Tuesday, November 29, 2016

A World Cup in the United States

A World Cup in the United States
Written by: Theo Johnson 

Soccer is the most popular sport in the world, both in terms of fans and revenue. In fact, it is the most popular sport in 226 out of 261 countries. The biggest soccer event, the World Cup, is 10 times more popular than the Olympics. (Bleacher Report) However, soccer has failed to make the impact it has worldwide in the United States where it ranks as only the 7th most popular sport. (TheRichest). While soccer’s popularity has been growing slowly since the 1994 World Cup that was hosted in the States, America is by far the largest potential market in the soccer industry. The United States would be a perfect fit for a World Cup.

The 1994 World Cup had a major effect on America, both in soccer’s popularity and from an economic standpoint. The World Cup was hosted in 9 different across the US. The average economic profit for each of these cities was 623 million dollars (Nodell). The United States was able to produce the largest economic profit from a World Cup because, unlike most other hosts, new stadiums were not needed and games were played in existing football stadiums. This allowed for the United States to host the World Cup with fewer fixed costs. The month-long event brought millions in profit to several different industries such as hotels, restaurants, and soccer itself. Since the United States is the most populous country the tournament has ever been held in, it produced record crowds, bring in more profit to FIFA. (InfoPlease) Since the United States creates the most profit for more FIFA and itself, it should be a frontrunner in hosting another World Cup.

The 2022 World Cup may soon be looking for a host as the current host, Qatar, is under fire for colluding FIFA to allow it to host. In that case, in makes sense for the States to host in terms of both the short and long run. In the short run, the low fixed costs will allow the event to bring in more profit for FIFA and the country. The World Cup would surely increase the soccer fan base in the United States. This increase in market size would increase the demand for all things soccer related such as getting soccer games on TV or soccer jerseys. The increase in demand would increase the price and therefore the producer surplus in the long run for FIFA as they have control over all international soccer.

The reason for Brazil’s failure in hosting the 2014 World Cup was larger in part to the costs of stadiums. In the US, that wouldn’t be a problem.

If a World Cup were to be hosted by the United States, it would benefit the country, FIFA, and soccer as a sport. Therefore, I believe that if the 2022 World Cup were to need a new host, America would be a perfect fit.

Works Cited

"Economics of the FIFA World Cup." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, n.d. Web. 28 Nov. 2016.

"FIFA 2014 World Cup Brazil Costs." Statista. N.p., n.d. Web. 28 Nov. 2016.

Joe Kidwell , Contributor Nov 14, 2008. "226 Countries Can't Be Wrong." Bleacher Report. N.p., 28 Nov. 2016. Web. 28 Nov. 2016.

"Most Populous Countries." Infoplease. Infoplease, n.d. Web. 28 Nov. 2016.

"1994 FIFA World Cup." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, n.d. Web. 28 Nov. 2016.

"Ranking The Most Popular Sports in America." TheRichest. N.p., n.d. Web. 28 Nov. 2016.

Vine Shuts Down

Jenni Mies
AP Econ
Mrs. Straub
Vine Shuts Down
The popular app, Vine, which enables users to record and post six second looping videos has reported that they are shutting down only three years after its launch date back in January, 2013. Although the exact date of shut down isn’t known, users have already expressed their concerns about saving their videos before the app is shut down for good. Vine started off strong as they became the number one app on the iTunes App Store only six months after joining the company. Vine has created new stars like Cameron Dallas, Brent Rivera and Lele Pons, with just naming a few. Most of these popular Viners have already moved out of the vining community  into other more profitable and popular social medias for example Instagram, YouTube and muscial.ly.

Vine, being owned by another popular social media base, Twitter, has been moved into the shadows of the more popular partner app. Twitter has regularly been posting about when the app will be shut down and have already announced that the website will still be up, enabling Vine fans to re-live all the incredible Vines posted in the past couple years. The announcement of the Vine app being deleted came after Twitter revealed their plans to lay off nine percent of their workforce which is approximately 350 workers. According to CNN money, Twitter posted a net loss of $103 million during their third-quarter report. Dropping Vine will decrease their net loss and/ or increase their profit.

A theory that has been proposed as to why Vine is shutting down is that it has been more of a loss to the company than a profit. Evidence that backs up this theory is that when competing app Instagram launched their video feature, Vine never recovered. Vine lost both users and market share to Instagram. It was then that many popular Viners jumped ship towards more profitable apps and left Vine vacant. As you can seen in the graph shown below, when Topsy’s analysis ran a check for Twitter links to Vine and Instagram, it revealed a large Vine drop-off right around the time that Instagram launched their new video feature. Based on the graph, there is no evidence that suggests that Vine will recover as the number of links to Vine.co in steadily decreasing.

