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The latest news from Business Insider

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    Wendy's bun 1

    • Wendy's is giving away free junior bacon cheeseburgers through November 23 in celebration of National Fast Food Day on Friday. 
    • To be eligible, customers need to purchase another item from the menu using the chain's app. The offer allows them to redeem one burger per person a day.
    • Fast-food chains are increasingly relying on deals to entice lower-income shoppers to stores. In 2018, Wendy's expanded its 4-for-$4 bundle deal, Taco Bell doubled down on its $1 menu, and McDonald's debuted its new $1 $2 $3 menu.

    Wendy's has a juicy deal for National Fast Food Day Friday. 

    The fast-food chain is giving away free junior bacon cheeseburgers through Friday 23 November. 

    To be eligible, customers need to purchase another item from the menu using its app. The deal can be used once a day, a spokesperson for Wendy's confirmed to Business Insider. 

    Fast-food chains are increasingly being forced to lean on deals to win over customers.

    As a result, there has been a flurry of offers and discounts across the industry in recent months. In 2018, Wendy's expanded its 4-for-$4 bundle deal, Taco Bell doubled down on its $1 menu, and McDonald's debuted its new $1 $2 $3 menu.

    Read more: McDonald's is debuting a new $6 meal deal that represents one of the chain's 'most aggressive' weapons in the battle for budget shoppers yet

    Wendy's CEO told CNBC earlier this month that this is partly due to stagnating wage growth among its lower-income American customers.

    "About 40 percent of our consumers are $45,000 and under from an income bracket," CEO Todd Penegor told CNBC."And they're not participating in the real wage growth to the extent of the rest of the consumer base."

    Value has become the top reason to visit a fast-food chain, according to a UBS Evidence Lab survey shared with investors in March.

    According to the survey, the emphasis on value is one of necessity. Having "less free spending money lately" and chains being "too expensive" were the top two factors that customers cited for eating at a particular chain less often.

    SEE ALSO: These are the most unhealthy meals in America, ranked

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: How Alibaba turned a fake holiday into a $25 billion shopping extravaganza that's bigger than Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined

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    skripal suspects petrov boshirov RT

    • Russian intelligence agents intimidated a tech specialist into hacking Britain's visa issuance system to secure tourist visas before Sergei Skripal's poisoning this March, according to a new report.
    • Agents co-opted Vadim Mitrofanov in 2016 under duress and threatened his family with imprisonment and deportation, the report says.
    • While this story doesn't indicate that Russia successfully managed to game the UK's visa system, it is a tale of a long Russian game to hack other countries' visa systems and learn about people's potential travel plans.

    Russian intelligence agents intimidated a tech specialist as early as 2016 into hacking the UK's visa enrollment system to secure tourist visas before the poisoning of Sergei Skripal this March, a new report says.

    Agents with the FSB, Russia's domestic security agency, promised to help a Russian tech specialist sort out his family's immigration hurdles, and threatened his wife with jail and deportation, in exchange for hacking into Britain's visa system, investigators at Bellingcat said in a report published on Friday.

    In September the UK accused two Russian men of entering England on tourist visas to poison Skripal with military-grade nerve agent this March. The Kremlin claimed that the two men were tourists.

    Bellingcat, a website dedicated to investigative journalism, later identified the two men as agents of Russia's military intelligence service, also known as the GRU.

    Read more:Russian military reportedly unhappy with a series of embarrassing blunders by its spies abroad

    sergei skripal

    According to Bellingcat, FSB agents recruited Vadim Mitrofanov, a Russian national who worked for a company that helped embassies process visa applications, under duress and asked him to breach the UK's visa application system.

    Mitrofanov, a Russian national, had been living in China when a Russian agent approached him in March 2016. He had been trying to organize Russian residency permits for his Mongolian wife and child, but had encountered numerous bureaucratic troubles.

    Bellingcat also published audio footage purporting to capture Mitrofanov's handler, identified as "Andrei," threatening his family members with imprisonment:

    In June 2016, Mitrofanov's handler asked him if he could organize visas "for a couple of guys who need to visit the UK," and to do so "without any review and background checks and without leaving any trace in the visa center," Mitrofanov told Bellingcat.

    It suggests that the Kremlin had been considering having its security agents enter the UK as early as 2016. 

    Bellingcat said this story does not "definitively prove" that Russia obtained the tourist visas through intimidating Vadim, but indicates a long game it has played to hack other countries' visa systems and learn about people's travel plans.

    It also does not answer how Russia managed to get the men responsible for Skripal's poisoning into the UK, as Mitrofanov's story doesn't prove that the FSB or any other Russian security agency successfully breached Britain's visa issuance system.

    The researchers said: "While our investigation does not definitively prove that Russian agencies were successful in these concrete efforts, it does paint a picture of a strategic, long-term Russian effort to compromise the visa issuance system, as well as to gather intelligence on potential travelers' plans – both from Russia to Western Europe, and the other way around."

    Read Bellingcat's full report here.

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: What serving in the military taught beauty YouTuber Jackie Aina

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    • Director Steve McQueen's thrilling heist delivers a smart crime drama.
    • The glue to the movie is Davis' Veronica character. Don't be surprised if this garners her another Oscar nomination.

    It's hard to make a heist movie these days that doesn't feel like the countless others we've had thrown at us going as far back as the days of the film noir.

    But director Steve McQueen ("12 Years A Slave") has caught lightning in a bottle with "Widows" (opening in theaters Friday).

    Based on the British TV series of the same name from the mid-1980s, we follow a group of women who are married or have relationships with a team of thieves. After the men are all killed in a job, the woman decide to take on the next one they were to do to help support themselves.

    But seeing this is a McQueen movie, there's a lot more between the lines.

    Filled with issues of race, dirty politics, and double-crossing, it's a smart crime drama that the likes of Michael Mann or David Mamet have done in the past. And McQueen has surrounded himself with a cast that can pull off clearing that high bar.

    Front and center is Viola Davis, who plays Veronica, the wife of the crew's leader, Harry Rawlings (Liam Neeson). The death of her man has left her heartbroken and broke. But when she is given a key to a safe deposit box that Harry has left behind for her, everything changes.

    Inside, she finds Harry's notebook that reveals the plans for what would have been his crew's next job. Unsure what to do, she finds motivation in a visit from gangster-turned politician Jamal Manning (Brian Tyree Henry), who informs Veronica that Harry stole money from him on his final job. Jamal says Veronica has one month to pay him back.

    So she decides to do Harry's job and enlists the widows of Harry's crew (Michelle Rodriguez, Elizabeth Debicki) to do it with her.

    As in previous McQueen movies, the beautiful photography of DP Sean Bobbitt shines through, and even though it's a studio movie (released by Fox), McQueen is able to throw in little creative elements that only he can.

