Business, Finance



    Brian X. Chen tells us in this article his experience with a company's customer service. He bought a Samsung oven and less than a year after of buying it, the oven broke down. Samsung sent a technician and he concluded that the oven was completely irreparable. All this process was managed in a period of 4-5 months.
    The article makes me think whether the costumer services are as good as their product is. I still prefer the "traditional" way of dealing in which if you have any problems, you only have to go to the shop where you bought it, explain your problem to a experienced technician and arrive at a solution.
    Nowadays, a few companies are offering a trustworthy customer service on the internet, making internet purchases easier.
    Javier Abajo Medina 1ºD

  2. Laura Mena Pascua 1º D Nº 19


    The Franklin School is an historic brick building downtown that has been previously been plotted as a contemporary art museum that was designed by architect Adolf Cluss an built in 1869 in Columbia. Mayor Bowser and Dani Levinas scrapped an idea proposed in turning the building into an art museum, citing financial benefits.
    Bowser searched for other companies interested in the building.
    The deadline arrived and five companies had submitted proposals for redeveloping the school:
    The CoStar group, it proposed turning the Franklin School into a center of CoStar´s technology training. The CoStar chief excutive, said to Franklin that it would be necessary for the people in Columbia to have more software culture.
    Another company, Thoron Capital, would develop the school with the Georgetown University, in the university of arts and music programms. He said to Franklin that this project is innovative and will honor this important building.
    Aria Development Group has invested in housing projects and using the school as an office building.
    The Friedman Capital has worked for years to try to turn it into a luxury hotel that woud support arts and museum programms.
    For redeveloping the school, Levinas worked with Anthony Lanier, who has redeveloped more than a dozen historic Georgetown properties.
    The Franklin School is considered as difficult project because it is a National Historic Landmark. It is one of the few building that is protected from undo alterations.
    The cost of rehabilitating the building runs from 15 million to 30 million.
    In my opinion, at the end of the day what is most important is to make sure that the project creates jobs for District residents and ensures long-term economic success for the distirct.

  3. Hands-free cars, is it legal?
    People sixty years ago would have never imagined that nowadays drivers could enter the highway, put their cars on “autopilot” and sit back as the vehicle takes over and heads for the horizon. This dream has become true due to the automakers. But now a problem is taking place, technology has sprinted ahead so fast that lawmakers and regulators are scrambling to catch up with features like this one. In the majority of the States in the US there isn't any rules at all, and the few that have them, are in a testing way. The point of view of the principal cars enterprises is that they don´t think that there should be a change in legislation because their cars are safe enough to not worry about the danger of having car crashes on the highways, they are equipped with all the features needed to prevent any unexpected situation like “pilot assists”. All that they are trying to do is making the tedious part of driving less stressful. In my opinion this kind of progress is unavoidable, our society is evolving in an impressive way, unimaginable years ago. That improvement in driving is perhaps the beginning of a new era, and for that reason we have to change our laws about these changes, to update our lifestyles in a safety way. But nevertheless one thing is understandable, if a police man sees someone driving with no hands on the wheel, he is going to give him a ticket because that is reckless. There should be some type of distinction to make out the automatic cars. In some States in the US the rules for the sale of this kind of vehicles are in process so the automakers will be able to sell cars with certain autonomous features legally surely by the end of the year. So the main important thing to avoid the issues related to this sort of development is to find a balance between the safety and the innovation.
    Rocío Mirabet Barrado. 1ºD.

  4. EU to investigate claims McDonald's avoided $1bn in tax
    The news speaks about an investigation that is done to McDonald due to the fact that during the period between 2009 and 20113 it has canalized money for a subsidiary based on Luxembourg with a Swiss branch to pay fewer taxes.
    I think that it is a striking news, since one does not believe itself that a company like McDonald could manage to stop paying 3 bn of Euros in taxes using a branch in Luxembourg. It is an interesting news for that not the whole world can wait and because of it I have chosen her, since I itself was not even thinking that such a powerful and world-famous company like McDonald could manage to do this type of deceptions.
    Álvaro Doval Bernaldo de Quirós

  5. UK´s growth is still hindered while interests are still low.

    Even if they are showing a small bit of change, England is still not growing as much as you should expect with such a low interest on loans (currently close to 1%). Even if unemployment has gone down 0.2pc it´s still not enough. As the time for the Bank of England´s report comes closer, with rumours about the interest going up even though inflation is at record mark of zero, the progress that was expected is still not enough.

