Don’t Try this At Home!

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In a memorable episode of Seinfeld, two characters hatch a plot: instead of returning bottles in New York for a 5-cent refund, they round up a load of containers and run them to Michigan, where the return is double, at 10 cents each. Now Brian Everidge is accused of attempting to “return” more than 10,000… Read more »

$35 here, $35 there and it all adds up!

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While strict rules require account holders to affirmatively opt into banking overdraft protection plans, a U.S. subsidiary of the Spanish banking giant, Santander Bank, which acquired Boston-based Sovereign Bank in 2009, crossed the line. Questions: 1. Briefly summarize what the bank did? 2. Who is the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and what was their role… Read more »

The changing world of streaming

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Netflix’s growth in the U.S. has slowed dramatically, and the company is adding new international users slower than expected. Statistically, the company added 1.7 million new subscribers in the last three months, which is less than the 2.5 million the company predicted. Just 160,000 of them were in the U.S. Questions: 1. Netflix is available… Read more »

Trapped by Debt?

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Belkin Antonio Hernandez-Vargas was desperate to see his wife and get out of U.S. custody, so he turned to one of the biggest names in the business of helping immigrant detainees secure bail bonds. As a result, the company Libre by Nexus helped Belkin, an El Salvadorian secure an $8,000 bond after he was able… Read more »

Big Deal!

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For years, Yahoo was the front door to the web and its services still attract a billion visitors a month. But…times are changing and as a result, Yahoo’s core internet operations and land holdings are being sold to Verizon Communications for $4.8 billion. Questions: 1. Why was the Yahoo model changing and how? 2. What… Read more »

Amazon goes into student loan business, sort of ……

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This week a partnership between Amazon and Wells Fargo was announced. Members of Amazon Prime Student will receive a 0.5 percent interest rate discount on student loans taken out through Wells Fargo’s Education Financial Services. Questions: 1. Why are financial advisors wary of the deal? 2. How much did the Washington Post calculate a student… Read more »

Submarine Patents: What is their Role?

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Humira and Enbrel are biologic drugs, composed of complex proteins made in living cells. Humira was the No. 1 selling biologic with $14 billion in global sales and Enbrel was the No. 3 biologic at $8.7 billion. Questions: 1. Approximately how much is the yearly price tag for these drugs per patient? 2. During the… Read more »

Auction misconduct, silly mix-up, or something else…………?

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The Keno brothers, stars of the PBS series Antique Roadshow, have recently exhibited strange behavior that is oddly out of sync with their stature as antique world luminaries. Leslie and Leigh Keno, twins and celebrity appraisers, say they accidentally bid against each other this spring. Questions: 1. A New Orleans auction house is suing the… Read more »

Is this really about Saving America’s Past Time?

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U.S. Representatives Brett Guthrie (R-KY) introduced a bill misleadingly called the “Save America’s Pastime Act,” with the sole purpose of excluding Minor League Baseball (MiLB) players from regulation under federal minimum wage and overtime requirements. Questions: 1. What is Mr. Guthrie’s reasoning for exempting the pay of Minor Leaguers from Federal pay laws? 2. What… Read more »

No List Prices?

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Amazon, who made its reputation on offering deals, is now quietly dropping list prices from its items. The new model is that Amazon does not have to entice customers anymore because they will buy anyway. Questions: 1. When did Amazon begin as a company? 2. When did the company begin dropping list prices? 3. Why… Read more »