Volkswagen, Why?

What could have possibly motivated VW to take the risk?

Rewarding Executive Incompetence

Researchers at Notre Dame’s business school “have found a correlation between generous option grants and the incidence of serious product recalls.” How could that be?

The Paradox of Work

Work is probably the most important thing we do. It is how we support ourselves, how we relate to each other, how we contribute to society, and how we build self-esteem. But our culture has always been ambivalent about it.

Anxious America

We spend over 2 billion dollars a year on anti-anxiety medications. What are we so anxious about?

Controlling CEO Pay

The SEC recently established a new rule requiring most companies to disclose the ratio of CEO pay to that of their average employee, but what will be the likely consequence?

Seeing Inequality--or Not

The rich not only tend to care less than the poor about our growing economic inequality, but also they just don’t see it, according to recent studies reported in Psychological Science.

Should We Work Harder?

In America, we tend to think that success is all about individual effort. And recently Jeb Bush reinforced that idea in suggesting that our economy could be more robust if each of us worked harder.

Hypocritical Capitalism

When capitalism takes its own picture, it inevitably smooth’s over the blemishes,

The Real Problem With Work

Men and women suffer from the same problem on the job: too much work

The Simple Solution to Income Inequality

It is a no-brainer, basically: a progressive rate in income taxes, along with estate taxes that target the super wealthy.

Why So Much Financial Crime?

If money is our universal solvent, allowing us to exchange anything for anything else, we seem to have reached the point where virtually all other values are dissolved as well.

The Juggernaut of C.E.O. Compensation

All efforts to rein in CEO pay seem to have failed. One has to wonder why

Fixing Corruption

Recently, The Economist looking into the effort of containing bribery, noted that “the cost and complexity of investigations are spiraling beyond what is reasonable. What can be done about it?

Why Not Tax the Rich?

Strangely, the poor themselves end up protecting the rich

Backward America

Do we just take it for granted that the U.S. is the best at everything? We don’t seem to notice how bad things really are or how much better off other countries are in ways we used to excel.

Is Marriage Only for the Rich?

It is common knowledge that professionals are more likely to marry and less likely to divorce than less educated workers. But according to sociologist Andrew Cherlin, the picture has become more complicated as real wages decline.

The Politics of Pizza

We think of pizza by the slice, sometimes a whole pie, so we haven’t noticed how big an industry it has become. But Big Pizza is as big as virtually anything else in our economy – and as political.

Negative Interest

This is odd: “about $3 trillion of assets in Europe and Japan … now have negative interest rates.”

Banking Reform Comes Through the Back Door

​After many high profile failures to reform banking, thwarted by the power of the banking lobby, including efforts to break up banks “too big to fail,” it now seems that a simple and obvious rule has made a significant difference.

Corporate Succession

There are a lot of ways to get it wrong

Our Hidden Oligarchs

Awareness of our still growing income inequality has spread widely, and new accounts are accumulating weekly in the media. But this growing consensus is now starting to obscure something even more ominous,

Finding Meaning in Terrorism

Faced with yet another massacre of innocents, we all too readily think of it as “senseless” or “insane.” If the acts are horrifying we sometimes think of them as “evil;” if just random they seem crazy.

Everything is PR

We have gotten used to authoritarian regimes imposing “reality” on their subjects.... But this is a step beyond that.

Good Consumers, and Bad

Most of us are unaware of how relentlessly and extensively we are being watched and evaluated as consumers – and how dangerous our ignorance of that practice can be.

False Positives

We tend to assume the opposite of a negative is a positive. The opposite of unemployment, for example, is employment. But it turns out the relationship between the two is more peculiar than that.

Yet More Corruption in Banks

The rule was strict in banking. There was a firewall between analysis and sales — for good reason: to protect customers. But that now seems a thing of the past.

Bankers More Likely to Lie

When bankers are reminded they are bankers, a new study has found, they are more likely to lie.

Investors Following the Crowd

The wisdom of crowds doesn’t apply to picking stocks. A new study published in the Journal of Portfolio Management shows that “hot stocks,” those that generate a lot of buzz and, as a result, move a lot, generally do not do well.

The Super Rich

Most of us may not have noticed, but the rising tide of income inequality is engulfing the super rich as well.

Why Corporate Boards Pay CEOs More

Presumably corporations would not want to overpay their CEOs, which is why they hire “compensation consultants.” The consultants study the publically available information on comparable CEO compensation so that they can benchmark their peers. But it doesn't seem to work.