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Diners aren't going to steakhouses just for the steak anymore

Feb 19, 2024
Some steakhouses are changing their menus and venues to accommodate new consumer preferences.
Some people like going to steakhouses for the vibe or ambiance, not just the steaks, says journalist Alina Dizik.
Andrew Toth/Getty Images for Harv

Low inflation doesn't relieve pain of high prices

Feb 15, 2024
Consumers' inflation expectations are falling. But they say the high prices imposed by inflation are still eroding living standards.
A Little Griddle eatery in Portland, Oregon, where co-owner Judd Harris has struggled to balance the prices he pays for supplies with the prices he charges customers.
Mitchell Hartman / Marketplace

The problem of "sameness"

Jan 31, 2024
Why department stores struggle to retain relevancy.
Can you tell whether this photo was taken inside of a JCPenney? A Dillard's? A Macy's?
Jeenah Moon/Getty Images

TV ads speak directly to consumers' economic anxiety

Jan 30, 2024
Advertisers are using people not having enough money for some things — college, a house — to encourage them to spend on other things — chicken wings, anybody?
A screenshot from a recent SoFi ad, where a comically large backpack represents a bride's student loan debt.

How you could get compensated for future delays on Southwest

Dec 19, 2023
The majority of the record fine levied this week by the U. S. Department of Transportation will go towards vouchers for passengers who are held up beginning April 30.
Starting April 30, if Southwest passengers arrive at their destination three or more hours late, they can request a voucher if the issues were caused by something under the airline’s control.
Brandon Bell/Getty Images

What's the difference between disinflation and deflation?

Dec 18, 2023
Inflation has fallen sharply in the last year and a half, but prices haven't come down. Economists say that's not a bad thing.
You can compare changes in consumer prices to driving a car. Disinflation is like reducing  your speed, but still moving ahead. Deflation, however, would be driving in reverse.
Scott Olson/Getty Images

The long-expected consumer pullback may finally be materializing

Nov 29, 2023
We spent more over the holiday, but we bought less — thanks to inflation.
While consumers spent a couple percent more this Black Friday weekend than last, they didn’t necessarily buy more.
Yuki Iwamura/AFP via Getty Images

For public good, not for profit.

U.S. economy among the few bright spots at World Bank/IMF annual meeting

Oct 10, 2023
The meetings are being held in Morocco, still struggling to recover from a severe earthquake just a month ago. The contrast with the U.S. could not be more stark. The IMF says the U.S. is the only major economy where output has returned to pre-pandemic levels.
In its latest World Economic Outlook, the International Monetary Fund raised its forecast for U.S. economic growth.
Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

Despite rising interest rates, consumers increased their spending in July

Aug 31, 2023
But what they're spending their money on is shifting.
Despite climbing interest rates, consumers spent .9% more on goods in July than in June.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Retail inventories have dropped. But discounts might stick around.

Aug 16, 2023
Over the last year, many retailers have been successfully using discounts to purge their excess inventories. Now, retailers might use discounts to lure skittish consumers.
Target announced its inventories were down 17% from last year.
Scott Olson/Getty Images