The NHL is back, the NRF comes clean, and NFC is facocked. Jes’ like we tol’ ya.
We told you here that The New York Times’s Jeff Klein would be wrong when he wrote that the National Hockey League would be “challenged” in coming back from its long lockout. Let’s use his own words from last week, post-lockout, to show you just how right we were, and how wrong he was:
“The N.H.L. returned over the weekend to sold-out arenas and record opening-day television audiences.”
In case Klein needs more reminders of how sorry his prediction was, he can check out this:
“The 3-2 Hawks win turned in a 5.40 local rating on CSN Chicago…shattering the previous record set in a March 2010 win over Vancouver.”
“The Bruins-Rangers game, drew 956,000 viewers, the best ever for NBC Sports Network for a regular season game…It was the most-watched NHL game on cable since 1.28 million tuned in to a Sharks-Red Wings game in January of 2002." TWO. THOUSAND. AND. TWO.
If there is bad news here, it is that New York Rangers fans will have to read Jeff “anti-hockey” (and “anti-grammar” by the way) Klein all season as the team struggles to shake off its high-paid rust.
NRF One Step Closer To Integrity
Someone must have sent execs at the National Retail Federation our story about its horrific forecasting escapades, most recently for the 2012 holiday shopping season.
We believe that is the case because the NRF did something it has NEVER done before: it compared actual results to its forecast.
Here is an excerpt from its January 15 press release:
“Total holiday retail sales increased 3.0 percent, below NRF’s projected forecast of 4.1…”
We fell off our chair.
So why do we say “One Step Closer” in our subheadline above? Because the rest of its press release is typical NRF obfuscation.
“For over six months, we’ve been saying that the fiscal cliff and economic uncertainty could impact holiday sales.” Not true. The NRF must have forgotten it said this (among so much other guff) during the shopping season: “…holiday shoppers have been out in full force these last few weeks…” Nary a cliff in sight.
In addition, the NRF still managed in its most recent press release to pass of U.S. Department of Commerce data as its own. Finally, whoever wrote the first sentence must have been so upset knowing a confession was coming that he/she tossed off this ungrammatical gem:
“Solid consumer spending in the month of December helped retailers finish the year with a healthy holiday shopping season, however economic uncertainties sent a cautious consumer to the stores.”
The NRF’s 2013 Valentine’s Day shopping forecast will be out soon. We will be all over it, like roses on a stem.
NFC = No Friggin’ Chance?
We told you here about the crazy mobile payments industry, with investment and development activity in near-field communications (NFC) technology a trillion times out of proportion to the lack of consumer interest. Cash, credit and debit cards work just fine for most folks.
So we had to laugh when we read this:
“Walmart and the other Merchant Customer Exchange members recently announced they would opt for a software-based mobile wallet instead of one based on Near Field Communication hardware.”
Boom! Ten years of effort down the hardware drain?