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Showing posts with label retail. Show all posts
Showing posts with label retail. Show all posts

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Jack Ma and Alibaba to spend nearly half a billion dollars to turn global retail into a cashless society

When most people think of a cashless society, they generally point towards actions being taken or discussed by government legislators, academics, and even central banks.  But it is not often that the move towards a completely digital economy is being undertaken by a free market enterprise.

Until now.

Ant Financial, which is a subsidiary of Jack Ma's online retail company, Alibaba, is looking to spend nearly half a billion dollars to entice businesses around the world to join his dream of creating a completely cashless retail environment.

Image result for jack ma cashless society
ALIBABA'S financial affiliate Ant Financial said it plans to spend 3 billion yuan (US$435 million) each year in the next two years to push forward the construction of a cashless society through partnership with various kinds of merchants and service providers. 
A total of 15 institutions became the first batch of members of the cashless alliance including the United Nations Environment Program and retailer Carrefour to help boost the adoption of cashless payment. 
Finnish mobile payment service provider ePassi and Australian payment firm Paybang also joined the alliance, which eventually hopes to include 30 million members covering 100 nations. - Shanghai Daily
Interestingly, the inclusion of the UN's Environmental Program to the partnership suggests highly that this vision is about much more than digital commerce, and perhaps is part of the elites goal of instituting a carbon credit monetary system as well as bringing about Agenda 21.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Bitcoin finally to function as a currency as Japanese retailers rush to allow the digital money as payment

In the opinion of the staff here at The Daily Economist, a large number of Bitcoin advocates over the past few years have sold out the original mission of the crypto-currency as being primarily a form of decentralized money that individuals and entities could use as a medium of exchange for goods and services and instead have welcomed its financialization by both Wall Street type markets, and third party conduits.  By this we mean that Bitcoin has been seen and purchased more as a speculative investment versus used as a form of money.

But with the Japanese government suddenly buying into the crypto-currency last week, and setting forth a regulatory framework to allow it to function as a medium of exchange within their nation's borders, Japanese retailers on April 5 are now rushing in to get on board to accept Bitcoin in their online and brick and mortar stores.

Image result for bitcoin is money
A few days after Japan recognized bitcoin as a legal method of payment, two of the country’s biggest retailers have sealed cooperation agreements with bitcoin exchanges to begin accepting the digital currency. 
The two leading retail groups, Bic Camera and Recruit Lifestyle, have announced trials of a bitcoin payment option, according to Japanese daily Nikkei. 
Bic Camera, a consumer chain selling electronics, has partnered with the Tokyo-based bitcoin exchange bitFlyer. The retailer will test the digital currency in two outlets. 
Consumers will be able to pay up to 100,000 yen ($900) using bitcoin, getting reward points at the same rate as for cash payments. 
Recruit Lifestyle, the retail branch of human resources conglomerate Recruit Holdings, is cooperating with another Tokyo bitcoin exchange operator Coincheck to include bitcoin payment option into its AirRegi application. 
The step will enable over 260,000 outlets across the country to start accepting bitcoin. Coincheck will process payments made by consumers using the app, converting bitcoins into yen and transferring the funds to the store. 
Japan is poised to become one of the leading cryptocurrency markets. Nearly 4,500 Japanese stores are currently accepting bitcoin while over 700,000 outlets actively use other modes of digital payments. - Russia Today

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

World's largest retailer Walmart pushing customers towards eliminating use of cash in their stores

As governments around the world mull over, or actually start to implement the elimination of physical cash, the world's largest retailer Walmart is now jumping onto this bandwagon.

In a new initiative announced on Feb. 28, the retail giant updated their mobile app with a new feature meant to entice customers to perform their pharmaceutical and money changing activities online, with the carrot incentive of no longer having to wait in line to fill out their documentation or to pay for these services.

Image result for walmart cashless
Walmart yesterday launched a new initiative in its drive towards zero-cash at its stores. 
The world's largest retailer has added a new feature to its mobile app, which would allow its pharmacy and money services customers to beat long queues, The Street reported.
Whether it was about refilling a prescription or wiring money, all tasks could be done without paperwork and checking prescriptions before stepping into the store, the report said. 
Walmart said while customers would still need to visit the store to pick up prescriptions and verify payments made through money services, express lanes would be set up to cut waiting times to as little as 40 seconds as against six to 11 minutes at present.
The app and express lanes would be introduced at 1,200 locations in March,  and extended to 4,700 US stores by the fall. - Domain B
In 2016 Walmart introduced an app called Walmart Pay in which customers would no longer need to use physical cash, or even receive a physical receipt when checking out as they would pay and document their purchases completely on their smartphones.

While cashless retail shopping is not widespread in the U.S. at this time, a growing number of countries in Europe are nearly 100% cashless, with many of their own retailers no longer even accepting physical cash as payment for items or services.

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Bitcoin goes mainstream as Japan legalizes the crypto-currency and designates it as legal tender

As major world currencies such as the Yen, Yuan, and Euro struggle to remain viable in an eroding global monetary system, some governments are slowly coming to accept the advent of alternative mediums of exchange that their citizens can use to protect their purchasing power.

Since 2009, dozens of central banks have embarked on a currency war following the 2008 global financial crisis in order to protect their economies and especially their exports.  And ironically it was this same year that Bitcoin came onto the scene as the world's first crypto-currency.

