By Mark Koba Despite arguments to the contrary, giving unemployed Americans extended jobless benefits of up to 99 weeks didn't prevent them from taking jobs, according a new report.Released last month through the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, the study says that the extended benefits given from 2009 to 2012 to the unemployed increased the overall employment rate by only 0.04 percentage points, which the report says is small in comparison to the peak recession unemployment rate of 10 percent.
While Germany slowly picks up steam.
Maybe the French should have stopped protesting gay marriage and instead gone to work or bought some stuff. France slipped back into a recession as the entire euro-zone economy shrank more than expected in the first quarter of 2013, according to European Union data released Wednesday. France’s economy shrunk by 0.2 percent, its first decline in four years, and officials worried that France will continue to fall further behind throughout the year if it can only keep up the current pace. Germany, the largest economy in Europe, posted modest growth after suffering a sharp decline in the last quarter of 2012, with the EU Statistical Office commending Germany for “slowly picking up steam.” But things were especially bleak for Italy, the third-largest economy in Europe: its economy shrunk by 0.5 percent, putting the economy in recession for its seventh straight quarter.
High costs and a constantly expanding array of other options are spurring more Americans – especially young ones – to kick the long-running American car habit.
Cars, long a status symbol for American youth, are increasingly being passed-over by millennials the New York Times reports. According to a study released Tuesday by the U.S. Public Interest Research Group, the driving boom of the past sx decades is over. Even though the U.S. population increases every year, 2013 marked the eighth year of declining driving. In aggregate, America’s vehicle owners are driving fewer miles than they used to. As federal data shows, total vehicle mileage driven in the U.
Google hasn’t been known for its must-have consumer products. But by parceling out a small number of units of its revolutionary new device to developers and fans in advance of next year’s launch, it is creating an Apple-like mania.
The future is here, folks. Google Glass has rolled into beta testing phase and for the past few weeks, some lucky early adopters have been strapping thin wire frames onto their faces and seeing what’s otherwise limited to that old-fashioned glass on the iPhone screen. Nearly 10,000 total pairs will be sent out to Google’s “explorers”: comprised of winners of the #ifihadglass contest and developers who signed up for the program at Google’s IO conference last year.
Despite the rise of Facebook, the founder of Netscape says risk-averse public markets are hostile to technology startups. The result is likely to be fewer blockbuster initial public offerings.
By Cadie Thompson Don't expect a game changing tech initial public offering anytime soon. Private tech companies are steering clear of going public as long as they can manage, said Marc Andreessen, the co-founder of the venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz, on CNBC's "Closing Bell" Monday."When you say what's the next big IPO, the brutal truth is I don't know and I'm not sure there is going to be one for quite while because the incentives are so strong to keep these companies private," Andreessen said.
Activist investor seeks breakup.
Hedge-fund instigator Daniel Loeb is calling for Sony to split its entertainment division from its electronics branch. Loeb’s hedge fund has acquired a 6.5 percent stake in Sony worth $1.1 billion. Notorious for disrupting companies in which he invests, Loeb thinks that by spinning off its entertainment arm, Sony could focus on electronics and increase profits. Time will tell if Loeb’s approach has any effect on the notoriously conservative Japanese corporate culture.
Supply shock sidelines OPEC.
Put that in your pipe and smoke it! The International Energy Agency is predicting that growing U.S. oil production will meet the majority of new oil demand globally over the next five years. This means that even if the global economy grows faster than expected, OPEC will still be constrained by the threat of even lower prices in attempting to increase output. By 2015, the report predicted, the U.S. will overtake Russia as the largest non-OPEC oil producer.
Humans may not be able to stop climate change. But they can take preventative action to mitigate it’s effects. The Rockefeller Foundation is kicking off a $100 million project to make cities more resilient in the face of more powerful storms and rising tides.
The foundation associated with one of America’s most iconic, historical names is launching a challenge to bring better resilience and sustainability to cities around the world. The Rockefeller Foundation announced Tuesday that it will invest $100 million into cities worldwide to help make them better equipped for the ecological challenges they may face in the future.“In this world today we will not be able to predict or prevent every catastrophe, take climate change—extreme weather, raging fires, vicious storms,” Rockefeller Foundation President Judith Rodin told the Daily Beast.
Backed in part by Tesla founder Elon Musk, SolarCity is succeeding where many other solar companies have failed. Josh Dzieza reports on the company’s innovative business model.
Sun Concept, Ampulse, Evergreen, Solyndra: the long list of defunct solar companies is enough to give pause to anyone trying to enter the business. But at least one company, SolarCity, has been succeeding where so many others have failed. Its secret? Staying away from manufacturing and focusing on installation.SolarCity was founded in 2006 by Lyndon and Peter Rive, on the advice of their cousin, Elon Musk, the Paypal founder who went on to start Tesla Motors and SpaceX, and is enjoying something of a moment.
Tree huggers and deficit hawks rejoice: The federal government is buying up to 10,000 hybrid cars. There’s never been a better time to switch gears, writes Daniel Gross.
Procurement policy we can believe in!It’s not much of a slogan. But with President Obama’s domestic agenda apparently crippled by recalcitrant Republicans, it’s something for progressives to hang their hat on.The federal government is a large buyer of goods and services—security contractors, office space, weapons, paper products. The General Services Administration, handles a good chunk of those acquisitions. And so the decisions it makes can have real-world impacts.
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After a University of Massachusetts student found significant errors in a study beloved by budget cutters world over by Harvard economists Kenneth Rogoff and Carmen Reinhart, Stephen Colbert does what he does best -- leaves them in the dust.
The unbanked may have a hard time buying insurance on the exchanges. Too bad we just created more of them.
Ali Gharib on how badly John Kerry's efforts to restart Israeli-Palestinian talks are going.