business news in context, analysis with attitude

•  From the New York Times:

"Americans have faced substantial inflation at grocery stores and restaurants. Over the past year, overall food prices were up 8.5 percent as consumers paid more for staples like eggs, fruit and meat.

"And corporations that wrested back pricing power during the pandemic may be reluctant to give it up. In earnings reports over the past week, some of the biggest packaged food companies said they raised their prices last quarter and saw their profits go up.

"But there have been signs that consumers are starting to resist price increases by cutting back or trading down to lower-priced options. Some of the same multinational companies that raised prices on food said the volume they sold went down.

"Brands risk alienating consumers with these high prices, said Sucharita Kodali, a retail analyst at Forrester. 'Customers may or may not come back,' she said. 'At some point, they will say enough is enough'."

•  From the Associated Press:

"Applications for unemployment benefits in the United States fell last week as the labor market continues to show strength despite some weakness in other parts of the economy.

"The number of Americans filing for jobless claims for the week ending April 22 fell by 16,000 to 230,000, the Labor Department reported Thursday.

"The four-week moving average of claims, which flattens some of the week-to-week volatility, fell by 6,000 to 236,000. At the start of the year, weekly claims were running around 200,000, and they have gradually moved higher."

•  After it filed for bankruptcy protection and said it would be closing down, Bed Bath & Beyond said it would no longer be accepting the familiar - some would say, ubiquitous - blue and white coupons that defined its marketing approach.

However, the coupons will still have some value - both The Container Store and Big Lots said they will accept the 20-percent-off coupons for the next few weeks as they look to fill the void left by Bed Bath & Beyond's demise.