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Target earnings beat expectations, though profits down

Plus: New protections for the gar; more snow coming up; e-pulltabs Court of Appeals case; Monica, Rachel, Chandler, Joey, Ross and Phoebe move to Minnesota?; and more.

Target, downtown Minneapolis
Target, downtown Minneapolis
MinnPost photo by Corey Anderson

The Strib’s Nicole Norfleet reportsMinneapolis retailer Target surprised Wall Street on Tuesday morning with an earnings report that beat analysts’ expectations as well as more cautious predictions from Target’s own leaders late last year. Target said it earned $876 million, or $1.89 cents a diluted share, from November through January. It was considerably better than the $1.40 analysts forecasted. Its fourth quarter revenue of $31.4 billion, a change of a little more than 1% from the year before, was also higher than expected ($30.7 billion). Target shares were up more than 2% in pre-market trading. Yet profits for the general merchandiser still plunged 60% this past fiscal year compared to the year before from $6.9 billion to around $2.8 billion, as the store has weathered more discerning shoppers amid high inflation.”

For Bring Me the News, Sven Sundgaard says more snow is expected late Tuesday.

At MPR, Kirsti Marohn reports, “An odd-looking native Minnesota fish is getting new protections. The gar is a prehistoric species that dates back to the age of dinosaurs, with a long, thin body covered with hard scales and a pointy mouth full of sharp teeth. In Minnesota, gar are classified as ‘rough’ fish as opposed to game fish. Until now, there were no limits on how many anglers could keep.”

This from Kim Hyatt and Rochelle Olson in the Strib, “The Minnesota Gambling Control Board improperly allowed an ‘open-all’ feature on electronic pulltabs, the state Court of Appeals ruled Monday, siding with the state’s American Indian tribes. The Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community brought the matter to the appeals court after initially challenging the open-all function in 2019, arguing it mimics slot machines, which the state’s tribes are allowed to operate exclusively. With that function, a user hits one button, cascading rows open to animated characters and players can win bonus rounds. Monday’s ruling reversed an administrative law judge’s decision that found the open-all provision was legal. The decision could renew a legislative push to clarify the law, explicitly banning the open-all feature.

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Also in the Strib Chris Riemenschneider writes, “There are some good reasons why Run Westy Run derailed in the mid- to late-’90s. The members created or joined other bands, including Iffy, Golden Smog and the Jayhawks. They also moved on to other cities and adventures. But there are bad reasons, too. A deal with a major label that went nowhere. Addiction. General slacker inertia. It’s all good now, though. In fact, it’s very good. … A band of brothers seen as a kid-brother act to the more widely celebrated Twin Cities indie-rock groups of the ’80s, Run Westy Run has been out generating good times again for a decade now. At last, though, things are about to get serious again. The band’s first album in 28 years arrives this week with a release party Friday at the Turf Club.”

At Joe Nelson says, “Is Dennis Evans headed to Louisville? That’s the speculation based on a prediction from 247Sports after the 7-footer reportedly asked the University of Minnesota to be released from his signed commitment to play basketball for the Gophers.  According to 247Sports’ Trevor Andershock, Evans is a 100% lock to land with Louisville. A stunning turn of events considering Louisville is still being punished by the NCAA for numerous violations, including being ‘restricted from showing personalized recruiting videos to prospective student-athletes during the remainder of the 2022-23 recruiting calendar’. Adding insult to the situation is that Louisville is one of only two Power Five schools in the country with a worse record this season than Minnesota.”

For Josh Snowden says, “In September 1994, television saw a brand-new sitcom air for the first time, starring an ensemble of six unknown actors who would go on to be some of the most beloved and successful actors in the industry. This sitcom was Friends. … When the writers were brainstorming ways to surprise the audience towards the climax of the show’s fourth season, they succeeded by introducing the shocking reveal of Monica and Chandler’s secret relationship. The show almost offered something very different. Generation Friends revealed that Monica and Chandler getting together wasn’t the original idea for the fourth season’s final episode, but instead was going to involve the gang moving to Minnesota. The season would have seen Chandler travel to Minnesota because of his work, although he would not be alone. Realizing that splitting up the gang would have been controversial and could cost viewership, the writers decided to have Monica, Ross, Rachel, Phoebe and Joey all tag along with him.”