Despite a January lawsuit settlement, many merchants are still dinging users. Insisting on minimum purchase amounts is also a no-no.
Some Silicon Valley businesses are getting IRS scrutiny for supplying workers with no-cost food, which 'can't be just disguised wages.'
Is sitting down with your colleagues for a work-funded meal a chance to brainstorm and collaborate -- or a fringe benefit that should be taxed?
That's an issue The Wall Street Journal recently reported on as the IRS looks at some companies, particularly in high tech, that regularly provide free food to their employees.
As an example, the WSJ points to Google (GOOG). The search engine giant has more than 120 free-for-employee cafes at its facilities around the world serving over 50,000 meals daily. Google's website notes its offices and cafes "are designed to encourage interactions between Googlers within and across teams, and to spark conversation about work as well as play."
Uncertainty about the fate of their home translates to continuing mental anguish for many owners.
Very mixed news last week for the financially struggling American homeowner. RealtyTrac, an online marketplace for foreclosure properties and real estate data, said overall U.S. foreclosure filings dropped 1% last month compared to February, but that was down 23% from March of 2012.
According to the report, 34 states showed annual decreases in U.S. bank repossessions in March. At the same time, however, some states saw foreclosure rates swing up sharply last month, including Arkansas (up 121% annually), Maryland (up 114%), Washington (up 88%), Pennsylvania (up 41%) and Ohio (up 39%).
"Although the overall national foreclosure trend continues to head lower, late-blooming foreclosures are bolting higher in some local markets where aggressive foreclosure prevention efforts in previous years are wearing off," Daren Blomquist, vice president at RealtyTrac, said in a press statement.
A generation of college grads, who owe more than $1 trillion, may have to postpone buying a home indefinitely.
The answer in almost every instance is more terrible than you can imagine. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau says U.S. students have amassed $1.1 trillion in loan debt -- double what its was in 2007 and greater than any other consumer debt not tied to a mortgage.
Whether graduates have a "useless" degree in liberal arts or a "practical" degree like an MBA, chances are they're being absolutely flattened by school-related debt. Their jobs aren't helping pay down that debt, either, as roughly 284,000 college graduates are making minimum wage and The Center For College Affordability and Productivity reports that nearly half of the college graduates from the class of 2010 are in jobs that don't require a bachelor's degree.
Some economists say Americans making $3 million or more can handle a levy of up to 66% with no harm.
Andrew Fieldhouse at The Fiscal Times put the nation's upper economic echelons on notice last week by letting them know they're not paying anything close to what economists feel is their fair share.
Amid stifled economic output, stagnant job growth, sequestration cuts, the expired payroll tax cuts, the stonewalling of the American Jobs Act and the gradual replacement of stimulus with European-style austerity, Fieldhouse says a dollar of government spending cuts will do four to seven times as much economic damage than an additional dollar of revenue collected from upper-income taxpayers.
US senator calls the race 'inappropriate' in the wake of the tragedy in the Newtown, Conn.
Gun control advocates are urging News Corp. (NWS.A) not to air Saturday's NASCAR race sponsored by the National Rifle Association (NRA), scheduled for broadcast on the Fox network.
The NRA 500 was denounced by Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT) in a letter to News Corp. CEO Rupert Murdoch as "inappropriate in the immediate wake of the Newtown massacre," according to a report in Politico. He was particularly concerned about "the live shooting of guns at the end of the race."
A spokesman for New York-based News Corp. declined to comment on Murphy's letter.
Kraft is looking for a brand update as it pushes a new liquid version of the drink to consumers.
That's about to change. Kraft Foods (KRFT) is unveiling a new Kool-Aid Man Monday. He's now computer-generated, he wears his flavors like clothing, he talks and even has a bit of a sense of humor.
A new commercial shows a crystal-clear Kool-Aid Man stepping out of the shower and picking an outfit from a pantry of different Kool-Aid mixes, the Associated Press reports. "I put my pants on one leg at a time," he says. "Except my pants are 22 different flavors. I've got grape pants, I've got watermelon pants."
Ever think about what happens to your email account when you die? A new feature from the Internet giant functions like a will for your online assets.
Google's (GOOG) latest feature might have a terrible name -- the Inactive Account Manager -- but it addresses a serious problem: What happens to your digital assets after you die?
It's not a comforting thought, but with more of our lives recorded digitally via email, Facebook (FB), Twitter, Instagram and a thousand other applications, it's become one of those big questions most of us will face.
Google's approach is to prod its users into figuring out what they want done with their data before they die.
The pair claim to be one of the largest holders of the alternative currency.
They may have the largest allocation of Bitcoins out there, according to The New York Times. The twins told the newspaper they own nearly $11 million in Bitcoins -- or, at least, their stake was valued at $11 million Thursday morning when trading was temporarily halted at around $120 per Bitcoin.
After a week of intensely volatile trading, Bitcoins were valued at around $77 Friday (see the live price here), a drop of nearly 36% from what The Times reported. That means the Winklevii, as they are informally known, have seen their Bitcoin investment plunge by nearly $4 million.
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While incompetent bosses like Michael Scott and Andy Bernard typically can’t survive in the workplace, office romances are a very real part of corporate culture.
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[BRIEFING.COM] The S&P 500 ended this week with a bang, roaring to a new all-time high on the back of stronger-than-expected economic data, influential leadership, and an ongoing appreciation for the Fed's monetary policy support.
The bullish bias was evident in premarket action as the S&P futures pointed to a higher start without the benefit of any definitive news catalyst. Stocks indeed benefited from a blast of buying interest at the opening bell on this ... More
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All hail the bull market, which ended the week with a big rally. But it also is starting to look a little like 1987, which suffered an epic blow-out.