Tech Thoughts Daily Net News ? July 5, 2013 \/\/TOP\\\\
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With smartphone ownership in the U.S. more than doubling in the past five years, Americans are embracing mobile technology at a rapid pace. And while adoption rates among seniors continue to trail those of the overall population, the share of adults ages 65 and up who own smartphones has risen 24 percentage points (from 18% to 42%) since 2013. Today, roughly half of older adults who own cellphones have some type of smartphone; in 2013, that share was just 23%.
Initially launched in December 2018, SeasonalJobs.dol.gov is a mobile-friendly online portal that leverages the latest technologies to broaden dissemination of available temporary and seasonal job opportunities for which U.S. workers may be interested in applying. On November 19, 2021, OFLC implemented several enhancements designed to improve customer service and broaden U.S. worker access to available job opportunities. First, SeasonalJobs.dol.gov now makes information about H-2A and H-2B job opportunities more accessible to U.S. workers with limited English proficiency by offering a Spanish translation of both the website content and specific terms and conditions of the job opportunity. Second, to facilitate broader dissemination of available job opportunities, OFLC has significantly expanded the amount of job information available to any third-party (e.g., job search websites) through data feeds, which can be extracted daily and indexed for further advertising to U.S. workers. And finally, a new customer feedback feature is available that allows any person visiting the website to quickly report a defect or offer an idea or suggestion for improving the functional capabilities of the website.
Stores opened greater than two years - Our stores opened greater than two years (store sites opened as follows: 2015 group - opened 2013 and earlier, 2014 group - opened 2012 and earlier, and 2013 group - opened 2011 and earlier) represent a consistent 'same-store' view of our business. During the months noted below, the stores opened greater than two years had daily sales growth rates of (compared to the same month in the preceding year):
Stores opened greater than five years - The impact of the economy, over time, is best reflected in the growth performance of our stores opened greater than five years (store sites opened as follows: 2015 group - opened 2010 and earlier, 2014 group - opened 2009 and earlier, and 2013 group - opened 2008 and earlier). This group, which represented about 90% of our total sales in the first six months of 2015, is more cyclical due to the increased market share they enjoy in their local markets. During the months noted below, the stores opened greater than five years had daily sales growth rates of (compared to the same month in the preceding year):
During the first half of 2013, the fastener product line was heavily impacted by our industrial production business. These customers utilize our fasteners in the manufacture/assembly of their finished products. The end markets with the most pronounced weakening included heavy machinery manufacturers with exposure to: mining, military, agriculture, and construction. The daily sales growth in July 2013 and December 2013 were negatively impacted by the timing of the July 4th holiday (Thursday in 2013 versus Wednesday in 2012) and the Christmas/New Year holiday (Wednesday in 2013 versus Tuesday in 2012). This resulted in a 'lone' business day on Friday, July 5, 2013, in which many of our customers were closed, and three distinct one to two day work periods in the last two weeks of December 2013. The December 2013 impact was amplified due to poor weather conditions.
Our sales to customers engaged in light and medium duty manufacturing (largely related to consumer products) began to improve late in 2013 and into 2014. This makes sense given the trends in the PMI Index. In the first quarter of 2014, our sales growth was hampered in January and February due to a weak economy and foreign exchange rate fluctuations (primarily related to the Canadian dollar); however, the biggest impact was a severe winter in North America and its negative impact on our customers and our trucking network. In March 2014, the weak economy and negative foreign exchange rate fluctuations continued; however, the weather normalized and our daily sales growth expanded to 11.6%. This double digit growth in March was helped by the Easter timing (April in 2014). In the second quarter of 2014, the negative impact of the Easter timing was felt, and then a 'less noisy' picture emerged in May and June. Our sales to customers engaged in heavy machinery manufacturing (primarily serving the mining, military, agricultural, and construction end markets), which represents approximately one fifth of our business, had a very weak 2013, but stabilized late in 2013 and improved in 2014.
The table below shows the pattern to the sequential change in our daily sales. The line labeled 'Benchmark' is an historical average of our sequential daily sales change for the period 1998 to 2013, excluding 2008 and 2009. We believe this time frame will serve to show the historical pattern and could serve as a benchmark for current performance. We excluded the 2008 to 2009 time frame because it contains an extreme economic event and we don't believe it is comparable. The '2015', '2014', and '2013' lines represent our actual sequential daily sales changes. The '15Delta', '14Delta', and '13Delta' lines indicate the difference between the 'Benchmark' and the actual results in the respective year.
A graph of the sequential daily sales trends to these two end markets in 2015, 2014, and 2013, starting with a base of '100' in the previous October and ending with the next October, would be as follows: 2b1af7f3a8