P&G posts weak 4Q sales, raising the price of diapers
Tuesday, July 31
CINCINNATI (AP) — Procter & Gamble’s fiscal fourth-quarter sales fell short of expectations and the world’s biggest consumer products maker said it’ll be raising prices on some of its most well-known brands, including Pampers.
The company said that it’ll be raising prices on Pampers in North America. It’s also boosting prices on Bounty, Charmin and Puffs.
Shares dropped more than 3 percent before the opening bell on Tuesday.
Prices for Americans have begun to rise, though at a rate that economists believe is healthy for the overall economy.
Earlier this month, the Labor Department reported that the June increase in its producer price index — which measures inflation pressures before they reach the consumer, was only 0.3 percent in June, but the 12-month gain was the fastest in more than six years.
Those costs, depending on the company, can be passed on to consumers.
On Tuesday, P&G said “core gross margin decreased 100 basis points, as 270 basis points of manufacturing cost savings were more than offset by 110 basis points of commodity and shipping cost increases,” among other things.
For the three months ended June 30, P&G earned $1.89 billion, or 72 cents per share. A year earlier the Cincinnati company earned $2.22 billion, or 82 cents per share.
Stripping out one-time gains and costs, earnings were 94 cents per share. That’s 4 cents better than what analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research were calling for.
Revenue rose to $16.5 billion from $16.08 billion, bolstered by a 10 percent increase in beauty segment sales. Wall Street was expecting $16.55 billion in revenue.
Procter & Gamble Co. anticipates fiscal 2019 earnings to be $4.45 per share. Analysts polled by FactSet predict $4.39 per share.
Elements of this story were generated by Automated Insights (http://automatedinsights.com/ap) using data from Zacks Investment Research. Access a Zacks stock report on PG at https://www.zacks.com/ap/PG
Inflation, gas prices, tariffs squeeze consumers
By DAMIAN J. TROISE and SARAH SKIDMORE SELL
AP Business Writers
Wednesday, August 1
The price of a can of Coca-Cola? Likely going up. A package of Pampers? That too. Plane tickets? They also may be more expensive. These items and more may cost more in the coming months as people start feeling the effects of higher fuel prices and raw-material costs as well as a range of tariffs.
Janette Hendricks said she has noticed higher prices on “just about everything” in the past three months or so. That’s put a little pressure on the recently retired nurse in Washington. So she goes shopping less often, “makes things stretch,” and she always shops for things on sale. She said she has also considered going back to work to have more cushion in the budget.
“The economy is doing great, so why is everyone doing so poorly?” she asked.
The consumer price index, the government’s primary measure of inflation, rose 2.9 percent in June from a year earlier, the fastest increase in six years. Starbucks had said in June that it had raised the price of a regular drip coffee, and McDonald’s said it raised prices when it reported its latest sales figures.
“I cut back on a lot of things,” said Ada Caro of New York, sitting outside a Target in lower Manhattan. “I just buy the necessities.”
Procter & Gamble, one of the biggest makers of consumer products, had said Tuesday that Pampers prices will increase by an average of 4 percent in North America, while the Bounty, Charmin and Puffs brands could see 5 percent increases.
Gas prices have already surged more than 24 percent in the past year. Rent and other housing costs were up 3.4 percent in June compared to a year earlier, and auto insurance has jumped more than 7 percent.
Hendricks said she and her husband also drive far less as they’ve noticed gas prices on the rise. Halla Byer, 28, has also seen the cost of filling up her car go up. The recently unemployed Portland, Oregon, resident feels optimistic about opportunities in the city, but joked of higher prices “making broke people more broke.”
The Federal Reserve, which tries to keep inflation at or slightly above 2 percent, has been raising interest rates to make sure that price pressures don’t get out of hand. Though President Donald Trump has criticized the central bank for raising rates, economists expect increases again in September and perhaps December.
Some of the higher prices also come as companies react to the Trump administration’s tariffs on steel, aluminum, lumber from Canada, and on $34 billion of imports from China. Beijing has imposed new duties on U.S. exports as well.
Overall, the aluminum and steel tariffs could cost the U.S. beverage industry nearly $348 million, according to The Beer Institute. Coca Cola has announced plans to raise prices, citing the cost of raw materials and packaging, though the impact on retailers and consumers is hard to gauge.
“Clearly, it’s disruptive for us. It’s disruptive for our customers,” Coca-Cola Co. CEO James Quincey said in a call with investors last week.
Rising fuel costs are prompting airlines to cull unprofitable flights and consider boosting ticket prices. Spot prices for jet fuel are up about 50 percent from a year ago.
