Younger Americans Living at Home Near All-Time High

A new study by the Pew Research Center shows that 64 million people, or 20% of the American public, live in multi-generational households. The study, based Pew analysis of census data, shows the number of people living in a home with more than one adult generation has grown since 2009. That year, the number of individuals living in a multi-generational household was 51.5 million people, or 17% of the population.

The number of people living in multi-generational homes was 21% in 1950. It fell to a low of 12% in 1980. The rebound in individuals living at home came about during and right after the Great Recession in the late 2000s.

The study defines multi-generational households as those in which at least two adult generations of family, including grandparents, grandchildren or great grandparents, live.

Many believe that poor financial prospects, along with lack of experience of supporting one’s self, is playing a role in the change in American’s living conditions.

“I think the younger generation is more likely to do this because they are not educated about what it takes to be ‘on their own,’” says 23-year-old mother Kirstie Berdega. “They enjoy the safety net they’ve grown up with and without it they simply don’t know how to function.

“I also believe there are some that still live with their family because it is also extremely difficult in some places to live on your own because of minimum wage being way less than the cost of living,” she added. Berdega lives with her in-laws.

Poor financial planning on the part of millennials has also become evident in numbers recently put forth by the National Institute for Retirement Security. According to NIRS, 66% of Americans between the ages of 21-32 have no savings for retirement, a function experts believe of financial constraints put on younger generations that were less pronounced in previous ones.

“I see in practice that a lot of us are putting retirement down the goal priority list, in favor of paying off student debt or buying homes,” said Douglas Boneparth, a certified financial planner and author of The Millennial Money Fix. “I know it will delay your ability to achieve financial independence, but how are you going to tell someone who has a child that saving in a 401(k) is more important than their immediate needs?” he added.

While the data collected by Pew shows that living at home is becoming a reality for every person regardless of ethnicity, it found that Hispanics and Asians are more likely than whites to live in a multi-generational household.

“Growing racial and ethnic diversity in the U.S. population helps explain some of the rise in multi-generational living,” the report stated. “The Asian and Hispanic populations overall are growing more rapidly than the white population, and those groups are more likely than whites to live in multi-generational family households. Another growth factor is that foreign-born Americans are more likely than those born in the U.S. to live with multiple generations of family; Asians and Hispanics are more likely than whites to be immigrants.”

Breaking down the study by age, the results showed that 33% of 25-29-year-olds were now living in a multi-generational household. According to the study, post high school education also makes a huge difference, with students that didn’t go to college being more likely to live at home with their parents then those that went to college and earned a degree.

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Sears to Sell and Install Tires Through Amazon

Department store chain Sears announced this week that it will offer full service tire installation through Amazon.com. The company says the service will begin in a couple weeks and will start with forty-seven Sears Auto Center locations in Atlanta, Dallas, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco and Washington D.C. Sears will subsequently roll the service at out to its more than 400 Sears Auto Center locations nationwide.

Sears touted the new offering as a convenient way for customers to shop for, purchase and have new tires installed on their cars. “With this collaboration, Sears Auto will become the first nationwide auto service center to offer Amazon.com customers the convenient Ship-to-Store tire solution integrated into the Amazon.com checkout process, which is easy and convenient,” the company said in a statement.

“Amazon customers simply select their tires, the Sears Auto location and their preferred date and time for the tire installation. Sears Auto Centers then contacts them to confirm their appointment,” the statement added.

The process starts with a customer buying a set of tires and checking a box that says they want the tires delivered and installed at a Sears Auto Center near them. Customers then choose between three appointment times. The auto center chosen will then set the closest available time slot to that choice.

Customers will be charged a service fee, which Sears says will cover installation, balancing, overall car evaluation, a road safety test and other precautionary steps. Sears carries its own tire brand, DieHard, but the company says all tires purchased through Amazon will be available for installation at an Auto Center.

“Amazon.com customers can expect terrific performance and reliability from DieHard tires and professional installation from Sears Auto Centers,” Tom Park, President of Kenmore, Craftsman and DieHard said in a statement. “We’re thrilled to expand our assortment of this iconic brand to include passenger tires on Amazon.com.”