A second theory as reported by The New York Times, is that Vine was dead weight. Mr. Isaac, tech reporter for The New York Times has concluded that, “If you have an entire division of your company that doesn’t make money and is a real resource drain, that’s hard to justify keeping it up and running.” Vine had more than 200 million active users at one point but has recently been struggling to maintain traction as the company saw a decline in popularity due to an increase in the demand of other competing apps.

Vine had its “fifteen minutes of fame” or in this case three years of fame and is now ready for its shut down to cut down on company costs. The company's goal is to have Twitter become profitable independently. If you are really upset about the announcement of Vine shutting down, realize that in the long run it will help the company as a whole.

Works Cited
Bambenek, Cadence. "Meet the 30 Top Vine Stars in the World." Business Insider. Business Insider, Inc, 28 June 2016. Web. 17 Nov. 2016. http://www.businessinsider.com/30-top-vine-stars-in-the-world-2016-6#7-logan-paul-24.
Rogers, Katie. "Vine Is Closing Down, and the Internet Can’t Stand It." The New York Times. The New York Times, 27 Oct. 2016. Web. 17 Nov. 2016. http://heavy.com/tech/2016/10/when-is-vine-video-app-closing-shutting-down-discontinuing-date-access-account-saving-downloading-vines-twitter/.
The Layoffs Are Expected to Impact about 350 Employees across Sales. "Twitter Cuts 9% of Staff and Kills off Vine App." CNNMoney. Cable News Network. Web. 17 Nov. 2016. http://money.cnn.com/2016/10/27/technology/twitter-layoffs-earnings/.
"When Is Vine Video App Closing?" Heavy.com. 27 Oct. 2016. Web. 17 Nov. 2016.

Black Friday VS Cyber Monday

Taylor Rouse
Mrs. Straub
AP Economics
Black Friday VS Cyber Monday

Black Friday is the most popular shopping day of the whole year followed by Cyber Monday. However, the popularity of Cyber Monday has grown immensely. Cyber monday has only been around for 11 years and has grown to become one of the most popular shopping days of the year. According to forbs.com “Cyber Monday sales grew 12% from 2014-2015 and Black Friday only grew 10% from 2014-2015.” In addition “Thanksgiving weekend, up from 151 million shoppers in 2015. NRF's annual Thanksgiving weekend survey conducted by Prosper Insights found that 44 percent went online and 40 percent shopped in-store”(Thanksgiving). People feel that Cyber Monday has way more pros than Black Friday and are starting to switch to online shopping.
The economic background of both these days are very interesting. In the short term there is an overall economic growth during this time of the year. The term Black Friday has been around ever since the 1960’s. According to Black Friday History “‘Black’ refers to stores moving from the “red” to the ‘black,’ back when accounting records were kept by hand, and red ink indicated a loss, and black a profit. Retailers saw an opportunity to draw in the huge crowds by participating in Black Friday. Another way retailers drew in customers was creating online sales. The term Cyber Monday has been around since 2005. The name was created by National Retail Federation to create a catchy name for online retailers to promote their deals following Black Friday.
Nowadays people are switching from traditional Black Friday shopping to online shopping. Cyber monday creates a more convenient shopping experience for customers. This is because websites are more convenient than stores, more deals and promotions are found online, and more people have mobile devices which makes it easier to shop online. Hot items that sell out quickly are often still available online. The opportunity cost of people would be sitting in the comfort of your own home ordering products online versus standing in long lines next to people who would fight you for a new TV. People also have to make marginal decisions to decide how the next hour of free time is going to be spent. If you're into the adventure and hustle of finding a fast deal, Black Friday is right up your alley, but if you'd rather shops for deals online at the comfort of your own home, then Cyber Monday is more up your alley.

Work Cited

"Cyber Monday Set To Be Largest Shopping Day In History." Forbes. Forbes Magazine, n.d. Web. 28 Nov. 2016.

"The History of Black Friday." The History of Black Friday. N.p., n.d. Web. 28 Nov. 2016.

Black Friday vs. Cyber Monday. Digital image. AddThis. N.p., n.d. Web

Barr, Alistair. "Cyber Monday Sales Surge to New Record." USA Today. Gannett Satellite Information Network, 03 Dec. 2013. Web. 28 Nov. 2016.

