Walmart chief says signs of recovery ‘very muted’
“Customers are still fragile. This economic recovery is still very close, but we see some positive signs with the information from consumers, but those signs have been very muted,” said Duke, whose operations reported fiscal year 2012 sales of some $444 billion and 2.2 million employees.
Speaking to a private meeting of the Council on Foreign Relations in New York City, Duke explained that his company’s findings were based on data derived from the shopping habits of Walmart “moms” who are a “pretty good barometer” of trends in general.
“One week before the election only 25 percent of our customers knew about the fiscal cliff. One week after, it rose to 75 percent,” he said.
Those findings were relayed directly to the White House in a recent meeting with business leaders, said Duke.