The news comes only a year after Amazon and Sears announced a partnership to sell Kenmore appliances on the online retail giant’s platform. Sears stock shot up 25% after last week’s announcement.

“Amazon is always innovating on behalf of customers and, in addition to fast shipping options, Ship-To-Store offers an added layer of convenience…Note that the installation is paid for during checkout,” an Amazon spokesperson told ITN in a statement.

“Amazon offers thousands of tires from brands like Goodyear, Carlisle, Michelin, and more. In addition, Amazon provides free in-store bike assembly and a broad array of in-home services such as house cleaning and TV wall-mounting.”

According to financial statements Sears is facing a stiff decline in sales with the company due to reach $1 billion in debt by the end of this year. Sears’ stock price is down 70% from where it was just last year. The company is looking to monetize other assets as well.

“We’re still not where we need to be, and Sears continues to face significant challenges in a tough retail environment,” Sears CEO Eddie Lambert said in a blogpost before a shareholders’ meeting. “The reality is transformation is an ongoing process and we are not done. I still firmly believe that, together, we can transform this company.”

Photo by Mike Kalasnick via Flickr

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Researchers Print New Skin Directly onto Wounds

The University of Toronto unveiled a 3D skin printer this week that can dispense skin tissue onto an existing wound, eventually healing it. Researchers say it is an alternative to skin-graft procedures because it allows skin to be created by bio ink directly on the wound, eliminating the need of healthy skin from a donor.

“Our skin printer promises to tailor tissues to specific patients and wound characteristics,” says University of Toronto PhD student Navid Hakimi, who lead the research. “And it’s very portable.”

According to a press release from the University of Toronto, “The handheld skin printer resembles a white-out tape dispenser – except the tape roll is replaced by a microdevice that forms tissue sheets. Vertical stripes of ‘bio ink,’ made up of protein-based biomaterials including collagen, the most abundant protein in the dermis, and fibrin, a protein involved in wound healing, run along the inside of each tissue sheet.”

This news comes only weeks after the University of Minnesota announced that they had created a 3D printer capable of printing electronic devices directly onto a person’s skin. The technology could be used by soldiers on a battlefield, they say, to print sensors of chemical or biological weapons, as well as solar cells to charge electronics.

UofM researchers also successfully printed biological cells on an open wound on a mouse. The technique could lead to new medical procedures for skin wounds and the direct printing of grafts for skin disorders.

The UofM device is lightweight, portable and inexpensive, costing less than $400. It can also adjust to small movements of the body during printing, a key innovation in the field of skin-printing.

“We imagine that a soldier could pull this printer out of a backpack and print a chemical sensor or other electronics they need, directly on the skin. It would be like a ‘Swiss Army knife’ of the future with everything they need all in one portable 3D printing tool,” said study lead and University of Minnesota Benjamin Mayhugh Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering.

Photo of University of Toronto researchers with their “skin printer” by Liz Do

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Lyft Announces Testing of All-Access Plan

Ride-share heavyweight Lyft announced testing of its all-new “All-Access Plan,” which allows riders to sign up for a monthly subscription service with the company. The company says a select group of customers will receive a notification in the coming hours that will let them opt into a waiting list to test the new feature.

“Testing our newest All-Access Plan is the next step in moving rideshare from one based on ownership, to one based on subscription,” a Lyft spokesperson told TechCrunch. “We’re excited to roll this out to more passengers in the coming weeks and continue offering Lyft’s affordable, convenient, and reliable rides.”

Riders that are selected from the waiting list will be able to purchase a $200 pass that will give them a $15 discount on thirty rides. Riders will have to pay the difference on any rides costing more than $15.

But those in the program stand to save about $250 a month if they take advantage of the thirty-ride deal. It’s not known how big the waiting list is for this new feature and how many people the company will actually select to take part in it.

The news comes after Lyft tried a similar plan earlier this year that allowed riders to purchase sixty rides a month for $399 dollars. Drawbacks of the new $250 plan, which will be available nationwide, is that unused portions of the monthly subscription would be lost and users will need to renew it every month.

