The bottom line
The 23 largest U.S. airlines earned a combined profit of $15.5 billion in 2017, including $4.6 billion from baggage fees and $2.9 billion from reservation-change fees. Los Angeles Times
Among S&P 500 CEOs who got raises last year, the 10 percent who received the biggest pay increases scored—as a group—in the middle of the pack in terms of total shareholder return. Similarly, the 50 companies posting the best total returns to shareholders scored in the middle of the pack in terms of CEO pay. The Wall Street Journal
U.S. imports of yoga leggings overtook those of women’s jeans last year, as the stretchy pants are increasingly seen as acceptable for both leisure and work. In March, leggings were added to the U.K. government’s “basket” of goods that reflect shopping habits across the country and are used to calculate official inflation statistics. Financial Times
The U.S. Department of Labor in 2017 counted just seven strikes involving 1,000 or more workers and lasting at least one shift—the second-lowest annual number ever recorded. This year’s activity has accelerated, however; from teacher strikes in Oklahoma and Arizona to hospital-worker strikes in California, as many major work stoppages had taken place by the end of March as in all of 2017. CBSNews.com
With China’s recent decision to stop importing recycled materials, the U.S. is in danger of running out of space for its trash. America has been forced to dispose of 676,000 metric tons of waste this year that would have otherwise been sent to China. At current rates, most Northeastern landfills will be full by 2029; the rest of the country’s landfills will be at capacity by 2036. TheOutline.com
The end of instant sellouts?
Taylor Swift’s fans noticed something odd when she began her Reputation stadium tour in Arizona last week: empty seats, said Anne Steele in The Wall Street Journal. The tour is testing a new approach that could “reset how tickets to high-profile tours are sold” by squeezing out scalpers. Automated programs that harvest huge numbers of tickets in the first few minutes of a sale have frustrated the industry for years. Swift’s strategy has been to allocate half of the available tickets to a Verified Fan presale on Ticketmaster. Registered users, who could “boost their standing in the ticket queue by watching music videos” or purchasing Swift merchandise, received codes giving them the chance to purchase discounted tickets over a six-day presale period. Only 3 percent of those tickets made their way to resale sites, according to Ticketmaster, compared with the usual average of 30 to 50 percent of tickets for high-demand artists.