In China, fuel costs rise again
China has increased fuel prices for the second time in just over a month. Benchmark diesel now costs about $1.22 per liter and gasoline $1.17—about 20 percent higher than average U.S. prices, and 50 percent higher than pump prices in China three years ago.
Full-service restaurants gain favor
Americans are eating out more at restaurants with waiters. Over the 12 months through January, sales at full-service restaurants were 8.7 percent higher than in the previous 12 months, the fastest growth since the late 1990s. Americans spend $220 billion a year at full-service restaurants, and $211 billion at places that serve food only over the counter.
The New York Times
The future of business cards
Thanks to LinkedIn, smartphones, and the Bump app, exchanging paper business cards is becoming passé. U.S. printers made $211 million last year on the business card market, down 13 percent from 2006.
Los Angeles Times
States take the axe to taxes
States cut taxes by nearly $2 billion last year, the first reduction in a decade. Much of the drop came from the expiration of temporary sales tax hikes in California and North Carolina. Twenty-one states lowered personal income taxes, and 20 cut corporate taxes to attract businesses and new jobs.
New Jersey's strong anti-corruption laws
New Jersey may have a reputation for corruption, but a study by the Center for Public Integrity found it has the strongest anti-corruption laws. The Garden State earned a B+ in the organization’s rankings, the best grade in the country. Eight states received F’s, including Virginia, Wyoming, and Georgia, which ranked last.