October 21, 2021

For months, supply chain problems have led to increased prices and long delays that show no sign of ending anytime soon. As a result, industry analysts are recommending that consumers start their holiday shopping as soon as possible if they want their items to arrive by December. While supplies remain low because of factors like jammed ports and truck shortages, demand is expected to ramp up this holiday season as experts predict a 7 to 9 percent increase in retail Continue reading

Continue reading...

October 19, 2021

With more than 1 billion users worldwide, TikTok has become a commercial powerhouse as companies fight for the attention of this enormous user base. Products that go viral on the short video platform are almost guaranteed to see sales skyrocket, leading some stores to create “As Seen On TikTok” sections to corral all these in-demand items together. For example, the New York-based candy store It’Sugar started stocking a brand of fruit-shaped gummies after they appeared in untold thousands of videos Continue reading

Continue reading...

October 13, 2021

Last month, we looked at how air travel has become so complicated during the pandemic that people are turning to travel agents to make sense of the mess. But not even the most experienced agents could have prepared Southwest passengers for the problems that many encountered this past weekend. On Saturday the carrier cancelled more than 1,000 flights and then another 800 on Sunday, followed by 360 more cancellations and close to 1,000 delayed flights on Monday. Southwest apologized for Continue reading

Continue reading...

October 8, 2021

For weeks, stock markets across the globe have become increasingly volatile as investors await the fate of Evergrande, an enormous Chinese real estate company with more than $300 billion in debt. Analysts predict that the property developer will not be able to pay back what it owes, which would likely have damaging ripple effects across the global economy. The video below looks at Evergrande’s current debt debacle and the possible ways that this situation could be resolved.

Questions:

  1. Why are Continue reading
Continue reading...

October 5, 2021

More than 3.5 billion people around the world communicate through Facebook and its collection of apps like Instagram, WhatsApp, Messenger, and Oculus. But for about six hours yesterday, no one was using these platforms as Facebook disappeared from the Internet. Company representatives said that this outage occurred when “backbone routers that coordinate network traffic” failed and brought services completely to a halt. The total shutdown meant that Facebook could not remotely reset its network, requiring it to send out a Continue reading

Continue reading...

October 1, 2021

For months, supply chains across the globe have become highly disrupted due to a multitude of factors related to the pandemic. From closed factories and clogged ports to a shortage of shipping containers, supply chain snags are harming small businesses and could possibly affect the flow of goods during the Christmas season. And in the immediate term, shipping issues are contributing to rising inflation which then leads to price increases, something that has been felt by consumers across Continue reading

Continue reading...

September 8, 2021

Although fewer people could be traveling in the coming months due to the delta variant, this summer airlines got slammed with vaccinated vacationers who were ready to fly. Unfortunately for travelers, though, some understaffed carriers were not exactly prepared to handle their return. During the height of the pandemic, airlines offered buyouts or encouraged retirement to many behind the scenes staffers. This led to employee shortages at many carriers, with Delta Air Lines reporting that its call center staff was Continue reading

Continue reading...

September 1, 2021

Over the course of the pandemic, problems with global supply chains have affected companies both large and small, leading some to reconsider their relationships with international manufacturers. Many other businesses are waiting for their products to arrive after weeks or even months of delays. For instance, the toy maker MGA Entertainment said its stock of Rainbow High dolls has been held up overseas due to a shortage of shipping containers. As a result, the company will likely not Continue reading

Continue reading...

August 24, 2021

At the beginning of summer, major airlines had plenty of optimism that rising vaccination rates would entice Americans into traveling again. Initially this hope seemed to be well-placed as demand for flights increased and prices surged accordingly, with the Consumer Price Index finding that airfares rose by 7 percent from April to May 2021. While prices stayed around that level through July, sales started to sag by August as carriers saw the impact of the Delta variant on their bottom Continue reading

Continue reading...

August 17, 2021

The economic disruptions of the past year and a half caused small businesses to lose an average of 11 percent of their revenues. This was not the case for the globe’s big corporations, though. According to a McKinsey study of 5,500 “big, highly productive” U.S. and European companies, all surveyed firms reported that they experienced no declines in sales during the pandemic.

Although large companies had already been overtaking their smaller rivals before 2020, economists say that the pandemic widened Continue reading

Continue reading...