Thursday, October 29, 2015

Is Tipping a thing of the Past?

Isabel Tenpas
Mr. Reuter
Economics
26 October 2015

Is Tipping a Thing of the Past?

Is restaurant tipping a behavior of the past? Will all restaurants begin implementing a “no tipping policy”? Danny Meyer’s Universal Hospitality Group has started utilizing this policy. Instead of requiring customers to tip, the overall price of the menu was increased allowing the company to keep a steady revenue flow. The main purpose of removing tips is to advertise wage balance between employees. Waiters are usually the only employees in a restaurant to get tipped, therefore, creating a larger gap between their paycheck and that of the kitchen staff. The outcome of this change, while having negatives, will most likely end up being more beneficial to companies and customers. (Drew)
To compensate for not receiving tips, companies are raising the prices of their food. When people see the high prices, it scares them. These people may look for possible substitutes including, fast food restaurants where they don’t have to tip or eating more homemade meals. These consumer decisions could really hurt the restaurant business. The question remains: will the opportunity cost of diminishing tipping be beneficial for the company in the long run?(Jones)
While it seems there are many negatives of banning tipping, there is an outweighing amount of positives. With the balancing of wages, employees will overall be more happy. Consumers will not stop demanding restaurant made food. Once, people catch on to the idea that in reality they are not paying more for their food/service, they will most likely take a liking to the new ways. Danny Meyer said, “You don’t tip your doctor if they do a good job. You don’t tip the airline pilot if the plane lands…. “ Meyer addresses a very true point. The restaurant business if one of the few places where we use gratuity as a recognition for good service.
Thinking about it, tipping really is becoming a thing of the past. It is inconvenient and an added stressor when eating out. Having gratuity built in to meal costs, will not only balance wages and make employees happier, it will allow the customer to enjoy their meal without having to worry about how much they are going to tip.



















Jones, Charisse. "Danny Meyer Says There Will Soon Be No Need to Tip at His New York Eateries." USA Today. Gannett, 15 Oct. 2015. Web. 26 Oct. 2015.
"Is This a Tipping Point for Tipping?" CNBC. 16 Oct. 2015. Web. 26 Oct. 2015.

Mars Exploration

Maria Staleos
Mr. Reuter
Econ
Oct. 24 1015

Mars Exploration

Is exploring Mars really needed right now when we’re not even sure of all of the different things on Earth? Human beings are still relatively new to this planet. The earth has been in existence for 4 billion years or so and the human race has only been here for about 6 million years or so, and humans are still evolving. There are still a number of things that are unknown still on Earth. To give an example instead of exploring Mars a substitute scientists could explore the oceans here on Earth, we have only explored about less than 5 percent of the oceans and the planet Earth is about 70% water.

There are things that are unknown on Earth but there is also a lot of mysteries outside of this blue planet we call home, a trade-off could be we could explore a little bit of both, take the budget for one, cut it in half, and use one half for exploring Mars, and the other for exploring the oceans. But in reality, half of whatever the budget for exploring Mars or the oceans probably won’t be nearly enough to try and get new information. Another trade-off is we could just explore one option right now, we could explore Mars or we could explore the oceans. If we did that then opportunity cost wise, the planet could miss out on new information on the one that was chosen not to explore.

Football in London

Derek Armstrong
Economics A3
Mr. Reuter
10/27/2015
Football in London
In September two of the smallest NFL teams of the past decade, the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Buffalo Bills, played out a minor classic in front of 84,000 people. The following weekend, another sell-out crowd participated in the whole fist-bumping, XXL jersey-over-hoodie wearing experience all over again when the Kansas City Chiefs and Detroit Lions came to town. How many sports – football aside - could sell out Wembley twice within a week? And how many could do it with teams of the equivalent standard of the Jaguars, Bills, Chiefs and Lions, who between them have won a grand total of eight out of 28 matches this season? This idea of having an international sports event has a great impact on the UK’s economy.
Back in 2014 a study carried out by the Sports Business Group at Deloitte found out that two NFL international football games played in autumn of 2013 contributed 32m euros (300 million US dollars) to the London economy. The International Series, which first touched down in the UK in 2007, attracted a cumulative audience of 167,000 across two games played at Wembley Stadium last year.
More broadly, the sport’s chains appear to be moving in the right direction too. It is believed that there would be at least four regular-season games in the UK by 2018. The NFL also reports that the average audience for the 6pm and 9pm Sunday games at Wembley Stadium have doubled in the past couple years. Meanwhile, in a fortnight the BBC, which has broadcast both Wembley games this season, will start a weekly highlights show.


