Market Minute: Retailers Push to Improve Working Conditions in Bangladesh

Big name retailers push a plan to improve factory safety overseas. That and more are what's making business news Thursday.

The Dow industrials (^DJI) jumped 149 points yesterday, its second straight triple digit gain. The S&P 500 (^GSPC) gained 15 points and the Nasdaq (^IXIC) rose 28.

bangladesh factory collapse worker safety retail walmart target
A number of leading American retailers are reportedly near a deal to establish a $50 million, five-year fund to improve safety conditions in the garment factories they use in Bangladesh.

The Wall Street Journal says the agreement hinges on the government there agreeing to certain accountability measures to oversee the safety improvements. Walmart Stores (WMT), Gap (GPS), Target (TGT), Macy's (M) and Sears Holdings (SHLD) are among the companies backing this deal.

Gold prices have slumped to their lowest level in nearly three years, and that's crushing some mining stocks. Newmont Mining (NEM) is down 41 percent so far this year. Barrick Gold (ABX) has tumbled 57 percent.

The Journal also reports that Verizon (VZ) is in talks to acquire Canadian mobile phone company Mobilicity, and a second, smaller company. Canadian officials have recently eased rules on foreign ownership in an effort to spur competition.

Shares of Clearwire (CLWR) have soared this year as Sprint (S) and Dish Network (DISH) waged a bidding war. But now Dish is dropping out, and Clearwire is likely to retreat.

On the Earnings Front

Bed, Bath & Beyond (BBBY) says earnings edged lower, but revenue rose -- both in line with expectations.

Office furniture company Herman Miller's (MLHR) net nearly doubled from a year ago, but the company's forecast for the current quarter fell well below Street expectations.

A trio of IPOs debut today, but in a sign of the market turmoil, all three were priced at the low end or below expectations. HD Supply, which was spun off from Home Depot (HD), goes on sale at $18 a share. The video advertising network Tremor Video is priced at $10, and there's also an IPO from tech-equipment seller CDW, which hits the market at $17 a share, well below recent expectations.

Hopefully they didn't pay consultants to come up with ticker symbol -- CDW.

-Produced by Drew Trachtenberg

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I believe it is very wrong, for Walmart, Sears, other restaurants are condemning, the cook that said that N word, and other people as well, what happened to words freedom of speech, look like this country is beginning to be like Russia, they can tell you what to say and not to say. Besides that people live in glass houses shall not cast rocks, we are not to be judged God will judge us for everything we do

June 27 2013 at 6:10 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

The big boys are on a roll

June 27 2013 at 4:37 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Not only are we the world police, we now dictate working conditions in other countries. Wonder why the world hates the USA.

June 27 2013 at 4:21 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply

No wonder the businesses listed are having financial troubles, they should not have any business at all having things made out of our own, very needy country.

June 27 2013 at 4:09 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

This makes me want to throw up. Why not just bring the work back to this country where jobs are needed and not worry about improving conditions for a work force who are nothing but cheaper labor as are the products.

June 27 2013 at 4:07 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Big John

Is this supposed to make the unemployed American feel better? All these people care about is cheap labor and big markups. Sickening !!!

June 27 2013 at 3:21 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply

Retailers Push to Improve Working Conditions in Bangladesh............WOW!..........what a great idea! Why didn't they think about this years ago?

June 27 2013 at 3:19 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Rather than pushing for better working conditions off shore, why not hire manufacturers in the United States to produce your goods?

June 27 2013 at 2:49 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to rastock's comment

That would be a splendid idea, but I'm afraid that the fascist capitalist profiteers exploit far more riches off the backs of the over worked impoverished slaves in third world rat trap factories.

June 27 2013 at 3:01 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply

I wonder what gave the retailers religion out of a sudden, or is this still some more hype for public consumption?

June 27 2013 at 2:33 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

So where where these Companies all the years this has been happening.
Merrily taking the MONEY to the bank.
They knew about the conditions these people where working under and until they got caught just like all criminals went happily along thinking no one would ever know.They should all be fined heavily for allowing this all these years.And we as consumer should stop buying these companies goods and stocks.

June 27 2013 at 2:28 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply