Articles on this Page
- 12/28/18--10:14: _A $2 billion transi...
- 12/28/18--10:16: _A 16-month-old has ...
- 12/28/18--10:26: _There's a hidden pe...
- 12/28/18--10:29: _The future of artif...
- 12/28/18--13:25: _The world's first n...
- 12/28/18--13:27: _Elon Musk is worth ...
- 12/28/18--13:30: _This minimalist $65...
- 12/28/18--13:38: _9 books you can fin...
- 12/28/18--13:40: _Here's how fintech ...
- 12/28/18--13:42: _'Flying blind': Ame...
- 12/28/18--13:42: _Trump's insistence ...
- 12/28/18--13:45: _NFL WEEK 17: Our of...
- 12/28/18--13:47: _The most disproport...
- 12/28/18--13:49: _These are the harde...
- 12/28/18--13:52: _Despite Trump's bor...
- 12/28/18--13:53: _Sears may be facing...
- 12/28/18--14:02: _How Alphabet, Amazo...
- 12/28/18--14:21: _6 NFL teams are sti...
- 12/28/18--14:29: _The 19 most shockin...
- 12/28/18--14:31: _This is how insuran...
- 16-month-old Baker Roth has Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome, a rare condition that caused his tongue to double in size, People reported.
- "It’s really hard not hearing him laugh, cry, or speak," Baker's mother told INSIDER.
- According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome affects about one in 13,700 newborns globally and can cause both cancerous and non-cancerous tumors to grow at faster than normal rates.
- Roth also developed childhood liver cancer as a result of the condition.
- Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome is typically caused by a gene mutation, according to the NIH, and symptoms include tumors, abnormal growths on and inside the body, and low blood sugar, according to the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD).
- Returning items customers have ordered from Amazon isn't usually free unless there's something wrong that was Amazon's fault.
- Ordering non-digital items with Alexa, however, comes with the ability to return any item for free.
- It's both an added incentive to use Alexa to voice shop, as well as a tacit admission from Amazon that ordering goods via voice is not always perfect.
- 12/28/18--10:29: The future of artificial intelligence in retail
- Billions of male chicks are killed each year because they are not used to produce eggs or meat.
- German scientists have found a way to determine the sex of a chick while it is still an embryo.
- The new technology could help end the culling of male chicks.
- Other American and European companies have attempted to identify a chick's sex before it hatches, but no other groups have been able to commercialize a method.
- Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, has a net worth around $23.6 billion.
- Musk said in January he will not receive any form of payment or compensation until Tesla reaches $100 billion in market cap.
- A notorious workaholic, Musk doesn't spend cash on lavish vacations or expensive hobbies.
Stuart & Lau is known for its minimalist accessories for the modern man, and its new card holder is no exception to the rule.
This simple piece is all it needs to be and nothing more, and comes in six different colors.
At just $65, this may be the perfect gift for that hard-to-shop-for guy, or honestly anyone who appreciates high-quality basics.
- The holiday weekend is a perfect time to curl up with some short books.
- We selected nine that are particularly informative, entertaining, and easy to read.
- They include guides to building your dream career and being happier.
- 12/28/18--13:40: Here's how fintech is taking over the world — and what's coming next
- A partial government shutdown entered its seventh day on Friday.
- The Department of Commerce won't report economic figures during that time.
- Economists say the lapse in data could pose risks to the economy and government institutions.
- President Donald Trump has been promising to build a massive wall along the US-Mexico border since his 2016 campaign, making it the benchmark of his immigration policy.
- His push for a border wall ignores one of the biggest issues related to undocumented immigration: roughly half of all people who are in the US illegally came her legally but overstayed their visas.
- A 2017 study from the Center for Migration Studies, a nonpartisan think tank, found that since 2007 visa overstays have outnumbered undocumented border crossers by half a million.
- 12/28/18--13:45: NFL WEEK 17: Our official predictions for who wins this weekend
- Every week we pick each game of the NFL schedule against the spread.
- Heading into Week 17, motivation is key when considering how to bet the games, with some teams and players having much more at stake than others.
- This week, we like the Eagles and Bears to win and set up Philadelphia's return to the postseason, and the Browns to spoil the playoff hopes of the Baltimore Ravens.
- 12/28/18--13:47: The most disproportionately popular girl name in every state
- Some unique girl names were more popular in certain states than the rest of the country in 2017.
- Names such as Juniper in Colorado, Montana, Oregon, Vermont, and Washington were disproportionately popular in multiple states.
- The girls’ name Juniper was overly popular in five states: Colorado, Montana, Oregon, Vermont, and Washington.
- While "Jeopardy!" is meant to be a game show to showcase people's intelligence, sometimes these contestants stumble.
- Using an episode database, INSIDER found some questions that stumped all three contestants.
- With categories ranging from baseball to Disney, can you get right what these "Jeopardy!" contestants couldn't?
- Support for the Republican Party among the US Latino population remains steady despite Donald Trump's rhetoric against immigrants and ongoing fight to build a border wall.
- According to the Associated Press, 32% of Latinos voted for Republicans in November's elections.
- This share frustrated Democrats. But many Republican Latino voters say they care more about religious liberty and pro-life policies than Trump's harsh words against immigrants.
- Sears, once America's most iconic retailer, is on the verge of liquidating.
- CEO Eddie Lampert blamed the company's decline on the media, shifts in consumer spending, and the rise of e-commerce, among other reasons.
- But analysts and critics say the company's demise is the result of years of under investment in stores.
- Some stores have shown signs of decay, such as crumbling walls, cracked floors, and collapsing ceilings. Sears employees have hung bed sheets and shower curtains to hide empty store space.
- Tech companies’ expertise in data management and analysis, along with their significant compute power, can help support healthcare payers, health systems, and consumers by providing a broader overview of how health is accessed and delivered.
- Each of the Big Four tech companies — vying for a piece of the lucrative healthcare market — is leaning on their specific field of expertise to develop tools and solutions for consumers, providers, and payers.
- Alphabet is focused on leveraging its dominance in data storage and analytics to become the leader in population health.
- Amazon is leaning on its experience as a distribution platform for medical supplies, and developing its AI-assistant Alexa as an in-home health concierge.
- Apple is actively turning its consumer products into patient health hubs.
- Microsoft is focusing on cloud storage and analytics to tap into precision medicine.
- Health organizations can further tap into the opportunity presented by tech’s entry into healthcare by collaborating with tech giants to realize cost savings and bolster their top lines. But understanding how each tech giant is approaching healthcare is crucial.
- Pinpoints the key themes and industry-wide shifts that are driving the transformation of healthcare in the US.
- Defines the main healthcare businesses and strategies of the Big Four tech companies.
- Highlights the biggest potential impacts of each of the Big Four’s healthcare strategies for health systems and insurers.
- Discusses the potential barriers that will challenge the adoption of the Big Four tech companies’ initiatives and how these hurdles can be overcome.
- The NFL playoff picture is still up in the air as the season heads into its Week 17 finale.
- In the AFC, the Pittsburgh Steelers and Baltimore Ravens are competing to clinch the AFC North, while the Tennessee Titans and Indianapolis Colts try to win the AFC South or the last wild-card spot.
- In the NFC, the Minnesota Vikings are trying to hold off the Philadelphia Eagles for the final wild-card spot.
- 12/28/18--14:29: The 19 most shocking celebrity breakups of 2018
- 2018 was filled with more than 100 celebrity couples that called it quits.
- Some of Hollywood's most beloved couples, like Channing Tatum and Jenna Dewan, revealed that they broke up.
- Other pairs didn't date too long, like Paris Hilton and Chris Zylka, but their breakups were shocking nonetheless.
- 12/28/18--14:31: This is how insurance is changing for gig workers and freelancers
- By 2027, the majority of the US workforce will work as freelancers, per Upwork and Freelancer Union, though not all of these workers will take part in the gig economy full time.
- By personalizing policies for gig economy workers, insurtechs have been able to tap this opportunity early.
- A number of other insurtechs, including Slice and UK-based Zego, offer temporary vehicle insurance, which users can switch on and off, depending on when they are working.
- Slice has also developed a new insurance model that combines traditional home insurance with business coverage for temporary use.
- Other freelancers like photojournalists need insurance for their camera, for example, a coverage area that Dinghy has tackled.
- Incumbent insurers have a huge opportunity to leverage their reach and well-known brands to pull in the gig economy and secure a share of this growing segment — and partnering with startups might be the best approach.
- Details what the gig economy landscape looks like in different markets.
- Explains how different insurtechs are tackling the gig economy with new personalized policies.
- Highlights possible pain points for incumbents when trying to enter this market.
- Discusses how incumbents can get a piece of the pie by partnering with startups.
Long before its opening in August, the Salesforce Transit Center was a major source of controversy in San Francisco.
In the eight years since breaking ground, the center has been embroiled in a number of legal battles, including a longstanding feud with Millennium Tower, a 58-story luxury skyscraper that opened in 2009. The tower is now sinking and tilting, and its developers say the transit center is to blame.
Meanwhile, the Salesforce Center has seen its own structural flaws: In late September, the terminal was closed due to a cracked beam on the third floor deck, generating concerns about the building's safety.
This reality is a far cry from what developers envisioned more than a decade ago. As the Bay Area's main bus terminal, the center was once touted as the "Grand Central of the West," a place where travelers and locals could dine and shop before heading off to their next destination.
In addition to its 100,000 square feet of restaurant and retail space, the center features a 5-acre rooftop park with an 800-seat amphitheater, jogging track, and space for exercise classes and cultural events. Officials are also putting the finishing touches on a public gondola, which would transport people from the street level to the rooftop. Even the fountain is impressive, with jets that are programmed to shoot water every time a bus passes by.
Now San Francisco supervisors worry that the project is hemorrhaging funds, while officials remain silent on when the terminal will reopen.
Here's a timeline of everything that's gone wrong since the project's inception.
In 1989, an earthquake damaged the old Transbay Terminal, prompting plans for reconstruction.
The building opened in 1939 as a hub for commuter and railway trains, but was converted into a bus terminal in 1958.
Demolition began in 2010 and was completed less than a year later.
The new structure — then known as the Transbay Transit Center — was expected to open in late 2016.
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
Most toddlers spend their time at playgrounds and daycares. Baker Roth, however, has spent most of his life at hospitals. That's because the 16-month-old suffers from Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome, a rare condition that caused Baker's tongue to double in size, according to People.
This condition has hindered Baker's verbal development, and also makes it difficult for him to breath. If that wasn't heartbreaking enough, it also caused him to develop hepatoblastoma, a type of rare childhood liver cancer.
"It’s really hard not hearing him laugh, cry, or speak," Farrah Roth, Baker's mom, told INSIDER. "It has not been easy, but I can’t see our lives without him now." In an effort to spread awareness and help her son, Farrah set up a GoFundMe page that documents the toddler's journey through chemotherapy
According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Beckwith-Wiedemann is a rare syndrome that affects about 1 in 13,700 newborns globally. The condition could be even more common, however, because oftentimes symptoms go undiagnosed.
Here's everything you should know about the rare disease.
Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome is usually caused by a genetically mutated chromosome
According to the NIH, Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome is typically caused by certain types of gene mutations. These can occur a few different ways, like through the mutation of a person's chromosome 11 or through methylation, a process that can disrupt gene regulation and cause overgrowths like the one Roth experienced with his tongue.
Because there are a number of gene-related causes, genetic testing is the best way to determine if a person has Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome. NIH noted that genetic testing can involve discussing family medical history, giving a person a physical exam, performing laboratory tests, or a mixture of these methods.
Doctors first detected Baker might have the disorder when his mother went to the hospital at 31 weeks pregnant for preeclampsia and had some tests done. When he was 3 weeks old, blood work confirmed Baker did indeed have Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome.
An abnormally large tongue or stomach, as well as low blood sugar, are often signs of Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome
In many cases, the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) noted that abnormally large body parts like the tongue or abdominal are signs of Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome. In some cases, however, the abnormal growth could occur inside the body and be less detectable. In fact, Baker had abnormal intestinal growth that required three surgeries when he was just a week old, his mother told INSIDER.
NORD also noted that low blood sugar is another symptom of the disease since overgrowths and increased insulin production can occur.
People with Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome have an increased risk of developing cancerous and non-cancerous tumors
Tumors are another common symptom of the disease, and usually detected during childhood. According to the NIH, about 10% of people with Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome develop cancerous and/or non-cancerous tumors. The most common types are Wilms tumor, which leads to kidney cancer, and hepatoblastoma, which leads to liver cancer.
Typically, people with Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome can lead healthy lives, with their abnormal growths becoming less noticeable as their bodies continue to grow. For newborn babies, consistent monitoring of their blood glucose levels can help keep them healthy, while infants and children should have regular ultrasounds to make sure their kidneys and abdominal area remain tumor-free.
Most importantly, parents of children with the disease should speak with their healthcare providers since treatments vary based on each individual's needs, NORD explained.
Visit INSIDER's homepage for more.
Alexa has a trick up its virtual sleeve.
Making returns on Amazon isn't usually free unless there's something wrong with the item that was Amazon's fault. Amazon deducts the cost of the return shipping and gives customers the remaining balance.
However, customers that own one of Amazon's Echo devices, have the Alexa app on their phones, or have another way to access Alexa with their own Amazon accounts have a workaround.
That's because Amazon offers free returns on all non-digital purchases made using Alexa. According to the Amazon help page, the return shipping charge will be levied as normal, but then refunded within seven days of the refund for the return.
There are likely a few reasons why Amazon has made this change. First, it removes some anxiety customers may have when ordering items using the digital assistant. Sure, there's a process where customers choose and confirm their purchases, but miscommunications can happen without a screen to confirm.
It's not hard to imagine a situation where a customer accidentally orders the wrong item from Alexa, not realizing it until the item arrives on their doorstep. Music bought from Amazon's digital music store with Alexa is also returnable, provided a refund is asked for within seven days.
That is likely also a tacit admission from Amazon that voice shopping isn't a perfect medium, and mistakes can happen.
Voice shopping is on the rise, but the pace of growth is slower than many predicted. There are some encouraging signs, however. Amazon said voice shopping with Alexa tripled over the holiday season when compared with last year.
Amazon also offers free returns when ordering from the website in some select categories where returning items is more prevalent, like clothing, jewelry, and accessories.
For everything else, just ask Alexa.
Hype around artificial intelligence has never been higher — and one industry where it has a chance to make a major impact on profits is retail.
Business Insider Intelligence projects that AI will boost profitability in retail and wholesale by nearly 60% by 2035, setting off a wave of excitement and investment among companies.
The areas where AI will have its biggest impact are personalization, search and chatbots.
But as hype and misunderstanding continue to build, it’s become harder than ever to keep sight of the true disruptive potential of AI.
Find out how AI is being implemented in these three areas and how each one can impact revenue in this new FREE slide deck from Business Insider Intelligence.
In this third and final installment of the three-part Future of Retail 2018 series, Business Insider Intelligence takes a hard look at the retail use cases where AI can make an impact, explores noteworthy examples of retailers implementing the technology, and weighs the benefits of investing in AI today.
As an added bonus, you will gain immediate access to our exclusive Business Insider Intelligence Daily newsletter.
To get your copy of the third part of this FREE slide deck, simply click here.
The first no-kill eggs in the world have gone on sale in Germany after scientists discovered how to tell a chick's sex while it is still an embryo.
Humans have long relied on chickens for meat and eggs, but male chicks are not used for either purpose. They grow too slowly for people to invest in feeding them long enough to produce meat, and they are unable to lay eggs. For these reasons, between 4 billion and 6 billion male chicks are killed around the world each year.
As The Guardian reported, male chicks are either suffocated or fed alive into high-speed grinders that turn the chicks into reptile food.
"Seleggt," the new process patented by German scientists, could put an end to this slaughter. According to The Guardian, the technology can figure out a chick's sex only nine days after an egg is fertilized, ensuring that only female eggs hatch after 21 days of incubation.
"If you can determine the sex of a hatching egg you can entirely dispense with the culling of live male chicks," Seleggt managing director Ludger Breloh told The Guardian.
Breloh told The Guardian that the new method draws on a discovery made by Almuth Einspanier, a professor at the Leipzig University. Einspanier created a chemical marker that can detect a hormone that's only abundant in female chick eggs. The marker, when mixed with fluid from a chick egg nine days after fertilization, turns white in females and blue in males.
According to The Guardian, Breloh worked with the Dutch technology company HatchTech to make Einspanier's process appropriate for hatcheries to use on a regular basis. The end result uses a laser beam to burn a tiny hole in an egg shell, after which air pressure is used to extract a drop of fluid.
This process, which allows hatcheries to collect fluid without touching the eggs, takes only one second per egg, The Guardian reported.
Seleggt's first eggs, which are labeled "respeggt," hit grocery stores in Berlin in November.
"Today, female hens are laying eggs in farms in Germany that have been bred without killing any male chicks," Breloh told The Guardian.
Rewe Group intends to begin selling these eggs all over Germany in 2019, and Seleggt plans on equipping independent hatcheries with the new technology the following year. Grocery stores will be required to pay a few more cents per box of eggs in return for permission to sell the "respeggt" product.
The German breakthrough is not the only effort underway to end the culling of male chicks, though it appears to be the first commercially viable technology. A number of companies have previously said they are closing in on presenting technology that could determine the sex of a chick before it hatches.
United Egg Producers, for example, announced in June 2016 that it would end the culling of male chicks by 2020, HuffPost reported. And, according to The Washington Post, Egg Farmers of Ontario said in 2016 that it had already patented a process to sort eggs by their sex.
But despite a growing interest in putting an end to the killing of male chicks, only Seleggt managed to commercialize its technology as of December.
Elon Musk may be the world's richest rocket scientist.
The 47-year-old CEO of Tesla and SpaceX and cofounder of OpenAI has said he won't be happy until we've escaped Earth and colonized Mars. Luckily, he has the mind and the money to make it happen.
Despite a massive net worth hovering around $23.6 billion, Musk has never taken a paycheck from Tesla, refusing his $56,000 minimum salary every year.
Back in March, Tesla shareholders approved a plan awarding Musk $2.6 billion in stock options, reports CNBC, which will vest in 12 tranches, or portions, as the company hits key milestones over the next decade. The $2.6 billion amount was March 21 current stock value. U.S. News notes that if Musk meets the goals and the stock value rises during that time period, it "could net him more than $50 billion."
In January, Tesla announced it would pay Musk nothing for the next 10 years — no salary, bonus, or stock — until the company reaches a $100 billion market cap. If and when that happens, Musk could potentially overtake Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos as the richest person in the world.
A notorious workaholic, Musk doesn't spend cash on lavish vacations or expensive hobbies. Instead, the entrepreneur spends most of his time at the office or in factories, retreating to one of his four Los Angeles mansions at the end of the day.
Scroll through to find out what we know about how Musk, a father of five, amassed his fortune and how he spends it.
As a child growing up in South Africa, Musk taught himself to code. By the time he was 12, he sold the source code for his first video game for $500.
Just before his 18th birthday, Musk moved to Canada and worked a series of hard labor jobs, including shoveling grain, cutting logs, and eventually cleaning out the boiler room in a lumber mill for $18 an hour — an impressive wage in 1989.
Musk got a pay cut to $14 an hour when he started a summer internship alongside his brother, Kimbal, at the Bank of Nova Scotia after cold-calling — and impressing — a top executive there.
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
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Having a proverbial fat wallet may be an enviable status symbol, but having a literal fat wallet is... well, both unsightly and inconvenient. After all, now that we’ve evolved past paper and coin and are relying almost exclusively on slim pieces of plastic, it’s about time that our wallets evolved, too.
Here to help you (or the man in your life) move into the 21st century is Stuart & Lau, the New York- and Hong Kong-based company dedicated to making thoughtful, elegant products for the modern man on the move. The team recently released their latest lineup of accessories, and one of my very favorites has to be the affordable Full Grain Italian Leather Card Holder.
Available for $65, this ideal gift comes in six colors, and is capable of holding up to eight cards. If you or someone you know is always looking for more ways to incorporate minimalism into your life, this may just be the perfect way to do so.
Sleeker still than the Stuart & Lau wallet (which is, by the way, already extremely slim and beautifully designed), the Stuart & Lau card holder proves that less really can be more. Unlike other card holders that are really just overpriced leather envelopes, this offering combines functional design with elegant form. There’s a central divider in the card holder that allows you to keep everything organized (though given that you’re only keeping a few cards in this accessory, you don’t have too much space to get messy). But don’t think that this card holder is too small to be useful — I’ve found that it’s perfectly capable of holding a few credit cards, an ID, and a few bills.
One of my favorite elements of the card holder is its bottom cutout, a clever addition (or rather, subtraction) that allows you to easily push your cards up and out. That way, you won’t have to stretch out the holder while you fumble around for the right card. Instead, just use your thumb to reveal the contents of the card holder, select the correct card, and be on your merry way.
Constructed with vegetable tanned Italian leather, the Stuart & Lau card holder comes in six unique colors. I’m a particular fan of the rather unique Evergreen hue, though for the more classic among us, there’s also a beautiful Cognac and striking Saffiano Black.
The card holder will set you back $65, which is certainly much less than you’d pay for a name-brand wallet. And with quality like this, we suspect that this is one card holder you’ll have in your pocket for years to come.
The first day back at work after a holiday weekend is a great time to brag to colleagues about all the awesome things you did.
Here's one idea: "I read an entire book and it changed my life!"
Below, Business Insider has listed nine books that will do just that. You can probably get through them in a long weekend — both because they're relatively short and because they're so compelling that you won't be able to put them down.
Grab one (or more) before you head out — we can guarantee you'll resurface as a more knowledgeable and interesting person.
SEE ALSO: The best business books of 2018
'Payoff' by Dan Ariely
This TED book is just over 100 pages and it's jam-packed with creative lessons about what motivates people to do their best work.
Ariely is a behavioral economist and professor at Duke University, and he's published of a number of popular books, including "Predictably Irrational." In "Payoff," Ariely argues that human motivation is a lot more complex than we might believe. Most importantly, money isn't everything.
In fact, getting pizza and compliments can be more motivating than getting a financial bonus. And letting people take ownership of a project and giving them credit for it makes them more inclined to do it well.
'Designing Your Life' by Bill Burnett and Dave Evans
"Design thinking" is a process that's typically used to improve on an object or experience, like a lightbulb or online dating. But in this book, two Stanford professors explain how you can apply the same process to your career, relationships, and life in general.
"Designing Your Life," which is an extension of Burnett and Evans' Stanford course by the same name, includes plenty of helpful brainstorming exercises. One such exercise is "mind-mapping," in which you play a game of word association to help generate ideas about different types of careers you could pursue — or create.
Another one is "Odyssey Planning," in which you map out different ways your life could potentially unfold. So in one life, for example, you could be a lounge singer; in another, you could be an investment banker. The goal is to realize that you could do a lot of things — and many of them could make you happy and unfulfilled.
'It Doesn't Have to be Crazy at Work' by Jason Fried & David Heinemeier Hansson
"It Doesn't Have to Be Crazy at Work" is essentially a polemic against the modern workplace, broken down into super short essays about Basecamp's unique culture. For example, every time someone quits or is fired, a detailed "goodbye announcement" email is sent around to the entire company. The idea is to be as honest and as transparent as possible. And salaries are largely non-negotiable, to avoid paying people for their haggling skills instead of their performance.
Overall, it's a super easy but super enlightening read that will make you rethink the way you work, lead, and live.
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
Digital disruption is affecting every aspect of the fintech industry.
Over the past five years, fintech has established itself as a fundamental part of the global financial services ecosystem.
Fintech startups have raised, and continue to raise, billions of dollars annually, pushing incumbent financial institutions to get in on the action. Legacy players have begun using fintech to remain competitive in a rapidly evolving financial services landscape.
So what's next?
Business Insider Intelligence, Business Insider's premium research service, explores recent innovations in the fintech space as well as what might be coming in the future in our brand new exclusive slide deck, The Future of Fintech: How Fintech Is Taking Over The World and What Comes Next.
To get your copy of this free slide deck, click here.
Wall Street is having its worst December since the Great Depression. The largest economies in the world are preparing to negotiate a trade war. And legal experts are examining whether the chairman of the Federal Reserve can be fired by the president.
But key economic data won’t be released to Americans until a new spending bill is passed.
Parts of the federal government were shut down last weekend after lawmakers failed to reach a funding compromise with President Donald Trump, who has demanded $5 billion for his long-promised wall along the US's southern border.
Because of a lack of appropriations, the Department of Commerce said it would not publish the closely watched economic figures it usually does, including home sales, gross domestic product, inflation, personal income, and the trade balance.
"Without that data, US businesses are flying blind," said Donald Moynihan, chair of the McCourt School of Public Policy at Georgetown University.
"One of the historical strengths of the US economy is the ability to rely on high-quality data produced by the government. But right now US businesses are facing into a new year without data that their peers in other developed economies will have."
The shutdown comes at an already uncertain time in the US, where fading stimulus, trade tensions, and rising interest rates have already stirred fears about slowing growth. With historic recession signals emerging, a lack of data could fan fears about a crisis.
More than half of economists surveyed by the Wall Street Journal forecast that a downturn could begin in 2020.
"Not getting the official economic data is likely to add even more fear to markets and consumers that are anxious about the possibility of recession in 2019," said Austan Goolsbee, a former economic advisor to President Barack Obama.
Offering some relief to policymakers and businesses, the Department of Labor is still set to release the jobs report.
Moody’s economist Adam Ozimek said while missing out on other data would add to uncertainty, employment numbers are the most crucial for understanding where the economy is in the business cycle.
"So long as we can keep our eyes on inflation and the job market in the near term, the lack of information is unfortunate but not devastating," he said.
Still, less obvious consequences for American businesses could outlast the shutdown, especially in the case of a prolonged impasse. The turmoil could make it more difficult for the government to maintain top staff at the Commerce Department, for instance.
"US businesses benefit from our government being able to recruit outstanding scientists because of the opportunities to work with great data," Moynihan said. "But every shutdown creates enormous disruptions. I worry that the Trump era will make it harder to recruit and retain these scientists in the future."
Lawmakers this week appeared to give up on a spending bill, handing the crisis off to the 116th Congress convening in the new year. With Democrats taking control of the House of Representatives, a newly divided government will change the calculus of a spending bill.
In the meantime, the new Congress will likely face pressure to at least negotiate a stopgap funding measure.
A Reuters/Ipsos poll conducted last week found 47% of American adults blamed the president, who earlier this month said he was "proud" to shut down the government over border security. Meanwhile, 33% of Americans held congressional Democrats responsible, according to the December 21-25 poll, and 7% faulted Republican lawmakers.
But Jonathan Weiler, a political scientist at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, said political ramifications would become less certain the longer a shutdown goes on.
"Substantively, the lack of available economic data, while likely not a serious problem in the short run, would certainly become more serious as the days and weeks pass," Weiler said. "And I should add that if I don’t think this will last long, it almost surely will."
President Donald Trump has been promising to build a massive wall along the US-Mexico border since his 2016 campaign, making it the benchmark of his immigration policy.
Trump portrays the wall as a panacea to undocumented immigration and problems he associates it with, including illicit drugs and crime. But the president's push for a border wall ignores one of the biggest factors related to undocumented immigration: roughly half of all people who are in the US illegally are visa overstays.
Simply put, they're people who entered the country legally but their visas have since expired and they've established residency in the US without proper documentation.
In making the case for the border wall, Trump has painted illegal border crossings as the primary source of undocumented immigration, but that is inaccurate.
A 2017 study from the Center for Migration Studies, a nonpartisan think tank, found that since 2007 visa overstays have outnumbered undocumented border crossers by half a million.
The report showed that in 2014 visa overstays accounted for roughly 42% of the total undocumented population (roughly 4.5 million people) and that overstays accounted for about two-thirds (66%) of those who joined the undocumented population that year.
In 2017, over 600,000 travelers who came to the US overstayed their visas and remained in the country by the end of the year, according to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
Meanwhile, government data shows the number of people arrested for trying to illegally cross the border in 2017 hit a historic low at just above 300,000. Arrests for illegal border crossings have declined drastically from historic highs.
The undocumented population in the US in 2016 was around 10.7 million, or 3.3% of all people in the US, representing a 13% decline from the peak of 12.2 million in 2007, according to Pew Research Center.
Accordingly, critics feel the wall would be a waste of money and do little to address the myriad issues surrounding immigration in the US, including visa overstays.
Greg Siskind, an immigration attorney based in Memphis, Tennessee, told INSIDER it's fair to say Trump's border wall is an inadequate, excessively expensive approach to thwarting undocumented immigration.
Alluding to the fact that people have ways of working around a border wall, Siskind added, "And I'm pretty sure that these brand new technologies called 'tunnels' and 'ladders' ... won't stop illegal border crossings either."
Matthew Kolken, an immigration attorney in Buffalo, New York, echoed these sentiments and suggested an alternative to a physical border wall.
"As I like to say the most effective wall is an immigration law that permits immigrants to come here legally," Kolken told INSIDER. "America needs a viable guest worker program that suits the needs of industries with recognized labor shortages, as well as the immigrants who are willing to do the work."
Trump's insistence on obtaining funding to build the border wall has pushed the government into a partial shutdown.
