August 16, 2019

Last year, we looked at how General Electric lost its spot on the Dow Jones Industrial Average after more than a century on the index. At the time, experts blamed the legendary company’s decline on the collapse of its financial services division along with a number of failed investments. According to a recent report from a well-known whistleblower, however, the recent troubles at GE are far worse than the company previously claimed. In a report released yesterday, forensic accountant Harry Continue reading

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August 13, 2019

Over the past five years, consumers have sent more than 1.3 million complaints to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) about scammers posing as government representatives. Whether they’re pretending to be from the IRS or a local police department, fraudsters like these have cost Americans more than $450 million since 2014. In fact, this year alone the FTC has received more than 200,000 complaints about calls from people claiming to be from agencies like the Social Security Administration. 

In one Continue reading

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August 9, 2019

For 106 consecutive months, the U.S. labor market has added jobs. But even though there’s plenty of work to go around, much of it is low-paying since wages have not grown as fast as expected. This video looks at the some of the factors contributing to low wage growth in the U.S., such as automation and the decline of unions. 

Questions:

  1. How has the rise of automation contributed to low wage growth?
  2. Do you think wage growth would be Continue reading
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August 2, 2019

About two years ago, hackers breached the credit reporting agency Equifax and stole personal information from nearly 150 million people. Along with names and birthdates, the hackers also obtained social security and driver’s license numbers. As consumers responded in anger and disbelief that Equifax could be so negligent, government regulators immediately started investigating the agency. Last week the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced the results of that inquiry: Equifax agreed to pay a minimum settlement of $575 million that could Continue reading

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July 30, 2019

From free finger food at Costo to complimentary mini-sized makeup at Sephora, companies have long depended on free samples as a powerful promotional tool. But as the clothing retailer Forever 21 recently learned, this time-tested strategy can backfire when paired with the wrong type of product. 

Forever 21 routinely includes sample items when shipping out orders to its customer base of young women. Last week one of those products was a free Atkins-branded lemon granola bar that encouraged customers Continue reading

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July 26, 2019

For major online retailers like Amazon and Walmart, few matters are more important than quickly shipping products out to customers. But while free two-day shipping has largely become the norm in e-commerce, all those packages moving across the country can have a major impact on the environment. This video looks at the ecological effects of rush shipping and how retailers could seek to limit its use in the future. 

Questions:

  1. In what ways does rush shipping harm the environment? Continue reading
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July 25, 2019

Since 2009 the website Genius has provided music lovers with a reliable source for lyrics to countless songs. A few years ago, though, the company noticed that someone else was exploring the site along with its usual batch of curious fans. The situation started when Genius published the lyrics to the hit song “Panda” by Desiigner with help from the artist himself. Since the company received assistance directly from the source, their lyrics served as the only accurate transcription of Continue reading

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July 23, 2019

In March 2018, the New York Times revealed that Facebook had allowed Cambridge Analytica to gather personal information from more than 50 million users without their knowledge. Soon after the newspaper published its findings, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) began its own investigation of the social media giant. After about a year of inquiry, last week the government agency imposed a $5 billion fine on Facebook, the largest penalty ever issued by the FTC.

It is also the same amount Continue reading

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July 12, 2019

In recent years consumers have started to lose interest in high-end fashion shows from major houses like Victoria’s Secret and Calvin Klein. In fact, the latter recently closed its luxury collection in order to focus on casualwear. Many designers have responded to industry changes by creating styles for all shapes and sizes to wear, not just thin models. This video looks at the designers who are answering the call from consumers for greater inclusivity in fashion. 

Questions:

 

  1. What Continue reading
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June 27, 2019

Last week, the U.S. Justice Department intervened in a class-action lawsuit against some of the nation’s largest poultry producers. The plaintiffs in the case claim that companies like Tyson Foods, Perdue Farms, and Pilgrim’s Pride conspired together to fix the price of chicken. Given that these allegations involve some of the top firms in a huge industry, the federal government decided to take over legal proceedings for the rest of the year. “The Justice Department wants to make sure they Continue reading

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