The Unveiling of the Future?

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Apple’s iPad Mini will likely be unveiled at a special event on October 23. The device is expected to ship with a 7.85-inch screen and costs about half of what the current starting price for an iPad. Questions: 1. According to both articles, what have iPad sales to the K-12 market been doing to PC… Read more »

CEO Quits Effective Immediately

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In a surprise move, Citigroup announced on Tuesday that Vikram S. Pandit, the bank’s chief executive, had resigned, effective immediately. While his unexpectedly fast departure has raised many questions, critics said there were many signs that the end was near for Pandit. Questions: 1. How long had Mr. Pandit been chief executive of Citigroup? 2…. Read more »

Exploding Water Pipe – Fraud Alert

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Forty-five government entities are now joining whistleblower John Hendrix’s suit against JM Eagle. The suit alledges that the largest PVC pipe manufacturer committed fraud by intentionally selling pipe to governments, where the company’s internal quality controls showed 50 to 80 percent failure rates. Questions: 1. What was Hendrix’s position with the firm and what did… Read more »

The Cost Disease

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Much of our political debate is fueled by the rise in the cost of healthcare, education, and other necessary services. Interestingly, the new book “The Cost Disease” is based on the work of William Baumol, who as a young economist in the 1960s promoted the idea tagged “Baumol’s Disease,” which explains that our current predicament… Read more »

The Disappearing Debt Suddenly Reappears!

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Jackie Esposito, of Guilford, Conn., got a letter that said her debt with JPMorgan Chase was canceling the amount she owed on a home equity account. While most people would be excited to get such a letter, Ms. Esposito was not. That is because Ms. Esposito had the debt legally wiped out three years ago… Read more »

When Will Apple Hit the Trillion Dollar Mark?

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When will Apple become the first company ever to be valued at $1 trillion? This new guessing game is the focus of the article by Nick Bilton. Questions: 1. Explain the $1 trillion in accounting terms (or the accounting equation). What is/are the product(s) that got the company to this point? Research these products and… Read more »

Aporkalypse? Not So.

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A bacon shortage was part of the headlines this week as a result of a September 20 press release from Britain’s National Pig Association, a trade group that describes itself as “Fighting for the growth and prosperity of the British pig industry.” While the pork industry is currently under serious stress, the reality is that… Read more »

The End to Red Ink?

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The struggling online company, Groupon, has just announced promotion that will allow them to stay afloat. It is a combination of hardware and software that will allow businesses to accept credit cards at rate far lower than what most merchants are currently paying. Instead of the usual credit card processing fee of between 2% and… Read more »

The Business Model of Overstating Benefits: How Harmful or Ethical?

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It is estimated that between 50,000 to 100,000 patients died or had a heart attack as a result of taking the drug Advandia. For seven years, GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) failed to report data that indicated Advandia increases the risk of heart attack by 40%. As we reported back in July, in the biggest health care fraud… Read more »

Private Equity Firms and A Tax Strategy Investigation

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Eric Schneiderman, the New York attorney general, is investigating abusive tax strategies at some of the nation’s largest private equity firms. As part of these efforts, last week, he subpoenaed documents from more than a dozen firms hoping to uncover conversion of certain management fees collected from their investors into fund investments, which are taxed… Read more »