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Opinion
Andrea Felsted

Walmart Rings More Alarm Bells for the US Economy

Shoppers are growing nervous. If the world’s largest retailer is struggling, the rest of the consumer sector is going to hurt even worse.

Warnings.

Warnings.

Photographer: Brandon Bell/Getty Images North America

It wasn’t supposed to be like this.

Walmart Inc. is the world’s biggest retailer, with stores that are a beacon of low prices and a corporate culture that is famously penny-pinching. If anyone was to thrive in the current economic environment, it should have been the big-box retailer. And yet, on Monday it warned on profit for a second time in just over two months. That is an ominous sign for the whole consumer sector and the broader US economy.