After 16 weeks of football, we've finally reached the end of the NFL regular season. This Sunday will mark the final full slate of NFL games to bet on until next year, making it a bittersweet day for football fans and bettors.
While it's difficult to say goodbye to our Sunday's full of football, Week 17 always provides some intriguing matchups for gamblers, as teams can often differ wildly in their motivations heading into the final game of the year.
We'll waste no time and get straight to the picks (* indicates home team).
LAST WEEK: 8-7-1
New York Giants* (-6) over Dallas Cowboys
The Giants led the Colts for almost the entirety of their matchup on Sunday, falling short of an impressive upset victory in the game's final minutes. With the Cowboys already having locked in their spot in the postseason, look for the Giants to end the season on a solid win.
Oakland Raiders (+14) over Kansas City Chiefs*
This is too many points. The Raiders looked solid on Sunday in what could have been their final game in Oakland, and Jon Gruden doesn't seem likely to give up that momentum after such a disappointing season.
New Orleans Saints (-7.5) over Carolina Panthers*
Teddy Bridgewater will be starting for the Saints on Sunday in what will likely amount to an audition for a contract with any number of teams next season. With the Saints elite set of offensive weapons at the disposal of a motivated quarterback, New Orleans is in position to roll over an already defeated Panthers team.
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
Girls born in 2017 were given interesting names and many of those unique names were disproportionally popular in certain states compared to the rest of the US, like Journee in Illinois and Emersyn in Iowa and Nebraska.
INSIDER has collected data from the Social Security name database to determine the most disproportionately popular girl name in each state.
In Alabama, Mary was the most disproportionately popular girl name in 2017.
Girls in Alabama were named Mary 4.5 times more than girls were named Mary nationwide.
In Alaska, Ayla was the most disproportionately popular girl name in 2017.
Girls in Alaska were named Ayla 6.7 times more than girls were named Ayla nationwide.
In Arizona, Ximena was the most disproportionately popular girl name in 2017.
Girls in Arizona were named Ximena 3.0 times more than girls were named Ximena nationwide.
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"Jeopardy!" is America's favorite game show and for good reason. It's entertaining to watch people earn money based on their intelligence, but every so often that intelligence runs short.
INSIDER rummaged through J-Archive— an exhaustive, fan-made episode database — and found a number of "triple stumpers," when all three contestants did not know the answer to the clue. Although it's rare, it does happen.
Throughout the show's 34-season history, there are a number of categories that prompt the contestants to stumble. Keep reading to see which questions confused players and to challenge yourself to see if you're smarter than a "Jeopardy!" contestant.
This question was worth $200, and the category was "Let's Have a Ball."
First contestant's answer: "Um ..."
Second contestant's answer: "What is the 8-ball?"
Third contestant's answer: "What is the pinball?"
Correct answer: What is the cue ball?
This one was under the "Name the Automaker" category and worth $200.
First contestant's answer: "What is Toyota?"
Second contestant's answer: "What is Mercury?"
Third contestants answer: "What is Buick?"
Correct answer: What is Pontiac?
In the "Food, Glorious Food" category, this question was worth $200.
First contestant's answer: "What is a goose?"
Second contestant's answer: "What is a turkey?"
Third contestant's answer: "What is a partridge?"
Correct answer: What is a pigeon?
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Latino voters have long been expected to vote Democratic, and around two-thirds of them do. It is the other third of Latinos who vote Republican that remain unreachable to Democrats, despite the harsh comments President Donald Trump has made about immigrants and several Latin American countries.
Data collected by the Associated Press shows that 32 percent of Latinos voted for Republicans in November's elections. This number is backed up by a Pew Research Center study that found that nearly one-third of Latinos support the GOP.
Many Democrats find this frustrating.
“The question is not are Democrats winning the Hispanic vote — it’s why aren’t Democrats winning the Hispanic vote 80-20 or 90-10 the way black voters are?” Fernand Amandi, a Miami-based Democratic pollster, told the Associated Press.
The same data collected by the AP shows that Latino voters are, like white vote res, split by gender. 61% of Latino men voted for Democrats in November, while 69% of Latino women voted for them. Nearly a quarter of Latino voters are evangelicals, the AP reported, and 13% were veterans.
Republican strategist Mike Madrid told the AP that these two groups have reliably provided Republicans with Latino voters for years.
“They stick and they do not go away,” Madrid said.
Though foreign-born Latinos are highly critical of the Trump Administration — 71% of them are likely to say the White House's policies are harming Latinos as a whole — slightly less than two-thirds of US-born Latinos say the same, according to a Pew study.
For the remaining third of Latinos, Trump's harsh rhetoric against immigrants and countries like Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras doesn't dissuade them from voting for the party or supporting the president.
“Why do 30 percent of Latinos still support Trump? Because of the Democratic Party’s obsession with abortion,” Sacramento-based Rev. Sam Rodriguez, one of Trump’s spiritual advisers, told the AP. Evangelical Latinos, he said, care more about about “life and religious liberty."
But because the US Latino population is not a monolith, different Latino populations have other bones to pick with the Democratic Party. Though younger generations of Cuban-Americans are leaning left, The Guardian reported that older Cuban-Americans traditionally vote Republican after coming to see the Bay of Pigs invasion "as a symbol of treachery of American left." According to The Guardian, the Republican Pb arty has depended on Cuban-American votes in Florida since 1980. To this day, Florida's large population of Cuban-Americans, tends to vote Republican.
According to the Miami Herald, Cuban-American support for Florida GOP gubernatorial candidate Ron DeSantis might have given him the edge over Democratic candidate Andrew Gillum. The Herald estimated that DeSantis won 66% of the Cuban-American vote. DeSantis campaigned among Florida's Cuban-American population by claiming Gillum was a socialist (he isn't). In the Senate race, Democratic candidate Bill Nelson couldn't defeat Spanish-speaking Governor Rick Scott.
