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 »

Coming to a store near you: What are the cost and benefits of good health?

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Hy-Vee is the only grocery chain in the country that posts a registered dietitian in almost every one of its 235 stores. In rural areas, some of its more than 190 dietitians serve a cluster of stores. By doing this it capitalizes on growing consumer awareness of the role food plays in health and wellness… Read more »

Interesting Educational Strategy

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At U.S. colleges, like NYU and Northeastern, some freshmen are beginning their studies abroad during their first and even second semesters. According to Bloomberg, the strategy is one used by universities to enroll larger classes and get more tuition dollars. How? The universities use the students and their tuitions to fill the beds of midyear… Read more »

Hard Rock Expansion Plans

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The franchise, Hard Rock Café, is known for its rock’n’roll memorabilia. Located around the globe, the franchise is expanding its reach into hotels and casinos. Questions: 1. When did the franchise begin? 2. Strategically, why is the move into casinos a good, but difficult one? 3. The franchise rotates more than 70,000 pieces of music… Read more »

Labor Department Violations

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On Tuesday, the Labor Department announced that it had levied a $34,000 fine on C. J.’s Seafood for safety violations. This is the company that supplies crawfish to WalMart. In addition, the agency also ordered C. J.’s to pay $214,000 for wage and hour violations. Questions: 1. Where is the company based? 2. Specifically, how… Read more »

Super Hero Strength

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The Associated Press reports that three of the five hospitals treating victims from the mass shooting will waive or limit medical costs. Children’s Hospital Colorado will use donations and a charity fund to cover the expenses of uninsured victims, and waive co-pays for the insured. Questions: 1. According to the article, about how much has… Read more »

The Weather Channel Buys Weather Underground

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This week, Weather Underground, a unique website with a cult following was acquired by The Weather Channel for an undisclosed sum of money. As a strong competitor to The Weather Channel, the website has a devoted readership, with approximately 10 million unique visitors per month. Fans of Weather Underground have expressed outrage and disappointment in… Read more »

The Price of Transparency in Hospitals

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One of the biggest problems today is that consumers have no way of figuring out how much a particular health care service costs. Unfortunately, a recent Arizona bill to encourage hospitals and doctors to become more transparent about the prices they charge for services was just killed by the state legislature. The bill would have… Read more »

Remember Driver’s Ed? Things have Changed!

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Mercedes-Benz has long been at the forefront of creating safer cars and now they are aiming to create safer drivers. In December 2011, the company opened the its first driving school in the U.S. called Mercedes-Benz Driving Academy. Mercedes has three more in Europe). This school is located on Third Street in downtown Los Angeles…. Read more »

Hospital Costs

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Two years ago, Augie Hong, who works for an investment firm in San Francisco, awoke with severe abdominal pains. He went to an ER at the hospital closest to his house and was diagnosed with acute appendicitis. He wasn’t worried about the cost because he had health insurance from his employer. However, when he got… Read more »