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An Overview of Madagascar's EconomyOpen in a New Window

Located off the South Eastern coast of Africa in the Indian Ocean, Madagascar is the world’s fifth biggest island. Historically, the island played a key role for international traders dating back to Asian and Persian traders in the 7th century. Madagascar subsequently served as a pirate stronghold in the 17th century and a major slave trading center into the 18th century. Madagascar was conquered and colonized by the French colonial empire in the 16th century but regained independence in...

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Worldwide Popularity of Streetwear AscendingOpen in a New Window

A collaboration between Supreme, a top-tier streetwear brand, and Louis Vuitton, a high-end fashion company, has produced a hoodie that costs upwards of $7 thousand.  Another collaboration between Supreme and The North Face, a winter outerwear company, gave way to a $600 backpack.  So what’s causing this uptick in prices for everyday items?  Streetwear—the casual clothing of a style worn especially by members of various urban youth subcultures—is one of the...

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Why Your Wine is About to Get More ExpensiveOpen in a New Window

2018 might be the year that you see an increase in the price of your favorite bottle of wine. In late October, the International Organization of Vine and Wine (OIV) released its annual report of 2017 wine production levels around the world, and the results exposed several indications for concern about the performance of the global wine industry. The OIV estimated a fall of 8.2 percent in global production to the lowest level the industry has experienced in 50 years. This decrease is...

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Renaissance Economies: Italian Trade PracticesOpen in a New Window

The economy of Renaissance Italy is incredibly interesting. During the Italian Renaissance, there were few nations or states that could come close the advanced level of commerce the Italian city-states achieved. Trade in Florence was more or less dominated by the Medici family.  The Medici fortune was built by Giovanni di Bicci de Medici and his son Cosimo de Medici.  Giovanni founded the Medici Bank and after he died his son Cosimo took control of the Bank.  Cosimo took the...

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A Groundbreaking Technology: Autonomous TrucksOpen in a New Window

It is very likely that you will soon witness a self-driving truck next to you on the highway. The world keeps taking a step further into the tech field, sparking innovative solutions for automotive companies. The automotive industry is highly competitive and many automotive companies are working very hard to stay ahead and take part in one of the greatest advancements in trucks. Trucking plays a very big role in this industry to the extent that it is worth $700 billion, making it a very...

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A Geographic Summary of A.T. Kearney’s 2017 Foreign Direct Investment Confidence ReportOpen in a New Window

International trends regarding Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) include optimism for large developed markets, a 2016 decline in global FDI, and North America, Asia, and Europe as top FDI destinations. Due to the recent global economic growth, many developed and emerging markets have seen FDI inflows in recent years. In the Americas, strong economic numbers and market transparency have provided investors with a strong economic foundation. For this reason, the United States claimed the top...

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Reusable Water Bottle Market Pushes ForwardOpen in a New Window

Each day, millions of people fill up reusable water bottles during school, sports, and work, continuing to grow the trend of ditching clear plastic bottles for their refillable—and more environment-friendly—counterparts.  Fueled by an increase in online shopping, reduction in overall price, and easy accessibility, the consumption of reusable water bottles across the globe is estimated to reach 3,902,642 thousand units in 2017 alone.  The implementation of these types of...

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Recent Trends in the Skiing IndustryOpen in a New Window

Days are growing shorter, the temperature is dropping and families are beginning to dig their snow boots out of storage. Winter is fast approaching which means the lucrative ski market will begin to rise again worldwide. In America alone, the winter sports industry is valued at approximately 12 billion dollars and is expected to grow in the upcoming decades. However, many people are beginning to grow weary of the industry due to the looming idea of climate change. In 2012, Vail, Colorado...

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Consumer Confidence Increasing GloballyOpen in a New Window

According to The Conference Board’s Consumer Confidence Index, consumer confidence in the United States has increased three points, rising to 129.5 from 126.2 in October.  Consumer confidence has been steadily increasing over the past five months, and is now the highest American consumer confidence rate posted in the past 17 years.  Americans are becoming increasingly confident in their finances, and spending even more as we come into this year’s holiday season....

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Business Prospects in the Gulf Region Darkened by Political Sand StormsOpen in a New Window

Business dislikes uncertainty, and there’s plenty of it now in the Gulf of Arabia region.  In case you missed it, a coalition of Gulf states led by Saudi Arabia are making life difficult for Qatar because of its alleged support of terrorist groups.  Qatar has hotly denied the charges, accusing coalition members of ganging up and attempting a takeover of the tiny sheikdom, which currently hosts 10,000 U.S. troops who are fighting the terrorists Qatar is accused of harboring and...