American Airlines Group Inc. saw its second-quarter profit plunge by more than a third as spending on fuel surged, and CEO William Douglas Parker warned about rising fares. Delta Air Lines Inc. CEO Edward H. Bastian said prices are up about 4 percent from last year.
“Pricing is certainly a function of cost, and with higher fuel prices, you’re going to expect to see ticket prices go up as well,” he told investors in July.
Industrial equipment companies are feeling the impact of the trade disputes. Caterpillar, which makes construction and agricultural equipment, said it plans to raise prices to offset the steel and higher material costs.
The National Association of Home Builders estimates that the tariffs the Trump administration placed on Canadian softwood lumber — along with other factors — have increased the cost of constructing a house by $7,000. Higher lumber prices may cause a slowdown in home construction, which would also mean a possible slowdown in job growth. Both building permits and groundbreaking slowed in June, according to the Commerce Department.
“Any higher costs for material comes right out of our profit,” said Randy Noel, a custom builder in Louisiana and chairman of the home builders’ board.
Higher costs mean his company has only sold 30 homes this year, rather than the normal 40. He’s been using fewer subcontractors on projects — which means those workers lose income.
“They’re sitting at home and looking for remodeling jobs,” Noel said.
AP Business Writers Josh Boak and Christopher Rugaber in Washington, D.C., contributed to this report.
Troopers seize $6.3 million worth of cocaine in Wood County
Ohio State Highway Patrol
August 1, 2018
MILLBURY – Ohio State Highway Patrol troopers filed felony drug charges against a Quebec man after a traffic stop in Wood County. During the traffic stop, troopers seized 165 pounds of cocaine valued at approximately $6.3 million.
On July 31, 2018 at 11:17 a.m., troopers stopped a rented 2018 Chrysler 300 with California registration for several marked lanes violations on the Ohio Turnpike. Criminal indicators were observed and a Patrol drug-sniffing canine alerted to the vehicle. A probable cause search revealed the contraband.
The suspect, Larbi Benkaddour, 46, was incarcerated in the Wood County Jail and charged with possession and trafficking in cocaine, both first-degree felonies.
If convicted, he could face up to 20 years in prison and up to a $40,000 fine.
A photo of the seized contraband is available for download on the Patrol’s website at www.statepatrol.ohio.gov
Since 2011, state troopers have interdicted more than $421 million in drugs and contraband including over 2,100 pounds of cocaine, worth approximately $80 million.
Secretary Husted Releases 2018 Annual Report, Highlights Workforce Development Initiatives
Secretary Husted touts business services and workforce development success.
Wednesday, August 1, 2018
COLUMBUS – Secretary Husted today released the Ohio Secretary of State’s 2018 Annual Report. The report outlines a series of initiatives the office has championed over the most recent state fiscal year, including achievements in the areas of business services, elections, and fiscal stewardship.
“We weren’t just marking time over the past year,” Secretary Husted said. “We set priorities, rolled up our sleeves and got to work for Ohioans. The last year saw us increase ballot access in our elections, shred more bureaucratic red tape, and follow through on the promise to run our office without using a single taxpayer dollar.”
In early 2017, Secretary Husted announced plans to operate his office without the use of taxpayer dollars for state fiscal years 2018 and 2019. Not only has Secretary Husted made good on that commitment, but since the start of his administration in 2011, office cash reserves have grown by 242 percent.
These savings have gone beyond the Secretary’s office and reached Ohio’s taxpayers and businesses alike. Last year was the eighth consecutive record-breaking year for new business filings in Ohio, and April 2018 marked the best month for filings in state history. These achievements were spurred by a series of innovative efforts to modernize business services in the Secretary of State’s office, including a 21 percent reduction in filing fees and ensuring that all business filings can now be submitted online. Today, four out of every five businesses are launched online.
Secretary Husted’s commitment to job creators and workforce development was highlighted in late-2017 when he embarked on a Workforce Development Listening Tour. Traveling throughout Ohio, the Secretary met with various educators, entrepreneurs, and industry leaders to learn of the current challenges facing job creators in Ohio. As part of that series, the Secretary shared information about the many reforms his office has championed to improve conditions for businesses looking to take root in Ohio.
On the elections front in 2018, the Secretary of State’s office pursued a series of initiatives to promote civic engagement and make it easier for Ohioans to vote in the coming years. Changes included a new, easy-to-use online search for voters to look up the status of their registration, as well as the implementation of “last chance” mailing urging inactive voters to respond or update their voter registration before cancellation. Secretary Husted also announced that newly acquired funds from the Helping America Vote Act (HAVA) will be used to enhance elections security. Projects being funded with HAVA funds include election security workshops, improvements to the statewide voter database, post-elections audits, and partnering with “pathfinder” consultants to assist in systems security and readiness.