    So what to do now? If loans interest rates go up less companies will take them and the companies that take them risk that these high rates lead them to bankruptcy which would also make the BoE( short for Bank of England) lose money in bad debts. So they can´t bring them up too much but they can´t bring them down or stay the same either. What they should do is slowly increase them, without peaks, a slow moderate growth would do. This would help them make more money and increase the growth while keeping their debtors solvent. I think bringing interest rates by 0.1%-0.2% a year would be fair enough.

    In conclusion, the BoE should be really wary about how much they increase the interest rates or else they could face recession or over-inflation.

  6. Greece fights to remain in Eurozone:

    It's a real fact that Greece is on the edge of the exit of the Eurozone, they failed to reach an accord on reforms needed to secury the country's future in the Eurozone. To make in front of the economic poverty, Greece should make reformations in the work market. Probably Europe won't agree with these reformations ¡, but it's the only exit that come the greeks to combat this economic situation.
    Some reformations that the goverment from Greece outlines are: to reduce the VAT (IVA), to cut the pensions, to reduce the minimum wage and to fight against the privatizations. I think that the reduction of the VAT will afect poorest people and the cut of pensions will suppose a popular rising, becouse of the old people are entitled to a minimum wage due to have been working during all its life. To reduce the minimum wage will also contribute to a popular uneasiness that can end in political problems.
    All these proposed reformations are directed to the fight of Greece to stay inside of the Eurozone.

    Roberto Sendino Serna / 1ºD / Nº 24


  7. I'm going to talk about a new that made me to feel hopeful. This article reads: Economic Growth in Eurozone Appears to Be Gaining Momentum.This is just a prediction but most of the times they come true.
    In spain we are suffering a terrible crisis that is desmoralising to the entire population and news like this one makes the people feel hopeful and safe so they spend more money buying items, reviving the economy.
    Also this new reads about the european economic growth. It says that europe is growing faster than the US, something that doesn't happen from 2011. This is another sign of the fast growth of the european economy.

    Nicolás Alonso Álvarez 1D


    This article talks about a Chinese woman named Sherry Chen, actually living in Ohio. She was accused on October 2014 of being a Chinese spy: of using a stolen password to download information about economic stuff of USA.
    She was accused with no proves, in fact in March the government dropped all charges against her with no explanation.
    From my point of view it should be a shame for the government to do such a severe accusation with no proves, and even more incredible the fact that they dropped all charges without giving explanation. These five months have been tough for miss Chen, she declares: “I could not sleep or eat. I did nothing but cry.”
    She should be given an explanation, an economic reward and an apology from the government for everything she has been trough (social bullying, trials). Also the government shouldn’t have the power to accuse with no proves, it is totally unfair.

  9. Starbucks promotes its employees education.

    Education is essential for having a decent professional future. Nowadays, everybody knows that, but not everyone has the possibility of going to college. Many teenagers and young people can't afford this expense, so they start working at a young age while they should be studying. Unfortunately, this is the situation of hundreds of people, not only in the Unites States, but in the entire world.
    Luckily, this problem has a solution and Starbucks is trying to solve it.
    About a month ago, the famous coffee company announced that it was going to hand out free four-year university bachelor's degree courses to any American employee who wanted to join Arizona State University's online learning program. This incentive, that costs about $60,000 per person, believes that this is a great opportunity for all those staff members who want to learn and approve a college degree. Besides, this gives them a better pathway to success in the future.
    Although this offer is only for employees who work more than 20 hours a week, I personally think that it's a way of giving people a chance to combine education and work; learning and earning some money, that's always useful. In fact, having money at the same time as they finish their studies gives them more opportunities to succeed in the job market.
    In conlusion, this motivated proposal is a great way of starting to change the lack of university education in the United States. I believe that this is going to develop and, in the near future, maybe we will be able to say that almost every teenager in the country has access to superior studies.


