Abha Bhattarai
Abha Bhattarai
Economics Correspondent for The Washington Post. @LoebAwards winner. Northwestern grad. Austin native. Email with stories or tips: abha.bhattarai@washpost.comSource
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Fewer hot showers, less meat: How retirees on fixed incomes are dealing with inflation

Fewer hot showers, less meat: How retirees on fixed incomes are dealing with inflation

Leslie Morgan is doing everything she can to save money: She quit smoking, cut back on groceries and is rationing hot showers so she can keep her water heater off for days at a time. But it hasn’t been enough, she says. Rent, food and utilities are all becoming more expensive, making it tough for the retired teacher to make ends meet on roughly $3,000 a month in pension and Social Security payments. “Just surviving day to day has become a big concern of mine — because, how in the world?” said Morgan, 65, who lives in Asheville, N.C. “Yes, I can afford what I’m doing right now, but I’m...

Mar 21
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Mall department stores were struggling. The pandemic has pushed them to the edge of extinction.

Mall department stores were struggling. The pandemic has pushed them to the edge of extinction.

Adrienne Whyte used to go to the mall twice a week, where she might meet up with her personal shoppers at Neiman Marcus and Saks Fifth Avenue or scour Macy’s for bedding and kitchenware.But it’s been well over a year since she set foot in a department store — and she isn’t sure when, or whether, she will again.“Now if I need something, I buy it online,” said the 72-year-old retiree from Falls Church, Va. “The department store is a one-stop shop, but so is the Internet.”Department stores, once a middle-class mainstay of convenience and indulgence, had been spiraling downward long before the...

April 16, 2021
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Walmart to invest $350 billion in U.S. manufacturing

Walmart to invest $350 billion in U.S. manufacturing

ADWalmart plans to invest $350 billion in products made, grown or assembled in the United States over the next 10 years, a move it says will help create 750,000 jobs.The world’s largest retailer said Wednesday it is committing to source a wide range of American-made products, including textiles, plastics, small electrical appliances, food processing, and pharmaceutical and medical supplies.The announcement follows a similar commitment from 2013, when it said it would invest $250 billion in products made (or grown or assembled) domestically. That effort later came under scrutiny after...

March 3, 2021
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Stealing to survive: More Americans are shoplifting food as aid runs out during the pandemic

Stealing to survive: More Americans are shoplifting food as aid runs out during the pandemic

Early in the pandemic, Joo Park noticed a worrisome shift at the market he manages near downtown Washington: At least once a day, he'd spot someone slipping a package of meat, a bag of rice or other food into a shirt or under a jacket. Diapers, shampoo and laundry detergent began disappearing in bigger numbers, too.Since then, he said, thefts have more than doubled at Capitol Supermarket - even though he now stations more employees at the entrance, asks shoppers to leave backpacks up front and displays high-theft items like hand sanitizer and baking yeast in more conspicuous areas. Park...

December 10, 2020
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Bonuses before bankruptcy: Companies doled out millions to executives before filing for Chapter 11

Bonuses before bankruptcy: Companies doled out millions to executives before filing for Chapter 11

Desktop notifications are on   | Get breaking news alerts from Turn on desktop notifications? Add to list On my list The recession tipped dozens of troubled companies into bankruptcy, setting off a rush of store closures, furloughs and layoffs. But several major brands, including Hertz Global, J.C. Penney and Neiman Marcus, doled out millions in executive bonuses just before filing for Chapter 11 protection, according to a Washington Post analysis of regulatory filings and court documents. Since the pandemic took hold in March, at least 18 large companies have rewarded executives with six-...

October 26, 2020
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