The Fight Against Quicken Loans (but why now)?

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According to Business Insider, with debt sitting at $9.2 trillion for the U.S. lending market, the industry has been the slowest to digitize and have had little incentive to remove friction from the customer application process. Questions: What has Rocket Mortgage added to the industry to become the largest residential mortgage originator by volume? According… Read more »

Banking While Black

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According to a new study by the National Community Reinvestment Coalition, Black and Hispanic men seeking small business loans face more scrutiny and worse treatment from bank officers than less qualified white men. Questions: What were the declines in government-backed lending to black business owners from 2008 to 2016? According to the study, what type… Read more »

How has Microsoft avoided the Big Tech Backlash

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According to the New York Times, while Google, Amazon, Apple, and Facebook faces regulator scrutiny, Microsoft, which is worth more than all of these four combined, watches from the side-line. Questions: According to this article, what has Microsoft learned from past antitrust investigations? How do market shifts and the evolution of Microsoft’s business over the… Read more »

Regulators Got their Eyes on You!

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According to the New York Times, Big Tech (Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google) are being investigated by regulators and lawmakers regarding how these companies may have used their size and wealth to quash competition and expand their dominance. Questions: Who are some of the regulators and lawmakers investigating Google and for what reason? What are… Read more »

Is this a good idea?

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According to the New York Times, one of the largest active construction projects in the United States will produce more than 1 million tons of plastic a year and is operated by Royal Dutch Shell near Pittsburgh. Questions: Where will pipelines for the plant be stretched and how many freight cars does it expect to… Read more »

White House Blues

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According to the Washington Post, there is discussion among senior White House officials to advance a temporary payroll tax cut as a way to limit the economic slowdown forecast by economists. Questions: When and how much was the last payroll tax cut and why was it made? Payroll tax cuts add dramatically to the deficit… Read more »

We’ve Seen This Movie Before And It Does Not End Well

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According to Paul Whitfield, economists differ on how much blame the Smoot-Hawley tariffs deserve for the Great Depression. They also disagree on how much credit President Franklin Roosevelt deserves for the Reciprocal Tariff Act, which put the U.S. on a path to lower  tariffs. But the market knows. Questions: According to the article, what similarities… Read more »

Strategic Differences

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HSBC announced that CEO, John Flint, was leaving the bank after only 18 months in the role.  Questions: What issues is Europe’s biggest bank grappling with currently? What specific strategic reason does the Board give for his departure?  What is the revenue risk that HSBC faces? Source: Reuters Staff. (2019). HSBC CEO John Flint leaves… Read more »

Equifax Hack Settlement

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According to the Washington Post, nearly half of all Americans were affected by the 2017 Equifax data breach, where hackers stole personal data for more than 147 million people: credit card numbers, Social Security numbers and other identifying information. Now, as part of a settlement agreement with the Federal Trade Commission, the people whose data… Read more »

Goldman Sachs has a plan – but is it a good one?

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Goldman Sachs has a plan to combine five investing teams into a single alternatives unit. This plan has been doubted internally and has led to interesting drama within the firm. Questions: Who is Goldman’s CEO who announced this plan? Why is this move important to outside investors? Why is the debate centering around Goldman’s two… Read more »