More information can be found in the Ohio Secretary of State’s 2018 Annual Report.
2018 Long-range fall forecast: Unseasonable warmth to grip Northeast; Extreme fire season predicted in West
AccuWeather Global Weather Center – August 1, 2018 – It will be a gradual transition to fall for the Northeast and mid-Atlantic this year, as warmth lingers for both regions.
The Southeast will remain at risk for a tropical impact and flooding rainfall while the Southwest sizzles in scorching heat.
Meanwhile, the central and northern Plains will get a little bit of everything, including the threat for some early-season snow.
AccuWeather Fall 2018 Forecast
Gradual transition to fall in store for Northeast, mid-Atlantic and eastern Ohio Valley
A warm fall is predicted overall for the Northeast and mid-Atlantic as chilly air takes its time to arrive.
Warmth is set to linger across upstate New York, New England and the northern mid-Atlantic states, with nights cooling off before daytime highs start to drop.
“You can expect it to cool down the farther south and west you go due to precipitation,” AccuWeather Expert Long-Range Forecaster Paul Pastelok said.
The mid-Atlantic, in particular, may be faced with tropical rainfall early in the season.
“There’s been a lot of rainfall for the spring and summer, so if we do get any tropical impact, the risk of flash flooding will exist,” Pastelok said.
While autumn may take longer than usual to arrive, it will be a picturesque season if forecasters are correct. Dry weather in the Northeast paired will cool nights will pave the way for vibrant leaves to emerge across the region.
Flash flooding possible as wet weather continues for the Southeast
The persistent wet pattern that occurred over the summer may continue into fall for the Southeast.
New Orleans, Louisiana; Birmingham, Alabama; Atlanta, Georgia; and Nashville and Chattanooga, Tennessee; are in the path to receive more rainfall after an already wet summer.
“I’d be watching for flash flooding in the area,” Pastelok said.
Systems coming out of the southwest could create severe weather into October, he said.
Meanwhile, a transition to El Niño may mean a quieter hurricane season than originally predicted.
El Niño is a part of a routine climate pattern that occurs when sea surface temperatures in the tropical Pacific Ocean rise to above-normal levels for an extended period of time.
“We’re definitely looking at a different season than last year,” Pastelok said.
Two to three U.S. impacts are predicted, and forecasters will have their eyes on the southeastern Gulf heading into September.
‘Bit of everything’ in store from the western Ohio Valley to the central and northern Plains
From the western Ohio Valley to the central and northern Plains, forecasters predict there’s a bit of everything on the cards.
Much of the northern Plains and Upper Midwest will have back-and-forth periods of wet and dry weather.
Temperature-wise, the season will start off warm before a blast of chilly air comes down from Canada.
This could lead to some early snow events.
Pastelok said, “If systems start coming out of the southwest, which we expect in mid- to late October, it could lead to some mixed rain and snow events across that area.”
El Niño may send much-needed rainfall to the southern Plains
While much of the southern Plains will be enduring drought as the fall season begins, a reversal is in store.
El Niño typically strengthens the southern jet stream, which could increase rainfall in September or October, Pastelok said.
Depending on how strong the southern jet stream becomes, drought conditions could be dramatically lessened or even ended during the fall season.
The wet weather will also help to cool down the air after a rather warm start.
Summer to linger in the Southwest with some extreme temperatures predicted
Hot and dry conditions will grip the Southwest early in the season.
“There could be some extreme temperatures in September for the Desert Southwest from Phoenix on westward,” Pastelok said.
These conditions will keep the threat for fires high before October brings a turnaround to cooler weather.
Meanwhile, dryness and dangerous fire conditions will continue for California.
“It looks like a really bad year for them,” Pastelok said.
Northwest, Rockies to see turnaround to cooler weather by mid-season
As is typical, the Northwest and Rockies will endure hot conditions into the early fall.
Temperatures will be steamy, but they won’t rival the summer of 2017.
Regardless, this will stoke the fire threat early on.
By mid-fall, a quick turnaround is predicted from hot weather to cooler air.
“You could be in hot and dry weather, then a week later, it could pretty cold with snow in the higher elevations,” Pastelok said.
Ski areas will benefit from an early start to the season, he added.
Download the free AccuWeather app to stay aware of weather hazards for your area.