And over the past eight years governments have struggled with how to deal with a form of currency that they could not control, tax, or regulate, and Bitcoin inevitably followed the path laid out by Mahatma Gandhi when he used a non-violent method of rebellion to eventually secure India's freedom from Britain.
"First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win."
And on Feb. 9 we may have just seen the first real victory for Bitcoin acceptance in the mainstream as the Japanese government has officially decreed Bitcoin to now be considered as legal tender, and welcomed it for use by individuals and businesses.
Embracing cryptocurrency, Japan has a new law that will make bitcoins usable as legal tender. Companies hoping to deal in the new currency, however, must submit to a long list of regulations to ensure that the ‘coins’ are not being used for criminal activity. 
Among the regulations, a company is required to have at least $100,000 in reserve currency, report their activities to the government regularly, and undergo routine external audits by the Japanese National Tax Agency. 
Japanese companies wishing to use bitcoins will be expected to pay the equivalent of some $300,000 to adopt bitcoin, and there is no guarantee that they will receive a license, even if they abide by government edicts. The steep price tag will likely discourage smaller Japanese companies from adopting the cryptocurrency. 
The measures have been put in place, according to reports, to protect the rights of consumers, as bitcoins have been involved in several notorious scams. The most famous of these was the Mt. Gox scandal, in which a bitcoin exchange company was found to be artificially inflating their holdings. At its 2013 peak, Mt. Gox handled about 70 percent of bitcoin transactions in Japan, but the scandal shuttered them. - Sputnik News
Image result for bitcoin yen

There are of course many upsides and downsides to this new initiative by Japan embracing Bitcoin.  First, centralized regulation by a government is the antithesis of what the original creators of Bitcoin desired when they created the crypto-currency almost a decade ago, and it threatens to impart a growing loss of confidence in the digital currency as people begin to see Bitcoin simply as another fiat medium of exchange subject to the whims of government.  However, acceptance by that same government could be the catalyst necessary for reaching a point of critical mass, where retailers will rush into accepting the currency as it explodes in recognition locally, and elsewhere around the world.

Additionally, and like what we have seen recently over in China, the legalizing of Bitcoin as a viable form of currency could see a massive rush by the Japanese people into exchanging their Yen or Dollars for Bitcoin, causing the price to skyrocket even higher than it is today, while also removing supply out from the general marketplace.  Because according to the original programmers, only 21 million Bitcoin will ever be created (mined), and the Japanese population could easily co-opt the entire supply if just 20% purchased just one Bitcoin apiece.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Retail closures scream recession

First it was Macy’s, who within days of the start of the new year announced store closures and layoffs, and was quickly followed by bell wealth company Walmart, who doubled down and reported the closure of hundreds of stores.  And now we can include at least six more major retailers who are shuttering down their low revenue outlets as economic conditions scream recession a little more than a month into 2016.
Contrary to mainstream business news, last year’s holiday shopping season was a major disappointment with sales growth worse than in 2014.  And after two years of blaming cold weather on slumping sales, these same pundits switched course and blamed warm weather instead.

Read more on this article here...

Monday, November 9, 2015

Walmart greeters +378,000, student loan ridden Millennials 0

It’s that time of the month again when the Hopey and Changey economic recovery gets to spin the jobs numbers for more political points.  And with today’s massive blowout over what most analysts forecast for new jobs created on Nov. 6, the world is right once again, and there is nothing to worry about in the economy.
Well, perhaps not so fast.
When we take a look at October’s job numbers, which came in at a whopping +271,000, we see a scary dichotomy that is sure to make student loan ridden millennials cry in their sleep.  That is because not only did the majority of new jobs (378,000) go to workers in the age range of over 55, but workers in the current generation lost 35,000 jobs making it a zero sum game for those ever wanting to pay off their loans and one day even dream of buying a home.
Graphic courtesy of Zerohedge
Read more on this article here...

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Retail sales in U.S. fall back to recession levels

The U.S. is no longer a manufacturing economy, and is instead a consumer based one where over 70% of the annual GDP is tied to consumer and government spending.  So when this single component drops by even a small amount quarter to quarter or year to year, it creates a huge impact on the overall growth for America.
Which is why new data from Johnson-Redbook shows that consumer spending growth has fallen to levels not seen since the Great Recession (2009), and forecasts for the upcoming holiday season are expected to be the weakest in five years.

Read more on this article here...

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Black Friday and Cyber Monday retail sales dissapoint

It is considered the two most important selling days of the year, and can easily make or break a business dependent upon the outcome.  And with 2014 being an overall disappointing year for consumer spending, both Black Friday and Cyber Monday did little to change that trend as sales for the start of the holiday shopping season were well below expectations.
 

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Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Obama recovery? Just don’t check with retail stores for the answer

Last week it was discovered that Democratic campaign advisers were issuing warnings to candidates seeking office during the 2014 elections.  That warning was to not talk about, or use the term, ‘economic recovery‘, as surveys showed that the American people no longer believe the spin and rhetoric coming from the primary party in power.
This week however, we are seeing more valid information as to why, and on Monday, Credit Suisse announced that retail store closures are surging, and are showing numbers double the store closings in the same period last year.
 
Read more on this article here...

Monday, January 27, 2014

One of world’s largest online electronic’s stores now accepts Bitcoin

Beginning on Jan. 23, one of the world’s largest online retailer of electronics will now accept Bitcoins as money to purchase products on their website.
Tiger Direct.com, which sells more than 200000 products that include, pc’s, laptops, televisions, and components, will now accept Bitcoin as cash and help increase the digital money presence in stores worldwide.

Read more on this article here...