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Walmart-Flipkart deal faces opposition; GrubHub teams up with Jack in the Box

TOP NEWS

* A right-wing Hindu group of Indian farmers want U.S. retail giant Walmart Inc.'s $16 billion acquisition of e-commerce platform Flipkart Online Services Pvt. Ltd. to be scrapped out of fear that small traders will suffer from the deal, Reuters reported. The small protest can pose a challenge for the Indian prime minister, who will be up for re-election next year, the report said, adding that officials were told not to comment on the merger.

* GrubHub Inc. teamed up with San Diego-based Jack in the Box Inc. to offer the restaurant operator's menu items through its delivery platform across 20 markets, including in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Dallas, Phoenix and Las Vegas. The companies also plan to incorporate GrubHub's point-of-sale integration into Jack in the Box's in-house system to allow restaurant operators to manage all of their orders from one device.

FOOD RETAIL AND DISTRIBUTION

* French retailer Carrefour SA's Brazil unit launched a drive-thru collection service in its São Paulo outlet that allows customers to select products online and pick up the orders in a designated area, Reuters reported, citing a company statement. The service reportedly is available in various countries but was recently expanded to the Brazilian market as the local Carrefour subsidiary looks to take advantage of the e-commerce space. Details on Carrefour Brasil's plans to expand the service were not provided, the report said.

PACKAGED FOODS

* Philippines-based conglomerate San Miguel Corp.'s San Miguel Pure Foods Co. Inc. posted a 7% year-over-year decline in net income to 1.36 billion pesos in the first quarter of fiscal 2018 from 1.47 billion pesos in the year-ago quarter. Its Ginebra San Miguel Inc. gin distillery business nearly doubled its net income for the period to 255 million pesos from 129 million pesos in the same quarter of 2017. Meanwhile, San Miguel Brewery Inc. recorded a 26% year-over-year increase in the quarter to 5.67 billion pesos from 4.49 billion pesos in the first quarter of fiscal 2017.

* South Korean packaged food company CJ Cheiljedang Corp. increased its operating income 9.2% in the first-quarter 2018 to 210.3 billion won from 192.5 billion won for the comparable quarter of 2017. However, its net profit fell 20.7% year over year to 72.1 billion won from 91 billion won in the year-ago period.

RESTAURANTS

* London Mayor Sadiq Khan will propose to ban junk food advertising on public transportation, including ground trains and buses, the Financial Times reported. According to the newspaper, a study by the National Centre for Social Research and Cancer Research U.K. suggests that advertising can influence families when choosing meals. Khan aims to reach out to the national government to face the issue across the country, the report said.

INDUSTRY NEWS

* China's consumer inflation grew marginally because of the 16% drop in pork prices, which weighed heavily on the country's consumer price index, offsetting the higher food costs, the Financial Times reported, citing the country's National Bureau of Statistics. The consumer price index rose 1.8% on a year-on-year basis in April.

* In a bid to address public health problems related to obesity and cancer, the Peruvian government increased the excise taxes on high-sugar drinks, liquor, cigarettes and petroleum-powered cars, Reuters reported. Tax on cigarettes reportedly will be 0.27 sol from 0.18 sol per cigarette, while sugary drinks will have a 25% tax compared to 17%. The National Society of Industries is against the tax hike, the report said, warning that it would lead to more contraband and pirated goods.

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Spread between supplier, retail prices a boost for grocer profits

The day ahead

Early morning futures indicators pointed to a higher opening for the U.S. market.

In Asia, the Hang Seng rose 1.02% to 31,122.06, and the Nikkei 225 climbed 1.16% to 22,758.48.

In Europe, around midday, the FTSE 100 was down 0.09% to 7,693.397, and the Euronext 100 was down 0.19% to 1,068.34.

On the macro front

The import and export prices report, the consumer sentiment report and the Baker-Hughes Rig Count report are due out today.

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