FINANCE

Mass affluent, Gen Y defer spending for retirement

BY Dan Berthiaume

New York – In what could be bad news for retailers, “mass affluent” consumers (those with $50,000 to $250,000 in investable assets) and Gen Y (age 18-34) are cutting back on spending to save for retirement. According to the Spring 2013 Merrill Edge Report, the average mass affluent investor expects to save $860,000 for retirement but has only saved $150,000. If given an extra $1,000 per month, 50% of mass affluent consumers would put it toward savings or paying down debt.

Meanwhile, Gen Y consumers are starting to save for retirement at age 22 on average (Baby Boomers did not start until age 35 onaverage) and have already saved an average of $55,000 for retirement. Seventy-seven percent of Gen Y consumers plan to increase their retirement savings in thenext 12 months and 57% will invest more in the stock market this year.

“Many mass affluent, particularly young investors, are focusing on their retirement goals by saving earlier and planning now for the lifestyle they want to live during their retirement years,” said Alok Prasad, head of Merrill Edge.

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Shake Shack deploys NCR smartphone app

BY Dan Berthiaume

Duluth, Ga. – Shake Shack has implemented the NCR Pulse Real-Time smartphone application. The app provides real-time, segmented performance metrics and notifications to employee smartphones, generated by a SaaS-based mobile analytics engine and can be integrated with NCR POS platforms.

“NCR Pulse Real-Time is a great tool,” said Giancarlo Fiorarancio, director of information systems, Shake Shack. “It gives you information that you can use right now to improve your results for the rest of the day.”

The chain is using the application to review data such as real-time sales, labor costs and voids and comps.

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Walmart consumers get wireless options

BY CSA STAFF

CITY OF INDUSTRY, Calif. — Walmart plans to offer two TP-Link portable wireless networking products in 800 of its stores nationwide. TP-Link is a global provider of networking products.

The set of products which will be available on select Walmart store shelves are the 150Mbps Wireless N Nano Router and the TP-Link Portable Battery Powered 3G/4G Wireless N Router.

"Walmart is trying to fill a void for portable and mobile networking products as well as assess the TP-Link value," said Lewis Wu, country manager of TP-LINK USA. "Should these products perform as we expect them to, there will be opportunities to offer more TP-Link products to Walmart’s customers."

The 150Mbps Wireless N Mini Pocket Router connects users in places that offer wired-only Internet. Users plug the router into a power outlet, insert the Ethernet cable into the device and it’s ready to share the Internet "wirelessly" with multiple users at 150Mbps speed with superior range if the device is placed nearby. It is small enough to fit inside a pocket, and ideal for connecting computers, tablets, smart phones, portable gaming consoles and other Wi-Fi enabled mobile devices while on-the-go.

The Portable Battery Powered 3G/4G Wireless N Router is a mobile networking device that pairs with a 3G/4G USB modem. Users insert the USB modem and the device will broadcast a wireless signal creating a mobile office or entertainment network for up to five devices to simultaneously access the 3G/4G mobile network. The device is the ideal travel companion, with pocket-sized design and powered by an internal rechargeable 2000mAh battery. The device is also easy to use, allowing users to rapidly set up a wireless Internet connection in as little time as it takes to plug in their 3G/4G USB router or an Ethernet cable.

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