"Holiday Headquarters." National Retail Federation. N.p., n.d. Web. 28 Nov. 2016

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Military Spending

Military Spending
By: Alex Mauch

We all know that America has the best military in the world, but most people don’t understand the costs of that military. The U.S. spent a grand total of $596 Billion on defensive measures in 2015 alone. And the spending will only increase. The proposed defense budget for 2017 is $859 Billion, of which, $617 Billion Dollars will be spent on military expenditures. The remaining $242 Billion of the proposed budget will be split between Veterans spending, foreign policy, and foreign aid. The U.S. ranks #1 for military spending by far. No other country even compares to how much the U.S. spends, in fact, the U.S. spends more money on defense than the next top 7 countries.
Whenever our military spending increases, it is either due to inflation, or due to foreign affairs. Throughout all of World War II, the U.S. only spent roughly $296 Billion from 1941-1945, and today, we spend more than twice that amount in only 1 year. Although the amount of money that the U.S. spends on its defense budget today seems incredibly high, it is actually much less than what most people would expect. The total military spending during WWII hasn't taken price changes into effect and as a result, have only presented Nominal GDP. In reality, the U.S. spent  41% of its GDP in the peak year of the war. That is equivalent to $4.3 Trillion in today’s standards compared to the $596 Billion that the U.S. spends today. In fact, since WWI, every war in our nation's history, in terms of GDP, has cost more than the wars fought post 9/11. Although it may seem ridiculous to increase military spending since the total debt is at an all time high, and continues to grow, the U.S. has been spending an average of 4.9% of it’s GDP in the past decade on the defensive budget, vs the 41% of the total GDP that the U.S. spent during WWII.
The demand for a safe country will never go away. But It is up to the government to decide how much to spend on guns and how much to spend on butter. How much is necessary to spend in order to keep the U.S. safe. In 2017 the proposed defensive spending budget is $859 Billion, but that is only 5% of the GDP, leaving room for 95% of the GDP to be spent wherever else is necessary.

How Tracks and Sports Complexes are Giving back to the Public

How Tracks and Sports Complexes are Giving Back to the Public

By: Zach Frei

The diverse events and brutal competition of a track meet have never failed to draw in large numbers of spectators to each event. From pole vaulting to steeplechase and everything in between, there’s something for every athlete and audience member. However, none of this would be possible without, of course, a track to host all of the events. At the collegiate level, high quality tracks are a must have for event, and schools are willing to dish out heaps of cash to fund construction for these first-class facilities. It’s easy to spend a few million dollars to get a high quality track and stadium. The track alone can cost around one million dollars, but then add in seating, facilities, and maintenance.  So where does the money to fund these massive projects come from and where is the benefit to the public? It comes from and goes back into local businesses that fund and benefit from these types of events. Tracks and sports complexes offer a way for a local community to invest into itself and allow for growth amongst local businesses.
Track and field is by no means a high revenue generating sport compared to others, average revenue from entry fees and concessions being around ten thousand per event (Mondo). Yet hosting prestigious collegiate meets attracts thousands of athletes, fans, and spectators from around the area. All of these people need food, a place to stay, and of course some opportunities to spend money on souvenirs and entertainment. The demand for food and shelter go up as visitors expect to stay at a decent hotel and be able to eat somewhere. Hotels will often drop prices as to encourage visitors to rent out their rooms and compete in the perfect competition of hotels in the area. This allows for an increase in quantity of rooms demanded by spectators. Restaurants also benefit by much of the same way. Many will advertise in order to create greater consumer taste for their restaurant and thus increasing demand for their restaurant amongst visitors. Stores and merch shops in downtown areas benefit by again lowering prices to increase quantity demanded and sell more to the incoming consumers.
An example of these events is during June 2014 during the Wisconsin state track meet hosted by the University of LaCrosse. According to university, “Last year’s event brought a total of about 23,800 people to the area with a total estimated economic impact of about $3.9 million” (UWL Sponsors). These statistics get even more interesting when considering this is an annual event and only a high school level meet. Collegiate level meets are much larger as they are hosted in the larger areas of every state and are often more frequently occurring. These marginal benefits clearly outweigh the marginal costs of the initial price of building and maintaining these complexes. Businesses who invest in projects like these often see a large return due to the large intake of new consumers in the area for the corresponding events. These complexes offer services for student athletes as well as a way to help grow the local economy by investing money back into the community and stimulating growth in the local businesses.

Works Cited

Mondo. "The Positive Economic Impact of World-Class Track and Field Facilities for Cities and Local Businesses." Www.sportscommissions.org. N.p., 2013. Web. 14 Nov. 2016.
Sponsors, UWL. "Campus News – UW-La Crosse." Campus News UWLa Crosse. UW LaCrosse, 3 June 2014. Web. 14 Nov. 2016.

