Good Evening! Tuesday was the last day in a turbulent month of February on Wall Street for U.S. equities.
The S&P 500 was down 0.30%, while the Dow Jones fell 0.71%. However, the Nasdaq Composite only fell by 0.10%.
DIVERSIFICATION CAN GO A LONG WAY
As consumer spending turns away from discretionary categories, Target (TGT) reported fiscal fourth-quarter profits above projections. Especially with what remains a “very challenging environment,” Target CEO Brian Cornell expressed his team’s satisfaction with the sales gain.
- Revenue: $31.40 Billion vs. $30.46 Billion Expected
- Same Store Sales: 0.7% vs. -1.74% Expected
- Earnings Per Share: $1.89 vs. $1.48 Expected
Diversification in products? Cornell said that having several category offers, including food & beverage in addition to beauty and home goods, benefited the shop during the previous quarter.
Looking ahead! The company is focusing on its long-term plan and “continued differentiation through affordability, assortment, ease, and convenience,” according to Cornell. On top of that, in the following three years, the firm aspires to surpass its pre-pandemic operating income margin rate of 6%, with the possibility of achieving this objective as early as fiscal 2024.
PART-TIME VS. FULL-TIME
According to statistics evaluated by the WSJ from the Labor Department, more than a million people entered part-time employment in December and January, with the majority opting for temporary work over full-time.
Let’s look deeper into the data… As of last month, nearly 22 million part-time workers deliberately worked less than 35 hours per week, compared to just 4 million who sought full-time hours but were unable to get them. According to the WSJ, this is a 6 to 1 ratio and is the highest it has been in twenty years.
But, Why? Early in the pandemic, when layoffs shook the economy, the percentage of people working part-time “for economic reasons,” as classified by the Labor Bureau, increased and peaked in April 2020. After that, however, the mood shifted: an increasing number of individuals chose to work part-time “for noneconomic reasons,” such as caring and personal health.