What is a Super Bowl Ad Worth?

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Derek Thompson presents evidence on both sides of the debate about whether Super Bowl ads are a waste of money or worthwhile advertising venues. Questions: 1. Rather than the price you pay for the advertisement, what does Mr. Thompson say that Super Bowl advertising is all about? 2. What is this year’s Super Bowl ads… Read more »

A Cost Benefit Analysis of Super Bowl Commercials

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Advertisers paid up to $4 million for a 30-second spot during the Super Bowl. This article examines the Go Daddy spot and the potential cost effectiveness of the company’s Super Bowl ads. Questions: 1. According to the article, how many customers does it take to break even and what amount on average must they spend?… Read more »

Sometimes Plans Just Don’t Work Out

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Although it was an excellent strategy to run a two-minute Bob Dylan ad at the end of the third quarter, the moment of peak Super Bowl excitement, the Seahawks stole the show early in a 36-0 blowout. Questions: 1. How much did the 2-minute ad cost Chrysler? 2. According to the article, when will the… Read more »

No Symbolic Message of Contrition for Jamie Dimon

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What a difference a year makes for Jamie Dimon! Last year, he had half of his paycheck cut to a measley $11.5 million for an embarrassing multi-million dollar trading blowup that resulted in $1 billion in fines. This year, after Chase paid the feds $20 billion in penalties for transgressions committed on Dimon’s watch, JPMorgan’s… Read more »

Don’t Mess with the Chef: Bob McDonnell’s downfall

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Former Virginia governor Robert F. McDonnell and his wife, Maureen, were charged Tuesday, January 21, with illegally accepting gifts, luxury vacations, and large loans from wealthy Richmond-area businessman, Jonnie R. Williams Sr., in return for special treatment from the state government. Questions: 1. Did McDonnell’s wife commit fraud by accepting the $3,500 refund? Discuss. 2…. Read more »

Starbuck’s App: Are You At Risk?

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The Starbuck’s app, used by more than 10 million customers that purchase drinks and food directly from their smartphones, was exposed as risky by security researcher, Daniel Wood. According to Wood on January 13, “There are multiple instances of the storage of clear-text credentials that can be recovered and leveraged for unauthorized usage of a… Read more »

Fun with Words: Does Rightsizing Make You Feel Better Than Being Fired?

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As the language of layoffs continues to evolve, David Gillen and Will Storey question whether or not you can really sugar-coat being fired. Questions: 1. According to Geoffrey Nunberg from U.C. Berkley, where does the term “you’re fired” really come from? 2. What are the three categories that Nunberg says are associated with the language… Read more »

The Costs of Becoming an Entrepreneur

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Fifteen years ago, Becky O’Neil of Arlington, Va. decided that she wanted more flexability in her life, so she started a dog-walking service and planned to spend more time with her 7-month old son. Unfortunately, what she found was that a start-up new business required long hours, hard work and unwavering commitment, even on Christmas… Read more »

Catch 22: Money from Legalized Marijuana

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Banks, including state-chartered ones, are reluctant to provide traditional services to legal marijuana businesses in Washington state and Colorado. Since the marijuana businesses are conducted almost entirely in cash, it is exceedingly difficult for these shop owners to open and maintain bank accounts, and ultimately accept credit cards. Questions: 1. Why won’t the banks open… Read more »

Nothing’s sacred!

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Over the past decade, the number of “hospice survivors” in the United States has risen dramatically. According to the Washington Post, this is, in part, because hospice companies earn more by recruiting patients who aren’t actually dying. Healthier patients are more profitable because they require fewer visits and stay enrolled longer. Questions: 1. How large… Read more »