    In a single-shot car ride, politician Jack Mulligan (Colin Farrell) gets in his town car after a speech in an underdeveloped part of Chicago. While driving back to his home, he has a heated conversation with his aid about wanting to quit politics.

    But McQueen mounts the camera on the hood of the car and only shows half of the car in the frame. We never see inside the car, only hear their voices. This allows the audience to watch the surroundings on the drive go from ghetto to mansions in the span of a few minutes.

    Widows Fox final

    The script is perfectly crafted with few cliches by McQueen and Gillian Flynn ("Gone Girl,""Sharp Objects"), but it's the incredible casting that makes this movie so great.

    Davis plays Veronica tough-as-nails. She's hard on the other woman to get the job done, but inside she's as scared as the rest of them.

    Rodriguez is perfect for this kind of movie, giving her usual tough persona performance, and Debicki is impressive as Alice, who after going through an abusive relationship wit her boyfriend Florek (Jon Bernthal) and left with nothing after his death, has to grow up fast when she agrees to take on the job. Her evolution in the movie is one of the most fascinating to watch.

    Robert Duvall, Carrie Coon, and Daniel Kaluuya as Jamal's deadly enforcer brother, round out the cast.

    But the glue to the movie is Davis' Veronica character. Don't be surprised if this garners her another Oscar nomination.

    Davis plays Veronica as a woman who is in pain but suddenly has found that she can finally be independent in the world. Though it may be a heist she's planning, she does it with the tenacity and persistence of a CEO running a company.

    She doesn't want us to feel sorry for Veronica — Davis makes us see that this woman is more than just arm candy to a criminal. 

    SEE ALSO: The new 'Halloween' movie is as tired and uninspiring as any of its sequels

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: How 'The Price Is Right' is made

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    mandy moore meghan markle

    • Mandy Moore and Meghan Markle used to hang out.
    • Markle's ex-husband, Trevor Engelson, was a producer on Moore's "License to Wed." 
    • Moore reached out to congratulate Markle on her wedding to Prince Harry and learned that Markle is a fan of "This Is Us." 

    Mandy Moore has a connection to Duchess Meghan Markle.

    In an interview with Access, the 34-year-old actress explained an old photo that shows Moore and Markle sitting with a group of women. 

    "I met her back in 2006 and spent ... a lot of time with her, and she is a lovely, generous woman," Moore said. "I'm so excited to see how her life has evolved, and she seems truly happy." 

    Meghan Markle

    Markle's ex-husband, Trevor Engelson, was a producer of Moore's 2007 comedy "License to Wed." Part of the movie was shot in Jamaica, so they all hung out there.

    "I think we spent New Year's with them that year," Moore said. "We spent some time over the summer in the Hamptons with them. It was another lifetime ago for both of us, but she’s wonderful." 

    Engelson and Markle married in 2011 after being together since 2004 but divorced in 2013. 

    trevor engelson

    Prince Harry Meghan Markle

    The "This Is Us" star said she emailed the duchess to congratulate her on her wedding to Prince Harry in May, which is how she discovered that Markle was a fan of her NBC show. 

    Read more:Prince Harry opened up about asking Prince Charles to walk Meghan Markle down the aisle at the royal wedding amid drama with her own father

    "She was very kind and said that she really likes 'This Is Us,'" Moore said. "She watches the show, so that was pretty cool. She's just a normal, regular girl."

    milo ventimiglia mandy moore this is us

    Watch the interview below. 

    Visit INSIDER's homepage for more.

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: The first woman in space almost didn't make it back to Earth and she had to keep it a secret for 30 years

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    Blood test

    Anemia is a condition characterized by a lack of red blood cells or a lack of functioning red blood cells. Red blood cells carry hemoglobin, an iron-rich protein that attaches to oxygen in the lungs and carries it to tissues throughout the body. Therefore, with a lack of red blood cells there's a resulting lack of oxygen being carried throughout a person's body. 

    The condition is the most common blood disorder, affecting more than 3 million Americans a year.

    We've compiled a list of some of the signs of anemia.

    While signs and symptoms are often used interchangeably, medically, they're different. Symptoms can only be felt and described by the affected individual, whereas signs have to be seen or read by an additional, unaffected person rather than felt.

    Paleness is a sign of anemia.

    The cause of pale skin is due to a lack of red blood cells and a lack of hemoglobin in the red blood cells. The blood and blood cells that are circulating are diverted to the organs rather than the skin, and according to Everyday Health, "as the numbers of red blood cells become restricted, not enough reach the surface of the skin."

    Anemia can cause dry skin and dry hair.

    Most oxygen is transported through the body via being bound to the protein hemoglobin, yet when hemoglobin is deficient, oxygen isn't transported as it normally is or needs to be throughout the body.

    The limited oxygen goes to the organs and tissues performing essential functions rather than going to our skin and hair. When the skin and hair are deprived of oxygen, they become dry and weak, and hair may even fall out in more severe instances.

    A swollen, pale tongue could be a sign of anemia.

    A change in color or texture of the tongue, as well as swelling of the tongue, are signs of anemia. Anemia tongue is also referred to as glossitis, which is inflammation of the tongue.

    Iron helps the body to make red blood cells, and when we're deficient in red blood cells, the tissue of the tongue doesn't receive enough oxygen, causing some of the above negative effects of the tongue.

    Read more: 5 warning signs your tongue could be sending about your overall health

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    13 best places to travel in january map

    • To find the best places to visit in January 2019, Business Insider looked at climate data, cultural calendars, and peak travel times.
    • January is one of the cheapest months to travel, thanks to the end of holiday season, and smart travelers are already planning their next getaway.
    • The best places to visit in January include a surreal, mirror-like salt flat in Bolivia, a tropical paradise in Thailand, and a neon ice festival in China.
    • Have different travel dates in mind? Find the best places to visit every month of the year »

    January brings the promise of a new year and countless opportunities to travel the world.

    With the December holiday season in the rearview mirror, January is thankfully one of the cheapest months to plan a vacation, and smart travelers are already starting to plan their early 2019 getaways.

    We looked at airfare trends, climate data, and global cultural calendars to select 13 vacation spots you should scope out for a January vacation. They include a stunning tropical island in Thailand, a surreal natural mirror made of salt in Bolivia, and a subzero neon theme park in China that attracts more 10 million visitors a year.

    Check out our 13 recommendations for your next January adventure, and kick off 2019 with a bang.

    SEE ALSO: 13 places to visit in November for every type of traveler

    SEE ALSO: 13 places to visit in December for every type of traveler

    Los Angeles, California

    Los Angeles is typically one of the most expensive cities in the US for travelers, but you can save a bundle by visiting in January. All through the winter months, prices on hotel and airfare drop for trips to California's biggest city.

