Archive for the ‘Differential pricing’ Category

Why Textbook Prices Keep Climbing   Leave a comment

textbooksLink: http://www.npr.org/blogs/money/2014/10/03/353300404/episode-573-why-textbook-prices-keep-climbing

Summary: Something strange is going on in the textbook market. The price has steeply increased over the past decade–and they’re only getting higher. There is a disconnect between the chooser (the professors) and the buyers (the students). Technically, the professor is the consumer, and they’re spending their students’ money. The podcast offers the opposite: high school textbooks, where costs are kept low because the books are paid for by the schools.

Original Air Date: October 3, 2014

Length: 14 minutes 56 seconds

Discussion Question/ Prompt: Propose a solution to the rising textbook price problem. (Example: a price ceiling? professor awareness of prices? incentives for lower prices?)

Free Money   Leave a comment

free moneyLink: http://www.npr.org/blogs/money/2014/11/07/362060876/episode-581-free-money

Summary: This podcast discusses arbitrage (free money), using the example of used textbooks. Arbitrage (free money) is a risk-free way to buy low and sell high. You can find one thing that’s selling for two different prices, and exploit the mistake.

Original Air Date: November 7, 2014

Length: 14 minutes 29 seconds

Prompt: Imagine you find an opportunity like the one discussed in the podcast. Write an outline of how you would go about this discovery, and what your plan of action would be.

Discussion Question: A woman in the podcast said their practice was immoral. Do you agree or disagree? Is what these two men are doing wrong? Use economic thinking in your discussion.

The Boom-and-Bust Story of a Crop Called Guar   Leave a comment

guarLink: http://www.marketplace.org/topics/sustainability/boom-and-bust-story-crop-called-guar

Summary: Guar is a small bean, and it had a recent rise and fall in the marketplace. Besides being an additive to thicken many foods, it’s also used in fracking. When fracking took off, the price of guar rose. As the price increased, Texas farmers started growing a lot of it, until Pakistan and India–which grow 98% of the guar combined–caught up to the demand. As a result, oil companies stopped hoarding it, and the prices dropped. The Texas farmers were left without buyers, and caused a chain reaction of bankruptcy.

Original Air Date: October 9, 2014

Length: 2 minutes 47 seconds

What Could Slow U.S.’s Surging Oil Output? Low Prices.   Leave a comment

Link: http://www.marketplace.org/topics/sustainability/what-could-slow-uss-surging-oil-output-low-prices

Summary: The oil the United States has been pumping has been getting less and less profitable. In North America, oil comes from fracking shale, and after the first initial output, oil companies have to drill deeper and deeper to get to the oil, causing it to be more expensive to access. However, the price of oil is dropping worldwide, and that could mean that the United States could be out of the oil industry, simply because it costs too much to produce.

Original Air Date: October 10, 2014

Length: 2 minutes

Get Rich By Giving Up Lattes? Not So Fast   Leave a comment

US Barista Championship Held During Coffee Industry Expo In BostonLink: http://www.marketplace.org/topics/your-money/get-rich-giving-lattes-not-so-fast

Summary: There’s a theory in the personal finance industry known as the Latte Factor, which says give up the coffee drink and invest the money instead, and you’ll have enough to retire on. However, that theory doesn’t factor into the equation inflation and taxes, and is now being proven wrong.

Original Air Date: October 10, 2014

Length: 2 minutes 19 seconds

How To Spend $442 on a 15-Minute Cab Ride   Leave a comment

pedi cab

Link: http://www.npr.org/blogs/money/2013/07/09/199048226/how-to-spend-442-on-a-15-minute-cab-ride

Summary: New York City is implementing new regulations on pricing in the pedi-cab market.  Includes interview of pedi-cab drivers who are for and against this new regulation, as well as some of the challenges of regulating the industry.

Length: 3:51 min

Original air date: July 5, 2013

 

Kid Rock vs. the Scalpers   Leave a comment

kid rockLink: http://www.npr.org/blogs/money/2013/06/25/195641030/episode-468-kid-rock-vs-the-scalpers

Summary:The Planet Money team interview Kid Rock on his strategies to combat after-market sales of concert tickets by scalpers.  Includes a discussion of changes in the concert industry, firm strategies to price differentiate and consumer views on such strategies.

Length: 19:05 min

Original air date: June 27, 2013