Questions tagged [economics]

Economics is the analytical study of the costs and benefits of producing, distributing, and consuming goods and services. This tag should not be used for personal finance questions, nor for most questions about expensive items, e.g. exorbitantly priced houses, autos, jewelry. It can be used for current events, and in historical contexts.

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7
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1answer
603 views

Has a carbon price lead to a 8.6 percent drop in electricity demand in Australia?

In a press release China’s pilot carbon trading market taps UNSW expertise (press release is by the UNSW, which is my employer) Minister Combet highlighted the benefits to date of Australia’s ...
10
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1answer
1k views

Do women drive 80% of consumption?

The Men's Rights organization, Men Going Their Own Way (MGTOW) have claimed (quoting The Observer Watches Blog) that: Consumption in the modern world today is driven overwhelmingly by women (80-91%,...
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2answers
600 views

x percent of people own y percent of the wealth

It is very common in infographics such as the following: to make a point about wealth inequality by showing a disproportionate amount of money owned by the richest people. I am slightly skeptical ...
10
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0answers
698 views

Is having a "sign waver" an effective marketing strategy?

It started a few years ago. The first one I remember seeing was Little Caesars $5 Hot-And-Ready pizzas. I don't know if this was the source, but it was the first symptom... (source: Sign wavers, ...
10
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3answers
6k views

Does pumping gas when the tank is half full and on the low flow setting provide an economic benefit?

There is a chain post making the rounds in my social networks. It asserts that gasoline vapors can affect how much fuel you actually get. To minimize the amount of vapor passed through the nozzle/...
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1answer
4k views

Could McDonald's pay a $10.10 minimum wage with an increase of only 4¢ per meal?

This caught my eye and seems like powerful statement, if true. WARREN: During my Senate campaign, I ate a number 11 at McDonald’s many, many times a week. I know the price on that. $7.19. According ...
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2answers
2k views

Is Walmart the largest company in history?

I have seen a post going around on Facebook containing a list of "facts" about Walmart. Two of them seem like very large claims: Wal-Mart employs 1.6 million people, is the world's largest private ...
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2answers
1k views

For the same size, is real estate cheaper in Australia than Japan?

From an upvoted comment: Size of an apartment isn't very good measure of how rich some is. Let's say a house that would make you filthy rich in Tokyo might be considered tiny rathole in ...
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1answer
2k views

Does the US have $54 trillion?

There's a viral video going around about the wealth inequality in the US. It claims the US has $54 trillion. It cites economists from Harvard Business school, but I didn't see where that particular ...
3
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1answer
2k views

Will the Affordable Care Act negatively impact radiologists in America?

My doctor, and numerous medical students and residents* I know, have told me recently that most doctors, and especially radiologists, are going to be negatively impacted by the Affordable Care Act, ...
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1answer
1k views

Are Americans less prosperous and less educated than their parents for the first time?

In the movie Inside Job, Matt Damon makes the following claim: For the first time in history, average Americans have less education and are less prosperous than their parents. Is that true? What ...
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2answers
1k views

Do banks typically lose as much money as they make in the long term?

Nicholas Nassem Taleb makes the following passing statement in his latest meditation on the nature and management of risk (Antifragile): ...businesses with negative optionality (that is, the ...
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1answer
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Is the pharmaceutical industry the most profitable business in the United States?

The Russia Today article Pharmageddon: America’s bitter pill claims The pharmaceutical industry remains the most profitable business in the US. More success and financial gain for the companies ...
15
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1answer
1k views

Does McDonald's periodic release of the McRib sandwich drive up market prices for pork trimmings?

According to an article based on an interview with University of Nebraska-Lincoln professor Roger Mandingo, the reason McDonalds' infamous McRib sandwich is only available periodically, and for ...
4
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1answer
587 views

Are Taiwanese people gambling on when cancer sufferers will die?

Police investigate claims of gambling with dying patients - Taipei Times Greater Taichung police on Tuesday said they have launched an investigation into a report that gamblers are betting tens ...
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1answer
1k views

Were more than a half of all Silicon Valley tech companies founded by immigrants between 1995 and 2005?