Coffee and the Economy

Jessica Esser
13 Nov 2016Image result for coffee
                                        Coffee and the Economy
The sun creeps over the horizon as the word begins to wake up for the day. All over the world they are preparing to start their morning commute. No matter who they are or where they are going, each one of them starts the day off with a cup of coffee. According to “I Need Coffee. com”,  “coffee is the second-most traded commodity with oil being the first”(Carrier1). Coffee benefits people all over the world. Both with its caffeine, but also with the revenue it . It produces money for countries that consume it as well as those who grow it.
Coffee is a giant part of the economy in many countries globally. In places like South America and Vietnam it runs a big portion of the product they export increasing their GDP. According to Global Exchange. org,“There are approximately 25 million farmers and coffee workers in over 50 countries involved in producing coffee around the world...An estimated 11 million hectares of the world's farmland are dedicated to coffee cultivation... Around the globe, the annual consumption of coffee has expanded to 12 billion pounds (Global Exchange. org)”. America is the top consumer of coffee globally. “According to the International Coffee Organization, the US imported 2.72 billion pounds of coffee from September 2001 to September 2002 2(Global Exhnge. org)”. Along with just about everything else, America really loves to import the coffee they get. This helps countries that produce coffee, help raise productivity and overall GDP. However it is not always a fair trade for those who farm the product.
Not all who produce coffee are paid their fair share. According to Global Exchange. com “In Guatemala for example, coffee pickers have to pick a 100-pound quota in order to get the minimum wage of less than 3 dollars a day. A recent study of plantations in Guatemala showed that over half of all coffee pickers don't receive the minimum wage, in violation of Guatemalan labor laws”(Global Exchange. org) With the rising demand of coffee these conditions may take a toll on the workers and amount they are able to produce. This, in turn may cause a negative externality, for coffee producing countries and the companies who own the farms, as well as raising the prices of coffee for those who consume it. Another factor that contributes to changing prices of coffee is weather. Due to the fact that it is a crop, the external forces such as droughts, floods, and animals can cause shortages of supplies. The image below is a graph from I need coffee. com that shows that, “ pricing is driven up and down by variables like changing weather conditions in the major producing countries, political turmoil, speculation about production levels, changing transportation costs and other unexpected factors” (carrier2). In years where the price was higher such as 96’ or 97’ we see a large increase were likely factor played into the spiking of the selling price. Coffee is one of the most influential crops worldwide, often making a big impact on countries GDP however its price is susceptible to change from external forces. Coffee "C" Market Basis Price
Works cited
“Coffee FAQ | Global Exchange.” Coffee FAQ | Global Exchange, www.globalexchange.org/fairtrade/coffee/faq.
@INeedCoffee. “Coffee Price Economics - I Need Coffee.” I Need Coffee, 1 Aug. 2014, ineedcoffee.com/coffee-price-economics/.                       

College Basketball Players should be Paid

College Basketball Players Should Get Paid
By: Kevin Dethloff

With the college basketball season just starting, many sports fans around the United States have turned their attention toward one of the most exciting sports. College basketball provides entertainment to a large portion of the population from November to early April. With millions upon millions of fans watching the games throughout the season, the NCAA reels in almost a billion dollars each year alone from broadcasting rights, sponsorships, and ticket sales. Depending on who is playing the basketball game, competition can vary the ticket prices because the higher the demand for the ticket by the consumer, the higher the price will be. Even though the NCAA is making millions solely off of the play of college basketball players, these athletes pocket zero dollars throughout their time playing college basketball, therefore; they should get paid.
One could argue that these athletes are offered incentives from colleges, and therefore they don’t need to get paid. Some incentives include playing at prestigious arenas, getting shoes from the university’s sponsors, or even a free education. In the end however, a lot of Division 1 college basketball players have one goal in mind, to play professionally. An education really doesn’t mean that much to them in that instance.
On the other side, there’s plenty of reasons why the NCAA should be paying the college athletes. First off, the NCAA and its schools make loads of money each year and don’t share any of it with the athletes. The schools do give these athletes scholarships which are worth a certain amount of money depending on the school. But in an article, Jay Bilas describes how giving an athlete a scholarship means almost nothing because what is really happening, is the athletic departments just pay the school to have a kid play basketball there, and in the end, the money ends up in the same place as it started, the school. Secondly, Jay Bilas also mentions that the athletes would stay in school longer if they were paid. This would result in an increase in demand from the fans watching college basketball, the better the teams, the more the fans want to watch.

Some consider the NCAA to be a monopoly because they run most of the college sports in the nation. However, some consider it an oligopoly because the NAIA does a similar thing, but with less athletes and sports. Either way, I think that the NCAA should be more fair to the college basketball players and pay them money because without the athletes, the NCAA wouldn’t be making any money.

Works Cited
Calareso, Jeff. "College Sports: Just a Game or an Actual Monopoly?" N.p., 2015. Web. 14 Nov.

Maurice, Peebles. "7 Common Sense Reasons Why College Athletes Should Be Paid (According to
Jay Bilas)." Complex. N.p., 2015. Web. 14 Nov. 2016.

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