Is Now the Right Time to Buy a Car?

By the time the coronavirus was sweeping the nation, Ali Jian, 42, a consultant in northern Virginia, already knew he wanted to replace his 2014 Subaru Forester with something bigger for his growing family. He decided on a new minivan but held off buying because dealers wouldn’t budge much on price.

But the pandemic forced many dealerships to close in March and April, and auto sales plummeted. The glut of inventory from the slowdown in sales led to deals and incentives, including 0 percent financing, deferred payments, and big discounts.

Jian decided this past spring was the time to buy. He focused on a 2020 Honda Odyssey he found through Costco’s car buying service, which gave him access to a nationwide network of more than 3,000 dealers. Costco offered a guaranteed price that was more than $6,000 below the manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP), and connected him with a local

Read More

LVMH expects pandemic to dampen sales for some time yet

PARIS (Reuters) – The fallout from the coronavirus crisis will weigh on LVMH’s <LVMH.PA> earnings for some time yet, though there were some signs of recovery this month, executives at the world’s biggest luxury goods group said on Tuesday.

Second quarter earnings at the owner of Louis Vuitton and other brands will be hit particularly in Europe and the United States, Chairman Bernard Arnault told a shareholder meeting, conducted online.

“We can only hope at this point for a gradual recovery,” Arnault told investors, adding that the second half of the year looked better. He flagged some “quite vigorous” signs of recovery in June, as virus lockdowns lifted in much of Europe, including in Milan and Paris, two major shopping hubs.

Luxury labels are still suffering from a lack of tourist travel even though consumption is picking up again on a local level as stores reopen, including in China.


Read More

celebrating art in the time of coronavirus

In 1918, when the world was plagued by the Spanish flu, artists tried to make sense of the world around them. Edvard Munch made lonely self-portraits, while Egon Schiele drew his mentor Gustav Klimt on his deathbed. Photographers captured empty streets and ghostly cityscapes, like Morton Schamberg’s rooftop views from 1917, to hospitals shot by the California photojournalist, Edward A “Doc” Rogers.

With the Covid-19 pandemic still raging on, and the world in quarantine, the online exhibition Life During Wartime: Art in the Age of the Coronavirus hosted by the University of South Florida Contemporary Art Museum, offers a window into what artists are up to right now.

Related: Signs of the times: how Douglas Coupland’s art came to life under coronavirus

By partly featuring artwork made since 5 March, the date the World Health Organization declared a global pandemic, it shows how artists have responded to the crisis –

Read More

Liberal groups are restarting door-to-door campaigning. But not all think it’s the right time.

Convinced they can do it safely and under pressure to match Republicans, a selection of Democratic-aligned groups are moving ahead with plans to restart their door-to-door voter canvassing operations, even amid a pandemic that has largely halted in-person campaigning since the spring.

Not everyone in the party is convinced it’s a good idea.

Working America, a political organizing arm of the AFL-CIO, plans to partially resume its canvassing effort next month to help elect Joe Biden and down-ballot Democrats, according to executive director Matt Morrison, with a test run in Michigan before expanding to other locations across the country if all goes well.

It’s joined by another group, the Progressive Turnout Project, which this past weekend began sending volunteers and staffers to knock on doors in Colorado and plans to expand to seven additional states this coming weekend.

Officials with both organizations say they are taking significant steps to make

Read More

7 clever tech tricks you’ll use time and time again

Today’s tech is loaded with features most of us never use. Why? Simply stated, there’s no real user manual.

Maybe no one ever told you that you could unsend an email. Yes, really. But you need to set up the feature before you need to use it. Tap or click for steps on how to unsend an email.

Did you know you can skip the ads on YouTube? That is until YouTube realizes we’re all doing this trick. Tap or click here for the simple secret to bypass ads on YouTube.

I’ve got seven more pro tips up my sleeve to make your digital life better.

1. Use your smart speaker’s smarts

We all have things that we only need every once in a while. For me, it’s the annual hunt for the key to unlocking the pod that holds all my Christmas decorations. Now, the elusive key is always

Read More

Now Is the Time to Embrace Bold Messaging, Branding Experts Say

Click here to read the full article.

