Industry Insights: July 12, 2023
by Jordan DeGraw • July 12, 2023
Would You Share a Bed to Save on Rent?
Hey there, Friends!
Welcome back to our weekly Industry Insights, where we bring you the latest updates and fascinating tidbits from various sectors. Grab a seat in the sun, relax, and let’s dive right in!
The Supreme Court recently made a significant ruling against President Biden’s student loan forgiveness program. The decision, with a 6-3 majority, blocked the potential forgiveness of up to $20,000 per borrower. However, President Biden has assured us that he has a “plan B” in place, relying on the Higher Education Act of 1965. It will be interesting to see how this unfolds and what it means for borrowers.
Now, here’s an intriguing indicator called the “Misery Index” that has been around since the 1970s. It combines inflation and unemployment rates to provide a crude measure of consumer sentiment. The good news is that the Misery Index has been steadily declining over the past year, suggesting that people are feeling less miserable. After all, low misery usually translates to more happiness, right?
Speaking of financial matters, a recent survey revealed that a significant number of adults in the U.S. feel uncomfortable with their emergency savings. Shockingly, one in five adults admitted to having no emergency savings at all, while 36% have more credit card debt than they have in emergency savings. It’s crucial to prioritize our financial well-being and work towards building a safety net for unexpected situations.
Now, let’s talk about something that may have brought a smile to your face. If you filled up your car’s tank before the Fourth of July weekend, you probably noticed that the pain at the pump was a bit less severe compared to last year. In fact, U.S. gas prices have decreased by a remarkable 30% from their peak in 2022 when they reached over $5 per gallon. It’s a small relief that can make a big difference, especially for those planning summer road trips.
Speaking of road trips, it seems that budgets for travelers’ biggest summer trips have been on the decline since 2021. While two years ago, travelers would have spent around $3,440; the current number stands at $2,930. It appears that the post-pandemic “revenge travel” trend might have had its moment, as people are now opting for more affordable trips while they navigate the effects of inflation on their travel budgets. It’s all about finding the right balance between exploring and managing expenses.
We have an interesting claim made by a researcher regarding Google’s advertising practices. Allegedly, Google charged advertisers for premium ad placements but failed to meet its own standards for monetization 80% of the time. These ads, primarily video ads on third-party websites, were reported to be “muted, auto-playing,” and even mis-declared. Google, however, responded to these claims, calling them “extremely inaccurate.” It remains to be seen how this situation unfolds and if any changes will be made to ensure fair advertising practices.
In other news, Meta, formerly known as Facebook, is all set to launch its Twitter clone this week. The Thread app aims to provide users with a text-based conversation platform that will integrate with Instagram. It’s exciting to see how this new offering will shape the social media landscape and what unique features it will bring to the table.
Remember the show from the 90s, Seinfeld? Well, here’s something that might surprise you. Back in the day, the average episode of Seinfeld had a runtime of 25 minutes, with five minutes dedicated to ads. However, if you catch a rerun of the show today, you’ll notice something interesting. The episodes have been sped up by almost 8%, bringing the runtime down to 22 minutes, which allows for a whopping eight minutes of advertisements. It’s quite a significant change, and if you’re curious to see the side-by-side comparison, check it out here. It’s amazing how the dynamics of television and advertising have evolved over the years, giving us a glimpse into the ever-changing landscape of entertainment.
Just for Fun:
Now, let’s take a fun detour and put your perception skills to the test. Can you differentiate between content created by humans and artificial intelligence? Take the “real or not real” quiz and challenge yourself to identify whether various brand assets were crafted by human creativity or AI algorithms. It’s a fascinating way to explore the capabilities of artificial intelligence and its impact on creative endeavors.
Here’s a quirky trend that has emerged to combat rising rents: “hotbedding.” It turns out that 3% of international students living in Australia have resorted to sharing a bed with a stranger who sleeps during opposite shifts, all in an effort to split the cost of rent. It’s an unusual solution born out of necessity, showcasing the creative ways people adapt to financial challenges. Who knows, maybe this trend will catch on elsewhere as well?
Lastly, let’s indulge in a bit of nostalgia and marvel at the progress we’re making toward a futuristic world. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) recently granted approval for the testing of a flying car for the first time ever. Remember the Jetsons? Well, the future they promised us is inching closer by the day. It’s an exciting development that opens up possibilities for innovative transportation solutions and a glimpse into what lies ahead.
That’s all for this week’s Industry Insights. We hope you found these tidbits intriguing and informative. Stay tuned for more exciting news next time! Remember, knowledge is power, and staying informed is the first step toward shaping our future.
Until next time, take care, stay curious, and keep embracing the wonders of our ever-evolving world. Bon appétit!
Your friendly Industry Insights devotee,