The Week: Most Recent Business Posts recent posts.en-usMon, 22 Dec 2014 08:56:00 -0500http://theweek.com Recent Business Posts from THE WEEKMon, 22 Dec 2014 08:56:00 -0500How to save money: 12 great personal finance tips<img src="" /></P><p class="p1"><strong> A new way to measure your 401(k)<br /></strong>The way we evaluate retirement savings "is about to be turned on its head," said </span>Liz Moyer at <em>The Wall Street Journal</em><span>. The conventional method of assessing your 401(k), by looking at the lump-sum balance, doesn't tell you much beyond how much you have saved and how well the market has treated your portfolio. But a new approach, called projected income, is beginning to catch on among retirement plan companies; it shows what your current balance "would pay out as income beginning at a certain age." Supporters of the new method say it gives investors a "more concrete...</span></p> <a href="">More</a>By The Week StaffMon, 22 Dec 2014 08:56:00 -0500How Wall Street is chipping away at reform<img src="" /></P><p class="p1"><span class="s1">After the financial crisis, Washington vowed to never again let Wall Street "write the rule book for itself," said Edward Luce at the <em>Financial Times</em>. How quaint that promise seems today. Four years after lawmakers passed the Dodd-Frank financial reform act, Wall Street is busy "arm-twisting Congress" to roll back some of the law's toughest rules. Earlier this month, on the brink of a government shutdown, an item written by Citigroup lobbyists was quietly slipped into the $1.1 trillion spending bill. It allows banks to resume trading risky derivatives in their units backed by taxpayers, reversing...</span></p> <a href="">More</a>By The Week StaffSun, 21 Dec 2014 09:00:00 -0500Can business succeed where the embargo failed in Cuba?<img src="" /></P><p><br /></p><p>Florida Sen. Marco Rubio (R) was all over the airwaves Wednesday blasting the Obama administration's momentous move to normalize diplomatic relations with Cuba for the first time since 1961.</p><p>The U.S. will establish an embassy in Havana and ease some restrictions on travel and money transfers to the island nation some 230 miles from Miami. The administration will also expand some banking and trade ties, allowing telecommunications companies to build out the necessary infrastructure to provide Internet and other services.</p><p>While the U.S. embargo against Cuba remains for now &mdash; it's been in...</p> <a href="">More</a>By Yuval RosenbergFri, 19 Dec 2014 07:12:00 -0500Hey, bosses: Stop giving bonuses to your employees<img src="" /></P><p>Alfie Kohn's <em>Punished by Rewards</em> might be the most important book you've never heard of.</p><p>The book's argument is as simple as it is provocative: Rewards, under any form ("Do this and you'll get that"), destroy motivation and defeat their goal of getting people to do whatever it is they're supposed to do. Kohn goes over enormously voluminous evidence from social psychology that seems very strongly to suggest that "Do this and you'll get that" doesn't work.<br /><br />The reason is very simple. There are two kinds of motivation: extrinsic motivation and intrinsic motivation. Intrinsic motivation means you are...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/pascal-emmanuel-gobry" ><span class="byline">Pascal-Emmanuel Gobry</span></a>Thu, 18 Dec 2014 06:10:00 -0500Supermarkets may be missing a huge opportunity<img src="" /></P><p><br /></p><p>You may not think about it as you stroll through your local supermarket's aisles, but the shelves stocked with food and the displays promoting specials are a constant battleground for stores trying to get you to buy more and for marketers trying to get you to pick their product.</p><p>As that battle goes on, a new report suggests that big chain grocers are missing a big opportunity by not stocking more ethnic foods.</p><p>Although major supermarkets have improved their ethnic food selection as demand has increased, 63 percent of ethnic shoppers in the U.S. still complain they can't find enough ethnic food...</p> <a href="">More</a>By Marine ColeTue, 16 Dec 2014 08:55:00 -0500Domestic spending again takes back seat to defense<img src="" /></P><p><br /></p><p>With Congress focused on beefing up defense in the face of mounting threats from ISIS and other terrorists groups, domestic programs that have barely kept pace with inflation are taking a back seat again.</p><p>Senate and House negotiators reached agreement Tuesday evening on a $1.1 trillion mega spending bill that will keep most of the federal government fully funded and operating for the remainder of the fiscal year.</p><p>Given the way lawmakers have carved up the available pot of funds, about 60 percent will go to the Pentagon and State Department for military operations and foreign assistance and...</p> <a href="">More</a>By Eric PianinMon, 15 Dec 2014 12:58:00 -0500This is what it's like to be a hotel concierge<img src="" /></P><p><br /></p><p>No figure in the hospitality industry mystifies me more than the hotel concierge.<span id="more-7674"></span> They have to know everything and anything, do anything and everything, and keep perfectly pleasant and positive even when requests are totally absurd.</p><p>I connected with Wonder Woman concierge Isabelle Hogan, head concierge at The Mark Hotel, a five-star dig on Manhattan's Upper East Side, to learn a little bit more about what she and other concierges do exactly and how they do it.</p><p>(<strong>More from <em>Map Happy</em>:</strong> Most hotels will accept your packages)</p><p>Her background: She's been making helicopters and perfect amenities appear...</p> <a href="">More</a>By Karina Martinez-CarterSun, 14 Dec 2014 11:00:00 -05005 things job applicants obsess over -- that hiring managers don't<img src="" /></P><p><br /></p><p>It doesn't matter how much work experience you have, or how many interviews you've knocked out of the park &mdash; job hunting is bound to make even the most confident candidates feel insecure.</p><p>And since so many factors are out of your control &mdash; like whether you'll hear back about that perfect fit opportunity &mdash; it's no wonder many people find themselves attempting to regain a little power by obsessing over what they <em>can</em> control.</p><p>But the truth is, not all job-search details are make-or-break.</p><p>To help you discern what's worth your worry &mdash; and what's definitely not &mdash; we...</p> <a href="">More</a>By Maureen DempseyFri, 12 Dec 2014 08:44:00 -0500How tourists cripple local economies by overpaying<img src="" /></P><p><br /></p><p>I always feel uncomfortable about how much I tip in impoverished countries. Should it be more, just because? That person was nice and attentive&hellip;<span id="more-7252"></span></p><p>Tourists can sometimes be put in a weird position when it comes to tipping and even just paying for goods or services abroad, especially when their spending power eclipses the local economy. I've found I most often wrestle with all sorts of mixed emotions and confusion related to payment and tipping when I'm visiting developing countries.</p><p>(<strong>More from <em>Map Happy</em>:</strong> Avoid taxi scams like a pro)</p><p>Halfway through my trip in India, the strap on my only...</p> <a href="">More</a>By Karina Martinez-CarterThu, 11 Dec 2014 14:34:00 -05004 things I got wrong about the Great Recession<img src="" /></P><p><br /></p><p>It's the time of year when analysts and pundits begin "marking their beliefs to market" &mdash; telling us what they got right or wrong in the previous year. In that spirit, here are some of the things I got wrong about the Great Recession:</p><p><strong>It's hard to change the inflation rate in a deep recession:</strong> Prior to the Great Recession, I thought central banks could create inflation pretty much at will, even in a deep recession. All that was needed was to crank up the printing press, get the money into the hands of people who will spend it, and the extra demand will drive up the prices of goods and...</p> <a href="">More</a>By Mark ThomaThu, 11 Dec 2014 08:57:00 -0500