Economics in the News – Nov. 25-Dec. 1, 2019
Economics impacts our lives every day. Below are some of the top storylines from this past week in economic news.
- Black Friday results are in! Americans spent more than ever before, according to USA Today. Both online and in-store sales increased in comparison to 2018 with sales at brick-and-mortar stores up more than 4.2%, according to USA Today’s data from First Data, now Fiserve.
- Uber will not be granted a new license to operate in London because recent efforts to improve passenger safety have not gone far enough. The BBC writes that the decision stems back to a 2017 decision but Uber was granted two extensions with the latest expiring on Monday. London is one of Uber’s top five markets with an estimated 45,000 drivers.
- Charles Schwab announced its intention to acquire TD Ameritrade for $26 billion. The companies are two of the largest brokerage firms in the United States. NPR reports that after the merger the new company will hold more than $5 trillion in assets and manage more than 24 million brokerage accounts.
- Utility companies in California, according to a report by The Associated Press, are testing a new technology that could assist in preventing wildfires. Texas A&M electrical engineering professor B. Don Russell helped in the development, which detects variations in electrical currents caused by deteriorating conditions or equipment. It’s estimated to cost between $15,000 to $20,000 per circuit.
- Black Friday deals weren’t the only sales that were up over the Thanksgiving weekend. The Wall Street Journal reports that Frozen 2 grossed a Thanksgiving record $123.7 million over the five-day holiday, topping the $110 million earned in 2013 from The Hunger Games: Catching Fire.
- YouTube’s platform has given everyone a voice - including those who spread messages of hate. YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki sits down to discuss how YouTube, owned by Google, is fighting hate and growing the brand to make it worth more than $160 billion in a 60 Minutes interview that goes in depth on whether or not they’re doing enough to limit the hate speech.