    All the staples of LA tourism are in play in January, from Universal Studios Hollywood to the Griffith Observatory and the glamorous storefronts of Rodeo Drive. And with highs in the upper 60s Fahrenheit, there will be plenty of action and people-watching to do at Venice Beach or Santa Monica Beach, even if it might be a little too cold to get in the water.

    It's worth noting that the Los Angeles area is suffering two wildfires as of this publication: the Woolsey Fire and the Hill Fire. You can make a difference by donating to relief organizations or, if you visit Los Angeles, volunteering your time to help those in need.

    Aspen, Colorado

    More than 200 inches of snow lure winter sports lovers to scenic Aspen, Colorado, each winter.

    Although December through February are the most expensive months to travel to this powdery haven, early January is when rates for hotels and ski lifts are the most affordable of the season. That's the sweet spot on the calendar between December holidays and the start of the annual X Games, which start in late January.

    Caladesi Island, Florida

    Florida's pristine and isolated Caladesi Island is the perfect winter destination for beachgoers who like to travel at their own speed.

    The quiet island off the coast of Central Florida is only accessible by ferry or private boat. But although it's slightly harder to reach than your average Florida beach, adventurous travelers will appreciate its serenity and calm.

    "The best things about Caladesi Island are the things it doesn’t have — roads, crowds, tackiness and noise,"The New York Times wrote in 2008. "There is little to do except enjoy nature, and there is nothing to buy except simple sandwiches, drinks, postcards and modest souvenirs at a small concession stand."

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    california fire

    • California's deadliest and most destructive wildfire broke out last Thursday.
    • The Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) said it could be responsible for the fire and had exhausted its revolving line of credit to pay for a fire-related liability.
    • California Public Utilities Commission President Michael Picker said he couldn't imagine letting the California utility declare bankruptcy.
    • Shares were under pressure recently but rallied on Friday following Picker's comments. 
    • Watch PG&E trade live here.

    The Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) soared as much as 45% early Friday after a regulator said he couldn't imagine letting the California utility declare bankruptcy, even as it faces huge liabilities from California's deadliest and most destructive wildfire.

    “It’s not good policy to have utilities unable to finance the services and infrastructure the state of California needs,” state Public Utilities Commission President Michael Picker told Bloomberg News.“They have to have stability and economic support to get the dollars they need right now.”

    Picker also told The San Francisco Chronicle the commission would soon implement a state-level provision through which utilities can pass wildfire costs to consumers.

    The San Francisco-based PG&E was under pressure recently, seeing more than half of its market cap wiped out in a week, amid speculation the utility could be responsible for the wildfire, which started its devastating path through the Northern California town of Paradise last Thursday and has killed at least 63 people.

    In a Tuesday filing, PG&E said it told state regulators last week that it experienced problems with transmission lines in the area of the fire around the time the blaze erupted. It added that while the cause of the fire is still under investigation, if the company's equipment is determined to be the cause, it will suffer a "material impact." 

    The company had aggregated $3 billion from its credit line in anticipation of a fire-related liability, according to the filing. Then, on Wednesday, PG&E announced that it had exhausted its revolving line of credit.

    Even with the spike on Friday, PG&E is down 45% this year.

    Now read:


    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Why you shouldn't be afraid to fly, according to a pilot with over 20 years of experience

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    millennial christmas movies

    In a recent survey from FandangoNOW, more than 1,000 millennials chose between holiday movies like "How The Grinch Stole Christmas" and "A Christmas Story" to rank the top 15 holiday movies of all time. While their top choices may be different than yours, depending on the generation you're in, the list might just prove that holiday-specific movies will be around for years to come.

    Here's what millennials say are the best holiday movies.

    "Home Alone" has a nostalgic feel.

    Rotten Tomatoes score: 62%

    When 8-year-old Kevin McCallister (Macaulay Culkin) misbehaves, his mother (Catherine O'Hara) makes him spend the night in the attic. As a result, he oversleeps and his whole family accidentally leaves him behind when they embark on a trip to Paris.

    At first, Kevin is excited to be, well, home alone but he soon realizes that two thieves (Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern) are taking advantage of the holiday to rob every house in his neighborhood. By devising a series of ingenious tricks and traps, Kevin manages to defend the neighborhood from the thieves.

    "Elf" is funny and heartwarming at the same time.

    Rotten Tomatoes score: 83%

    When Buddy (Will Ferrell), a human who has been raised among elves, discovers the truth about his heritage, he embarks on a mission from the North Pole to New York City to find his real father. While he's there, he's dismayed by the cynicism displayed by everyone in the city especially his father, a curmudgeonly businessman played by James Caan but still manages to instill the Christmas Spirit in everyone he meets.

    "Dr. Seuss' How The Grinch Stole Christmas (2000)" is a story about the Christmas spirit.

    Rotten Tomatoes score: 52%

    The Grinch (Jim Carrey) is a surly green creature who lives in a cave above a town called Whoville. He detests the people who live there for many reasons, but most of all for their love for Christmas. So, he decides to ruin it for them by supplanting Santa Claus and stealing Whoville's gifts and decorations but, in the process, he accidentally learns the real lesson of Christmas.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Nvidia ceo volta tesla v100

    Nvidia on Thursday reported disappointing third-quarter earnings, leading shares to slump as much as 18% early Friday.

    The chipmaker said it earned $1.82 a share, falling short of the $1.92 that was expected by Wall Street according to Bloomberg data. Its bottom line came in at $3.18 billion, missing on the $3.24 billion that was expected. 

    Looking ahead, the company expects its fourth-quarter revenue to be $2.7 billion, while analysts were expecting $3.4 billion.

    The underwhelming financial results were largely due to an excess of mining GPUs for cryptocurrency. “Our near-term results reflect excess channel inventory post the crypto-currency boom, which will be corrected," CEO Jensen Huang said Thursday in the earnings release. Management in August warned that it's expecting "essentially no cryptocurrency" business moving forward.

    Also at stake is a product transition which will unlikely ramp until next year. 

    In August Nvidia unveiled its new graphics cards, which improve the gaming experience through features like real-time ray tracing. But those new features aren't yet available because games supporting the high-end graphics cards aren't out until 2019.

    But nearly every Wall Street analyst is still bullish about the chip giant, saying it's time to buy the dip as the company has good fundamentals.

    Here is what they are saying:

    Goldman Sachs — 'Structural thesis unchanged but remove from Conviction List on increased near-term uncertainty'

    Price target: $200

    Rating: Buy

    "Structural thesis unchanged but remove from Conviction List on increased near-term uncertainty," said analyst Toshiya Hari at Goldman Sachs.

    "While we view the inventory correction in Gaming as a one-time reset as opposed to a change in the long-term growth profile, we believe it could take a few quarters before the market regains confidence in the growth trajectory of the business, especially given the weak economic backdrop."