Source: CNN Global Public Square: A new book caught my eye this week. It’s called The Immigrant Exodus by Vivek Wadhwa, a former tech entrepreneur who now studies and lectures on immigration. He ...
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2answers
2k views

Do casinos have a negative economic and social impact on the neighborhoods they are located in?

In a recent article of the Toronto Sun that discusses a proposed waterfront casino for the city of Toronto, the author Christopher Hume makes the following statement: Experience around the world ...
13
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1answer
797 views

Is avoiding global warming by preventing CO₂ emissions far too expensive compared to geoengineering or adapting to a warmer world?

Experts in the science of global climate change often criticise their opponents by disparaging their expertise in climate science. But experts in climate science are not experts in economics. So when ...
60
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2answers
8k views

Is there a worldwide helium shortage?

I've seen a number of news articles about scarcity of Helium lately, for example: At the moment, helium is cheap, primarily because the US government built up a large surplus supply, then decided ...
9
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2answers
2k views

Does food aid cause famines?

This article claims: While all efforts should be made to get emergency food aid to Africa during this famine, the tradition of US food aid in Africa is actually part of the problem. Giving food ...
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4answers
3k views

Was money invented because barter was deemed impractical?

When the history of money is described, very often the claim is made that people invented money because barter was impractical: a quick Google Search lists many places where this claim is made, e.g. (...
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2answers
3k views

Does banning abortion significantly increase or decrease the number of abortions?

According to the following article, the oft quoted result that abortion is higher in countries where it is legal is misleading: The obvious problem with The Lancet study is that many of the ...
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1answer
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Are Apple products sold at a premium price?

I have often heard people talk about to an Apple tax in reference to Apple products (especially their Mac products). This is one of many references to Apple having overly high prices compared with ...
19
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1answer
2k views

Does a customer have the legal right to receive change in whatever denomination they want if the cashier can cover it?

I am a cashier at a gas station in California and I recently had a customer put me in this situation. They prepaid for $50 in gas with a fifty dollar bill and filled their car. They had $19 in ...
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1answer
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Does a tax increase on high incomes slow down economic growth?

The Republican party in the US has a position that that raising taxes on rich people leads to less growth. Is this true? For one example of the claim, CNN reported in August 2012: Republicans ...
9
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2answers
370 views

Hedge fund performance due to chance?

Is there any evidence that hedge funds (any in particular, or the industry as a whole) actually offer any expertise? Clearly, they claim that they do (that is what management fees are for after all), ...
25
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1answer
8k views

Are the chances of dying on the way to get lottery tickets larger than the chance of winning?

I encountered the following claim: The chances of you dying on the way to get your lottery tickets is greater than your chances of winning Of course, whether is is true depends on the lottery, on ...
27
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2answers
75k views

Does Louis Vuitton burn all their unsold bags?

It first ran across the notion with this meme Every year Louis Vuitton burns all their unsold bags A google search yields lots of results but none of them seems credible. Snopes yields nothing. ...
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1answer
1k views

Did Americans coin the phrase "to make money"?

This claim comes from a work of fiction but it is often repeated as true by fiscally conservative individuals who respect the author. In Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged, a character named Francisco gives a ...
26
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1answer
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Does the $20 bill predict the 9/11 attacks?

I am referring to claims such as those made at this site. Basically they claim that a certain folding of the bill shows burning images of twin towers. The new U.S. $20 dollar bill contains hidden ...
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2answers
3k views

Are teachers in the United states paid poorly?

At the last "Save Our Schools" rally, Matt Damon said: So you think job insecurity is what makes me work hard? I want to be an actor. That’s not an incentive. That’s the thing: See, you take this ...
10
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0answers
317 views

Glut of dolphin meat in Japan going into pet food?

Is there any truth behind the claim that Japan doesn't need all the dolphin meat it gets and the excess is being passed off to the pet food industry because there is little demand for the meat or they ...
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2answers
2k views

Would the United States lose its title as the richest country if we exclude top 5% wealth holders?

I read this claim in Quora: The "richest" country in the world (the u.s.) would assuredly lose that place if you excluded just the top 5% of wealth holders Is this claim true? Is there any ...
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4answers
6k views

Can we end poverty for $US175 billion per year?