Photo by Sergio Ruiz via Flickr

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Five More Nike Employees Fired As A Result Of Harassment Investigation

Nike announced this week that five more of its top level executives would be departing the company after an internal inquiry by female Nike employees found a problem of sexual harassment and work-place bias against women. Six people have already been fired or resigned due to the investigation, the results of which were handed to Nike Chief Executive, Tony Parker on March 5.

“I apologize to the people on our team who were excluded, and I apologize if some of those same people felt they had no one to turn to,” Parker said in a candid address to employees after the internal investigation. “I want everyone at Nike to know their voices do matter and your bravery is making us better.”

Ten days after the results of the survey were presented to Mr. Parker, the company announced that Trevor Edwards, who served as the president of the Nike brand, Jayme Martin, Nike’s head of diversity, and a head of foot wear were all let go by the company. Those departures were followed by the release of Steve Lesnard, who was head of running in North America, Helen Kim, Simon Pestridge and Tommy Kain, who was the company’s director of marketing.

Nike is making headlines after The New York Times conducted interviews with fifty current and former employees concerning sexual harassment. One employee claims that she was made to visit other employees at a strip club. Others said they were on the receiving end of unwanted kisses in the workplace. Several people that were interviewed claimed that they brought the problem to Nike’s attention, but nothing was done about the matter.

“While many of us feel like we were treated with respect at Nike, that wasn’t the case in all teams,” Parker told employees during a speech about the investigation. “And if all of our teammates don’t see the same opportunities, we just can’t accept that.”

It is being reported by The New York Times that reactions to Mr. Parker’s speech were mixed, with some feeling hopeful about the promise for change in the workplace environment and in how women were treated, but with other finding the speech “frustratingly vague.” Parker failed, they point out, to lay out specific actions that the company would take to make sure similar incidents wouldn’t happen again.

Despite the steps that Nike has taken in order to create a more inclusive and safer work environment, some are wondering if the massive shakeup could end up still affecting the company’s bottom line. Nike’s stock was already down 1.21% on Tuesday afternoon with some believing it will drop further due to the shakeup. There is also concern about whether the incoming management will be able to achieve the lofty goals set by Parker.

Mr. Parker set a variety of goals for the company, including increasing revenue from $36 to $50 billion dollars by the year 2020. Parker plans to achieve this goal by selling more Nike products in the company’s own stores. Many within the company believe doing so will involve shifting the focus away from sports athletes and turning its attention instead to women and the athleisure market.

“Nike has a deep bench and has a history of moving people around the different businesses,” said Sam Poser, an analyst with Susquehanna Financial Group. “But we haven’t before seen the exits of people like this who have been there for a very, very long time, and the question is, are the people who are replacing them ready to take on these new jobs?”

Photo by Kaique Rocha

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Stein Campaign Refuses to Turn Over Documents in Russia Probe

Former Green Party candidate, Jill Stein, is refusing to turn over documents and correspondence to the Senate Judiciary Committee relating to the committee’s ongoing Russia investigation. Although she did not fully comply with the demand for the information, calling the request, “so overboard in reach as to demand constitutionally protected materials,” she did agree to turn over some documents related to the matter.

Documents Stein is agreeing to turn over include all correspondence between her campaign, Russian media organizations, and their employees. They are refusing to turn over internal communications regarding the campaign’s policy on Russia, however. The Committee has also asked Stein to provide them with correspondence they had with anyone from the Russian Government, business interests and Russian people.

Stein’s campaign said they have provided the committee all communications with individuals from the Russian government and media, but will not comply with the request for communications with all individuals of Russian descent.

According to a letter written by the Stein campaign and provided to The Intercept, Stein believes that the request for information on anyone from Russia that the campaign has talked to between 2015-2017 is unconstitutional, and, they claim, puts supporters of hers that live in America, or of Russian decent, in danger. Asking for the information unfairly puts people of Russian descent under suspicion they say.