    RBC Capital Markets — 'Crypto strikes again along with data center softness'

    Price target: $260 (from $310)

    Rating: Outperform

    "Crypto strikes again along with data center softness," said Mitch Steves, an analyst at RBC Capital Markets.

    "Nvidia reported results and guidance below expectations due to 1) gaming inventory - crypto currency chips being returned, 2) data center coming in lighter than expected at $792M (Street $820M) and 3) guided gaming down ~30% q/q for gaming. Overall, while this is a material set-back for the stock we note that the long-term secular trends remain the same: Data Center - AI, Autonomous in 2020 and VR ramps in 2020 and beyond. Going forward, we think the focus will now shift to Data Center as gaming expectations are now reset due to crypto currencies and a product transition (Turing) which will unlikely ramp until around the Jul-qtr time frame."

    JPMorgan — 'secular growth in datacenter and gaming still intact'

    Price target: $200

    Rating: Buy

    "Near-term softness on excess channel inventory, but secular growth in datacenter and gaming still intact," said analyst Harlan Sur at JPMorgan.

    "Aside from excess GPU inventory in the channel, core Gaming demand remains strong on continued blockbuster gaming titles/e-sports strength, notebook sales and launch of new games supported by Turing," Sur said.

    "Though management did not provide directional guidance per segment as it has done in prior quarters, with strong momentum in high-performance computing, datacenter acceleration and early adoption of inferencing products at cloud service providers, where spending remains robust (including in China), we are confident in NVIDIA growing its Datacenter business sequentially again in the Jan-Q."

    Sur continued: "In Gaming, excluding the impact of excess channel inventory, we believe the team is seeing solid demand, and will likely see solid sequential growth for its RTX-20 series gaming platforms in the Jan-Q."

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    camp fire firefighters hosing down

    California is in flames to the north and south as the deadly Camp and Woolsey fires rage on.

    Both wildfires lit up on Thursday, November 8, and have been stoked by dry, windy conditions. The Woolsey Fire has destroyed parts of Malibu and other areas on the outskirts of Los Angeles, while the Camp Fire ravaged the town of Paradise, California, which is north of Sacramento. That fire has killed at least 63 people — more people than any fire in state history.

    Investigators think some sparking power lines could have been the cause of the blaze. Stocks of California's two largest energy companies fell sharply on Monday, the Los Angeles Times reported, as investors worried about where blame for the deadly fire will fall. A group of people whose homes burned to the ground is already suing Pacific Gas & Electric Co.

    As of Friday, the Camp Fire had burned 142,000 acres and was 45% contained. Hundreds of people are still missing, and fire officials expect it will take weeks to finish dousing the flames. In one week, the Camp Fire has already destroyed more structures than any fire California had before it: more than 10,000 homes and businesses are gone.

    Here's what the affected area of Northern California looks like.

    SEE ALSO: California wildfires just demolished an entire town and forced the Kardashians to evacuate. Here’s why fire season is getting longer and stronger.

    The Camp Fire lit up just after 6:30 a.m. Thursday morning. In less than 24 hours, it devoured nearly the entire town of Paradise, California, growing at a rate of 80 football fields per minute.

    Source: Insider

    At 9:23 a.m. Thursday, the Butte County Sheriff's Office sent out frantic tweets — first warning — then ordering residents to get out of the way of the flames. "What pisses me off is I don’t think they told everybody soon enough," resident Kim Benn said.

    Source: TwitterLA Times

    At least six people died in their cars as they tried to escape.

    Source: Business Insider 

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    China Students Exam

    • The CFA Institute is moving its increasingly popular Level I exams online.
    • The Level I exam, currently offered just twice a year, will be administered more often, and results will be delivered faster. 
    • Over 200,000 candidates registered for one of the three levels of CFA tests in June alone, a 20% increase in just a year.

    Hundreds of thousands of aspiring financiers sign up for the notoriously grueling, three-level Chartered Financial Analyst exam every year.  

    To meet this rising demand, the CFA Institute plans to move the Level I exam online, Business Insider has learned. The test, currently offered in June and December, will also be administered more often. To be clear, test-takers will still need to head to physical locations for the exam, but the paper tests will be replaced with an online format. 

    Test-takers could see different types of questions through online exams than the current paper medium allows. For example, an online format offers more options to incorporate spreadsheets into questions, CFA Institute head of communications Anne O'Brien said in an interview.

    The CFA Institute is still in the process of finding vendors for online exam administration, so the changes are a few years away, O'Brien said. A record 227,031 candidates registered to take the Level I, II or III test in June, up 20% from last year. Tests were administered in 286 centers around the world. 

    Electronic exams offered more often could help the CFA Institute offer a wider variety of venues – and students will see results faster,  O'Brien said. 

    Read more:  A selection of questions on a Level I practice exam

    "It’s becoming increasingly challenging to find and staff physical venues in some of our markets to accommodate the sheer volume of candidates we have," O'Brien said. 

    Becoming a CFA charterholder is a huge leg up for anyone hoping to build a career in money management. It's also less expensive than an MBA — a CFA costs about $2,500 in total, while an MBA can easily run into the hundreds of thousands of dollars.

    Level I exams are six hours long and feature 240 multiple choice questions. Since the test is offered only twice a year, venues must accommodate sometimes thousands of students. In New York, for example, test-takers head to the Javits Center, a 1.8 million square foot convention center. 

    In Beijing, the June test was administered over the course of two days, because there was not a large enough venue to accommodate the candidates. 

    The Level I exam focuses on investment tools and business foundations, while Level II and II tests dive deeper into analysis and portfolio management. It takes most candidates four years to pass all three levels of the test. Less than one in five people who start the CFA program make it through all three levels and complete the other requirements to become a charter holder.

    The first CFA exam was administered in 1963 to 284 candidates in the US, Canada, and London, according to the CFA Institute's website. There are now more than 154,000 CFA charterholders globally. 

    See also:

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    nintendo 64 christmas morning video freakout

    • With the massive success of the NES Classic Edition and Super NES Classic Edition consoles, it was widely expected that a Nintendo 64 Classic Edition was next in line.
    • Nintendo even trademarked images that look an awful lot like the imagery used for the NES and Super NES Classic Edition consoles.
    • But Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aimé threw cold water on the idea in a recent interview. "I would not ever rule something out, but what I can tell you is certainly that’s not in our planning horizon."

    Sorry, fellow millennials: It looks like a miniature version of our generation's iconic Nintendo console, the Nintendo 64, may never come to pass.

    That's according to the president of Nintendo of America, Reggie Fils-Aimé. "That’s not in our planning horizon," he told Kotaku in a recent interview. Notably, he couched his response with the preface, "I would not ever rule something out." 

