In the QAD Precision News Round-Up: 13 August 2021, US consumer
prices up; UK spending increases; John Lewis expands distribution
operations; chip shortage halts production at Nissan; USPS releases
proposed surcharges; plus export management explained and more.
On Wednesday, the US Labor Department said that its Consumer Price
Index increased 5.4 percent in July from a year previous. This result
matched the 5.4 percent increase in June. Moreover, this is the
largest increase in more than a decade — since August 2008.
In addition, on a month-over-month basis, the CPI increased 0.5
percent. This is in line with the forecasts from economists surveyed
by Dow Jones. However, excluding energy and food, the CPI rose by 0.3
percent in July. This was just below expectations for growth of 0.4
percent and was well under June’s increase of 0.9 percent. Compared to
2020, the core figure is up 4.3 percent. For more details, please
In July, consumer spending in the UK increased due to sporting
events, summer holidays and the lifting of coronavirus restrictions.
According to payment card provider Barclaycard, consumer spending grew
11.6 percent last month compared to the same period in 2019.
Furthermore, there were also some good indicators from the British
Retail Consortium. According to a BRC survey, spending in shops
increased by 6.4 percent in July compared to a year earlier.
Nevertheless, BRC Chief Executive Helen Dickinson said sales were
beginning to slow. However, online sales remain strong. Barclaycard
also reported a decline in spending at bricks-and-mortar retailers.
For more information, please see RTE.
Nissan announced that it will be temporarily closing its Smyrna,
Tennessee plant. The closure is due to the global chip shortage.
Beginning on Monday, 16 August, the plant will close for two weeks.
The Nissan factory covers over 6 million square feet and employs over
6,700 workers. As a result, this shutdown will be one of the largest
shutdowns of a US auto plant of its size. Nissan stated that the chip
shortage was due to a COVID-19 outbreak at its semiconductor factory
in Malaysia. Additionally, General Motors had to shut down three of
its factories this week due to similar issues.
Moreover, analysts caution that the chip shortage experienced
globally could continue into 2022 or later. The Smyrna factory
produces six Nissan vehicles, including its top-selling US vehicle,
the Rogue. The plant will resume production on August 30. For more
details, please see AP News.
As a result of surging e-commerce demand, UK retailer John Lewis has
announced that it plans to open a new 1 million square foot warehouse
in Milton Keynes. The new facility will employ approximately 500
people and will be John Lewis’s second biggest distribution center
after the nearby Magna Park.
Furthermore, the retailer has signed a three-year lease on a 300,000
square foot distribution center in Bardon, Leicestershire. This
facility will handle the busy Black Friday discount period in late
November. The investments come as online orders at the group have
grown to 60 percent of overall sales, up from 40 percent before the
COVID-19 pandemic. For more details, please see The
On Wednesday, Amazon announced that it will add six new facilities in
Florida. The expansion will include one robotics fulfillment center as
well as five delivery stations. The new facilities will create over
2,000 full-time jobs. Completed in late 2022, the fulfillment center
will have 630,000 square feet of space. The five delivery stations
will support Amazon’s last mile delivery operations. For more
information, please click here.
The United States Postal Service has released its proposed delivery
surcharges for the holiday season. This is the second consecutive year
that it has added surcharges to peak delivery times. Nevertheless,
before the surcharges can take effect, they must be approved by an
independent agency, the Postal Regulatory Commission.
The surcharges will begin on October 3 and continue until December
26. This means that the beginning of the peak season surcharges is two
weeks earlier than in 2020. Surcharges for Priority Mail Express,
Priority Mail and Parcel Select services range from $1-$5 per piece
depending on the weight and distance traveled. The surcharges will
affect retail and commercial customers, but not international
shipments. For more details, please visit Freight Waves.
The trade in physical goods is one of the cornerstones of the global
economy. Everyday countless items travel make their way from Point A
to Point B.
Despite our reliance on global trade, items cannot always travel
freely. There are many laws governing the movement of goods. This is
true for all types of companies and all types of export transactions.
Whether you ship raw materials or finished goods, or to consumers or
businesses, you must comply with foreign trade regulations.
It is illegal to contravene international trade regulations.
Companies that do so can face fines and other penalties. These could
be serious, including loss of export privileges and even jail time. In
this 3 Minute Explainer, we look at the basics of export management.
To read the full report, please click here.