    Blanca Casqueiro Blanco
    1º D

  10. HSBC lend £8 billion to UK's small businesses
    From my point of view is very important for national prestige banks such as Bank HRED lend money to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to succeed, economic growth, and thus increase the country's GDP.
    This new project; by HRED (the largest bank in the UK), that benefits SMEs inject money into companies from 43 regions of the country; of which Manchester and Birmingham will receive 400 million pounds. The latter was recently named one of the most entrepreneurial cities in the United Kingdom.
    Ian Stuart, head of UK retail banking at HSBC, said that any business could ask for the loan, but that the companies that manufacture in the UK would have some advantage because they grow the national economy
    Another initiative that should make banks is giving grants to companies that employ people who are unemployed, as people who have some disability. This would make people of different social classes have the same opportunities.
    Luis Moneo Martínez de Azagra 1 Bach D

    At May 2015, Greece’s economy is still worrying to international community, specially for EU countries, that see how Greece threaten with leaving the Euro, if their payment terms don´t relax.
    From my point of view, neither Greek, nor economy expert, and therefore, ignorant of all the details of the situation, I can only try to put myself in the shoes of Greek citizens to meet their debt payments.
    One of their options is to leave the EU, and return to the Drachma to be able to devaluate their currency as solution of economic crisis. But I think if countries decided, at their time, to join together to be economically stronger, is consider Monetary Union as a failure.
    So this would have been a waste of time, and I think that it’s better to make an effort to stay in the EU.

  12. Legal Marijuana Faces Another Federal Hurdle: Taxes

    The New York Times, an important and famous newspaper from USA, published this article last may 9.

    Marijuana, a drug that comes from cannabis, is legal in some states from USA, for example, Colorado.
    There is a number of difficult situations related to drugs and even more related to legal drugs.

    Denver is a great city in Colorado, and they are facing some issues about this legalization.
    In Denver, especifically, Marijuana business owners, have found a new "problem": taxes.
    The point is, what kind of tax must pay Marijuana? Tax like bread? Luxury tax?
    It's a question of classification. Authority has to decide which kind of product drugs are.
    In order to solve the problem, government has decided to put the biggest tax to marijuana, an idea that I support.

    In my opinion, drugs are dangerous and they should be forbidden, but in many countries they are legal, and many people love them.

    In conclusion, taxing these products with high amount of money is a good idea to control and minimize marijuana consumption.

    Complete article link:

    Alejandro Vigil Martín-Nuño, 1ºD.


    In the last four years Greece economy has been in a extremely delicate situation. Greece has been financed by European Union and now it is time to reimburse the cash. Unfortunately, the country is not in conditions to fullfill their comitments.
    European Union is able to keep helping Greece if Greek goverment address deep reforms regarding labour market, pensions, salaries, privatizations...
    The main problem is that the current Greek goverment ,elected few months ago, has promised to their citizens that they willl not accept any demand from european authorities that ,in their opinion, could damage the weak ecomic situation of the country.
    Now it is crutial to reach an agreement between EU, IMF (International Monetary Found), ECB (European Central Bank) and Greek authorities otherwise there will be a huge risk that Greece will be removed from the Eurozone. If it happens,without any doubts, there will be dramatic consequences for the rest of european economies. Therefore, we must admit that it is not a local issue, on the contrary it is a global problem due to the worldwide globalization of the economies.
    The uncertainty of this issue is damaging seriously stock markets. In my opinion both parties are obliged to deal. The worst scenario is a non agreement result. Soon we will see the final result of this endless negotiation. I wish finally there will be a fair deal, good for EU, Greece and every single european citizen.
    Let's cross fingers!