As you read above there has been a lot of impact on not only the UK’s economy, but on the NFL as well. If something as little as a sports league can bring in as much revenue as it did obviously something is being done right. The average Cowboys home game at AT&T Stadium has drawn an average of 89,536 fans this season. However, the Jaguars played in front of a Wembley Stadium crowd in London that was far bigger than the average crowd at EverBank Field.  
Many barriers remain. There is the travel, with all that pinging back and forth through time zones. Then there are the logistics of shipping tons of team equipment, which is often sent months in advance to London (how would that work in the play-offs?) In addition there is the lack of a permanent stadium. Overall, the idea of having an international NFL game is a smart idea. It’s a different thing because many other countries don’t participate in American Football. It broadens the horizon of everyone because everyone is affected in some sort of way.
Works Cited
"London's NFL Love Affair Shows Signs of Growing More Substantial Yet." NFL Sports Blog. Sean Ingle. Web. 27 Oct. 2015.
"NFL Contributed £32m to the London Economy." - London & Partners. Web. 27 Oct. 2015.
"Seven Years until London Jaguars?" BBC Sport. Web. 27 Oct. 2015.
MLA formatting by BibMe.org.

Google's Monopoly of the Global Economy

Tiffany Torres

Mr. Reuter

Economics

10/26/2015

     Google’s Monopoly of the Global Economy

If you don't know the answer to something, ask google! In fact it seems nowadays that consumers turn to google for everything and I mean EVERYTHING. From being a search engine, a map resource , a place in California and even a grocery store service it seems like Google has everything you could ever want or need.
The more and more additions google makes to the services they provide, the more of a demand the consumers have for the google product. While google provides some services that other stores and/ or websites also provide, consumers find an opportunity cost in using google and their product. First off google is a one stop shop. Secondly you can access google and almost every single one of their  services at your fingertips.  As a matter of fact while reading this very blog, you could have also purchased tickets to the new star wars movie through the use of google. While there are alternative substitutes to google, they are hardly used.  This Chart below shows the search engine usage by browser.
According to Forbes, if a Google employee passes away, "their surviving spouse or domestic partner will receive a check for 50% of their salary every year for the next decade." This small fact just goes to show you how much money, and how successful the google company is. On a worldwide basis, Google employed 54,604 full-time employees as of June 30, 2012, compared to 33,077 full-time employees as of March 31, 2012. The company google has $54 billion in U.S. economic activity during 2009, and has an even bigger global economic impact. This video explain the impact that google plays on the economy. Econ Impact video.
Google has its own sort of global interdependence meaning that
production and consumption of the google products occur on an increasingly international scale. Because google is such a big cooperation, the ability to make their products is fairly easy and cheap. Therefore according to the law of demand,  Consumers will buy more of the google product because they are at a lower price. With all of the services provided by google, Google will continue to play an important role in not only the global economy , but all of our individual lives.

Works Cited

"What Did the Web Do for Businesses in 2014?" Economic Impact Report – Google Economic Impact. Web. 24 Oct. 2015.

"What Did the Web Do for Businesses in 2014?" Economic Impact Report – Google Economic Impact. Web. 23 Oct. 2015.