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What's Next for Zimbabwe?Open in a New Window

Three weeks ago, Robert Mugabe, who at age 93 had served as Zimbabwe’s head of state for 37 years, purged his vice president, and longtime loyal supporter, Emmerson Mnangagwa in a move which elevated Mr. Mugabe’s 52-year-old wife to next in the line of succession. This move sparked outrage within the country and ultimately cumulated in a de facto military coup that forced the resignation of Robert Mugabe. The three tumultuous weeks came to a close last Friday with the swearing in of...

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Bitcoin to Hit $10,000 Record HighOpen in a New Window

Bitcoin has had an incredible year. Starting at around $1,000 in January of this year, the cryptocurrency is a mere $40 away from hitting five figures today. Bitcoin is an online currency that can be sent electronically to any user anywhere in the world. Bitcoin has no physical backing and is not run by a single organization—a decentralized network of computers verifies transactions and records them in its blockchain. Payments using Bitcoin are cheap and easy, as they are not tied to...

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Effective use of E-Commerce in the Modern Business WorldOpen in a New Window

E-commerce is a major component of almost every business that sells goods in the modern world, some even call e-commerce the key to a successful business.  E-commerce is defined as transacting or facilitating business over the internet. With the internet growing exponentially over the last two decades many people now look to it for a more convenient avenue to shop and do business over.  People can now do everything from paying their bills online to buying groceries and...

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A Depiction of 3 Major Political Regimes, Their Economies, and Philosophies on Foreign Direct InvestmentOpen in a New Window

Although modern economies have increasingly become globalized, opinions of foreign direct investments (FDI) have varied throughout human history. When researching the history of prominent global economies, I realized that many have had the opportunity for strategic global expansion into international markets. This can be seen in different political schemes including the Soviet Union, United States, and China. The Soviet Union is a centralized economy, the United States a decentralized...

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The Rise of Autonomous Cargo VesselsOpen in a New Window

The maritime industry is being revolutionized this year, with the introduction of “smart ships.” The maritime transport carries more than 90% of world trade annually and is the most cost-effective mode of transportation for mass goods and raw materials worldwide. Advancements in technology have built a strong platform for the creation of autonomous ships. The sensory technology and algorithms needed for a virtual captain already exist and it’s only a matter of time until we...

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Black Friday Sales Continuing to Hold StrongOpen in a New Window

2017 is quickly coming to an end with many major holidays approaching in the blink of an eye. People are beginning to search for the perfect gift for their significant other and grandmothers. Black Friday, and more recently Cyber Monday has played a large part in the purchasing of holiday gifts. Black Friday originated in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in the 1950s and expanded across the globe in the last ten years. Some have begun to speculate that Black Friday is dying out due to the age of...

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International Students Experience Educational EnrichmentOpen in a New Window

This is the final post in a five-part blog series focused on International Education Week. International Education Week wouldn’t be complete without the central force that drives international education—international students.  With a record 1.08 million foreign students enrolled in approximately 2,100 US institutions, education in America is as enticing as ever.  Students from China account for nearly a third of foreign enrollees, with 350,000 students coming to the US...

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Benefits of an International Education for Younger StudentsOpen in a New Window

This is the fourth post in a five-part blog series focused on International Education Week.  An international education has numerous benefits for students in grades kindergarten-12th grade (K-12).  When students travel between different countries they tend to be more comfortable with cross-cultural interactions, have the opportunity to learn multiple languages, and develop relationships with people from diverse backgrounds and in different places around the world.  All of these...

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The Importance of International EducationOpen in a New Window

This is the third post in a five-part blog series focused on International Education Week. Advancements in technology have led to the world being more interconnected than ever before. Today we are a mere click away from being face to face with our counterparty, who could be halfway across the world. This interconnectedness has had an incalculable effect on society, both from a social and business perspective. It is now impossible to live in the silo on one’s home nation without being...

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Student Benefits of Study Abroad ProgramsOpen in a New Window

This is the second post in a five-part blog series focused on International Education Week. International Education Week is a joint initiative of the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Education to encourage global education. From November 13-17, individuals and institutions will be promoting international education programs that prepare Americans for a global environment as well as attract future leaders to study, learn and exchange experiences....

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