    Marina Vidal Pelayo.1ºD

    This article talks about one of the most important car´s manufacturers in the world. This company is Toyota and it´s located in Japan. Toyota has raised their net income in a 19%!
    Actually, is this good or bad?
    Nowadays countries in the world are still suffering the crisis and this new is a clear evidence that crisis is being emerged. This new would make other companies believe in a close future with more clients and more benefits. This new could also make a few people set up their own business and believe that they may be rich in the future having a comfortable life.
    On the other hand this new could make companies think that only the biggest companies are able to reach this objectives. Thinking in this pessimistic way won´t take companies to a good place and they won´t reach a good place in the market. As a consequence this companies won´t emerge from this current crisis and they will lose their money and will go bankrupt.
    In my opinion we have to believe in this little news and believe that it´s possible to be in the right way. Hopefully more companies will raise their net income, not only the car´s manufacturers, also the little business and the crisis will emerge definitely, reducing the unemployment and letting more people work.


    Carolyn Wilman, a Canadian 48-year-old has been the woman who has earned over 250,000 dollars in prizes.
    She began to compete when she was a little girl, and she won her first prize at 14 years old, when she phoned the local radio station and won tickets for a Burton Cummings concert.
    When she grew up, she became unemployed, and came up with the idea of starting to participate in sweepstakes to improve their lifestyle.
    In fact, those years she won a lot of prizes that include amazing trips to Mexico, Santorini…Even a trip to the 2010 Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver!
    In 2009 Wilman earned 68,491 $ in prizes. So ’ the contest queen’ became invincible and decided to help others persons to win sweepstakes. For example, thanks to her, a woman won a house. She even helped a man to win a Ferrari car and another person to win a trip to outer space.

    The basic tips that Carolyn Wilman gives are:

    1-You should have two address emails. One for personal emails and another one for sweepstakes emails.
    2-Wilman gave a list where you could find the best competitions to participate.
    3- She said that it's very important to take time to read the rules and to lose a few minutes for reading the fine print to distinguish the scams from the real contests.
    4- She suggested starting with local competitions and gradually achieve national sweepstakes.
    5- Do not spend more than one or two hours a day. We mustn’t let the competition take over your life.

    Firstly, I have to say that it’s not good to try to make her living doing contests and sweepstakes; I think it's better to consider it as a hobby or entertainment. The best way to earn money is making job interviews, it is a safe method; contests, instead, is sort of random. Instead, Wilman seems to me that she has been a very wise woman and she has always known the guidelines to follow in order to win all those awards, so I attribute her the merit of that astuteness. She has known how to be savvy, resourceful, enterprising and supportive when she helped others to fulfill their dreams of winning a Ferrari or a trip to outer space.

    Secondly, referring to the advices, I'm not one to say whether they are good or bad, because I've never participated in a contest or sweepstakes; but I think they are very well designed and they're quite logical. At the end of the day she has given an image of dreamer, but she has also given an image keeping her feet on the ground, because, as she states in the last tip, don’t let the contests dominate your life. I think that it’s absolutely right because first of all you have to spend hours enjoying with your family and people you love. (yahoo news)


    Retirement Planning

    I´ve chosen an article that explains the difficulty of retirement for many American people.
    Reading this article has made me think about how important saving money is because you never know when you will need it. I think that saving money from an early age would be the best solution so old people stop having any financial difficulties. For example, when you get money for your birthday or from your lovely granny, instead of spending it all, save some of it in the bank.
    In other words, I think the best way to solve this plan would be if Americans had our ´Retirement Plan´, which I think works very well and old people are happy with it. This Spanish plan is a financial product which you buy with a tax deduction during your working period so when you get to your retirement moment, you have a lot more money saved. You can either receive it all at once or over the period of a few months.
    To conclude, I have to say that everyone should be a lot more conscious about how lucky they are and the things they have that other people, no matter how much they work, can´t have. We should be a lot more thankful and help the others that aren´t as lucky as we are. You never know if someday you will be in their economic situation!

