Here are three things people are talking about in the market this week.
Et tu, face scrub?
The U.K.’s ban on making products with microbeads — tiny plastic particles in everything from cosmetics to shampoo and toothpaste — took effect Jan. 8 in an effort to protect marine life. The U.K. joins other countries including New Zealand and Canada, in banning them. Former President Barack Obama signed a bill to outlaw microbeads in rinse-off products in the U.S. in 2015.
What it means for you: You may need to move toward more natural exfoliators in the short-term, and you’ll be able to enjoy the ocean more in the long-term. A win-win!
Fitbit is investing heavily in blood sugar (how sweet)
The move appears to be part of Fitbit’s larger plans to make its fitness devices more valuable for overall health. Sano, founded in 2011, is a San Francisco company that has been working on what it describes as a minimally invasive, continuous glucose monitor that you’d wear on your skin like a patch.
What it means for you: If you’re living with diabetes, like almost 30 million other Americans, a lot! Now you can harness Fitbit’s excellent data collection technology to keep your blood sugar in check. A holistic approach to health is best, and now it will be more stylish than ever.
Walmart raises wages and closes stores
In a good move overall for the economy, the world’s largest private employer has indicated that it will raise minimum wages to $11. This news confusingly comes the same day as word that they’ll be shuttering several hundred stores under the same corporate umbrella.
What it means for you: If you’re currently working for Walmart and earning minimum wage, you get a raise (that may be eaten up by the new tax bill)! If you’ve worked there for 20+ years, you also get a one-time cash bonus of $1,000. Target recently raised its minimum wage and Amazon and Costco offer similar wages to their workers. Plus, Massachusetts and Washington have established $11 an hour as the going rate for all workers, meaning that Walmart already had to pay employees in those states that amount. Rising wages reflect a generally tight labor market.