Marketing News

Marketing News is South-Western's service to provide summaries of the latest marketing news stories. Review the brief summaries and, for stories of interest, select the full summary.
Title  Brief Summary 
Big Box Retailers Backing Generic Drugs
Full Summary
In a move designed to bring more shoppers into stores and to overcome criticism that it scrimps on health insurance for employees, retail-giant Wal-Mart has announced that it is rolling out a low-priced generic drug program to dozens of states.
(Updated November 2006)
The Price of Beauty
Full Summary
Eyes Lips Face (e.l.f) carved a niche in the beauty industry by helping women look great for less. Now the cosmetics maker is demonstrating its competitive agility with a new line of customized compacts that gives women more color choices.
(Updated August 2006)
Hybrid Cars: Chic, But Not Cheap
Full Summary
From the Toyota Prius to the Lexus RX400 SUV, hybrid cars are turning heads and promising to change the way America drives. But while these chic petrol-electric vehicles are more eco-friendly and fuel-efficient than are traditional gas-guzzlers, they are also far more expensive to own—and they may not pay back their price at the pump.
(Updated January 2006)
Economic Reports: Price Squeeze Ahead
Full Summary
Recent economic reports indicate that prices paid by businesses and consumers have jumped to their highest levels in years. With inflation talk swirling about the Federal Reserve, many analysts predict that a price squeeze is coming. The question is, who will get squeezed most, businesses or consumers?
(Updated October 2005)
Employee Pricing: Is it Really Over?
Full Summary
The Big Three automakers slashed prices this past summer, enabling customers to purchase 2005 vehicles at "employee discount" prices. The highly publicized incentive program proved wildly successful, as July sales were the highest of any month in the 109-year history of the U.S. auto industry.
(Updated September 2005)
Bargain Bling Bling
Full Summary
From the ostentatious bling flashed by hip-hop artists to the colored gems seen on Hollywood's most dazzling stars, diamonds are taking on a new sparkle with the younger generation. But can anyone really afford these fashionable little stones?
(Updated June 2005)
All the Young Punks are Bargain Shoppers
Full Summary
After years of binge spending on fashion items, juniors have suddenly morphed into bargain shoppers. According to one recent poll, teen shoppers are now looking for lower-priced shoes such as sandals and classic sneakers, scouring for key trends rather than brands, and spending more time on mass-merchant floors. The change has industry analysts searching for reasons that might explain the new frugality of youth shoppers.
(Updated January 2005)
Playing Fair with Price
Full Summary
Scores of "fair-trade" organizations, nonprofits, wholesalers, and other businesses have sprung up in recent years to sell everything from coffee to carvings, all while ensuring that 15 to 30 percent of the retail price goes to the artisan or farmer that produced the products. These groups charge higher-than-market prices on products to help workers earn a wage in poor countries where such products are made. Proponents of the fair trade movement say the benefits are manifold: Workers in third-world countries get safe work conditions; families can afford health care; kids get money to go to school; and the environment and ancient artistic traditions are preserved. While these benefits are important, the market for fair trade merchandise has been slow in catching on, and some analysts question whether fair trade is ultimately "fair" to all parties.
(Updated 11/1/04)
"Fill 'Er Up"…Halfway, Please
Full Summary
When American gas prices hit a record, inflation-adjusted cost of $2.99 per gallon back in 1981, Hollywood released the movie "Gas," a wacky send-up of the gas crisis featuring a reporter that investigates a story about stolen milk causing a rise in milk and gas prices. While the film is fictional, and certainly not worthy of repeat viewing, the recent spike in fuel prices has some Americans wondering what causes volatility at the pump and what might be the results.
(Updated 7/1/04)
Xbox Priced to Compete
Full Summary
Microsoft has quietly circulated the specifications for its next-generation Xbox video-game console, indicating how the company plans to carry on its war against dominant player Sony.
(Updated 4/1/04)
Does Everyone Lose In a Price War?
Full Summary
News of an economic recovery got an added boost in 2003 when President Bush declared an end to official hostilities of the Iraqi War. However, while consumer confidence is on the rise, analysts fear that the masses weaned on temporary price wars and zero-percent financing may not spend heavily again without those major incentives offered during the prior economic slump.
(Updated 10/01/03)
Everyday High Pricing-Can It Possibly Succeed?
Full Summary
While the Wal-Marts and Costcos of today's price-slashing universe are driving everyone to insane low pricing (and lower profits), some companies are actually finding ways to successfully raise prices. Michael Eisner did it with Disney in 1984 when he jacked up ticket prices at theme parks; consumers paid, and Disney's profits rocketed. Yet it remains true that most companies can't raise prices, even though they need to. However, with the economy improving, some marketers hope to find ways to raise prices and still keep customers satisfied.
(Updated 10/01/03)
Apple Prices Pop Songs at 99 Cents
Full Summary
Apple's venture into online music distribution with its iTunes system has been hailed as a solution to online music piracy, and a boon to Apple's future. However, the computer giant is grappling with content and pricing issues arising from complexities of how songs and albums should be valued-and price fluctuations are likely to continue in the foreseeable future.
(Updated 10/01/03)
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