News in brief

Walmart Foundation giving to Afghan aid

Walmart Inc.'s charitable foundation is giving $1 million to groups aiding Afghan refugees in the United States.

The Walmart Foundation funds will support three organizations aiding incoming refugees, as well as veterans and their families, the company said Tuesday.

No One Left Behind and the Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service will continue their work with special immigrant visas to support refugees entering the country. The Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors will use the donation to increase the capacity of its National Military Survivor Helpline, which provides round-the-clock support for veterans, military spouses and family members.

"We're looking to the cross-cultural experience of our veteran and Afghan associates to support refugees, service members and one another, as veteran leaders at Walmart explore ways to support these efforts," said Dan Bartlett, Walmart's executive vice president of corporate affairs.

Walmart and the Walmart Foundation together provide more than $1 billion in cash and in-kind giving each year.

-- Serenah McKay

Car-Mart put at 67 in Forbes top 100

America's Car-Mart has ranked No. 67 on Forbes magazine's 2021 list of America's Best Small Companies, according to a release Wednesday from the Rogers-based used car company.

Companies are ranked on the list through various criteria including earnings and sales growth over the past year and the past five years as well as one-year and five-year return on equity. Companies on the list must have a market value between $300 million and $2 billion. No other Arkansas companies made the 2021 list according to the Forbes website.

"It is our dedication to customer experience and the hard work of our associates that makes America's Car-Mart great," Jeff Williams, Car-Mart's president and chief executive officer, said in a statement.

Despite reporting strong first-quarter 2022 earnings and revenue last week, Car-Mart saw its shares drop about 20% before leveling out. Shares closed at $125.39 on Wednesday, down $1.11 or less than 1% in trading on the Nasdaq.

-- John Magsam

Index ends at 666.31 after dropping 2.53

The Arkansas Index, a price-weighted index that tracks the largest public companies based in the state, closed Wednesday at 666.31, down 2.53.

"Market sentiment remained positive ahead of the annual Jackson Hole Economic Symposium beginning [today] with speculation that Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell may delay the tapering of asset purchases until later this year as the financials and energy sector outperformed," said Leon Lants, managing director at Stephens Inc.

The index was developed by Bloomberg News and the Democrat-Gazette with a base value of 100 as of Dec. 30, 1997.

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