Here are three of the week's top pieces of financial insight, gathered from around the web:
A degree worth the price tag
Getting an MBA still pays off for most graduates, said Patrick Thomas and Andrea Fuller at The Wall Street Journal. The sticker price for many graduate business programs can go well into six figures for just two years on campus. But a recent analysis of federal loan data for nearly 600 programs found that "at about 98 percent of universities that offer MBA programs, graduates typically made more money two years out of school than they had borrowed." Contrast that with law schools: Only 6 percent of them sent graduates home with higher earnings than debt in the same time frame. "Not everybody who attends a well-known school catapults into a new income bracket." But the debt loads from some of the most expensive MBA programs were generally among the most manageable.
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A disappointing office return
"Many workers are finding their return to the office isn't going as hoped," said Sawdah Bhaimiya at Business Insider. In a survey of 1,000 adult workers by the software firm BambooHR in August, 37 percent said "they felt worse in the office than even at their lowest point in the pandemic." Among respondents, "61 percent hoped for more in-person collaboration" at the workplace "but only 49 percent actually reported experiencing it." The majority of workers expected their productivity to go up after returning, but nearly two-thirds of them have found that has not been the case. An overwhelming majority — 79 percent — also said their company's culture hasn't improved since they got to see colleagues in person.
Job-board identity theft
Fake ads are popping up on job boards everywhere from scammers trying to steal people's personal data, said Cezary Podkul at ProPublica. A few of the telltale signs of fraudulent want ads are "unusually generous pay, using suspicious email domains, and requiring that one verify one's identity upfront." A ubiquitous fake listing, for instance, is looking for an airport shuttle driver "at a pay rate that works out to more than $100,000 a year." A version of the ad was shared among a well-known Nigerian scam group "along with instructions on what to tell applicants to get them to share their Social Security number." Other fraudsters are going to elaborate lengths to bolster their authenticity. One created a fake application site that "uses Spirit Airlines' photos, text, font, and color code."
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