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Working Conditions in the Textile IndustryOpen in a New Window

This is part four of a five-part blog series on the evolution of the textile industry over time. The textile industry is one of the largest economic markets in the world, generating $450 billion and employing over 25 million people across the globe.   It’s estimated that over 120 billion pounds of textiles are made each year, a number that is ever-increasing because of constant high consumer demand.  Specifically, cotton consumption rates feature all-time highs, with an...

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The Textile Industry During the Industrial RevolutionOpen in a New Window

This is part three of a five-part blog series on the evolution of the textile industry over time. The Industrial Revolution started in England in the 1700’s.  At this time, England was a colonial power, and used its colonies in the Americas and Asia to provide resources such as silk, tobacco, sugar, gold, and cotton, and provided its colonies with finished products such as textiles and metalware. As the population in Britain and its colonies increased, Britain had to find new ways...

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The Silk Road: The International Ramifications of Ancient Textile TradeOpen in a New Window

This is part two of a five-part blog series on the evolution of the textile industry over time. The textile industry has been shaping international business and cultural trends for thousands of years. In fact, ancient Chinese silk was one of the catalysts for the formation of the world’s first international commercial highway. The Silk Road, or Silk Route, was an ancient network of trade routes spanning from China through India and Central Asia. Ultimately, these routes connected two of...

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The Evolution of the Textile Industry Series IntroductionOpen in a New Window

This is part one of a five-part blog series on the evolution of the textile industry over time. The textile and apparel industry is one of the most popular in the world.  Like most other industries the textile industry has evolved over time.  The evolution of the textile industry is one of the most interesting industries to examine.  One can trace the origins of the textile industry back to prehistoric times.  It is estimated by anthropologists that humans began wearing...

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GDP Growth in Emerging Markets vs. Mature MarketsOpen in a New Window

When it comes to market growth, countries around the world have different perspectives on what constitutes a strong performance of the economy. On Wednesday, October 11 the International Monetary Fund (IMF) announced its prediction that India’s growth rate will decrease to 6.7 percent for 2017, compared to a prediction earlier this year of 7.2 percent. This large drop is largely due to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s implementation of the Goods and Service Tax (GST) and the...

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The Gender Pay Gap MisconceptionOpen in a New Window

Until this day, we deal with controversies on gender pay gap globally. Is the whole matter due to gender discrimination by employers or is it just a fraction of it? Does culture or family traditions play a role? Or does it just come down to the fact that women are expected to raise a family and work less, or even leave their job, at some point? These are all factors that contribute to the gender pay gap problem, however, the way people look at it has created some misconceptions. It is...

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Global Economic Growth Since the Great RecessionOpen in a New Window

We are in the midst of the 10 year anniversary of the S&P 500’s its pre-recession high. On October 9th, 2007, this index peaked at 1,565. Since then indexed bottomed at 666 on May 6th, 2009 but has recovered. This index is currently trading around 2,550, the highest it has ever been. The United States is in the midst of the second longest economic expansion in its history. Economic prosperity has allowed the housing market to recover and the United States Federal Government has ended...

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Fair Trade's Global ImpactOpen in a New Window

Fair Trade has been around since the 1950s, but what exactly is Fair Trade and how has it changed since its inception? Fair Trade is global movement focused on providing over 1.6 million small-scale producers and workers with fair prices. It is an approach to commerce that eliminates forced labor, child labor, and discrimination while demanding safe working conditions, fair payment, respect for the environment, and transparency. It is an ethical method to trade and works towards...

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Universities' Contribution to International BusinessOpen in a New Window

Universities play a central part in initiating and facilitating global learning. The Centers for International Business Education and Research (CIBERs) were developed to help provide guidance and tools for competitiveness in an international environment. There are seventeen CIBER schools established across the United States, Michigan State University being one of them. CIBER schools work through their centers to offer relevant data in terms of research, economic...

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Global Sneaker Market Takes OffOpen in a New Window

The sneaker industry is becoming a new fad in today’s society, and led by sportswear behemoths Nike and Adidas, is transforming the market into one of the world’s most profitable and demanding sectors.  Propelled by the resurgence of Adidas footwear in popular models like the “Ultra boost,” “NMD,” and rapper Kanye West’s coveted creation, the “Yeezy,” and the continued success of Nike in models such as the “Air Jordan” and...

