A little bit of this, a little bit of that

HomeColumnA little bit of this, a little bit of that

St. JudeWith Labor Day in our rear-view mirror, it signifies that we are approaching the quarter pole of the race that is 2022. Summer’s basically over, and now it’s time to gear up for fall. Lots of travel awaits, lots of thoughts percolating in my mind.

Let’s begin with an email I recently received from Donato Grosser, who does consulting for the Italian Trade Commission and is always a staple at Coverings. Donato was responding to my recent column on the ITR Economics presentation at the CCA Global convention:

Steve,
Excellent column. I found there is another way to measure economic activity…

“How is a recession measured? According to the National Bureau of Economic Research, there is a recession when GDP falls for two consecutive quarters. According to this definition, the United States is in recession because GDP fell by 1.6% in the first quarter of 2022 and 0.6% in the second quarter. Despite this, there are some data that indicate the U.S. economy is still expanding. Statistics show Gross Domestic Income, which is made up of wages, profits and other income, grew 1.8% in the first quarter of the year and is estimated to have grown less in the second quarter. In theory, GDP and GDI should be aligned. This situation is very anomalous. In addition, there is now data on Gross Output, which increased 2% in the first quarter. Gross Output measures spending at various stages of production, including the supply chain. There are those who say the Gross Output is a more precise measurement of the economic situation than GDP, because GDP does not consider the supply chain—only the final products. This means GDP measures only 44% of economic activity.”

This may explain in part why business is picking back up again for many flooring retailers.

Next, every floor covering retailer I’m sure is aware of Shaw Floors’ commitment to St. Jude Children’s Hospital via its various fundraising efforts. Shaw has raised more than $17 million for the research hospital’s life-saving efforts since the partnership was formed in 2012. This year Shaw will celebrate its ninth year running in the St. Jude Memphis Marathon. Last December, Shaw sent 129 associates, customers, suppliers and partners—its largest team ever. The team was crowned the top corporate fundraiser for the third year in a row. (Regrettably, I was not one of them; these days I seem to only run to the neighborhood pub.)

The people who run for St. Jude raise money through donations that go toward finding a cure for childhood cancer. The thing about St. Jude is:

  • Families never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food because all a family should worry about is helping their child live.
  • Treatments invented at St. Jude have helped push the overall childhood cancer survival rate from 20% to more than 80% since it opened more than 50 years ago.
  • St. Jude freely shares the discoveries it makes and every child saved at St. Jude means doctors and scientists worldwide can use that knowledge to save thousands more children.

My friend Debbie Kelleher, a Shaw territory manager and 2019 Circle of Distinction winner from Scottsdale, was among the 129 Shaw contingent who ran last year. She did the 5K; this year she’s stepping it up to a 10K. She exemplifies the selfless people who try to make a difference. Single mom of two, full-time job. FCNews just donated once again to Debbie’s efforts. It would be awesome if a few of our readers would do the same. It would be even better if she raised more than any other Shaw rep because of FCNews readers. Visit fundraising.stjude.org, click on “Find a Pariticipant’ and type in Debbie’s full name to support her run.

Lastly, looking at the calendar, this fall is jam packed with so many events that I am looking forward to attending and seeing as many of you as possible: National Floorcovering Alliance, FEI Group, NAFCD, FloorCon, Mohawk Edge Summit. Retailers, distributors, contractors. Would love to learn how the magazine can serve you better, what you want to see more of, less of, etc. Don’t be shy.

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Aug. 29/Sept. 5, 2022

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