Posted by & filed under Accounting Information Systems, Accounting Principles, Advanced Accounting, All Articles, Auditing, Cost Accounting, Ethical Dilemma, Financial Accounting, Intermediate Accounting, Managerial Accounting, Uncategorized.

According to Bloomberg, the market value of Kraft Heinz is down $50 billion. Its major players, Warren Buffett and 3G Capital (who orchestrated the 2015 merger) for the packaged food giant, need to turbocharge sales or strike a big deal to satisfy Wall Street.

Questions:
1. Where is the company trying to find sales growth?
2. When was Kraft Heinz pushed to its highest price and what was it?
3. What has happened to the company since that time?
4. What are some of the reasons why Kraft Heinz has not recovered?

Source:
Giammona, C. 2018. Warren Buffett Better Sell a Lot of Ketchup Fast.Bloomberg, April 26 (Retrievable online at https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-04-26/warren-buffett-needs-to-sell-a-lot-of-ketchup-fast)

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The first credit card offering frequent-flier miles made its debut over 30 years ago. Delta Airlines generated $3 billion from its relationship with American Express in 2017 and expects to hit $4 billion by 2021.

Questions:
1. What did the frequent flier airline cards offer in the 1980s? How does that compare to now?
2. Who ought to have these cards, according to the article?
3. Why should these cards inspire healthy cynicism?
4. Is it possible to gain generic advise that will help you pick a card? Why or why not?

Source:
Lieber, R. (2018). Why Airline Credit Cards Have an Enduring Appeal. The New York Times, April 27 (Retrievable online at https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/27/your-money/airline-frequent-flier-credit-card.html)

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According to Bloomberg.com, Google Chief Executive Officer Sundar Pichai is about to have a very big week.

Questions:
1. An award of 353,939 restricted shares he received before a promotion in 2014 will vest. What does this mean?
2. How big it the payout to this executive?
3. How did the award swell in value?
4. What was the most interesting thing that you learned in this article?

Source:
Melin, A. (2018). Google CEO Pichai Set to Cash In $380 Million Award This Week, April 23 (Retrievable online at https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-04-23/google-ceo-pichai-poised-to-cash-in-380-million-award-this-week)

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According to the New York Times, in recent years, the ranks of state and local employees have languished even as the populations they serve have grown. They now account for the smallest share of the American civilian work force since 1967.

Questions:
1. Explain some of the reasons why this is happening.
2. What is wrong with jobs created mostly in service industries?
3. By how much have local and state payrolls grown in the last 12 months?

Source:
Cohen, P. and R. Gebloff. 2018. Public Servants Are Losing Their Foothold in the Middle Class. The New York Times, April 22 (Retrievable online at https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/22/business/economy/public-employees.html)

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According to The Week.com, Amazon plans to sell its own smart television with its Fire TV capabilities built in. To help in this endeavor, it has chosen an unlikely partner – Best Buy.

Questions:
1. How many models of HDTV’s will the partners start selling this summer?
2. What brand will be sold and what feature is dropped as a result of the partnership?
3. Why is this partnership so new and different? Explain.

Source:

Staff. (2018). Amazon and Best Buy are teaming up to sell TVs. TheWeek.com, April 18 (Retrievable online at https://theweek.com/speedreads/768324/amazon-best-buy-are-teaming-sell-tvs)

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According to the Washington Post, an effort that animal rescuers began more than a decade ago to buy dogs for $5 or $10 apiece from commercial breeders has become a nationwide shadow market that today sees some rescuers, fueled by Internet fundraising, paying breeders $5,000 or more for a single dog.

Questions:
1. Why do they do it?
2. How much was spent since 2009 at government-regulated auctions?
3. Why did one golden retriever rescue group turn to the auctions?
4. What are the trends they quote?

Source:
Kavin, K. (2018). Dog rescuers, flush with donations, buy animals from the breeders they scorn. Washington Post, April 13 (Retrievable online at https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/2018/investigations/dog-auction-rescue-groups-donations/?utm_term=.43bc08cb6139)

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This New York Times article exposes a growing industry that makes money by coaxing women into having surgery — sometimes unnecessarily — so that they are more lucrative plaintiffs in lawsuits against medical device manufacturers.

Questions:
1. What is the role of lawyers in this industry?
2. What is the role of marketers in this industry?
3. What is the role of loans in this industry?
4. Are all plaintiffs are equal in this industry? Why or why not?

Source:
Goldstein, M. and J. Silver-Greenburg. 2018. How Profiteers Lure Women Into Often-Unneeded Surgery. The New York Times, April 14 (Retrievable online at https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/14/business/vaginal-mesh-surgery-lawsuits-financing.html)

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According to the New York Times, Trump administration officials are seeking ways to lower drug costs but target pharmaceutical companies that refuse to provide samples of their products to generic drug companies, making it impossible to create inexpensive generic copies of a brand-name medicine.

Questions:
1. Argue both sides of this issue as a good thing or a bad thing.
2. Why is the Federal Trade Commission investigating this and what is the main thing that they are worried about?
3. What does the Bill by Leahy and Lee propose?
4. Would the Bill be a boon to trial lawyers? Explain.
5. Who would be the winner in this Bill situation?

Source:
Pear, R. (2018). Drug Company ‘Shenanigans’ to Block Generics Come Under Federal Scrutiny. The New York Times, April 14, 2018 (Retrievable online at https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/14/us/politics/drug-companies-generic.html)

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According to CNN, shares of BlackBerry (BB) were up in early trading Wednesday after the company reported earnings and sales that topped forecasts, led by growth in its software and services business.

Questions:
1. Why is this such big news?
2. How is the company making a big bunch of their money?
3. What has the company done with its production of BlackBerry-branded phones?

Source:
La Monica, P. (2018). BlackBerry’s software bet continues to pay off. CNN-Money.com, March 28 (Retrievable online at http://money.cnn.com/2018/03/28/investing/blackberry-earnings/index.html)

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According to the Washington Post, researchers at Temple University and the Wisconsin HOPE Lab found that 36 percent of students at 66 surveyed colleges and universities do not get enough to eat, and a similar number lack a secure place to live.

Questions:
1. What do the researchers blame the problem on?
2. What does low food security mean?
3. How widespread is this and what are some colleges doing to alleviate or ease the problem?

Source:
Dewey, C. (2018). The hidden crisis on college campuses: Many students don’t have enough to eat. Washington Post, April 3 (Retrievable online at https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2018/04/03/the-hidden-crisis-on-college-campuses-36-percent-of-students-dont-have-enough-to-eat/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.090b66d0e9de)