Category Archives: Business

YouTube reviewer Sean Cannell made $40,000 in April from Amazon

This is why there are numerous review channels, especially for high value items like cameras:

Sean Cannell makes tens of thousands of dollars a month as a professional Amazon reviewer. As part of the Amazon Affiliate program, Cannell reviews camera gear on his Think Media YouTube channel and makes a cut of every sale those reviews generate on Amazon. Here’s what his life is like.

Source: YouTube reviewer Sean Cannell made $40,000 in April from Amazon

Sean seems like a decent guy and ethical and these comments should not be viewed as critical of him. Just noting in a generic sense that affiliate sales are becoming the “bread and butter” of Youtube reviews and other social media related online reviews. When viewers click through and make a purchase, the reviewer gets a small commission for the sale. Even “mainstream media” services are doing this now – and usually disclose in fine print that the article contains affiliate sales links.

Some reviewers do good reviews and some do biased reviews in favor of pushing products. It’s not a bad business – we all look for reviews of products that interest us. But we need to be cautious that the reviews might be biased from “gear pushers”.

The Northrup’s also do camera reviews and work very hard at what they do. They purchase all gear they review to avoid conflicts of interest. They, like many, of course, do at times use click-bait titles (which I do not like) to drive their business. The important thing is – it is a business. I think Tony and Chelsea are decent people doing what they need to do to make a living in photography. And Tony’s books really are among the most clearly written books I’ve seen. As an author myself, I’ve learned how to improve my writing and explanations from what I saw in his books!

Interesting form of age discrimination

Many corporations moved large offices out of suburbs to downtown locations viewed as appealing to young millennials:

And with each of these moves, there were perks: Millennial talent was more plentiful in these bustling districts such as the Loop in Chicago, where the nightlife and bar scene were also strong. Some companies, including GE, found tax breaks from municipalities when they positioned their offices downtown.

Source: After flocking downtown to woo millennials, offices might move back to the burbs

In a post pandemic, post apocalyptic burned out downtown buildings world, the ‘burbs are looking good again.

Companies may have moved to downtown locations as a  subtle way to discourage older job applicants (who have families and homes),  making it simpler for companies to pursue young workers instead, who are often viewed, particularly in tech, as “hipper” , less expensive and more up on the latest tech fads.

Inflation: Why is the stock market shooting up?

This is not perplexing but by design:

Stock market has the richest valuation in 18 years even as profit outlook worsens

Source: Surge in layoffs is unlikely to help profits, no matter what the market thinks

Update – I see one financial analyst thinks “It’s different this time” and there is little risk of inflation. So there is that view too. Deflation is certainly likely in the shorter term due to suppressed demand (retail sales and services fell by over 16% in April). 

Why the stock market rise? Probably because of future inflation. The U.S. government is printing money like crazy – calling it an “economic stimulus”.

Chart of the U.S. Money Supply from U.S. Federal Reserve:

How will these trillions in spending be paid for? Inflation.

Inflation devalues the dollar making today’s debt’s cheaper to pay off in the future. Governments have always done this. Will this be what happens this time? Who knows for sure?

Inflation taxes everyone simultaneously by lowering the purchasing power of the dollars they hold.

Continue reading Inflation: Why is the stock market shooting up?

A look at travel issues over the next 12-24 months

Mandatory physical distancing measures, temperature checks and filling out medical history questionnaires prior to airplane flights, possible Covid-19 testing before boarding, limited or non-existent meal and beverage service on airlines, no more free hot breakfasts at hotels, restaurants allowed to use only 25-50% of their seats, mandatory face mask wearing at all times … and higher prices. Airlines can not keep flying idled seats – someone has to pay for it.. Hotels, restaurants and car rental agencies will have to charge more to fewer customers in order to cover their fixed costs.

Source: What travel will look like for the next year or two – SFGate

What does this mean for travel? It means recreational travel will be limited until a vaccine is widely distributed and people have confidence in its effectiveness. Many will choose to avoid the “new normal” hassles of travel during this time.

Continue reading A look at travel issues over the next 12-24 months

Airbnb rental hosts are setting up their own booking sites

Short-term rental hosts are launching their own direct-booking websites in an effort to diversify their business after years of mounting frustrations with companies like Airbnb

Source: Airbnb hosts are building their own direct booking websites in revolt

This happens as more and more become disenchanted with “big business” hassles.

Continue reading Airbnb rental hosts are setting up their own booking sites

Disease: Good summary of coronavirus COVID-19 situation

Summarizes possible impacts to the U.S. and economic issues. CDC is planning for possible school and business closure mandates, summer Olympics could be canceled, and hoping the disease, like many, subsides during warm summer conditions.

The total number of COVID-19 cases climbed above 80,200 as of Tuesday with deaths climbing to at least 2,704.

Source: Coronavirus live updates: US confirms 53 cases, CDC outlines pandemic planning

U.S. firms discouraging or prohibiting travel by employees to affected areas now including China, Italy, South Korea and southeast Asia including Australia.

Quality Control: “Boeing finds debris in wing fuel tanks of undelivered 737 MAXs”

It’s also unknown if anyone will be willing to fly on a Boeing 737 MAX:

Regarding the additional 385 MAXs that were delivered to customers but have been grounded for almost a year and are parked at airfields around the world, company spokesman Bernard Choi said Boeing is recommending inspections for those airplanes that have been in storage for more than a year. “It’s still undecided if we will inspect the rest” of the delivered MAX fleet, he added. “Obviously, we’ll do what’s right for safety.”

Source: Boeing finds debris in wing fuel tanks of undelivered 737 MAXs, orders inspections | The Seattle Times

No idea what someone was thinking with that last quote – “it’s still undecided if we will inspect the rest“. When you are in a hole, stop digging. That decision ought to be obvious.