    That's a pretty big surprise, given the overwhelming success of Nintendo's two miniature "Classic Edition" consoles — the NES Classic Edition and the Super NES Classic Edition. Both consoles re-create the look of the original game consoles, albeit in a smaller size, and pack in a bunch of classic games.

    NES Classic Edition / Super NES Classic Edition

    More than just a logical conclusion, the idea of a Nintendo 64 Classic Edition first popped up in trademark filings from Nintendo itself. 

    In the filing, a distinctive image is shown:

    Nintendo 64 (trademark)

    The trademark image isn't just notable because it's the outline of the Nintendo 64 gamepad — it's notable because it's the same outline of a gamepad that appears on the retail branding of Nintendo's other "Classic Edition" consoles. 

    For example:

    NES Classic Edition gamepad (arrows)

    That silhouette of the NES Classic Edition gamepad on the top of the box? It's identical to another trademark filing image from Nintendo:

    NES Classic Edition (Logo)

    This close-up really highlights how similar the image is:

    NES Classic Edition

    Nintendo filed the same logo trademark in Europe for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System gamepad silhouette, and that same silhouette appears on top of the Super NES Classic Edition box.

    Thus, the logical conclusion was that Nintendo was working on a miniaturized Nintendo 64. But it's been a few months since that trademark popped up, and Nintendo has yet to announce a Nintendo 64 Classic Edition. 

    And now, Fils-Aimé says that such a console is unlikely — a measure of Nintendo's business calculations around the "Classic Edition" line.

    "For us, these were limited time opportunities that were a way for us as a business to bridge from the conclusion of Wii U as a hardware system to the launch of Nintendo Switch. That was the very strategic reason we launched the NES Classic system," Fils-Aimé said. 

    nintendo wii u

    More clearly: The NES and Super NES Classic Edition consoles were created to keep money coming in while Nintendo transitioned from the Wii U (which bombed) to the Switch (which is a resounding success). And now that's Nintendo's doing well again, the need for more Classic Edition consoles may no longer exist.

    It's a major bummer of an explanation that seemingly ignores the massive consumer interest in Nintendo's classic games library, but it's a logical decision for a company that's regained its foothold in the ever-finicky video game hardware business. 

    Regardless, if you were holding your breath for the Nintendo 64 Classic Edition, it may be time to exhale.

    SEE ALSO: It looks like Nintendo could release a miniature Nintendo 64 console to compete with the new Sony PlayStation Classic

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    NOW WATCH: There's so much CO2 in the atmosphere that planting trees can no longer save us

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    kratom herbal pills

    • Government regulators are expected to soon rule on the legality of a controversial drug called kratom, a representative at the Drug Enforcement Administration told Business Insider on Tuesday.
    • While federal agencies have called kratom a dangerous opioid, advocates say it's saved their lives.
    • One thing missing from the debate about kratom: hard science on how it works.
    • For the first time this summer, a researcher isolated kratom's two key ingredients to see how they affect behavior in rats. Although the results were preliminary, they suggested the drug could hold promise for people with addiction.

    A final decision on the legality of a controversial drug is expected imminently from the US government.

    The drug, called Kratom, has pitted government regulators against scientists and advocates. The Food and Drug Administration has called it a dangerous opioid and sought to ban it by making it a Schedule 1 drug like heroin or ecstasy. Some advocates say it's helped them end their addiction to opioids, and scientists want to keep exploring its potential as a medical treatment.

    Right now, researchers at the DEA are evaluating the two main components in kratom. They'll either rule the same for both ingredients, effectively banning all forms of kratom nationwide, or they'll ban one and make the other potentially available as a medicine at a later date. That's according to Melvin Patterson, a spokesperson with the Drug Enforcement Administration who described the ruling as forthcoming.

    "I think there’s just a few remaining in-house things the DEA was looking at" before issuing a ruling, Patterson told Business Insider on Tuesday.

    Right now, kratom is legal in most states, where it is sold in whole plant form as a supplement.

    The ruling is highly anticipated by both advocates who say the drug has saved their lives and by scientists who simply want to learn more about how it works.

    "I wish there was some sort of holding box we could put drugs like this in until more studies could be done," Scott Hemby, a professor of pharmaceutical science at North Carolina's High Point University who authored a recent study isolating kratom's two main ingredients, told Business Insider on Monday. Hemby also said that based on his recent discussions with regulatory officials, he believed a decision on kratom was "imminent."

    Read more: A mysterious supplement has a viral following of people who take it for addiction — and researchers say it's too compelling to ignore

    Hemby's research — the first of its kind — was a preliminary study looking at how kratom's two main components affect behavior in rats. His findings suggested that the chief compound in the plant could potentially offer therapeutic benefits to people dealing with addiction, but it's still early days for the work.

    "We're at the precipice of something promising here," Hemby said when the paper came out.

    But Hemby worries that the government's ruling could make studying the plant and its key ingredients even harder than it already is, and he's not alone.

    Life-saving supplement or dangerous opioid?

    Kratom_PillsFrequently ground into a fine powder and taken as pills or tea, kratom is a psychoactive drug derived from the leaves of an Asian plant in the coffee family called Mitragyna speciosa. Kratom advocates swear by the stuff, saying it's helped them kick devastating addictions to opioid painkillers.

    But federal regulatory bodies like the FDA and the DEA have cracked down on kratom and previously tried to ban it.

    "It's like a cruel joke that I finally found something that works, and the FDA and DEA want it banned," Bryce Avey, a 26-year-old California native told Business Insider this summer. Avey said he took kratom daily as a tea to help him stop using the opioids he became addicted to after wrist surgery.

    The efforts to make kratom illegal culminated at two recent points: In 2016, the DEA attempted to ban kratom but stopped after facing backlash from advocates and members of Congress. Then in October 2017, the FDA broke out kratom's two main components and studied them separately, ultimately recommending a ban on both of them, Stat News reported this month. 

    That 2017 FDA recommendation was then sent to the DEA, which began the lengthy process of reevaluating the drug's two components to make a final decision on the legality of each of them, Patterson said.

    Now, a decision on the drug's two compounds is imminent, he said. While the FDA focuses on medicinal potential, the DEA looks at the compounds' abuse potential. 

    Importantly, the agency could choose to rule differently on each compound, Patterson added. Those include mitragynine (MG) and 7‐hydroxymitragynine (7‐HMG) — two ingredients that Hemby calls "the yin and yang of kratom" because while HMG could be potentially harmful, MG seems like it has a lot of therapeutic potential.

    That means that even if HMG gets banned or placed into Schedule 1, there's a possibility that MG could be placed in a different schedule. (Popular ADHD drug Adderall, for example, is a Schedule 2 drug.)

