China's Ping An Insurance Group entered a $127.1 million joint venture to develop shopping centers that will be anchored by Wal-Marts. Its subsidiary, China Ping An Trust & Investment Co. Ltd., will jointly develop the properties with Pan-China Commercial Property Development (Shenzhen) Co. Ltd. The joint venture will build its first malls in Beijing, Nanning, Yuxi and Jingzhou. Wal-Mart owns 66 stores in China.
After Bill O'Reilly and other Fox News commentators last year blasted retailers for using the phrase “Happy Holidays” rather than “Merry Christmas,” Wal-Mart became the first retailer to switch its language. This year its stores carry “Merry Christmas” messages. In stores, some of Wal-Mart's specific references to Christmas include ‘The Christmas Shop’, previously known as ‘The Holiday Shop’ — where they sell decorations. It also is including “Days ‘Til Christmas” signage in its stores, among other measures.
Wal-Mart pulled skull-and-crossbones T-shirts from its shelves after a Bent Corner, a Maryland-based blog, noted that the image was strikingly similar to a Nazi emblem. The site posted a picture of the shirt next to an image of an insignia used by one of the Nazi SS units. The logo shows a caricature of a slightly-tilted skull with two stacked bones behind it.