Pumpkin Spice Mania

Sam Wollenzien
Mr. Reuter
Economics
18 October 2015
starbucks-pumpkin-spice-latte.jpg
Pumpkin Spice Mania


For many, it’s not Fall without a Pumpkin Spice Latte.  It is by far the Starbucks drink with the most hype, and although it is not technically a “holiday” drink, it is widely referred to as the seasonal drink that kick starts Fall.  Each year, the release of it becomes more and more anticipated, and the number of anticipating PSL lovers grow each year.  It has grown in popularity over the past few years, and as of this year, the PSL is now made with real pumpkin which has lead to an increase in demand, and boosted its sales. In the past few years, the Pumpkin Spice Latte has not only increased in purchases, but also increased in popularity over social media networks like Twitter.  It has basically become a nationwide indicator of Fall to many young adults and avid coffee drinkers alike.  


This private good, although trending and popular, comes at a pretty steep price.  According to an article dedicated to the PSL on Fortune.com, the average amount of money spent by a Pumpkin Spice Latte lover is about $7.81- $8.37 compared to all other spenders at about $6.67 per transaction.  Each PSL lover much consider the opportunity cost of each of their drinks, because not only are their cheaper substitutes, but also other, non Starbucks, options to spend that $8.37 on.  To most of the buyers, however, the PSL is more of an elastic good, and is only purchased about once a month as a luxury; only about less than 7% of consumers purchase it on a regular basis.  


As of 2015, rumors have gone around that these widely loved fall fruits have become scarce.  According to pumpking producers, including the nation’s largest producer of canned pumpkin, Libby, the rumors of pumpkin shortages are true.  It has been excessively rainy in most regions where pumpkins are grown, thus a lower production of these seasonal goldmines, yet the demand of it grows annually.  Minor pumpkin shortages much like this, have happened before (as seen below, 2013), and it is said to not negatively impact Halloween festivities, but may affect the output of pumpkin pies during Thanksgiving and Christmas.  
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Works Cited
Spiegel, Alison. "Starbucks Holiday Drinks, Ranked According To Hype."The Huffington Post. TheHuffingtonPost.com, n.d. Web. 18 Oct. 2015.


Pumpkin Crops Are down about a Half This Year, and The Harvest Concluded This Week. "The Great Pumpkin Shortage of 2015."CNNMoney. Cable News Network, n.d. Web. 18 Oct. 2015.


Lassiter, Lesley. "Prepare Now for the Great Pumpkin Shortage." Nashville Scene Food Blog. N.p., 19 Oct. 2015. Web. 19 Oct. 2015.

"5 Key Facts about Pumpkin Spice Mania." CNBC. N.p., 22 Sept. 2015. Web. 19 Oct. 2015.

www.statista.com 

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Uber to Make Taxis Extinct

Aidan Borre
Uber to Make Taxis Extinct
Anyone who has visited a big city such as New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, or Chicago knows that getting around can be a near impossible task. While taxis are widely available in these cities hailing a cab has become quite the exercise. Even after rushing to the street corner and flailing your arms in the air you may still be faced with a real life game of frogger as you attempt to cross the street to get to the cab. However, your troubles wouldn’t end there. After entering your taxi you would then experience the driving of a person who would appear to be competing for an award for the world’s most aggressive driving. Then entered the app called Uber. This app allows you to request a ride from your phone. Uber is said to be all around a better option than taxis. This video rates both taxis and uber and can help you better understand their differences.
   
The second graph shows the amount of trips made by taxis compared to Uber drivers. We can see that there is a decrease in Demand for taxis as availability of Uber increases. This is causing a drop in the supply of taxis. However, there is an opportunity cost to using Uber vs taxis. While taxis use distance and time of your trip to calculate cost Uber has adopted a controversial method for determining the final cost of your trip. For Uber your fare is calculated by distance and the demand for rides in the city at the time you request to be picked up and the supply of drivers available in your zone of the city. This is called surge pricing which means that as the quantity of rides demanded rises so does the price. So while at low traffic times an Uber may cost less than a taxi, but come rush hour your fare could be quite a bit more. Uber has admitted that there are times where this surge pricing has been inappropriate such as in times of natural disasters, but that being said if someone is going to drive me around at the risk of being caught in the middle of a natural disaster they deserve to be paid a little more. This graph shows the number of people in the app and the number of requested rides. Based on this data from economists at the University of Chicago we can tell that the demand price is rather inelastic even during periods where demand is high. When we look at the opportunity cost of using an Uber we see that you can end up paying slightly more for comfort and ease.
In the long run the supply of drivers for Uber will increase ultimately causing the prices to drop. For now though Uber will continue to attempt to make taxis an inferior good.