It wasn't, however, a bad year for Democrats trying to capture the Latino vote. 64% of Latinos voted for Senate candidate Beto O'Rourke in Texas, who ran against Ted Cruz. More than half of Latino voters in Texas voted for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Lupe Valdez. The AP reported that Latinos voted at high rates this election, despite having among the worst midterm turnout rates historically.
Madrid told the Associated Press that that is why Republicans shouldn't settle for the approximate third of a vote they get from the Latino block. They are still losing more than 60% of their vote.
“That is contributing to the death spiral of the Republican Party — even if it holds at 30 percent,” Madrid said. “That’s a route to death, it’s just a slower one.”
Sears, once the largest retailer in the world, may be on the verge of liquidating.
ESL Investments, the hedge fund run by Sears' CEO Eddie Lampert, had a deadline of 4 p.m. Friday to submit its bid to bankruptcy court to purchase many of the company's remaining assets, including about 500 stores.
No formal bid was made public on the company's electronic docket as of 5 p.m. Friday by ESL, or any other party for that matter.
Without a bid, the 125-year-old company will likely be forced to begin shutting down and laying off its 68,000 employees.
This would mark the end of the iconic retailer, which has survived two world wars and the Great Depression but failed to rebound from several years of sales declines under the control of Lampert, a former Goldman Sachs executive turned hedge-fund manager.
Sears and ESL Investments did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Read more: Sears is closing 80 more stores
For years, he has kept the ailing retailer afloat through billions of dollars in loans from ESL, the selling off of valuable real estate, and the slow dismantling of Sears' exclusivity over some big American brands.
He has said the measures would buy Sears more time to execute a transformation that would lead the company back to profitability.
But analysts have long been skeptical that the company could make a comeback following years of under investment in stores.
As have sales tumbled, from $53 billion in 2006 to less than $17 billion in 2017, Sears has closed hundreds of stores, reducing its locations to 687 stores as of mid-October, down from 1,980 stores in 2013.
Some stores have suffered severe decay, such as crumbling walls, cracked floors, collapsing ceilings, and a lack of working toilets for weeks on end, according to store visits and interviews with Sears employees over the past two years.
In addition to maintenance problems, several stores feature barren shelves and empty floors, likely the result of suppliers exacerbating Sears' problems by threatening to cancel contracts and demanding new payment terms for orders.
Sears employees have hung bed sheets and shower curtains from store ceilings to cover empty areas. The company has also introduced handwritten pricing signs in an apparent effort to slash costs.
Lampert responded to the supplier troubles last year by blaming the news media in a rare interview and publicly threatening to sue two of its top tool vendors.
He has also defended his investment strategy in stores.
"I was criticized for not investing enough in the stores," Lampert said in 2013. "My point of view is we couldn't invest in everything."
Lampert's critics, including some former Sears executives, have also blasted him for managing a company in crisis from afar, visiting Sears' headquarters only once a year or so for the annual shareholder meeting.
Instead, Lampert prefers to work from an office in Bay Harbor Islands, off the coast of Miami, and communicate with employees primarily through teleconference meetings.
How Lampert can win even when Sears loses
Lampert is Sears' largest shareholder and creditor, and he's among the first in line to be repaid if the company liquidates.
He became the company's largest creditor by helping to prop up the ailing company for years, through loans totaling more than $2.6 billion from his hedge fund ESL Investments.
In return, Sears pays origination fees and interest, estimated to total about $200 million annually, to ESL.
The loans are backed by Sears' real estate and assets, which ESL has the right to repossess if Sears can't pay its bills. It means ESL and, by extension, Lampert are among the first creditors in line to be repaid if Sears runs out of money.
Lampert also benefits from the closure of some Sears stores through Seritage Growth Properties.
After creating Seritage in 2015, Lampert orchestrated a massive real-estate deal in which Sears sold 235 stores and interest in an additional 31 stores to Seritage. Sears raised $2.7 billion from the sale and rented back the store space from Seritage.
The transaction, known as a sale-and-leaseback agreement, is relatively common, especially among traditional retailers looking to raise money from valuable real estate that they have owned for decades.
Sears needed the deal. The retailer was at the end of its rope with net losses ballooning to more than $8 billion in the five years leading up to the transaction, so the $2.7 billion payment gave Sears a new lifeline.
Lampert becomes both tenant and landlord
Since then, Seritage has taken over all or some of the space in dozens of the Sears stores it owns and has rented the empty space to other retailers — like Whole Foods, Dick's Sporting Goods, and AMC — at roughly four times the rent that Sears was paying, according to regulatory filings.
Seritage can also get paid when Sears exits a lease early. If base rent outweighs earnings over a 12-month period, Sears can break the lease, but it has to pay Seritage a full year of rent to do so.
On top of paying rent to Seritage, Sears reimburses the company for taxes and maintenance on the stores it owns.
A group of individual shareholders sued Lampert, ESL, and members of Sears' board of directors over the Seritage deal, claiming that it stripped Sears Holdings of its best assets to enrich Lampert and his hedge fund.
The suit said the Sears stores were worth far more than $2.7 billion and that Lampert — by standing on both sides of the transaction — stood to benefit regardless.
The suit was later settled for $40 million. The defendants said in court papers that the settlement was not an admission that the lawsuit's claims were valid. In a May 2017 settlement hearing on the suit, a judge said it "is not clear" how the "transaction was structured to benefit Lampert at the expense of the minority holders."
ESL has said that the Seritage transaction was "carried out on transparent terms that delivered value to all Sears shareholders, and every shareholder had the same opportunity to participate in the offerings."
If you work for Sears and have information to share, contact email@example.com.
Read more about Sears' downfall:
This is a preview of a research report from Business Insider Intelligence, Business Insider's premium research service. To learn more about Business Insider Intelligence, click here.
The healthcare industry is undergoing a profound transformation. Costs are skyrocketing, consumer demand for more accessible care is growing rapidly, and healthcare companies are unable to keep up.
