US: Wal-Mart has launched Operation Main Street, a campaign that will see thousands of prices slashed over the next seven weeks. "In challenging times, our customers look to Wal-Mart to be their advocate and do what we do best - save them money," said Eduardo Castro-Wright, Wal-Mart USA president and CEO. The offers will change weekly and include toys, electronics and homeware, as well as core groceries. It has also launched a 'savings alert' mobile phone text service to keep shoppers informed.

China: A supermarket for singles opened in the Pearl River Delta in Guangdong province this week, according to Chinese reports, offering shoppers the chance to find love while browsing for groceries. Although the outlet has not been named in the Chinese press, the location has been described as a 'scenic spot'. Shoppers will be able to post their photos and details in special booths in the supermarket and there will also be events and parties.

US: Whole Foods Market has sold a 17% stake of its business to a private equity company, a move executive chairman John Mackey described as a "vote of confidence in our business model and our long-term growth prospects". Green Equity Investors paid $425m (£269m) for the stake. "This investment, combined with our strong cash flow from operations, gives us the financial flexibility to manage in these difficult economic times while prudently investing in our long-term growth," said Mackey. The retailer last week reported full-year total sales up 18% to $7.9bn (£5bn) for the 52 weeks to 28 September. However, profits were down 33% year-on-year to $206.5m (£130.7m) for the period.

Germany: Rewe Group's 2,000-strong Penny chain is to step up efforts to stop underage tobacco and alcohol sales, with a security system at tills. Every time an age-resticted product is scanned, the screen will flash a sign asking the cashier to check the customers' age. Once checked, the cashier will press a button to continue scanning. In Germany, the minimum age for buying cigarettes and alcohol is 18.