Kerr, Dara. "Detest Uber's Surge Pricing? Some Drivers Don't like It Either - CNET." CNET. N.p., 23 Aug. 2015. Web. 27 Oct. 2015.
Murphy, Mike. "Uber Got Two Economics PhDs to Explain How Supply and Demand Works." Quartz. N.p., 17 Sept. 2015. Web. 27 Oct. 2015.
The Data Team. "Substitutes or Complements?" The Economist. The Economist Newspaper, 10 Aug. 2015. Web. 27 Oct. 2015.

Phillips, Abby. "No, Uber Drivers Can’t Game the ‘surge Pricing’ System the Way One Driver Claims." Washington Post. The Washington Post, 19 Aug. 2015. Web. 27 Oct. 2015.

The Teal Pumpkin Project

Taylor Vander Wyst

AP Economics

Mrs. Straub

25 October 2015




With Halloween less than a week away, consumers are going to out to purchase huge bags of candy to give away to trick or treaters. According to the news site WROB, the total revenue from chocolate Halloween candy in 2014 reached $217 million. This doesn’t even include sweet candy such as Skittles or Nerds. After trick or treating, kids devour all their chocolate and sweet candy with their friends. But what about the kids who have a food allergy and can’t have candy? They must feel left out on Halloween.
This is why people at Food Allergy Research and Education(FARE) came up with the Teal Pumpkin Project to meet the demand of those with a food allergy. According to the Tampa Tribune, “the color teal was chosen for the project because it has been used to signal food allergies for nearly 20 years,” (Associated Press). To participate in the Teal Pumpkin Project, people can paint a pumpkin teal, provide non-food treats, and put up a free printable sign from FARE to indicate there are non-food treats available at that home. This idea took off online last year and it was promoted nationally. FARE’s Facebook post about the Teal Pumpkin Project last year reached 2.7 million people in less than 72 hours, (Cheshire). This year, FARE has over 100,000 households throughout the United States that are pledging to participate in the Teal Pumpkin Project, (Food Allergy Research and Education).
Food allergies are life threatening and affect 1 in 13 children in the United States, (Cheshire). That is about two children per classroom that may not be able to enjoy Halloween candy. Fortunately there are countless substitutes to Halloween candy such as glow sticks, bubbles, vampire fangs, stickers, and bouncy balls that people can give away instead. The kids love these toys equal to, if not better than candy which increases their satisfaction. These toys cost about the same as buying a large bag of candy so it is easy for consumers to make the switch and provide non-food treats.  
Everyone is encouraged to join in on the Teal Pumpkin Project. Grab some teal paint, a pumpkin and non-food treats to give out to the children this Halloween. It will be worth it for the many kids with a food allergy. To learn even more about the Teal Pumpkin Project, check out this short video.

Works Cited
Associated Press. “Teal Pumpkin Project Raises Awareness of Kids’ Food Allergies.” Tampa Tribune. Tampa Media Group, 24 Oct. 2015. Web. 26 Oct. 2015.
Cheshire, Sara. “Teal Pumpkins to Make Halloween Safe For Kids With Food Allergies.” CNN. Cable News Network, 23 Oct. 2015. Web. 26 Oct. 2015.
Food Allergy Research and Education. “The Teal Pumpkin Project.” Food Allergy and Research Education. Food Allergy Research and Education Inc., 24 Sep. 2015. Web. 25 Oct. 2015.