    'The yin and yang of kratom'

    In stark contrast to what regulators have said about kratom, a growing cluster of physicians and researchers are beginning to suggest that the drug could have therapeutic potential. Some have said they understand why people looking to get off opioids might find the drug helpful; others have said that new research suggests the plant's compounds could have untapped potential.

    "It makes sense that this product would mitigate the symptoms of opioid withdrawal or allow someone to transition from a higher dose to lower dose, or help get off them off of opioids altogether," David Juurlink, a professor of medicine at the University of Toronto, told Business Insider this summer.

    One big reason is that the kratom plant's two main ingredients — which can be thought of as similar to how marijuana contains both THC and CBD — appear to have very different effects on the brain.

    Of kratom's two chief ingredients (MG and HMG), MG is thought to be the compound with the most therapeutic potential. There's about 30 times more MG in Kratom than there is HMG. 

    Hemby's study was the first to use rats to investigate how each of these two compounds affects the brain. After giving the animals the chance to self-administer each ingredient by pushing a dial, they found that the rats quickly took advantage of the opportunity to give themselves the HMG but were completely uninterested in MG.

    "We stood on our heads to get them to self-administer," Hemby said, adding that his team tried upping the doses of MG several times. "It just wasn't working. It was almost like it was innocuous."

    In other words, while one of kratom's main compounds appeared to be addictive, the other wasn't at all — in fact, it appeared to have the opposite effect.

    That could be promising for people who are turning to kratom for relief from opioid addiction. The drug is known to tap into some of the same brain receptors as opioids — which spurred the FDA to officially call it an opioid in February.

    But some people believe those characteristics mean kratom could help treat opioid addiction by staunching cravings and reducing withdrawal and relapse.

    Hemby's findings also suggest there might be a way to process kratom to capitalize on this therapeutic potential by heightening the effects of one compound while minimizing the effects of the other. Strains of the plant, for example, can be bred to have differing concentrations of MG and HMG.

    That's something that he and other researchers like him want to keep studying, he said, so long as government regulators let them.

    "It’s really a rush to judgement to say let’s put the kibosh on everything," Hemby said.

    SEE ALSO: A mysterious supplement has a viral following of people who take it for addiction — and researchers say it's too compelling to ignore

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    NOW WATCH: Beautiful time-lapse videos show how much China has changed over the years

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    panic room jodie foster


    Forget penthouse views and rooftop pools. The ultra-wealthy are shelling out up to $500,000 for an unexpected amenity: luxurious panic rooms complete with flat-screen TVs, high-end décor, and even bars.

    "Panic rooms have become more popular, particularly in London, especially with international clients from the Middle East and Russia, where they are prevalent," Richard Westell, commercial sales manager for Safe and Bolt Co. and Opulent Safes, companies that make and install safes, vaults, and panic rooms, told Mansion Global. "These people want to replicate what they have in their other houses."

    In New York City, some members of the urban elite have built panic rooms into opulent homes such as an $88 million Upper East Side mansion that the New York Times called an "urban fortress." Internationally, Business Insider Australia reported in February 2018 that American billionaire Peter Thiel was building a panic room into his $4.8 million house in New Zealand.

    Of course, safety is still paramount in these fancy safe rooms, which are made of blast-proof and bulletproof material. But some have decorated their panic rooms to look like a 1920s speakeasy and or a Ralph Lauren catalog, as Chris Cosban, the owner of New York-based Covert Interiors, which makes luxury panic rooms for the elite of New York City and the Hamptons, told Mansion Global.

    These luxurious panic rooms cost between $50,000 and $550,000 for the basic armored room, and more for the furnishings and décor, according to Mansion Global.

    Interest in luxe panic rooms has spiked as mass shootings become more and more prevalent, said Chris Acevedo of Panic Room USA, a panic room firm based in Parkland, Florida.

    "The volume of our business increases commiserate to the increase in gun violence," he told the site.

    After decreasing for years, homicides and suicides that involve guns have been on the rise, according to recent data from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

    SEE ALSO: New York City has more penthouses available than it can fill — and it suggests a change in the way wealthy people are looking at luxury real estate

    DON'T MISS: Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich owns the second-largest yacht in the world and a customized airplane with a 30-person banquet hall — see how else he spends his fortune of at least $11 billion

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    Travis Kalanick

    • Travis Kalanick's net worth is $5.45 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.
    • Kalanick keeps his personal life fairly under wraps, but it's clear he spends much of his fortune on real estate and travel.
    • He has no clear ventures into philanthropy. 


    Travis Kalanick co-founded Uber in 2009. But, after a series of scandals and a workplace culture where discrimination and sexual harassment were the norm, Kalanick resigned as CEO in 2017. 

    Though he's no longer leading the global ride-hailing company, Kalanick remains wealthy. He's worth $5.45 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

    Here's how he spends his fortune:

    SEE ALSO: Tim Cook is worth $625 million and leads a $1 trillion company — but he reportedly buys discounted underwear and wants to give his money away after paying for his nephew's tuition

    Travis Kalanick presently has a reported net worth of $5.45 billion. Much of that is from holding 7% of Uber's stock, a company now valued at $76 billion.

    Source: Bloomberg

    As Business Insider previously reported, he was, up until recently, relatively "cash-poor for a billionaire." But his liquid assets saw a boost after he sold $1.4 billion in Uber shares to Japanese tech giant SoftBank.

    Source:Business Insider

    Kalanick grew up in the middle-income Los Angeles neighborhood of Northridge. He wanted to be a spy when he grew up.

    Source:Business Insider, LA Times

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    per se new york restaurant michelin

    • Five New York City restaurants earned the highest Michelin rating for 2019. 
    • The Chef's Table at Brooklyn Fare, Eleven Madison Park, Le Bernardin, Masa, and Per Se were all awarded three stars.
    • Two of those, Le Bernardin and Per Se, have consistently topped Michelin ratings for 13 years — every year since Michelin started ranking NYC restaurants in 2006.


    Five restaurants in New York City were recently awarded one of the highest honors in the industry: three coveted Michelin stars.

    The Chef's Table at Brooklyn Fare, Eleven Madison Park, Le Bernardin, Masa, and Per Se, all in Manhattan, topped the NYC guide for 2019. All five restaurants are on the pricier side, with meals falling in the $75 and higher category, according to the Michelin guide.

    Two of the restaurants, Le Bernardin and Per Se, have won the highest Michelin rating 14 times, every year since the restaurant guide was established in New York City in 2006.

    Le Bernardin, a seafood restaurant in Midtown West, was opened in 1986 by a sibling duo from Paris who had already established the restaurant there in 1972. It's now run by one of the siblings, Maguy Le Coze, and chef Eric Ripert.

