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July 2010 Archives

  • Marketplace Money wants to know: is your summer break a boon or a burden?

    • Posted by Alison Brody
    • on July 22, 2010 1:44 PM

    When you’re a kid, summer means one thing - vacation. For most adults, however, summertime is just another season of five day work weeks and dress down Fridays. Unless, that is, you do something like teach or work in Hollywood. Then you’re on break, or hiatus, or whatever your chosen industry chooses to call it.

    Marketplace Money is working on a series about people who year after year face a gap in employment during the summer months.

    If your job breaks for summer, we have a question for you: is your time off a welcome change or does it cause a financial headache? Tell us here.

  • Is Groupon too much of a good thing?

    • Posted by Alison Brody
    • on July 21, 2010 2:03 PM

    Want to get $50 worth of parts and services from Midas for just 25 bucks? How about a green tea facial for 75% off the original price? Of course you do. So do thousands of other consumers who flock to the online coupon site Groupon, where individuals harness their collective buying power in exchange for daily deals.

    It’s a win-win for customers and businesses, but is it too much of a good thing? Some small business owners who sold products and services on the site have been overrun by customers, making it difficult for them to deliver on what was promised.

    Are you a Goupon user? How did it work out for you? Tell us here.

  • When online comments run wild, what's a company to do?

    • Posted by Alison Brody
    • on July 19, 2010 1:21 PM

    Earlier this month, game developer Blizzard announced - and then quickly retracted - a plan to require forum participants to comment using their real names. The company created the policy in an attempt to cut back on “unpleasantness run wild,” but the announcement was met with an onslaught of criticism. A discussion thread slamming the proposal on one of Blizzard’s forums reached more than 2,000 pages.

    Now, the company has softened their approach. They’ll give users the ability to rank and flag comments, but anonymous posts will still be allowed.

    Blizzard isn’t the only company grappling with the question of how to manage user comments. Newspapers, tech companies, even individual bloggers continue to experiment with ways to keep conversations vibrant, yet civil - without dedicating too many resources to the task.

    What do you think of the ability to comment anonymously? Does it cause people to behave badly? Has it ever caused you to behave badly? Tell Marketplace here.

  • Are you struggling with a low credit score?

    • Posted by Alison Brody
    • on July 14, 2010 12:25 PM

    The Great Recession has resulted in all sorts of record-breaking numbers - more foreclosures than ever before, more credit card defaults than ever before. And, on Monday, we added another number to this grim list: personal credit scores.

    FICO, the company that created the credit score, released new data that showed Americans’ credit scores have sunk to new lows, with 43 million people scoring below 600.

    When the news came out, Marketplace talked to Joan Goldwasser of Kiplinger’s Personal Finance Magazine to shed some light on the current state of personal credit.

    Now we want to hear from you. How’s your credit score doing? Has a low credit score negatively affected your life? Tell Marketplace here.

  • Jobs are returning to Wall Street. Are you part of the hiring spree?

    • Posted by Alison Brody
    • on July 8, 2010 11:25 AM

    Wall Street is hiring again! Between February and May, the financial industry added 6800 jobs in New York City alone, the largest three-month increase since 2008.

    This new wave of hiring prompted us to ask some questions: Who’s getting hired and for what jobs? Do applicants now have more choice? Are firms being forced to pay more and offer better bonuses? What does this mean for the industry as a whole? What does it mean to the city?

    Marketplace wants to talk to recruiters, new hires, and job candidates to get a feel for the current Wall Street job market. If you have an experience to share, click here to tell us.

  • Was college worth it?

    • Posted by Alison Brody
    • on July 7, 2010 1:36 PM

    The Department of Education is cracking down on for-profit schools like the University of Phoenix and Kaplan because of the promises they make about career training and advancement. The worry is that students rack up debt only to find themselves working low paying jobs.

    But graduates of for-profit schools aren’t the only ones in this situation. Students who pay $200,000 to go to non-profit institutions like NYU are also having trouble finding wages that match the price of tuition.

    If you’re the proud recipient of a B.A., B.S., A.A., M.A. or Ph.D., Marketplace has a question for you: Was it worth it?

  • Do you have any experience with the current job market in Silicon Valley?

    • Posted by Alison Brody
    • on July 6, 2010 11:49 AM

    We’ve been hearing news of a mini-hiring boom in Silicon Valley, especially for engineers and other tech types. Is it true?

    We’re looking to talk to folks who have personal experience with the job market there. If you work in the field of hi-tech or live and work near Silicon Valley, tell us how the employment market looks from your vantage point by clicking here.

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