A famous photograph shows Stein seated at a dinner with Russian President Vladimir Putting during her trip there in 2015. The dinner was a celebration of Russian news outlet RT’s tenth anniversary. Also seated at the table was former National Security Adviser Gen. Michael Flynn.

Stein maintains that she didn’t have a conversation with anyone from Russia at the table.

Stein would say during an interview last year that a few people from Russia tried to offer money for hotel and transportation during her trip but that she declined both offers.

“This wasn’t intended to be a discussion of any sort,” Stein said of the dinner. “I spent just about the whole evening talking to the German former foreign minister sitting next to me, Willy Wimmer, and we had a very interesting conversation. But I think that was the only substantive conversation that took place around that table.”

“Then [Putin and others] walk out. He was basically there to give a speech,” Stein continued. “This was not some kind of a dinner meeting. Nobody even met anybody…I didn’t hear any words exchanged between English speakers and Russians.”

Photo by Daniel Nesbitt via Flickr

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California is Now the Fifth Biggest Economy in The World

The State of California has now surpassed the United Kingdom as the fifth largest economy in the world by growing their gross domestic product $127 billion over the last two years, to $2.7 trillion. The U.K’s economic shrunk this year, believed to be a result of exchange-rate fluctuations the country has suffered over the last couple of years.

“We have the entrepreneurial spirit in the state, and that attracts a lot of talent and money,” said Sung Won Sohn, an economics professor at California State University Channel Islands. “And that’s why, despite high taxes and cumbersome government regulations, more people are coming into the state to join the parade.”

The revelation is part of data released by the federal government last week that shows the growth is due to the large population of the state, the influence of Silicon Valley, as well as the film industry.

Real estate and financial services grew by $26 billion over the course of the two years, the information sector grew by $20 billion and manufacturing increased by $10 billion. The news comes six years after the State dropped to tenth on the list of biggest economies, due to the great recession that ravaged the United States in the late 2000s.

California has contributed 16% to the United States job growth, with only 12% of the population. The growth is said to be concentrated in areas like San Francisco, San Jose, and San Diego.

The biggest surprise of all may be that California has surpassed the U.K.’s economy with 25 million less more people living there. The United States, China, Japan and Germany are the only countries with bigger economies then that of California’s now, an impressive the feat is in today’s economy

California isn’t the only U.S. state with a large economy – Texas has the 11th biggest economy with $1.7 trillion and New York has the 11th biggest with $1.5 trillion.

“The state calculates California’s economic ranking as if it were a country by comparing state-level GDP from the Bureau of Economic Analysis at the U.S. Department of Commerce with global data from the International Monetary Fund,” according to The New York Times.

Photo by Ken Lund via Flickr

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Nestle, Starbucks Strike $7.5 Billion Deal

Nestle struck a $7.5 billion deal with Starbucks this week that will give the Swiss food and beverage company exclusive rights to sell Seattle’s signature coffee in stores around the world. The deal, was announced Monday, allows Starbucks to turn their attention on their more profitable store-operations, as well as higher-end Roastery shops.

“This global coffee alliance will bring the Starbucks experience to the homes of millions more around the world through the reach and reputation of Nestlé,” said Kevin Johnson, president and chief executive officer of Starbucks. “This historic deal is part of our ongoing efforts to focus and evolve our business to meet changing consumer needs, and we are proud to work alongside a company that is committed to our shared values.”

The deal also gives Nestle the right to sell other Starbucks properties, including Seattle’s Best Coffee, Teavana and Torrefazione Italia products. Starbucks says their earnings per share will increase by the year 2021. The company also stands to make a large amount of money from sales and royalties. Exact details on how much Starbucks would make yearly off of those revenue streams haven’t been announced at this time.

“This transaction is a significant step for our coffee business, Nestlé’s largest high-growth category,” said Nestlé CEO Mark Schneider. “With Starbucks, Nescafé and Nespresso we bring together three iconic brands in the world of coffee. We are delighted to have Starbucks as our partner. Both companies have true passion for outstanding coffee and are proud to be recognized as global leaders for their responsible and sustainable coffee sourcing. This is a great day for coffee lovers around the world.”

