The bottom line

Seniors lose $2 billion-plus to scam artists; McDonald's plans for China; Will Google TV fail?; Taxes as a percentage of GDP; Homeownership reaches lowest level since 1998

Seniors lose $2 billion-plus to scam artists

One in five older Americans has been sold an inappropriate investment, paid excessive fees, or been a victim of financial fraud, according to the Investor Protection Trust. Insurer MetLife estimates that seniors lost $2.9 billion last year to financial predators and scam artists.

Money

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McDonald's plans for China

McDonald’s plans to greatly increase the number of its outlets in China, to 2,000 by 2013, up from 1,300. Hoping to grow its 16 percent of the country’s fast-food market, it also plans to recruit 50,000 employees in China this year.

Bloomberg.com

Will Google TV fail?

Google TV may be on the skids. The tech giant’s bid to enter the TV market was unveiled last year with software that connects TVs to the Internet. But a key partner producing Google TV devices says more units were returned last quarter than were purchased.

The Wall Street Journal

Taxes as a percentage of GDP

The total tax burden on Americans in 2009, as a percentage of GDP, was 24 percent, lower than it was in 1965. In comparison, Canadians pay 31 percent of GDP in taxes, Britons 34 percent, Germans 37 percent, and the French 42 percent.

Toronto Globe and Mail

Homeownership reaches lowest level since 1998

U.S. homeownership has fallen to its lowest level since 1998. Currently 65.9 percent, the homeownership rate is down from a record high of 69.2 percent in 2004. Analysts say foreclosures and stricter borrowing terms are the chief factors in the decline.

Bloomberg.com

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