Wal-mart leading economic indicator

The old saying was “as goes Detroit, so goes the nation.” Today, we should substitute “Wal-Mart” for Detroit. The ubiquitous retailer is the nation’s largest private employer (1.1 million); it accounts for 9 percent of US retail sales. Its annual US sales of $203.7 billion dwarf the combined sales of the next four largest US

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Office upgrade touts collaboration

Reuters reports that Microsoft unveiled the latest version of Office today. The application suite is designed to allow people to collaborate on documents using the Web. Another reported feature is “self-destructing” documents. The Globe & Mail focuses on Outlook’s spam filtering and Microsoft’s positioning of Office for enterprise (group) use, versus “individual” purchase.

Innovation and tech giants

Authors Clayton Christensen and Michael Raynor have penned a sequal to Christensen’s 1997 book, The Innovator’s Dilemma. The first chapter of The Innovator’s Solution: Creating and Sustaining Successful Growth , follows AT&T’s search for new identity post-breakup, a $50 billion exercise, according to reviewer Leslie Walker at the Washington Post. Amazon; Powell’s.