Starbucks coffee is a roughly $2 billion business, but some believe that the addition of the new deal will allow for the company to grow even more profitable. Starbucks says it plans to use the money to increase buyback stocks to $20 billion.

Analysts believe part of Nestle’s overall strategy will be to expand its line if single serve pods to include Starbucks products, a market Keurig Green Mountain has a stranglehold on in North America.

Starbucks is also said to be focusing on its higher end Reserve bars and Roastery locations where cups of coffee go for as much as $10.

Photo by Marco Arment via Flickr

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McCain Invites Obama, Bush but Not Trump to Funeral

Arizona Senator John McCain does not want President Trump to attend his funeral it was revealed this week. Members of McCain’s family contacted the White House to request that Trump skip the event, but invited Vice President Mike Pence to attend.

Senator McCain was diagnosed with an aggressive form of brain cancer, Glioblastoma, last year and his health is quickly deteriorating. The 81-year-old also recently underwent surgery for an intestinal infection. He was joined this weekend by his daughter Meghan, who flew to the McCain family ranch in Arizona to keep an eye on her ailing father. Megan McCain, who is a co-host on television’s The View, thanked fans for supporting her. She will return to the show on Tuesday, she said.

The McCain family did not specify a reason for disinviting President Trump from McCain’s funeral, but the two men have had tumultuous. Much of that animosity started on the 2016 campaign trail when Donald Trump mocked McCain for being captured by enemy troops during the Vietnam war.

“He’s not a war hero. He was a war hero because he was captured. I like people who weren’t captured,” Trump said during a 2016 campaign event. Trump was heavily criticized for the statements and many even thought it would be Trump’s downfall during the election season.

McCain spent 5 ½ years as a POW in a Vietnamese prison camp being tortured repeatedly and suffering permanent damage to his arms.

Senator McCain was able to return the favor last year when he cast a deciding vote against the repealing and replacing of Obamacare, a major Trump campaign promise. McCain’s vote killed the legislation in the Senate. The move was praised by former President Barack Obama, who thanked McCain for the vote in a phone call, but also drew massive criticism from President Trump.

McCain also reportedly attacked President Trump an upcoming book, “The Restless Waive.”

“He seems uninterested in the moral character of world leaders and their regimes,” he writes of the president, according to The New York Times, which obtained an advanced copy of the book. “The appearance of toughness or a reality show facsimile of toughness seems to matter more than any of our values. Flattery secures his friendship, criticism his enmity.”

McCain’s family have also invited former President’s Barack Obama and George W. Bush to deliver eulogies at the funeral. The funeral is scheduled to take place at Washington’s National Cathedral.

Photo by Gage Skidmore via Flickr

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Plan to Denuclearize Not Because of U.S., North Korea Says

North Korea’s plan to denuclearize was not the result of pressure from the United States, the country’s news agency announced this week, adding that the U.S. was intentionally misleading the public by claiming otherwise. The U.S. government has repeatedly claimed North Korea’s decision to denuclearize was the result of imposed sanctions and a “maximum pressure” campaign from the Trump administration.

“It would not be conducive to addressing the issue if the U.S. miscalculates the peace-loving intention of the DPRK (North Korea) as a sign of ‘weakness’ and continues to pursue its pressure and military threats. This act cannot be construed otherwise than a dangerous attempt to ruin the hardly-won atmosphere of dialogue and bring the situation back to square one,” a North Korean foreign ministry spokesman said.

The foreign ministry spokesman also warned the U.S. that they should avoid intentionally provoking the country by raising the concern of human rights issues. The news comes after North and South Korea announced that they would be moving toward denuclearization at a historic summit that took place last month. Specific plans on how, and when, that would be achieved were not laid out.

The news also comes only weeks before a historic summit is set to take place between President Trump and Kim Jong Un. The Trump administration has not responded to North Korea’s comments at the time of this writing. It is not yet clear whether they will have any effect on the proposed peace talks.

Photo by South Korean Blue House via Wikimedia Commons

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