The Bet

Has Wal-Mart suddenly turned blue?

Last week the world’s largest private employer announced that it supports plans to reform health care. Since Wal-Mart has consistently opposed mandating employer-provided health insurance, this change of heart is significant. After all, if a company that employs half-a-million people supports employer mandates, who can oppose them?

But we need to keep in mind the political realities of reform. If reform comes and you oppose it, you’ve lost standing in shaping that reform. If reform fails but you supported it, you haven’t really lost anything. Kind of like Pascal’s wager.

Understood this way, Wal-Mart’s position makes sense. By virtue of its size, Wal-Mart will probably always have a seat at the table. But because people cycle from the private sector to government service and back again, Wal-Mart’s influence should only grow. Call it the retail-industrial complex.

Douglas R. Tengdin, CFA
Chief Investment Officer
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By | 2014-09-04T18:56:47+00:00 July 6th, 2009|Global Market Update|0 Comments

About the Author:

Mr. Tengdin is the Chief Investment Officer at Charter Trust Company and author of “The Global Market Update”. The audio version of each post can be heard on radio stations throughout New England every weekday. Mr. Tengdin graduated from Dartmouth College, Magna Cum Laude. He received his Master of Arts from Trinity Divinity School, Magna Cum Laude and received his Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation in 1992. Mr. Tengdin has been managing investment portfolios for over 30 years, working for Bank of Boston, State Street Global Advisors, Citibank – Tunisia, and Banknorth Group. Throughout his career, Mr. Tengdin has emphasized helping clients manage their financial risks in difficult environments where they can profit from investing in diverse assets in diverse settings. - Leave a comment if you have any questions—I read them all! - And Follow me on Twitter @GlobalMarketUpd

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