Market Research. “Chocolate Halloween Candy Sales Reach $217 Million in 2014.” WROB. 2000-2015 World Now and WRCB, 22 Oct. 2015. Web. 25 Oct. 2015.

NFL Online

Ryan Stoffield
Mrs. Straub
Insight AP Economics
26 October 2015
NFL Online
Every Sunday millions of Americans hop on their couch at 12 and turn on FOX or CBS to watch some football.  The demographics of these people are very different, some are tech savvy, some are the old fashioned people who just want to watch football the same way they have been in the last 30 years.  Fans watching the Sunday game in London on Oct. 25 had to watch the game on something different than the TV, Yahoo.
Yahoo has paid $20 million for the rights of the broadcast (Blanc).  By doing the NFL is trying to expand the brand globally and increase revenues.   Not only does the NFL benefit from their brand being expanded, Yahoo benefits from being the first company to actually try this.  Every Sunday there is a high demand for NFL football.  The NFL is trying expand the options that its viewers have to watch their favorite teams on Sunday.








The NFL is extremely profitable and this has been a large part due to the television rights that its broadcasters pay them.  Broadcasters like CBS, NBC, ESPN, and FOX dish out extreme amounts of money which makes the NFL so profitable.  This allows them to experiment with new ideas, such as the online streaming.   Fans watching the game will have less commercials to watch, and more game action.  
Fans who prefer the old fashion way of watching football will have a trade-off and be unable to watch the game.  For the fans who switched they should enjoy the fact that Yahoo will be streaming games twice the speed than usual.   Fans will be given a much better product because of the other online competitors that were also bidding for this air time.  This is a perfect competition, where there are many competitors in the marketplace.   
The NFL streaming games on the internet is a new and interesting idea that could change the way we watch sports and entertainment.  As a fan myself I actually think that watching NFL games online is really cool and adds a different, more interactive experience to the game watching.   The more interactive, the better experience for the fans and the better product they will receive.   If this grows the way they think it will the demand curve for computers/phones to watch the games on will shift to the right as the demand increases.   One thing that could be concerning is the inaccessibility to wifi of some of the fans.   On the other hand it could encourage fans to purchase wifi for the games, or increase attendance to bars/viewing parties.  
Yahoo broadcasting NFL football games could be something that could revolutionize the way we watch football on Sunday afternoons.  It’s definitely something that would take some time to get used to, but could frame the way everyone views television in the future.  As the younger generation moves in the NFL has to adapt to the new ways of watching football.  With more and more people watching games on their phones, ipads, and computers the experience is getting more interactive.   










Most fans will be watching their favorite NFL team play on something other that the television in 5 years, and that excites many young fans.  On the other hand  television contracts go through 2022 so fans will still be seeing gameday on your main networks.  Not only will this affect the way fans watch games it will impact the growing online economy even more.  Expect to see a increase in demand (shift to the right) in the amount of fans who will be wanting to watch the games on their phones or tablets.   One day the NFL could be broadcasted all over the web, wouldn’t that be interesting.







Works Cited
Blanc, Martin. "Yahoo! Inc. Shells Out $20 Million To Broadcast NFL Game Online." Bidnessetc. N.p., 03 June 2015. Web. 27 Oct. 2015.
Goldman, David. "NFL to Give Live-streaming a Try out This Fall."CNNMoney. Cable News Network, 24 Mar. 2015. Web. 27 Oct. 2015.
Marvez, Alex. "NFL's Yahoo Streaming Experiment Offers Glimpse of the Future." FOX Sports. FOX Sports Interactive, 23 Oct. 2015. Web. 27 Oct. 2015.
"NFL and Yahoo! Partner to Deliver First-ever Global Live Stream."NFL.com. NFL Enterprises, 3 June 2015. Web. 27 Oct. 2015

Shapiro, Steven. "Going Global: The NFL to Live-stream UK Game on Yahoo." Yahoo News. Yahoo News, 23 Oct. 2015. Web. 27 Oct. 2015..