$43 Hot Dog

hot dog

CNBC reports as the financial elite meet at Davos for the World Economic Forum they are shelling out some hefty money to eat food. Appearently hot dogs are a big seller:

Full of global leaders, policymakers, business gurus and the odd music star, the attendees at the World Economic Forum (WEF) at Davos aren’t short of a dollar or two. But they might well be at the end of the week — with some of the food prices around town proving to be a little hard to stomach.

At the posh Steigenberger Grandhotel Belvédère, a conference hotspot, even humble menu items can be astronomically pricey. A hot dog with pickles, fried onions and mustard is priced at 38 Swiss francs (about $43.50). It’s 48 Swiss francs for a chicken Caesar salad with parmesan (about $55) and a draft beer at a local restaurant – in a pint-sized glass – can cost 6.50 Swiss francs, about $7.50.

I really don’t know how this yearly meeting of financial gurus does for the world economy. Probably a lot of it is nostalgia. But you do get a lot of lecturing of how to live your life from these people. This does remind me of a story related to Walmart. One year during their annual board meeting of directors the financial numbers weren’t too hot. The meeting was getting close to lunch and board members were getting ready for a big spread. The door opened and it was a Walmart associate with bread, lunch meat and some chips. The members looked stunned and the director said [paraphrasing] “If we are losing money, that means we have to cut expenses”.

I think I’ll buy my hot dogs at Walmart.

Walmart Challenges Amazon

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From Reuters –

Wal-Mart Stores Inc has informed managers of its roughly 5,000 stores across the United States that they can match prices with Amazon.com Inc and other online retailers, the head of the company’s U.S. business said on Thursday.

Greg Foran said the directive was meant to formalize a practice already in place in many stores. “About half of the stores were doing it anyway,” Foran said on a call with media following the reporting of its quarterly results.

Walmart Competing Against Doctor Offices

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Walmart is now opening clinics to compete in the ever changing healthcare landscape. This from Marketwatch:

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. pushed down prices for some generic prescription drugs to just $4 eight years ago, setting a new industry standard. Now it is trying to do the same for seeing a doctor.

On Friday, a Walmart Care Clinic opened in Dalton, Ga., six months after Walmart U.S., the retailer’s biggest unit, entered the business of providing primary health care. It now operates a dozen clinics in rural Texas, South Carolina and Georgia and has increased its target for openings this year to 17.

Here is a list of pricing for services offered:

An office visit costs $40, which Walmart U.S. says is about half the industry standard, and just $4 for Walmart U.S. employees and family members with the company’s insurance. A pregnancy test costs just $3, and a cholesterol test $8. A typical retail clinic offers acute care only. But a Walmart Care Clinic also treats chronic conditions such as diabetes. (Walmart U.S. also leases space in its stores to 94 clinics owned by others that set their own pricing.)