    Irene Canosa 1ºD

  17. My article is about how the rich countries are more worried about the little inequalities between them, leaving aside the big problem of the inequalities in the truly poor countries like Africa, Asia…

    Basically it is said that the politicians and economists waste their time trying to resolve the economic crisis in their own country without paying attention in resolving why is growing up the number of immigrants to the borders of other countries.

    In the new, its also remarkable that maybe, if the countries leave more people get in, it would be much easier to give them opportunities and more facilities to get out of the big crisis. The main problem is that parties don’t agree with that type of solutions. They are just worried about making their country the best one in the world.

    Besides that, the main idea of the article is that in a while, the global warming will make the poor countries be in worst conditions.

    In my opinion the article talks about one of the most important problem that nowadays we have to solve.
    I totally agree with it because for me the first thing that we have to solve in the world is the inequalities between countries.
    Unfortunately we are not conscious about that big problem because we are not in their position but sometimes we should ‘’waste our time’’ thinking about how to make the world as perfect as we can, I mean no inequalities.


    Beatriz Bravo 1ºD

    Rachel Riley is a baby clothes designer whose clients including the royal family.
    The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge dress their son, Prince George on tours with her designs and that has undoubtedly helped Rachel’s shops to become even more popular. In fact, that has led to a 14% increase in Riley´s sales and probably with the new royal baby her business will have another boost. She has three shops, two of them are located in London and the other one in New York.
    This is a really good example of how small business can be a success. Rachel recognises she was carefree when began to develop her business and this is something always required for a start-up enterprise, it doesn’t matter what it will be about. You must be breaking limits and dare to explore new fields to be successful in any activity and more when referring to fashion-related business.
    Carlota Reyero 1ºD nº23

  19. José Luis Villena Gutiérrez ​​Nº28​ ​1ºD

    Train Future
    This article talks about a new generation of trains developed by Rolls Royce.
    The new train is greener, quieter and more efficient and this use a hybrid power system. Will make life better for people who live near railway lines.
    It is possible that the UK could be the first country in using this new trains. In addition, families will get used to this new idea but they might need time for that.
    I think this new trains are an excellent idea. This good for British industry in general and for the environment. It would be a good proposal for an other countries that are trying to developed in the electricity factory.
    To conclude it is a way to save fuel.

    José Luis Villena Gutiérrez ​​Nº28​​ 1ºD

  20. Abel Abenza, 1 D : Business, Economy, Finance

    Link ;

    There has been a lot of controversy when we talk about Greek process. Do we need, or are we obligated to exit Greece from the Eurozone? This question is really important, because when we say Greece, we say any country, so thats why a lot of politicians disagree in the fact of throwing up Greece from the Eurozone.

    But, the thing is how did Greece get in to this stage? The Government didn´t manage in a proper way all the things that should have managed in a proper way, economy etc

    Now, Greece it´s in crisis, and the Eurozone has tried in several occasions to help Greece but the problem is that Greece is running out of cash, so in order to pay back all the money that Greece received, politicians have suggested the use of parallel currency as a solution.

    This will be useful in order to pay civil servants which is good, because if civil servants have a higher income they will be consuming more which is quite good for the companies which will be investing more and this is going to revive Greece economy.

    But it also has it disadvantages, the banks will be under pressure and they probably could not affront all the debt that they have so thats why is important to consider this proposal with a fine-tooth comb.

    In my opinion i think this offer should been taken on account, but only if helps Greece to go ahead, because if Greece leave Eurozone this act will have serious consequences to the country and to the Eurozone.

    More Info;

  21. Why did David Cameron win?

    Shortly before the Election Day, the polls were showing a Conservative Party with a little bit more votes than the Laborist Party. It seemed that we were going to see very closed results but it was not true.

    Why Britains chose Conservative instead Laborist?

    Citizens are fed up with government intervention. They want to keep the money they earn in their pockets and spend it the way they prefer.
    No authority will tell them how to dedide and people want low taxes and to reduce public spending.
    The Government must not take so big chunk of your salary for financing needless and useless public services and social groups like LGBTcommunity, labor unions, environmental groups and political parties.
    They should be financed instead by their affiliates and no by governments whose main interest is maintaninig theselves in their chairs via votes. The very same votes they pay for.