Health organizations are increasingly turning to tech companies to facilitate this transformation in care delivery and lower health expenditures. The potential for tech-led digital health initiatives to help healthcare providers and insurers deliver safer, more efficient, and cost-effective care is significant. For healthcare organizations of all types, the collection, analyses, and application of patient data can minimize avoidable service use, improve health outcomes, and promote patient independence, which can assuage swelling costs.
For their part, the "Big Four" tech companies — Google-parent Alphabet, Amazon, Apple, and Microsoft — see an opportunity to tap into the lucrative health market. These same players are accelerating their efforts to reshape healthcare by developing and collaborating on new tools for consumers, medical professionals, and insurers.
In this report, Business Insider Intelligence explores the key strengths and offerings the Big Four will bring to the healthcare industry, as well as their approaches into the market. We'll then explore how these services and solutions are creating opportunities for health systems and insurers. Finally, the report will outline the barriers that are inhibiting the adoption and usage of the Big Four tech companies’ offerings and how these barriers can be circumvented.
Here are some of the key takeaways from the report:
In full, the report:
Heading into Week 17, the final week of the NFL regular season, the NFL playoff picture is still up in the air.
Nine of 12 playoff spots have been locked, but seeding is still very much open, and three playoff spots are still up for grabs.
In the AFC, the Kansas City Chiefs, New England Patriots, and Houston Texans all have their divisions locked up, while the Los Angeles Chargers have secured a playoff spot. The race for the AFC North has come down to the Baltimore Ravens and Pittsburgh Steelers, while the final Wild Card spot is still open. The Indianapolis Colts and Tennessee Titans play a crucial Week 17 game for that final spot.
In the NFC, the New Orleans Saints, Los Angeles Rams, Chicago Bears, and Dallas Cowboys have all won their divisions, while the Seattle Seahawks also locked up a playoff spot, meaning only the final Wild Card seed is available. The Minnesota Vikings are trying to stave off the surging Philadelphia Eagles for that spot.
Below is a breakdown of how each of the teams still fighting for the open spots could fare in the final week of the season (with some help from NFL.com).
vs. Cleveland Browns
The Ravens currently lead the AFC North, and their path to clinching is pretty simple: beat the Browns. If that happens, they'll be in the playoffs.
If the Ravens lose or tie, it gets a bit more complicated. If the Ravens lose to the Browns, they would also need the Steelers to lose, in which case they could still win the division. If the Ravens lose and the Steelers win, they would be out, as one of the Colts or Titans would win the last Wild Card spot.
vs. Cincinnati Bengals
As outlined above, the Steelers are in a must-win situation. Any situation where they lose means they're out. The only way they could get the Wild Card spot is if they win and the Colts and Titans tie.
at Tennessee Titans
The Colts still have a chance to win the division if they beat the Titans and the Houston Texans win. Either way, they need to beat the Titans to get in. If they end up tying the Titans, they would need the Ravens to lose and the Steelers to lose or tie.
vs. Indianapolis Colts
Likewise, the Titans need to beat the Colts. They, too, could nab the division if they win and the Texans lose.
vs. Chicago Bears
If the Vikings need to beat the Bears, they'll be in the playoffs. If not, they'll need the Eagles to lose the Redskins.
at Washington Redskins
The Eagles' improbable, Nick Foles-led surge is still out of their hands. Even if the Eagles win, they'll need the Vikings to lose to get into the playoffs.
Long-running couples that fans thought would last forever, like Channing Tatum and Jenna Dewan, revealed their devastating breakups this year. Other stars weren't dating for too long, but their breakups were still surprising.
Jennifer Aniston and Justin Theroux
"Normally we would do this privately, but given that the gossip industry cannot resist an opportunity to speculate and invent, we wanted to convey the truth directly," read the statement given to The Associated Press by Aniston's publicist, Stephen Huvane. "Whatever else is printed about us that is not directly from us, is someone else's fictional narrative. Above all, we are determined to maintain the deep respect and love that we have for one another.”
Prior to getting married in 2015, they reportedly started dating in 2011.
Channing Tatum and Jenna Dewan
In retrospect, there were probably signs that Tatum and Dewan's marriage wasn't perfect, but fans were surprised when they broke up after nine years of marriage.
"We fell deeply in love so many years ago and have had a magical journey together,"they said in a statement. "Absolutely nothing has changed about how much we love one another, but love is a beautiful adventure that is taking us on different paths for now."
Dominic Cooper and Ruth Negga
The two actors met back in 2009 in a British theater production called "Phedre." They didn't speak much about their relationship but were reportedly together for eight years before splitting.
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
The gig economy is becoming a core element of the labor market, pushed to the fore by platforms like Uber and Airbnb. Gig economy workers are freelancers, such as journalists who don’t work for one publication directly, freelance developers, drivers on platforms like Uber and Grab, and consumers who rent out their apartments via Airbnb or other home-sharing sites.
Gig economy workers are not employed by these platforms, and therefore typically don't receive conventional employee perks, such as insurance or retirement options. This has created a lucrative opportunity to provide tailored insurance policies for the gig economy.
A number of insurtech startups — including UK-based Dinghy, which focuses on liability insurance, and US-based Slice, which provides on-demand insurance for a range of areas — have moved to capitalize on this new segment of the labor market. These companies have been busy finding new ways to personalize insurance products by incorporating emerging technologies, including AI and chatbots, to target the gig economy.
In this report, Business Insider Intelligence examines how insurtechs have begun addressing the gig economy, the kinds of policies they are offering, and how incumbents can tap the market themselves. We have opted to focus on three areas of insurance particularly relevant to the gig economy: vehicle insurance, home insurance, and equipment and liability insurance.
While every consumer needs health insurance, there are already a number of insurtechs and incumbent insurers that offer policies for individuals. However, when it comes to insuring work equipment or other utilities for freelancers, it's much more difficult to find suitable coverage. As such, this is the gap in the market where we see the most opportunity to deploy new products.
The companies mentioned in this report are: Airbnb, Deliveroo, Dinghy, Grab, Progressive, Slice, Uber, Urban Jungle, and Zego.
Here are some of the key takeaways from the report:
In full, the report: