Friday, April 22, 2011
Stay current with what’s happening in the business world. Headlines from this week include…
The price of gold reached record highs nearly every day last week, closing above $1,500 an ounce on Thursday, April 21. The reason for gold's ability to do well in the market lies in its recent role as a haven from concerns about the dollar, inflation and shocks in Europe, the Middle East and Japan. Gold is seen as a lasting store of value, which doesn't erode like that of currencies.
Source: Wall Street Journal
Toyota Slowly Returning to Normal
Though Toyota’s 17 plants in Japan escaped the earthquake/tsunami/nuclear disaster relatively unscathed, factory lines are working at only half volume there and at 40% overseas, as vital suppliers in Japan’s worst-hit areas struggle to restart operations. Toyota said on Friday that production will not return to pre-disaster levels until the end of the year but that the company is committed to keeping production, and jobs, in Japan.
Source: New York Times
New Wave of Concerns Regarding Digital Privacy
This week the Wall Street Journal reported that both Google, Inc. and Apple, Inc. mobile devices reguarly transmit location information back to each company, further raising concerns regarding user privacy. Google and Apple are gathering location information as part of their race to build massive databases capable of pinpointing people's locations. These databases could help them tap the $2.9 billion market for location-based services—expected to rise to $8.3 billion in 2014, according to research firm Gartner Inc.
Meanwhile, Microsoft gave all of its 90,000 employees a pay raise, following an across-the-board 10% salary increase given by Google late last year. The move by Microsoft further escalates the talent war among technology companies seeking to attract and retain top talent.
Source: Wall Street Journal, Reuters, Financial Times