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Pop Culture Drinks Surge in Popularity


iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Like a particularly enjoyable form of Inception, you can now drink your Game of Thrones beer while you watch...Game of Thrones. Or, sip on 50 Shades of Grey wine while you read the book (or watch the movie trailer, for that matter), or Downton Abbey wine while you binge on the British series. The list goes on.In recent months, instances of branded drinks have skyrocketed, and people are drinking them up.Ommegang Brewery was approached by HBO -- the network behind G

Pittsburgh Restaurant Serves Food of Countries in Conflict with US


iStock/Thinkstock(PITTSBURGH) -- There are things you don't talk about at the dinner table, and politics is one of them. But political conversation is encouraged at one restaurant in Pennsylvania. Indeed, it inspires the cuisine.Welcome to Conflict Kitchen, a takeout spot in Pittsburgh that only serves food from countries in conflict with the United States.Created by Jon Rubin and Dawn Weleski, Conflict Kitchen features a rotating menu of food native to countries like Cuba, North Korea (Manduguk

How 'the Cloud' Works, Why So Many People Are Perplexed by It


iStock Editorial/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- You’re probably using "the cloud" already and just don’t know it.While most people have heard of the mysterious "cloud," only 29 percent say they use it, according to a report from nScreenMedia.However, the report finds that 90 percent of broadband users in the U.S. are aware of cloud services.The disparity between the number of people who use cloud storage and the number of people who say they have heard of it suggests that more people are li

These Companies Reward You for Being Yourself


iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Your mother may have encouraged you to be yourself, but the advice has never meant quite as much as it does day. A growing number of apps now promise users real-life rewards on the basis of their virtual profiles.Launched earlier this year, Hotelied is a booking site that prompts users to build profiles that add up to a "travel persona" -- social followings, professional credentials and hotel-loyalty programs are all accounted for. By leveraging that data to partic

Twitter Has Growing Influence on Movie-Going Habits


iStock Editorial/ Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Twitter is putting more butts in movie seats.Although attendance at the movies is not as robust as in recent summers, a new Nielsen survey suggests that if Hollywood wants to boost sales, it should latch on to the growing social media site.According to the survey, some 87 percent of Twitter users claim that their decision to go to a current movie was influenced by reading others' tweets.Meanwhile, 88 percent of Twitter users say that tweets about movies

Don't Bet Your Bottom Dollar When Making a Purchase


iStock/Thinkstock(AUSTIN, Texas) -- Everyone’s heard of “buyer’s remorse.” However, researchers from three colleges may have come up with a different way of explaining why we sometimes kick ourselves after making a purchase.The researchers from University of Arkansas, University of Texas at Austin and University of South Carolina say it may be derived from something they call the “bottom dollar effect” -- that is, our purchases are less pleasurable when we&rsq

Guess Which Men Do Better in Business Negotiations


iStock/Thinkstock(RIVERSIDE, Calif.) -- Men, do you really want to be the owner of a wide face?Before you answer, researchers at the University of California, Riverside's School of Business Administration say guys with wider faces have an advantage when it comes to negotiating for more money or closing a business deal.In one of a series of simulated exercises, wider-faced men got signing bonuses that were $2,200 more than their narrow-faced counterparts.When attempting to sell a chemical plant t

American Airlines Reports Record Quarterly Profit


Joe Raedle/Getty Images(FORTH WORTH, Texas) -- American Airlines reported record quarterly earnings Thursday, detailing a net profit of $1.5 billion -- a record for any quarter in company history, according to airline representatives. The American Airlines Group announced a record GAAP net profit of $864  million, compared to $220 million in the second quarter of 2013, which was prior to its merger with US Airways.  "We are very pleased to report the highest quarterly profit in the his

Walmart US Names Greg Foran Next President, CEO


Walmart(NEW YORK) -- Retail giant Walmart announced a new president and chief executive officer for U.S. operations Thursday, naming Greg Foran as the successor to Bill Simon. Simon, who has held the role since June 2010, is expected to "transition" out of the company and assume consulting responsibilities for the next six months, according to a statement from Walmart. Foran, 53, takes over on Aug. 9 and will report to Walmart President and CEO, Doug McMillon. “Greg is one of the most tale

Stocks Mixed Following Jobless Claims, Home Sale Figures


iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Stock prices ended the day mixed on Wall Street Thursday, following good news on jobless claims and mixed quarterly earnings results from several companies. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost three points, finishing at 17083.80, the Nasdaq Composite fell two points at 4472.11, and the S&P 500 gained one to end at 1987.98. Investors received positive news regarding jobs, with the Labor Department reporting that weekly applications for unemployment benefits dr

New Home Sales Plummet 8.1% in June


iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- The number of Americans purchasing new homes took a big plunge last month.The Commerce Department reported on Thursday that sales of newly built homes dropped by more than 8 percent in June to 406,000."The numbers are definitely a little disappointing. I think it's important to keep it in perspective. Part of the drop is from an abnormally high May figure," said Robert Denk, a senior economist with the National Association of Home Builders.In another bit of bad n

Why Recalls Haven't Dented GM's Sales


Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- GM's 29 million recalled cars since January is costing the car company more than $1 billion, but the company's varying fleet of vehicles have prompted a steady sales growth, according to the company’s quarterly earnings.Despite huge falling profits at the company largely due to the recall and legal expenses, customers are still buying lots of GM cars, according to the car manufacturer's report Thursday."GM would have had an outstanding quarter had

Christian Louboutin Debuts $50 Nail Polish


Christian Louboutin(NEW YORK) -- Christian Louboutin is best known for his signature red-soled stilettos. But the most recent creation from the French designer delivers a different kind of lift.Earlier this week, Louboutin revealed his first foray into the beauty industry. The craftsman announced a range of nail polishes in the pages of Women's Wear Daily.Each bottle of Rouge Louboutin contains less than half an ounce of the luxury lacquer and will retail for $50.But what the collection lacks in

Profits Plunge at General Motors


Joe Raedle/Getty Images(DETROIT) -- The troubles continue for General Motors, as the automaker on Thursday reported an 80 percent drop in second quarter profits from this time last year.GM had previously announced it will pay $400 million to the victims of its defective ignition switches after a wave of lawsuits and $1.5 billion paid out in fines. The company is now facing some immediate financial repercussions of the more than 29 million cars it has recalled since January. However, overall sale

Jobless Claims Down to Lowest Level in Eight Years


iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- Jobless claims fell last week, decreasing by 19,000, according to the latest figures released Thursday by the Labor Department.For the week ending July 19, the number of people filing for benefits dropped to 284,000 -- the lowest level for initial claims since February 18, 2006. The previous week, claims stood at a revised level of 303,000.The Labor Department said there were no "special factors" impacting this week's figures.The four-week moving average fell to

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