Thesis Corner – Jack Gries

For my blog post, I had the privilege of interviewing fellow graduating senior Jack Gries about his Economics Thesis. Look below for more information about his work! I would like to thank Jack Gries for his time and energy in answering the questions below. What is the topic of your thesis? De-risking private investing into smart grid infrastructure. Basically, I looked at different ways to make investing into smart grid infrastructure more appealing to the investment community. I looked at ways to de-risk smart grid technologies so there is less variability in return. I also looked at to what threshold Continue reading Thesis Corner – Jack Gries

NFL Draft Strategy

Last night, the NFL Draft took place in Nashville, Tennessee. Football fans across the country tuned in to see if their respective teams would capitalize on this next wave of young football talent. With the coveted #1 overall pick, the Arizona Cardinals selected reigning Heisman Trophy winner Kyler Murray. Murray, who has been compared to the Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson, appears to be a promising dual threat offensive weapon for years to come. However, in the year 2005, a paper titled “The Loser’s Curse: Overconfidence vs. Market Efficiency in the National Football League Draft” was published by economist Richard Thaler. Continue reading NFL Draft Strategy

Added Utility of More Utility Choices

This past week, I attended a business seminar on campus that discussed energy markets. The lecturer discussed what she had learned as a result of her work in this market, including how geographic location influences the type of technologies one would encounter during daily work. For me, the most interesting concept that was brought up during the seminar was how the energy market operates in the state of Texas. In 2002, the Texas Senate approved a measure that would deregulate the electricity market. This deregulation would take place over several years. As a result, 85% of Texas power consumers are Continue reading Added Utility of More Utility Choices

Equal Pay Laws

The issue of the gender pay gap persists in many national conversations regarding women’s rights. April 2nd, 2019 was recognized as “Equal Pay Day.” This date symbolized how far into this year women had to work to earn what men earned last year. In 2018, Governor Inslee of Washington State signed into law the Equal Pay Opportunity Act whereby “employees are legally required to receive equal pay and career advancement opportunities, regardless of gender.” The acceptance of the gender pay gap is not without contention. A recent study conducted by SurveyMonkey finds that “46 percent of men and 30 percent of Continue reading Equal Pay Laws

Verizon’s 5G Rollout

This past Wednesday, Verizon introduced 5G capabilities in the cities of Chicago and Minneapolis. In doing so, Verizon became the first telecommunications company to serve its customers with the new technology. Although there have been complaints about spotty service and inconsistent coverage, these appear to be only temporary delays which are expected when a new technology is introduced to the public. As Verizon and other telecommunications companies optimize their 5G capabilities, the general public will be able to utilize the technology without a hitch. 5G wireless networks will prove as tremendous improvements over current 4G technologies. In fact, estimates put current Continue reading Verizon’s 5G Rollout

JUST Meat or Just “Meat”?

JUST, Inc. is a company based in San Francisco, California looking to revolutionize the food manufacturing industry. The company aims to produce “clean meat.” This type of meat does not require farming, massive slaughterhouses or abundant amounts of animal feed for food growth. Instead, JUST, Inc. is perfecting a technology that allows for the extraction of animal DNA from any one of its cells. This DNA is then replicated in a petri dish and animal muscle is grown. For example, a chicken’s DNA sequence can be extracted from a single feather, introduced into a petri dish and chicken meat can Continue reading JUST Meat or Just “Meat”?

Unequal Distributions and Price’s Law

Discussions of unequal distributions are present in most evening news segments. Calls against income inequality and wealth inequality often dominate political discussions, especially as we prepare for the upcoming election cycle. Oftentimes, there is an assumption that capitalism is the system that produces such stark differences in distribution. However, this is not the case. Price’s Law states that the square root of a given population produces 50% of the total production. The model does not prove nearly as profound in smaller populations as it does in larger populations. For example, if 10 bricks are produced in a group of 10 Continue reading Unequal Distributions and Price’s Law

Every Luxury Must Be Paid For

As Spring Training for the upcoming MLB season continues, some marquee free agents were recently signed to teams looking for future success. Manny Machado signed a 10 year contract for $300 million with the San Diego Padres. At the time of the signing, it was the largest contract ever signed by a free agent in any U.S. sport. However, he did not hold this record for long. Eight days later, another free agent player made history with the new largest free agent contract in U.S. history. Bryce Harper, now with the Philadelphia Phillies, signed for 13 years for $330 million. Major Continue reading Every Luxury Must Be Paid For

Liberty in the Name of Liberty: Forced to Bake a Cake, Eating It, and Having It Too

In 2012, two men approached Masterpiece Cakeshop to bake a cake for their same-sex wedding. Jack Phillips, owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop, refused to bake this particular cake for religious reasons. The couple went on to file a formal complaint with the Colorado Civil Rights Commission for sexual orientation discrimination. The initial ruling stated that Philips did not have a first amendment right to deny the gay couple’s request for a cake. The commission also “ordered Jack and his staff to either violate Jack’s faith by designing custom wedding cakes that celebrate same-sex marriages or stop designing all wedding cakes, which was Continue reading Liberty in the Name of Liberty: Forced to Bake a Cake, Eating It, and Having It Too

Super Low at the Super Bowl

It has now been five days since the Super Bowl. The New England Patriots, led by Bill Belichick and Tom Brady, went on to beat the Los Angeles Rams to win their sixth league championship. The game, held in Atlanta, Georgia, was the lowest scoring NFL championship in league history with both teams combining for a total of 16 points. The score was not the only low point at Mercedes Benz Stadium, however. This past season, the ownership of the Atlanta Falcons decided to slash concession prices during home football games. Fans could purchase a beer for $5 and a Continue reading Super Low at the Super Bowl