Vehicular Homelessness

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As housing costs soar in major cities, more Americans are living behind the wheel. Although the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development doesn’t collect national data on vehicle residency, unsheltered homelessness—a category that includes people sleeping in vehicles—is on the rise. Questions: 1. Are all of these individuals poor? What are some of the… Read more »

Something to look forward to? Bankruptcy in Retirement!

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According to a recent study, the rate of people 65 and older filing for bankruptcy is three times what it was in 1991. Questions: 1. What are some of the main reasons that this is happening? 2. What is happening to the next generation nearing retirement age and why is this happening? 3. In 2016,… Read more »

Stock Buybacks are Eating our Lunch!

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According to The Atlantic, a new report finds that big companies could have given their workers thousands of dollars’ worth of raises with the money they spent on their own shares. Questions: 1. Where is money pulled away from when companies use it to buy back stock? 2. Which industries were part of the study?… Read more »

A long-term strategy for electric scooter travel

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According to Axios, Uber is planning a shift in emphasis from cars to electric bicycles and scooters for shorter journeys. Questions: 1. What was the company that Uber acquired? 2. What were Uber’s losses last year? 3. How much did Uber pay for the electric bike-sharing company? 4. What types of risks do you anticipate… Read more »

Worse Than We Imagined!

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According to the National Center for Education Statistics, the typical student borrower will take out $6,600 in a single year, averaging $22,000 in debt by graduation. Questions: 1. Of borrowers who started repaying in 2012, how many had defaulted by 3 years later? 2. By year 5, how many students default? 3. Collectively, how much… Read more »

Wage Stagnation and Fast-Food Workers: No-Poach Clauses

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According to the New York Times, attorneys general in 10 states are moving to investigate whether a clause in fast-food franchise agreements is preventing workers from switching jobs and, therefore, locking them into low-paying positions and, some economists say, contributing to widespread wage stagnation in the United States. Questions: 1. Briefly explain how these clauses… Read more »

Bad Way to Encourage People to Use Self-checkout Lines

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This article discusses how many companies are employing aggressive legal tactics and taking advantage of loosely written state laws, to push for restitution even when people have not been convicted of wrongdoing. Questions: 1. How much does shoplifting cost stores each year? 2. What happens in many states to payments made to retailers before court… Read more »

The Fastest Growing Retailer in America: Where Wal-Mart Will Not Tread!

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According to this article, Dollar General, the fastest-growing retailer in America, is blasting across Middle America opening stores at the rate of three a day in failing towns that Wal-Mart won’t go to. Questions: 1. What is the claim that Dollar General makes about its stores and the population that surround them? 2. What are… Read more »

Big Deal!

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Emergent BioSolutions, a Maryland-based pharmaceutical company that provides infectious-disease vaccines for the U.S. government, is about to add cholera and typhoid vaccines to its arsenal of preventives. Questions: 1. What is Emergent’s link to the defense contracting market? 2. According to the article, briefly describe Emergent’s corporate history. 3. What health issues does the PaxVax… Read more »

Yet another warning!

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In a new study from the University of Toledo, researchers found that an increase in exposure to blue light can accelerate blindness. Questions: 1. How does this mechanism work? 2. Does your cell phone have blue light? How many devices do you have or use, which have blue lights? 3. What suggestions does the article… Read more »