Saturday, June 12, 2010

Target on Target

The recent success of Target Stores seems to be a sign that the economy is shaking itself awake!
by Charlie Leck

Don’t worry! I’m not trying to pretend to be a business writer or stock market observer. I’m far from either. Yet, there are certain signs that the economy is coming out of its doldrums and that has a certain lap-over affect into an arena in which I do spend time – namely political observations!

Target Corp (a Minnesota based company) recently announced dividend payments to its shareholders that were up 47 percent over the last pay out. At a stockholder meeting in Colorado, the CEO told his audience that shoppers were loosening up and spending again. Retailers, like Target, have particularly felt the pinch during recent hard times. Though the company remains guarded, preserving its reserves quite conservatively, it is an interesting sign that it is opening its first store in Manhattan this year.

Another Minnesota company, United Health Group increased its dividend payout this year – by more than a thousand percent.

The only events that could save progressive politicians in this year’s election are much improved economic signs and some job growth. This, of course, would then make the coming two years much less turbulent for the Obama administration. There’s not much a political activist can do to make this happen. One just has to sit back and watch one of the most unpredictable institutions in America – its stock market.


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