    Read more: Michelin just announced its 2019 New York City restaurant list — and 16 restaurants made the list for the first time

    "When the definitive history of NYC's dining scene is written, Le Bernardin will have a chapter all to itself," reads Michelin's description of the restaurant. "...Seafood restaurants have no hiding place when it comes to cooking fish or crustaceans and this kitchen always hits its marks — whether that's poaching halibut, pan-roasting monkfish, baking striped bass or searing tuna."

    A glimpse from the pass: CAVIAR TARTARE Filet Mignon-Kampachi-Osetra Caviar Tartare; Lightly Smoked Dashi Gelée

    A post shared by Le Bernardin (@lebernardinny) on Apr 10, 2017 at 9:24am PDT on

    Per Se is a newer establishment, opened in 2004 by chef Thomas Keller

    "The kitchen's sourcing is legendary and will make you think again about ingredients you consider familiar," reads the Michelin guide. "For instance, the milk-poached poularde is so exceptionally succulent and flavorsome that any chicken you subsequently sample will seem a disappointment."

    Sixteen restaurants in the city earned Michelin stars for the first time, while five others saw their status elevated: Gabriel Kreuther, Kosaka, Le Coucou, Sushi Nakazawa, and Tuome. In total, 76 New York City restaurants received stars for 2019. 

    Michelin defines a three-star rating as "Exceptional cuisine, worth a special journey." The stars are based on five criteria: the quality of ingredients used, mastery of flavor and cooking techniques, the personality of the chef in his cuisine, and value for money and consistency between visits.

    SEE ALSO: Only 10 guests can eat at this Michelin-starred restaurant per night, where a meal costs $600 and the dining room is transformed by high-tech lights, sounds, and scents throughout the evening

    DON'T MISS: 19 Michelin-starred New York City restaurants where you can get lunch for $50 or less

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    woman think sad upset

    • The signs that someone is lying aren't always easy to decipher.
    • And, unfortunately, there's no way to determine whether or not someone's being honest with 100% certainty.
    • But there are some obvious signs that someone might be lying. Keep reading for a list of signs you can watch out for.

    How can you tell if someone is lying to you?

    Well, it's complicated.

    Research by Dr. Leanne ten Brinke, a forensic psychologist at the Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley, and her collaborators, suggests that our instincts for judging liars are actually fairly strong — but our conscious minds sometimes fail us.

    Luckily, there are signs we can look for when trying to detect a lie.

    Dr. Lillian Glass, behavioral analyst, body language expert, and "The Body Language of Liars" author, said when trying to figure out if someone is lying, you first need to understand how the person normally acts. Certain habits, like pointing or over-sharing, might be perfectly within character for an individual.

    Keep in mind that these signs are just possible indicators of dishonesty — not definite proof. Plus, some liars are so seasoned that they might get away with not exhibiting any of these signs.

    With that in mind, here are some signs that someone might be lying to you:

    SEE ALSO: 15 signs your coworker is a psychopath

    DON'T MISS: 4 signs your job isn't enough for you anymore

    SEE ALSO: There's a lesson for any manager or exec in how United handled its PR nightmare

    1. People who are lying tend to change their head position quickly

    If you see someone suddenly make a head movement when you ask them a direct question, they may be lying to you about something.

    "The head will be retracted or jerked back, bowed down, or cocked or tilted to the side," said Glass.

    This will often happen right before the person is expected to respond to a question.

    2. Their breathing may also change

    When someone is lying to you, they may begin to breathe heavily, Glass said. "It's a reflex action."

    When their breathing changes, their shoulders will rise and their voice may get shallow, she added. “In essence, they are out of breath because their heart rate and blood flow change. Your body experiences these types of changes when you’re nervous and feeling tense — when you lie.”

    3. They tend to stand very still

    It's common knowledge that people fidget when they get nervous, but Glass said that you should also watch out for people who are not moving at all.

    "This may be a sign of the primitive neurological 'fight,' rather than the 'flight,' response, as the body positions and readies itself for possible confrontation," said Glass. "When you speak and engage in normal conversation, it is natural to move your body around in subtle, relaxed, and, for the most part, unconscious movements. So if you observe a rigid, catatonic stance devoid of movement, it is often a huge warning sign that something is off."

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    joyce chang

    • The world has undergone four paradigm shifts that make it difficult to use old playbooks to gauge the next financial crisis, according to Joyce Chang, the global head of research at JPMorgan.
    • The biggest of the four is a shift in market structure, which is setting up financial markets for what JPMorgan has already dubbed the "Great Liquidity Crisis."
    • In an exclusive interview with Business Insider, Chang explained why geopolitical risk has also changed significantly, and the well-known hedges that would be ineffective for the next crisis.

    Joyce Chang has witnessed her fair share of financial crises during the nearly three decades she has worked in markets.

    Chang, the global head of research at JPMorgan, isn't applying any of the old playbooks to the next one, which she says is inevitable.

    The good news is that the next recession is not imminent, according to JPMorgan. The firm's internal probabilities place the odds of a recession in the US by 2020 at 50%.

    Chang says the world will be a completely different place from what it was during some of the worst crises in recent history, and argues that many of these changes have already taken place.

    To that end, she's outlined four "paradigm shifts" that investors should keep in mind when thinking about the triggers for the next financial crisis. They're discussed in detail below.

    "All these things make it very difficult to say that past cycles are necessarily the best gauge for what will happen next," Chang told Business Insider in an exclusive interview.

    1. A shift in market liquidity, structure, and function

    Chang describes this theme as the biggest change in financial markets.

    The market caps of assets in global bonds and exchange-traded funds have ballooned since 2008. However, liquidity, which Chang described as market cap as a share of trading volume, has fallen by as much as 70% over the same period. This helps explain many of the flash crashes that have occurred in the interim and how they seem to be happening over shorter time frames.

    She noted that the stock market's correction at the end of October was an example of the lack of market liquidity. It coincided with negative headlines on US-China trade, a spike in global bond yields, and fears about the end of this cycle.

    Older examples include the Chinese yuan devaluation scare, the Brexit-related sell-off, and the Italian referendum earlier this year.

    "This is my 29th year in the market," Chang said. "You used to have time for a recommendation to play out, and the time compression has really moved as the market has become more electronic."

    This paradigm shift further manifests itself in the high frequency with which investors need data. For example, JPMorgan constructed a trade war index based on over 7,000 earnings reports for an instant look at where the risks to stocks lie.

    "When I started in research, it was before the internet, so things were actually physically mailed to people, Chang said. "We would, for our top clients, actually FedEx it to them so they would get it more quickly."

    Obviously, those days are long gone.

    2. The global political system is shifting away from multilateralism and towards a multipolar order

    Simply put, this means there's less cooperation among countries and more inward-looking policies that prioritize citizens. The UK's decision to forge its future outside the European Union is an example of this shift. But perhaps the poster child of this approach is President Donald Trump with his America-first agenda, which has been used to justify the trade disputes with China and other allies.