After experiencing a drop in sales earlier this year, footwear companies are trying to capitalize on the new wave of shoppers returning to stores, both online and in store. To do so, businesses need to connect with consumers who are expecting different things from the brands they shop at – making brand communications a critical tool for retail success.

“First, you need to understand who your is brand talking to and what do they care about,” said Heather DeMonte, brand strategist + storyteller at brand creative agency Klique. “This seems so basic but many brands miss the mark and make themselves the hero of their own story instead of their customers. Truly understanding how your apparel satisfies an emotional need for customers is essential.”

Recent studies have shown that consumers are valuing authenticity and transparency right now, as well as favoring brands that

Read More

COVID-19 quarantines gave hackers time to perfect presidential election attacks: tech security CEO

Cloudflare CEO Matthew Prince continues to warn that the coming presidential election may unleash hackers again just like in 2016 in a bid to influence the outcome.

The recent actions of these faceless bad actors look to be practicing their craft while quarantined at home because of COVID-19.

“I think as sports are canceled around the world, it’s getting hackers to spend more time focusing on how they can hack various things. And we see some versions of that, which are relatively harmless. For instance, we seen a big uptick in relatively unsophisticated attacks, which is actually similar to what we see when schools let out. I think there are a bunch of kids out there trying to test their chops if they can hack various systems. What has been concerning is especially over the last month, there has been a rise in nation states sponsored attacks targeting both political

Read More

Vroom Is a Relevant Business Operating in an Awkward Time

At the start of the novel coronavirus outbreak in the U.S., the automotive industry appeared to be on the verge of collapse. First, with very few people driving, the need for personal transportation diminished greatly. As well, the mass-scale transition to remote work made cars temporarily irrelevant. Thus, if you had to guess, you might assume that Vroom (NASDAQ:VRM) and more specifically, Vroom stock, was headed toward disaster.

Source: Lori Butcher / Shutterstock.com

However, you would be wrong. Right at the time that the online car retailer had its initial public offering, key economic metrics began improving substantially. Primarily, the May jobs report saw the economy unexpectedly add 2.5 million jobs, quickly repudiating doom and gloom forecasts. Recently, the Commerce Department provided a positive shock to the financial system, revealing that May retail sales jumped nearly 18%.

Clearly, investors were in the mood for some technology-based risks. Vroom

Read More

TIME and Columbia Business School Partner to Launch a Series of Business Classes for Professional Development During Uncertain Economic Times

“The Business of Change” classes are offered on-demand and at an affordable price point, empowering individuals to expand their skill set and facilitate their own success. Support from Deluxe is helping to make this world-class education series accessible to a broader audience, including its own community of small business owners and entrepreneurs

(June 18, 2020 — New York, NY) — Today, TIME and Columbia Business School announced a first-ever partnership to offer a new series of online, on demand business classes designed to empower anyone to take control of their futures during this moment of economic uncertainty. The Business of Change classes are taught by world-renowned professors from Columbia Business School and are offered at an accessible price, through the support of corporate partner Deluxe. The classes focus on building and expanding critical skills, both in and out of the office.

The partnership unites the cutting-edge curriculum of Columbia Business

Read More

Why a recession can be a good time to start a business

What do General Motors, Burger King, CNN, Uber and Airbnb all have in common?

The were all founded during economic downturns.

GM launched in 1908, when the US economy was in turmoil after “the Panic of 1907” financial crisis. Meanwhile, Burger King flipped its first patty in 1953, when the US was again in recession, and CNN started its news broadcasts in 1980, when US inflation hit almost 15%.

For both Uber and Airbnb, they set up business during the global financial crisis of 2007-09.

These examples show that many of the best, and longest-lasting, companies are set up during downturns, according to Dane Strangler, a fellow at the Bipartisan Policy Centre, in Washington DC. He says that the difficult economic backdrop makes them both tougher and more nimble for years to come.

Airbnb launched in August 2008

“There’s this trial by fire idea,” he says. “If you get

Read More