August 2, 2023

Experts estimate that as many as 80,000 American retail stores will close over the next five years as companies like Forever 21, JCPenney, and Neiman Marcus struggle to stay afloat. That’s not the case for the British retailer Primark, however, which has 18 locations in the U.S. with plans for a lot more to come. This video looks at how the company became a multibillion dollar brand in Europe by sticking to brick-and-mortar stores stocked with high quality items at Continue reading

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July 26, 2023

Making a $7.95 bottle of soap for Bath & Body Works (BBW) once took three months to accomplish. Parts traveled more than 13,000 miles across multiple countries to end up at the company’s Ohio distribution center, a difficult journey that the beauty brand sought to change in 2008. Years of working with local officials and skeptical suppliers resulted in BBW’s “beauty park” located outside of Columbus, an industrial campus that handles nearly every aspect of production. Featuring 10 manufacturers with Continue reading

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July 21, 2023

American companies have been hiring lots of new employees this year, making economists hopeful that the country will not experience a recession anytime soon. Still, other experts claim that increased hiring is not as reliable of an economic indicator as some think. The video below explains how total working hours can provide a more detailed picture of the country’s economic health and why fears of an incoming recession could be justified. 

Questions:

  1. How do economists use “hours worked” as Continue reading
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July 19, 2023

At the beginning of May, the Writers Guild of America (WGA) voted to strike against major Hollywood studios, citing poor working conditions and declining pay as the primary causes of the work stoppage. Although the union does not appear to be any closer to signing a new deal than they were months ago, members of the WGA have recently seen their picket lines become stocked with new faces, some of which are quite famous. That’s because last week the Screen Continue reading

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Retailers have long relied on credit cards and companies like Paypal to provide payment options for customers, but recently these services have faced some new competition. Firms like Affirm, Klarna, and Afterpay offer “buy now, pay later” models that can be an appealing alternative to credit cards. As the video below shows, though, these services could potentially be dangerous to consumers while also failing to maintain steady profits for investors.

Questions:

  1. What are the potential advantages and disadvantages of using Continue reading
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June 28, 2023

For the last three years, travel over the Fourth of July weekend has decreased as Americans dealt with issues brought on by the pandemic. According to AAA, though, that won’t be the case in 2023. This year the country’s roads and airports will be jam-packed like never before, with more than 43 million Americans planning to drive 50 miles or more over the holiday weekend. That represents a 4 percent increase over 2019 and marks a new record for July Continue reading

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June 23, 2023

From 2011 to 2021, the value of Rolex watches outperformed real estate and stock markets as well as commodities like gold. This video looks at the risks and rewards of the $20 billion used watch industry, from soaring demand and big price tags to small margins and extensive counterfeiting.

 Questions:

  1. Why are counterfeit products harmful to luxury brands like Rolex?
  2. How does high demand for Rolex encourage counterfeiters to produce knockoffs?
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June 21, 2023

The Instant Pot first hit the market in 2010 and quickly gained a following of dedicated users who took every opportunity to praise the pot’s pressure cooking and slow cooking abilities. Sales climbed throughout the decade as word-of-mouth spread, and then the Instant Pot truly became a blockbuster during the pandemic. Sales of multicookers and air fryers doubled in 2020 as millions of homebound people searched for ways to make easy meals in their kitchens. 

Customers certainly got what Continue reading

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The parent company of T.J. Maxx earned more than $50 billion last year, more than Nordstrom and Macy’s combined. This video shows how the retailer lives up to its promise to give customers “the max for the minimum price” through ever-changing inventory and eye-catching deals. 

Questions:

  1. What is “price-anchoring,” and how does T.J. Maxx utilize it to drive sales? 
  2. Why does T.J. Maxx continuously restock its stores with new inventory?
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Lawmakers are once again butting heads about raising the debt ceiling, a limit on the total amount of money that the federal government is authorized to borrow. This video looks at the potential economic consequences that could follow if legislators fail to reach an agreement and default on the nation’s debt. 

Questions:

  1. How does debt help drive the U.S. economy?
  2. Why are U.S. bonds traditionally seen as reliable investments? How could that change if the country defaults on its debt?
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