    Where investors are concerned, Chang said such policies have raised the pass-through from geopolitical events to markets.

    "The conventional wisdom that it's more noise than trend is true," Chang said. "But if you look at causes of the recession, it often comes with an oil shock, which is triggered in part by geopolitical risk."

    She also observed that more companies are discussing the impact geopolitics is having on their earnings.

    JPMorgan found that geopolitical events had a strong negative impact on US, emerging-market, and global equity indexes. Chang recommended shorting equities as one of the best hedges for geopolitical risk, as well as going long on the dollar and volatility.

    However, contrary to popular belief, gold is not an effective hedge, as political shocks tend to impact all commodities negatively. The Japanese yen also provided little protection against losses.

    Ultimately, as geopolitical risks rise, investors will need to know the most effective hedges for their portfolios.

    3. The rise of populism

    From the US to Brazil and Mexico, antiestablishment candidates are coming out of the woodwork and winning presidential elections.

    It's a trend that stems from the rise of income inequality following the Great Recession, Chang said. But the crisis is not the only thing that has worsened income inequality. The deregulation of financial markets and increases in technology have also created winners and losers and crushed the middle class.

    For these reasons, populism is poised to become a feature of geopolitics rather than a bug, Chang said.

    4. A reshaping of the US-China relationship

    The brewing trade war between the countries is just one of the issues that will matter to investors as the next crisis approaches.

    China's ambitions to build infrastructure in other countries, its use of artificial intelligence, and its dispute over the South China Sea are some of the other possible triggers for geopolitical turmoil.

    SEE ALSO: BANK OF AMERICA: There's mounting evidence that the stock market will make an extreme move higher before the year ends — here's where to invest now

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    Hotel President Wilson 1

    • Some luxury hotels avoid posting their most expensive and exclusive rooms online.
    • Many of the rooms are available only for well-connected clientele who have heard of the rooms via word of mouth — and have the funds to pay for them.
    • Hotels keep their rooms unlisted for a variety of reasons, including to protect their assets and to create buzz.

    How are you supposed to book a room that isn't listed on a hotel's website?

    Well, the point, as reported by Bloomberg, is that you probably can't, unless you're connected enough to have heard about it by word of mouth.

    That's often the case with ultra-luxurious rooms and suites that high-end hotels purposely omit from their listings. There are no photographs, no descriptions, and no prices available; to anyone who isn't in the know, it's as if they don't exist.

    Hotels keep such rooms secret for a variety of reasons, whether protecting the hotel's assets or protecting the guest's identity and privacy.

    Then, of course, there's the thrill of exclusivity. As The New York Times put it, hotels use these unlisted rooms "as a way to delight valued guests or generate buzz."

    Read more:A 5-star boutique in Switzerland with a world-famous infinity pool no longer has to pay for advertising, thanks to Instagram

    These rooms go by a variety of terms — owner's suites, partnership suites — but one thing they have in common is a hefty price tag.

    Take, for example, Blue Lagoon— one of Iceland's most recognizable tourist attractions. The Retreat is a luxury hotel with 62 suites that can be booked online, some of which offer direct access to the lagoon. But tucked away within The Retreat is The Blue Lagoon Suite. There's no mention of it on The Retreat's site, but, according to Bloomberg, it goes for $10,050 a night — and requires a minimum two-night stay.

    Booking details vary for these unlisted rooms. In some cases, an interested guest has to call ahead and specifically request the suite. Other hotels require that their penthouse suites be booked by email in advance, so that managers have time to vet the guest before making a decision.

    Even if booking an unlisted hotel room is a bit (or a lot) out of your budget, there are still ways to customize your five-star hotel experience with some semisecret perks. That can include free Champagne or chocolate-covered strawberries and even special decorations in your room.

    And hotels aren't the only businesses that build a name for some of their products — if not their entire brands — by choosing not to advertise them. Consider Goyard, a two-century-old Parisian brand.

    As Business Insider's Hillary Hoffower previously reported: "Goyard's prime press strategy is silence. It forgoes any advertising, e-commerce, and celebrity endorsements. It rarely grants interviews and very occasionally makes products available to the mass market."

    Clearly, in some cases, not talking about your luxury product is the best way to make people want it.

    SEE ALSO: The world's 10 most expensive hotel suites

    READ MORE: This futuristic hotel is going to be built at the base of a glacier in remote, northern Norway — and it looks like it's straight out of a sci-fi movie

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: The author of 'Boy Erased' reveals what gay conversion therapy is really like — and how he survived it

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    BI Reviews_Bose Headphones_4x3

    At $350, Bose's comparatively expensive QC35II headphones aren't for everyone, especially if all you want is a simple, good pair of Bluetooth headphones.

    But Bose's Quiet Comfort headphones come with noise cancelling, and they're usually the best at drowning out unwanted ambient noise. If you're in the market for noise cancelling headphones, the QC35II should certainly be near the top of your shortlist. 

    They deliver premium audio quality, but they're not my favorite headphones for music, as I personally prefer a little bit more bass than they deliver for bass-heavy music. But their excellent noise cancellation and extreme comfort make the QC35II my go-to pair of headphones for every day use. 

    Check out the Bose QC35II headphones:

    SEE ALSO: I’d recommend these almost-perfect $150 Bluetooth headphones to everyone I know

    The QC35II are perfect for the office.

    The QC35II creates a sound proof bubble in the office. They totally remove the hum of the office air conditioners at BI, which can be incredibly loud. Other sounds like office chatter, doors closing, and footsteps are muffled, but they're still audible. Don't expect the kind of silence you get at a library, but these headphones absolutely make the office a less distracting place to work in. 

    It might not seem like they do a great job in a noisy environment, but they do.

    The QC35II muffle the sounds of commuting, like subways and noisy streets, but everything is still largely audible. I wasn't very impressed at first, but then I took the headphones off in the middle of a subway ride and realized just how much sound they were cancelling out.

    The same thing goes for walking around NYC. I initially thought the city was still pretty loud while using QC35II. But once I took them off, I wondered how people live without ear plugs or noise cancelling headphones. It's pretty amazing, and it makes commuting a lot more comfortable. 


    They're the next best thing after ear plugs for air travel.

    The headphones don't completely remove an airplane's hum, but they're close! It's the same experience as during my commute. You don't realize just how much noise the QC35II headphones cancel out until you take them off. I wondered the same thing as I did with my commute: How could anyone possibly go through a flight without ear plugs or noise cancelling headphones?

    The headphones also come with an aux cord that plugs into the headphone jack of any device that still has a headphone port, like an airplane's entertainment system.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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