Posts by Nicole Goodkind

  • Ford's 2016 GT: Iconic car born in a Dearborn basement

    Nicole Goodkind at Yahoo Finance 1 day ago

    A secret underground laboratory evokes images of mad scientists or multibillion-dollar particle colliders to mind, not sports cars. But Ford (F) went to great lengths to keep its 2016 GT quiet and built just that. In an unassuming basement corner of Ford’s Product Development Center in Dearborn, Mich., is an unmarked door that leads into the design lab, formerly a large storage closet. During the early stages of design, only 25 employees had access to the room and often worked at night or on weekends. They weren’t even allowed to tell their families what had them keeping such odd hours. The project had a codename: Phoenix.

    Only 250 models of the 2016 GT will be produced and will be priced to compete against Ferraris and Lamborghinis. While Ford won’t disclose how fast the cars will go, Callum assures that they’ll be “fast enough to lose your driver’s license many times over.” Cars at Le Mans typically go over 200 miles per hour.

    Related:

    Ford CEO: 2015 a 'breakthrough year' for the company

     

  • A $15 minimum wage could hurt those it's meant to help

    Nicole Goodkind at Yahoo Finance 2 days ago

    The minimum wage is going up in a lot of places, such as New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seatlle and Chicago. Some workers will soon earn a starting wage of $15 per hour, more than double the federal minimum of $7.25.

    But the sharp boost in the lowest legal wage is largely unprecedented, and some economist are warning of dire consequences. A new study published by the American Action Forum and Manhattan Institute finds that boosting the minimum wage nationwide to $12 or $15 would end up hurting many of the people it aims to help. Yahoo Finance has an exclusive first look at the research, which finds that a Federal minimum wage increase to $15 per hour would cost the economy 6.6 million jobs and that only 6.7% of the extra $105.4 billion in new wages would go to people in poverty.

    “If you raise the minimum wage to $15 per hour, 55 million workers will see their wages affected—we looked at what happens after their wages are affected.”

  • Man rents out back of van on Airbnb for $99/night

    Nicole Goodkind at Yahoo Finance 5 days ago

    Chris Farley’s SNL character Matt Foley thought living in a van by the river was a bad thing but a Queens, NY Airbnb host is charging for the privilege.

    The host who goes by the name Jonathan has at least six vans that he parks in the Long Island City neighborhood of New York and rents for $22 to $99 each night. Guests are not allowed to move the car. The listings offer sweeping views of Manhattan in a safe, quiet neighborhood. The listings also make it clear that the vans have no wifi, power, air conditioner, shower or bathroom. Guests are encouraged to use nearby public bathrooms and to leave the van during the daytime when the heat can be uncomfortable.

    Still, at least 53 people have opted to stay in the vans instead of pricier hotels and apartments and the reviews are mostly positive albeit entertaining. “Not being able to shower was definitely a negative seeing as New York City isn't very clean so you get dirty easily,” writes a guest. One guest wrote that they used baby wipes to stay clean, another got creative with a sponge and a bottle of water.

    More weird news:

  • How Snapchat and Facebook could win the 2016 election

    Nicole Goodkind at Yahoo Finance 6 days ago

    On Monday, Hillary Clinton held a live question and answer session on Facebook. Clinton responded to users’ questions, posted gifs, exclaimed in all-caps and posted links to her campaign store during the hour-long chat. The session was the first of its kind but will likely lead the way for other candidates and secures Facebook’s place as an integral election tool.

    While the 2012 presidential candidates recognized the importance of social media in campaigning, this is perhaps the first election where a decent social media strategy is now a vital part of any campaign. Many presidential hopefuls announced (or announced that they would be announcing) their candidacy on Twitter, post in "throwback Thursdays" on Instagram, pose for selfies on the trail and even participate in Snapchat’s election coverage.

    Senator Lindsey Graham proved that candidates are thinking about “how to go viral” by responding to Donald Trump giving out his phone number by participating in a video Wednesday that featured him destroying his cellphone via a blender, golf club and toaster oven.

     

  • Meet the 19-year-old who earned $100,000 on Etsy and paid for college

    Nicole Goodkind at Yahoo Finance 8 days ago

    LeiLei Secor is a 19-year old University of Virginia student. She’s spending her summer working for her local congressman near Albany, New York where she grew up. She’s also the owner of Designed by Lei, an Etsy store that has made more than $100,000 in three years. She’s using that money to pay her way through college.

    Secor first opened her store in the summer of 2012 after an unsuccessful job search (Sound familiar? Check out our interview with millionaire makeup sensation Michelle Phan who began her career after being rejected by Lancome). “I liked making jewelry as a hobby and then I came across Etsy and thought it would be perfect for me,” she tells Yahoo Finance. Secor began studying how to sell online with a particular focus on what worked for some stores and didn’t work for others.

    The Devil is in the detail

    Persistence is key

  • Sex, drugs and collusion: @GSElevator tells all

    Nicole Goodkind at Yahoo Finance 13 days ago

    In the summer of 2011, about three years after the U.S. government issued a $700 billion bailout to hundreds of banks, and two years after Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein announced he was “doing God’s work,” John LeFevre launched @GSElevator on Twitter.

    “It started as a joke in a bar,” says LeFevre. He was inspired by the Twitter account @CondeElevator which chronicled supposed conversations in the Conde Nast elevator. “I thought ‘wow if people find this entertaining they would be blown away by some of the things that [bankers] say and do.’” Though he worked for Citigroup, he chose to use Goldman because he found that “Goldman Sachs' culture is an amplified version of broader Wall Street culture.” The material came directly from things LeFavre’s friends had said and overheard over their years working at banks.

    The Tweets were classist, sexist and all kinds of prejudiced—and they led to 719,000 followers and a book deal.

    The book claims that the Wall Street culture encouraged bankers to give clients intentionally bad advice and collude on fees. “If our [Bloomberg terminal] chats ever came out they would ruin careers and marriages,” says LeFevre.

    More from Yahoo Finance

  • Boy band member faints from wearing 12 layers of clothing: Weird business news

    Nicole Goodkind at Yahoo Finance 18 days ago

    This week in weird business news…

    Boy bands are known for their unique fashion sense (see any group photo of *NSYNC).

    On Wednesday a member of the Glasgow-based group Rewind took quirky style to a whole new level. In order to avoid a 45 pound (about $70 USD) baggage fee on an EasyJet flight from Essex to Glasgow, band member James McElvar put on 12 layers of clothing. That’s right… six T-shirts, five sweaters, three pairs of jeans, two sweat pants, two jackets and two hats. Shortly after boarding the plane he passed out from heat exhaustion and was treated by an off-duty medic who happened to be on the flight.

    “The woman said either one bag went in the hold or we weren’t getting on,” he explained to The Sun. “The rest of the band had gone through so I couldn’t give them any of the clothes. I was told I’d either have to pay a £45 fee to get it on the plane, get the flight the next morning, bin the clothes or wear them.” Once the plane was in motion, McElvar began to undress but not quickly enough to prevent overheating.

    RyanAir, a discount European airline that rivals EasyJet has offered the band two checked bags for free on their next trip.

    More weird business news:

  • European festival recycles urine to make beer: Weird business news

    Nicole Goodkind at Yahoo Finance 18 days ago

    This week in weird business news…

    Organizers at Northern Europe’s largest music festival, Roskilde and the Danish Agriculture & Food Council partnered last weekend to collect 25,000 liters of urine from more than 100,000 festivalgoers. In a program they’re calling “From piss to pilsner.”

    The collected goods will be sent to local farmers to fertilize barley crops used to grow beer. The program will be used to create 425 kegs of beer that will be sold at the festival in 2017.

    According to the Rich Earth Institute in Brattleboro, Vermont and environmental scientists at the University of Kuopio in Finland, human urine has been shown to be an effective agricultural fertilizer. Urine contains nitrogen, potassium and phosphorus which are all ingredients that help plants thrive. And according to scientists, urine is actually quite sanitary when it leaves the body.

    Roskilde Festival is known for its green initiatives. The festival has also featured car-sharing programs, organic beers and recycled cups.

    More weird business news:

     

  • Would you soak in a tub of crude oil?

    Nicole Goodkind at Yahoo Finance 21 days ago

    Azerbaijan is an oil-rich country. The republic, situated in the South Caucasus Mountains and flanked by Russia, Iran, Georgia and Armenia, depends on energy for 75% of its income and 95% of its exports . The country has a long history of oil production, it produced 80% of the oil used by Russia during WWII.

    Azerbajian is so rich in oil that its citizens bathe in it, literally. The country’s capital, Baku is filled with spas that offer a soak in a tub full of Naftalan oil. Local legend has is that the tradition dates back to the 6th century when a camel was cured of its ailments after coming into contact with it. During his travels through Baku, Marco Polo wrote accounts of men using the crude as salve.

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    More weird business news:

    Weird business news: How much would you pay for a clean public bathroom?

  • Central Russian Officials ban yoga for being too cult-like: Weird Business News

    Nicole Goodkind at Yahoo Finance 27 days ago

    This week in weird business news…

    Government officials in central Russia are shutting down yoga classes. The owners of two studios that rent space from the city of Nizhnevartovsk have received letters stating that they must stop teaching yoga "in order to prevent the spread of new religious cults and movements." The letters go on to say that the form of exercise is “inextricably linked to religious practices.”

    The owners of the yoga studios told British newspaper The Times that they’re both scared and amused and that they’re working on gathering evidence that yoga does not lead to cult activity.

    Russia has a strange history with yoga-- it was banned in the USSR because it was believed to be tied to mysticism. Some sects of the Russian Orthodox Church are also against the practice.

    Check back next week for more weird news

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