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(Reuters) - Starbucks Corp and e-commerce company Alibaba Group Holding Ltd are set to join forces on coffee delivery, according to media reports, as the coffee retailer seeks to rebound from a sales slump in the once-booming China market. The move follows a hint earlier this month by former Starbucks Executive Chairman Howard Schultz, who suggested that a tie-up with Alibaba’s billionaire founder Jack Ma could be on the horizon. A formal announcement of the deal will be made later this week, the Wall Street Journal reported on Monday. Starbucks declined to comment.

Starbucks quarterly sales in China declined 2 percent in the period ended charlotte hornets cufflinks July 1, a steep departure from the 7 percent growth in the same period a year earlier, The Seattle-based cafe chain blamed a crackdown on unapproved third-party delivery services for much of the slowdown, as well as cannibalization of its own stores with the retailer’s rapid expansion in the Chinese market, Increased competition from fast-growing rivals like China’s Luckin, which has already opened more than 660 outlets in 13 Chinese cities since officially launching in January, has also pressured Starbucks’ 3,400-store operation..

In its third quarter earnings call, Starbucks admitted to an “underperformance” in China, and said it was making progress on plans for delivery there, starting this fall in Beijing and Shanghai. Wall Street is hoping a partnership with Alibaba’s food delivery arm,, will help fuel Starbucks growth plans in the country. Starbucks aims to almost double its number of stores in China by 2022. “An imminent announcement of a delivery solution is an important first step, as is a roll out of mobile ordering,” which is not yet in China, Sharon Zackfia, an analyst for William Blair, wrote in a research note.

CHICAGO (Reuters) - Caterpillar Inc (CAT.N) on Monday gave a promising outlook for the global economy despite ongoing trade tensions and mounting cost concerns, and the heavy equipment maker lifted its full-year earnings forecast after quarterly profits nearly doubled, The Deerfield, Illinois-based company now expects charlotte hornets cufflinks adjusted profit per share to be in a range of $11 to $12 in 2018, compared with $10.25 to $11.25 projected earlier, The second increase to the profit outlook in the past two quarters helped somewhat allay investors’ concerns that the industrial cycle and even broader economic activity are approaching their peak..

“There is continuing improvement in many of our end markets,” Jim Umpleby told analysts on a conference call. “Our order rates in the backlog remain strong.”. Caterpillar said it has not yet seen the impact of ongoing trade tensions on its business, but said tariffs are estimated to inflate material costs in the second half of 2018 by up to $200 million. Overseas markets account for half of Caterpillar’s sales. Caterpillar is better placed than many companies to deal with the tariffs as its manufacturing footprint is spread across the globe.

Yet, the stock has charlotte hornets cufflinks lost about 18 percent since January, buffeted by increasing trade frictions and mounting costs, The stock last month fell to its lowest level since late October before recovering modestly, It was last trading up 0.4 percent at $143.20, Higher freight prices, which drove up manufacturing costs in the last quarter, are expected to remain elevated, The company expects to take higher costs in its stride through price increases it carried out on July 1 and through cost discipline, Analysts at JP Morgan reiterated their “Overweight” rating on the stock, saying potential earnings upside is not fully priced in the company’s shares..

Monday’s results showed that a strong global economy, which is having its best run since 2011, is helping manufacturers like Caterpillar book more orders and deliver higher profits despite cost pressures. For example, the company said demand for oil and gas and mining machines is so strong that it was taking orders for delivery well into 2019. At the end of the second quarter, its order backlog was $17.7 billion, up about $200 million from the first quarter. It saw positive pricing in all of its principal business segments except construction industries.

Overall, the company expects product prices to charlotte hornets cufflinks more than offset increased costs in the second half of the year, This is in contrast to companies such as Ford Motor Co (F.N) and Harley-Davidson Inc (HOG.N), which are battling weak demand and do not enjoy the same pricing power to offset increased input costs, In resource industries, higher commodity prices and strong global growth have helped improve the finances of mining customers, However, the company said customers have yet to start full-scale fleet replacements..

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