hope that the economy is improving, however consumer spending not likely to reach pre-recession levels anytime soon. The Index, released Monday, rose in February, driven primarily by the slight improvements in real home prices and initial jobless claims, according to the company.
The Index attempts to track consumer cash flow as an indicator of future consumer spending.
“Despite the small gains in the Index, the recent sharp rise in energy prices could weaken consumer purchasing power in the months ahead,” said Carl Steidtmann, Deloitte’s chief economist and author of the monthly Index. “The stabilization in real home prices may also be temporary given the persistent strain on the housing market. On the upside, should the slow but steady improvement in employment continue, it may help offset price increases.”
The Index, which comprises four components — tax burden, initial unemployment claims, real wages, and real home prices — rose to 4.02 %, from an upwardly revised gain of 3.92% a month ago.
“Unsurprisingly, some retailers are concerned about rising costs and whether they can avoid passing them on to consumers,” said Alison Paul, vice chairman and retail sector leader, Deloitte LLP. “Retailers should consider costs across the entire supply chain, from strategic sourcing at the back end to the technologies and analysis they use for monitoring inventories and product movement at the front end.”
Williams-Sonoma reports record earnings growth
San Francisco — Williams-Sonoma announced that net revenues for fourth quarter 2010 increased 9.7% to $1.195 billion versus $1.09 billion in fourth quarter 2010, including Internet net revenue growth of 27.2% and a comparable-store sales increase of 5.2%.
Diluted earnings per share on a GAAP basis were $1.05 for the quarter, compared with 81 cents for the same period last year.
Laura Alber, president and CEO, commented: “Fiscal 2010 was a record earnings year for Williams-Sonoma. Each of our brands is stronger today than a year ago and we made substantial progress on our longer term growth and profitability initiatives. We are particularly pleased with the progress we made in merchandising, marketing, customer acquisition, and customer service, as it is these competitive advantages that allowed us to attract new customers to our brands and gain profitable market share all year, including Internet revenue growth of 27%.”
Going forward, Alber said she expects growth in the company’s e-commerce business.
"In fiscal 2011, we expect e-commerce to once again be our most profitable and fastest growing channel. As such, our direct-to-customer segment is expected to reach 43% of total company revenues in fiscal 2011 versus 41% in fiscal 2010."
Williams-Sonoma reported that net revenues for the 2010 fiscal year increased 12.9% to $3.5 billion versus $3.1 billion last year, including Internet net revenue growth of 26.9% and a comparable-store sales increase of 9.8%. Diluted earnings per share on a GAAP basis were $1.83, compared with 72 cents for the same period last year.
For fiscal 2011, the company is expecting non-GAAP diluted earnings per share increasing in the range of 8% to 12% and net revenues increasing in the range of 4% to 6%.