Friday, May 01, 2015 at 12pm

Business News Weekly Roundup: May 1 2015

MBA news

NerdWallet research reveals best places in US to start a business

And in this week’s second piece of online research, personal finance website, NerdWallet, has conducted a study into the best places in the US in which to start a business. The number one place? Boulder Colorado, naturally, followed by Wilmington, North Carolina and Greater Bridgeport, Connecticut. Smaller markets, it seems, fare well, with the Midwest standing out as the place to be, with lower costs and lower competition giving businesses an edge. The site looked at six indicators to get the results, split into those which look into the success of businesses (average revenue of businesses, businesses per 100 people and the percentage of businesses with paid employees – they point out that 23 million of 28 million US businesses are non-employer businesses) and the area’s overall economic strength (median income, median housing cost and the level of unemployment). A total of 183 areas with populations of over 250,000 and 15,000 businesses were considered. 

Fixr.com map shows what people want to know the cost of and where

Cost-estimating website Fixr.com has released a world map looking at which items people want to know the prices of, by country. Okay, let’s clarify here – this is hardly an in-depth exercise in analytics. The map has been drawn up by using an autocomplete formula, looking for the most common instances of ‘how much does X cost in X’, which naturally is subject to a number of variables, not least of which is the rest of the world’s perceptions of said country. But it still makes for interesting, often entertaining and occasionally troubling reading. Some examples are ‘how much does a kidney cost in Iran?’, ‘how much does a prostitute cost in Brazil?’, ‘how much does a slave cost in Mauritania?’ and ‘how much does it cost to fly a MiG?’ in Russia. 

BNP Paribas ordered to pay US$9 billion settlement

France’s largest bank, BNP Paribas, has been ordered to pay a record fine for violating US sanctions in Sudan, Iran and Cuba between 2004 and 2012, reports Businessweek. The bank pleaded guilty to processing billions of dollars of transactions across the three nations in the time period in question.  BNP Paribas will also serve five years of probation as a result of the verdict, which comes in light of pleas for clemency from French President François Hollande. The news comes at a bad time for European banks, as confidence in UK banks approaches an all-time low, with a string of scandals proving an obstacle to attaining renewed confidence.


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Mansoor is a contributor to and former editor of TopMBA.com. He is a higher and business education specialist, who has been published in media outlets around the world. He studied English literature at BA and MA level and has a background in consumer journalism.

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