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Effects of Online Music Streaming on the Music IndustryOpen in a New Window

The economics of the music industry have completely changed in recent years as sales of physical copies and online downloads have changed to online viewing websites and streaming subscriptions through companies such as Spotify and Pandora. The music industry is clearly rising, as in the first half of 2017, music industry revenues have reached four billion dollars, compared to the midway point in 2015 with revenue of three billion dollars.  Subscriptions to online streaming websites are...

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Global Gamble on Electric VehiclesOpen in a New Window

Automotive manufacturers across the globe are investing in electric vehicles and its accompanying technology at unprecedented levels. Just this week, Detroit based General Motors announced plans to introduce two more electric vehicles in the United States over the next year 18 months and 20 vehicles globally in the next six years. Not to be outdone, cross-town automotive competitor, Ford Motor Company, disclosed that they had formed a new team, dubbed “Team Edison”, to help direct...

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Technology in the Bra IndustryOpen in a New Window

Recently, technology has been hitting many new sectors of everyday life from reading, media and now clothing. The bra industry plays a major factor in the economic impact of clothing and now is attempting to flourish even more with the new technology being implemented into innovative products. As of 2016, the world lingerie retail market was valued at about $29 billion with bras making up about 34% of that market value, and the figures predicted to rise in the next 5-10 years. Europe...

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Economic Impact of Major Independence ReferendumsOpen in a New Window

Catalonia, the northeastern region of Spain, held a referendum for their independence on Sunday, October 1st. Unofficially recorded by the Catalonian government, 90 percent of the 2.3 million citizens who attended the polls voted for the region’s autonomy from Spain. While this result is not an official decision and will take extensive deliberation between the Catalan and Spanish governments for it to be formally enacted, there are many ramifications of how Catalonia’s independence...

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Shipping Industry Back on the RiseOpen in a New Window

The world’s biggest and smallest shipping companies have been experiencing some hardship since the financial crisis occurred. For the past two years, shipping operators have been going through major losses with freight rates being below the breakeven point. However, it seems like a plot twist is being encountered by the shipping brokers this year due to rising demand for commodities. A significant amount of shipping companies were forced to sell a large number of their ships to stay...

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A Brief Overview of the 2017-2018 Global Competitiveness ReportOpen in a New Window

The World Economic Forum (WEF) recently published their Global Competitiveness Report for 2017-2018.  According to the WEF, the Global Competitiveness Index assesses the competitiveness of the landscape of 137 country’s economies and it provides unique insight into the drivers of their productivity and prosperity.  There are twelve pillars of competitiveness used to sort and rank each country’s economy.  The twelve pillars are as follows: institutions, infrastructure,...

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Current Topics in International Private EquityOpen in a New Window

Over the past decade, private equity firms have surged in popularity across the globe and have presented financiers with less regulated opportunities across international industries. Investment opportunities are typically less regulated because private firms aren’t required to register with governmental organizations who regulate the trading of shares. For those unaware of what private equity is, it is a form of financing where a firm can become a major stakeholder in a private...

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Guide to Global Social Media StrategyOpen in a New Window

A business reaching international audiences depends on idea sharing and connectivity for its continued success. Today, social media is increasing audience engagement even further. In fact, the key to a successful social media strategy is effective engagement. With social media's importance continuing to rise, understanding the key concepts will help give your business an edge in this increasingly connected climate. Following is a complete and global guide to navigating social media...

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Will Mobile Payments Become the Norm of All Payment Methods?Open in a New Window

Nowadays, most people use their mobile devices to check on their bank accounts and pay for bills, parking, and cabs. People are also now even shifting towards making payments using their mobile devices, using apps such as Apple Pay, Android Pay, the Starbucks app, or the PayPal app. There are three types of mobile payment options. First, there is the commerce payment, which is simply opening a browser on your phone or a shopping app and then purchasing the goods by putting in your...

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Cash Crops in AfricaOpen in a New Window

In the last part of this week's series on cash crops, we explore the top two African cash crops. Africa has long been rich in natural resources, consistently providing other nations with opportunities to obtain its plentiful supply of cotton and cocoa—two of the world’s most important cash crops.  According to Merriam-Webster, a cash crop is “a readily salable crop (such as cotton or tobacco) produced or gathered primarily for market.”  These crops aim to...

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