U.S. Postal Service data breach, McDonalds (MCD) sales down and General Motors (GM) ordered parts two months before recall

Markets were heading slightly higher on Monday after the United States Postal Service announced that there was a data breach the affected it’s employees and their call center. They reported that nearly 800,000 employees have had their personal information compromised along with customer’s data that called into the call center from January through August of this year. The information that was compromised from employees could include things such as Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses and more. David Partenherimer, the spokesman for USPS, said that they start alerting employees on Monday morning and they would be covering a year of credit monitoring for it’s employees. He also said, “The intrusion is limited in scope and all operations of the Postal Service are functioning normally.” The FBI is leading the investigation.

Shares of McDonald’s Corp. (MCD) were relatively flat after the company announced that worldwide sales at their established restaurants were down in October. The company partially attributed the drop from stiffer competition and their supplier scandal in Japan and China. Sales at stores open at least 13 months were down 0.5%. This did, however, beat out analysts’ expectations of a 2.2% drop. When focusing just on the U.S. same-store sales were down 1%, which was also less than the 1.9% analysts’ had been projecting. Current Chief Executive Officer, Don Thompson, took over in July 2012 and has since been putting efforts on refocusing the brand. He has been pushing the company to instill fresh ingredients and custom sandwich toppings. The company has also been facing harder competition from stores like Wendy’s, In-N-Out Burger and Chick-fil-A.

Shares of General Motors (GM) were heading lower after news was released that the company had placed an order for nearly 500,000 ignition switches almost two months before alerting consumers of the ignition recall that was attributed to nearly 30 deaths. The emails show that show the order placement were brought to light by the Wall Street Journal. The original emails were sent in the middle of December 2013. The emails were sent between a General Motors contract worker and indicate there was “urgent” order for replacement switches, which followed a meeting of senior executives. The recall affected nearly 2.5 million cars.

That’s all for today,

Warren Gates, Normandy Research

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