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More than 1.5 billion people worldwide rely on AccuWeather to help them plan their lives, protect their businesses, and get more from their day. AccuWeather provides hourly and Minute by Minute™ forecasts with Superior Accuracy™ with customized content and engaging video presentations available on smartphones, tablets, free wired and mobile Internet sites, connected TVs, and Internet appliances, as well as via radio, television, and newspapers. Established in 1962 by Founder, President, and Chairman Dr. Joel N. Myers—a Fellow of the American Meteorological Society who was recognized as one of the top entrepreneurs in American history by Entrepreneur Magazine’s Encyclopedia of Entrepreneurs—AccuWeather also delivers a wide range of highly customized enterprise solutions to media, business, government, and institutions, as well as news, weather content, and video for more than 180,000 third-party websites.
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OPINION: THEIR VIEW
Yost Ju(lying) his Way into August
Dettelbach for Ohio
Wednesday, August 1, 2018
CLEVELAND — Today is August 1st, but it would be remiss of us to let July pass without taking a look back at Yost’s long month of mishaps and lies. He truly is Ju(lying) his way into August.
Paying Ohio kids to attend his speeches. News reports revealed that Yost allowed ECOT founder Bill Lager to pay students up to $50 each in taxpayer money to attend graduation ceremonies, where Yost gave speeches and presented awards (for bookkeeping!) to the scam school on three separate occasions. Yost’s excuse? The practice was legal.
YOST OWES TAXPAYERS UP TO 300K. A number of parties have called on Yost to reimburse taxpayers for the money spent to build a crowd for his speeches. With ECOT claiming “more than 2,000” graduates in 2013, 2014 and 2015 respectively, Yost’s total tab to taxpayers could exceed $300,000. We’re still waiting for him to give it back.
Yost and crew continue lying about the now-debunked ‘165 claim.’ Even after a cleveland.com deep dive debunked Yost’s repeated claim that his office has secured convictions for 165 public officials, Yost has continued to lie about his record.
This time around, he’s taken his lies to Google search ads for his campaign:
Republicans Splinter on ECOT & DeWine Throws Yost Under the Bus. In an attempt to deflect blame, Attorney General Mike DeWine insisted his hands were tied in holding ECOT and its founder accountable due to Yost’s failure to refer the case. First, that isn’t true. The AG has full authority to investigate corruption far and wide — and certainly corruption right in front of him. Second, it looks like Republicans are splintering on ECOT by pointing fingers at each other. The Republican ECOT cover-up continues.
Yost Teaching a Course He Flunked. Today — if you can believe it — Yost and his office are hosting a community school training and offering courses in attendance reporting and fraud prevention. The fraud prevention course is titled “Fraud Red Flags” and promises to cover “various fraud schemes and techniques to proactively prevent fraud.”
We think a case study in the timeline below holds a lot of “real life example” promise for pupils:
October 2014 – ECOT alerts the Auditor’s office that a whistleblower has alleged the e-school is “cooking its attendance books.”
November 12, 2014 – Yost filed paperwork to create the Yost 2014 Transition Fund.
November 25, 2014 – Yost’s office decides against conducting a full audit in response to the whistleblower’s claims and writes ECOT to lay the groundwork for a limited “special examination”
December 2, 2014 – ECOT writes Yost’s office objecting to auditors’ request to review log-in data as part of the special investigation
December 12, 2014 – The Yost 2014 Transition Fund received $7,500 from ECOT’s parent company, founder and a top executive – over 20 percent of the money it raised.
December 16, 2014 – Yost signed ECOT’s audit for the year ending June 30, 2014.
January 22, 2015 – Yost closed the special investigation of ECOT, concluding “all was ok,” according to the Columbus Dispatch. Auditors never ask again for log-in data.
Yost Teaches Training on Catching Charter School Fraud and Other Unlikely Teachers
Dettelbach for Ohio
Wednesday, August 1, 2018
COLUMBUS — Today, Auditor of State Dave Yost is holding his annual charter school training, where he is offering courses on attendance reporting and fraud prevention. The irony is palpable.
Dave Yost has a long track record of failing to stop fraud at the now-defunct Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow (ECOT), an e-school that defrauded taxpayers by nearly $200 million. In fact, Yost gave ECOT awards for bookkeeping—the same books they used to swindle Ohio taxpayers and children while Yost looked the other way.
Yost sponsoring courses on stopping fraud got us thinking. Maybe Dave can help put together these classes too:
Putin teaching a class on cybersecurity.
Bernie Madoff’s Investing 101.
An arsonist’s guide to fire prevention.
Mark Zuckerberg teaching a course on privacy.
Paul Manafort’s Introduction to Business Ethics.
Tom Brady: How to Win Without Cheating.
Cookie Monster’s two-day seminar on portion control.
Al Capone teaching a class on the Rule of Law.
Kim Kardashian and modesty for the modern selfie-taker.
Betsy DeVos setting foot in a school to teach any kind of class…
A class on grammar, Yoda teaches.