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Wal-Mart Attracting More Affluent Consumers

Wal-Mart's emphasis on low prices is keeping lower-income customers loyal and attracting more affluent shoppers who usually spend elsewhere, according to Eduardo Castro-Wright, CEO of the retailer's U.S. division. He hopes to keep those customers once the economy turns around by capturing their imagination with the "store experience."

Wal-Mart has worked to shorten checkout times, which Castro-Wright says have improved by a third, and make stores more attractive and cleaner. Wal-Mart is changing displays to make them brighter and draw even more emphasis to low prices that are shown on ever-larger placards.

Castro-Wright says the company surveys between 500,000 and 1 million customers every month, and the weight customers give to price has nearly doubled from a year ago. The surveys also show that the number of more affluent shoppers increased 0.7% in February and was up 2.2% in March.

Read the whole story at USA Today/AP »

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