A recent question brought up the claim that poverty can be eliminated for 175 billion a year. I found this claim To end extreme poverty worldwide in 20 years, Sachs calculated that the total ...
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0answers
165 views

Are prices ending with 99 cents more likely to result in purchase decisions? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: The origin of “99 cents” "Psychological pricing" refers to the theory that certain prices are more likely to lead to a sale than others. In the United States, that ...
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2answers
3k views

Do minimum wage laws disproportionately harm black employment?

There is a common claim that applying minimum wage laws impacts the poorer members of society, and thus impacts poorer minorities, such as blacks, more than others. Milton Friedman openly argued ...
11
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1answer
7k views

Does US Congress cost $30m per day to run?

What does it cost for The United States Congress to be in session for a single day? I recently heard a quote of $30 million, but did not see any supporting facts to back it up. What would the total ...
52
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2answers
107k views

Does UNICEF use less than 14% of the donated money for the advertised causes?

I have heard claims from several people in relation to the occasional donation my wife or I make: that some charities have so much waste in their organization, or use so much money to market their ...
12
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2answers
13k views

Is the US $20 bill the most counterfeited?

In a comment on "Is it illegal to refuse US currency for a purchase?", @Dan Neely said I don't think the main reason many businesses ban $50/100 bills is that they'd deplete their ability to make ...
16
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1answer
1k views

Were only half of US college graduates from 2006-2011 employed full-time in 2012?

According to an online article SmartMoney magazine titled, "The Jobless Class of 2012": Only a half of those who graduated since 2006 are now employed full time, according to a recent Rutgers ...
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0answers
282 views

Are the New York MTA's financial documents accurate?

I've read many claims that the Metropolitan Transit Authority of New York is low on funds and is in massive debt, but I've also heard several allegations of fraud, including claims of "keeping two ...
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4answers
4k views

Is more than 30% of US healthcare spending waste?

National healthcare spending in the USA consumes more than 18% of GDP and is growing rapidly. Europeans criticise the expense and relatively poor quality of the US system (for example, see this ...
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1answer
2k views

Do performance incentives work for knowledge workers?

In this animated video of his talk, Dan Pink claims performance incentives do not work, and can actually lead to worse performance. In summary, he quotes two studies (which he unfortunately does not ...
43
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1answer
5k views

Do the rich get richer and the poor get poorer?

From the Wikipedia page "The rich get richer and the poor get poorer" is a catchphrase and proverb, frequently used (with variations in wording) in discussing economic inequality. Its most common ...
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1answer
2k views

Do countries deliberately avoid winning Eurovision?

Spanish singer told to lose Eurovision? claims that countries deliberately avoid winning the Eurovision Song Contest because of the expense of hosting it. It claims that: Montenegro, Andora and ...
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2answers
648 views

Could Eurostar have implemented a Wifi network on their train for £600 (GBP)?

I'm watching this video by Rory Suterland in which he claims at 6:15 that Eurostar could have implemented a WiFi network for £600, but instead choose to spend £6,000,000 decreasing the journey time by ...
3
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0answers
848 views

Would eradicating hunger worldwide cost about 30 billion US dollars a year? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Can we end poverty for $US175 billion per year? I have come across this claim several times. The Money required to eradicate hunger for everyone in the world has been ...
6
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0answers
470 views

Have western governments spent $100billion on global warming research and advocacy?

The author, Robert M Carter argues against Anthropogenic Global Warning and his book is called Climate: the counter consensus. In it he makes two related claims: that the cumulative funding on climate ...
16
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1answer
5k views

Is 2FABE a secret code for sending postcards without a stamp?

Borrowing shamelessly from a travel Stack Exchange question https://travel.stackexchange.com/questions/2825/2fabe-the-secret-international-travel-postcard-stamp-code: I was told about this about ...
6
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1answer
3k views

How many new jobs are needed per month for job creation?

According to Rush Limbaugh, we would need about 600,000 to 700,000 new jobs a month to really begin job creation. However, the unemployment rate has been dropping with significantly smaller figures. ...

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