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• US District Judge Robert Dawson has ruled that convicted former Wal-Mart vice chairman Tom Coughlin will not have to undergo a physical before he is resentenced on fraud charges later this week..

Coughlin pleaded guilty to the charges, but only got 27 months of house arrest because he claimed to have severe health problems; prosecutors appealed on the grounds that the sentence was too lenient, a judge agreed, but prosecutors wanted Coughlin to be examined by a doctor before the resentencing.

Dawson said that a physical would cause an unreasonable delay of his February 1 resentencing.

• The Wall Street Journal reports that Wal-Mart will pay John Menzer, who will retire March 1 from his role as vice chairman and chief administrative officer, $6.71 million in “transition payments” over a two-year period, assuming he lives up to his obligations under a separation agreement.

• The Financial Times reports that Wal-Mart-owned Asda Group in the UK will “explore selling electricity to its customers through its power services company, Power4All, in a move that reflects its US parent's growing interest in energy.”

According to the story, Asda CEO Andy Bond would like to extend to the retailer’s customers a program set up last year to provide its stores with low cost and sustainable energy. "I'm very confident that in the future we'll be able to do it for our customers as well," he said.
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