    Javier Ferrandis Sánchez 1ºD

  22. VISA Europe sells his business to banks
    VISA Europe is about to be sold to street banks. These could collect a winfall of billions of pounds. British bank (Barclays and Lloyds) would benefit most. International VISA want to retrieve its European arm that broke in 2008.
    In my opinion, It sems to be a very profitable business for banks, but obviously feels the same International VISA and wants back what it sold in 2008.
    In conclusion, International VISA wants to recover that in turn sold since has realized the economic benefit that would bring them.
    Complete article link:

  23. New Chief Officer Daniel Zhang faces challenges in e-commerce:
    Alibaba Group (a Chinese e-commerce company) needs to find a solution. And that won´t be easy for Daniel Zhang, the New Chief Executive Officer, who replaces Jonathan Lu.
    Zhang has to recover the lost $70 billion in market value, when shares dropped dramatically after peaking in November 2014.Besides he has to find off the competence and to bolster cross-border e-commerce.
    According to him, Alibaba Group needs to bring younger leaders into the company.
    This notice is an evidence of how in the short term firms and industries like high tech, Internet, e-commerce…, will be run by a younger generation of leaders. This is an evidence because nowadays more and more students go abroad to study and then come home to work for these firms.
    Rodrigo Martorell
    1ºD Nº18

  24. This surprising article, written by Hadley Malcolm, tell us the McDonald´s sales drop in the last months, caused by the arrival of more modern fast food restaurants.
    In my opinion this is a very positive new, because all manner of competence is good for the costumers.
    With that information, McDonald´s will increase the quality of their products, which is the most problematic thing about McDonald´s, and people´s health will be better
    As time goes by, people care more for that, and I thing that this is the main reason of the appearance of new and healthier commerces, though they are fast food restaurants.
    In conclusion, this company, which has almost 33.000 restaurants all over the world, will have to increase the quality of their food if they want to still being the first option for us in terms of fast food.


  25. Greece, leaning out to the precipice...

    As we all may know, economy is one of the main bases of our society. Being aware of the functioning of the economy, specially nowadays, means widing our range of posibilities to take part in our problems as independant nations, and having a positive impact on our country in many ways.

    As I see it, Economics is the science that is more comparable to a roller coaster. It consists of cycles which vary constantly. Economy can take us from the top to the bottom and vice versa at anytime. This is why we must try to keep a firm balance, to avoid strong contrasts that may result in disasters. In this article, published earlier this year, we can see the situation in which Greece, with a brand new Government, is merged in, and the way it should seek fast plans to avoid sinking more into poverty. There is a clear case of crisis, and it has generated distrust in foreign countries. This situates Greece in the lower part of the “roller coaster”. From my point of view, I would say that Greece's stroller is about to stop forever, and urgently requires the help of other strollers that are above to pull it up. However, it is crystal clear that at the moment Greece cannot offer anything in exchange for external helps, and this is something that removes reliability and confidence to the European Union, because such large loans without a minimum guarantee of return can not be given. In addition, it is not clear that the money Greece receives will be applied and managed in a proper way so this is quite a big deal, isn't it?

    If Greece wants to solve its current situation, strict economic reforms should be implemented in order to “start from scratch as if nothing had happened”. At this point, I consider that citizens are the ones that have to take the direction of the way out towards an improvement.

    With the little confidence that people have in Greece, the Greeks are the only ones who have to “run the engine again”, and this process starts on being heard against the politicians. There is still time to change the future, and to save Greece from a complete disaster. The power is in us, the citizens.

    We must begin to act earnestly in search of a solution, setting aside what makes our goals hard to achieve. In this way, it's time to stand up and show solidarity with nations such as Greece to find a fast and effective solution as fast as possible.

    Arturo Temboury Jiménez, 1º BTO-D. Colegio San Agustín.

  26. Remarkable blog! I have no words to praise, it has really allured me.Knowledge First Financial Review