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Fiat Chrysler and France’s Renault are reportedly in advanced talks to forge partnership

A row of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) 2017 Crysler Pacifica minivan vehicles are displayed for sale at a car dealership in Moline, Illinois, on Saturday, July 1, 2017.

Daniel Acker | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Fiat Chrysler and France’s Renault are in advanced talks to forge extensive ties in the face of sweeping changes to the global auto industry, according to a report in The Financial Times.

The collaboration could bring the Italian-American carmaker into the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance, according to The Financial Times, although the other members — like Japan’s Nissan — would have to be won over. 

The discussions could still fall apart, sources told The Financial Times. Once source told the newspaper that Nissan has had no involvement in the talks so far. 

The Financial Times reported in March that Renault planned to take up merger talks with Nissan within the year, and then potentially acquire Fiat Chrysler.

Fiat Chrysler’s chief executive, Mike Manley, previously told the FT: “If there’s a partnership, merger, relationship that makes us stronger, then I’m absolutely open to looking at it.”

If Fiat Chrysler were added to the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance, which dates back to 1999, it would become the largest global carmaker, with 15.6 million combined sales a year. The current leader, Volkswagen, sold 10.8 million last year.

Read the full story in the Financial Times


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He moved to a jungle in India to escape his giant student debt — and he’s not alone

Chadd Haag said he left the United States to escape his student debt. Now he lives in India.

Source: Chadd Haag

Chad Haag considered living in a cave to escape his student debt. He had a friend doing it. But after some plotting, he settled on what he considered a less risky plan. This year, he relocated to a jungle in India. “I’ve put America behind me,” Haag, 29, said.

Today he lives in a concrete house in the village of Uchakkada for $50 a month. His backyard is filled with coconut trees and chickens. “I saw four elephants just yesterday,” he said, adding that he hopes never to set foot in a Walmart again.

More than 9,000 miles away from Colorado, Haag said, his student loans don’t feel real anymore. “It’s kind of like, if a tree falls in the woods and no one hears it, does it really exist?” he said.

Some student loan borrowers are packing their bags and fleeing from the U.S. to other countries, where the cost of living is often lower and debt collectors wield less power over them. Although there is no national data on how many people have left the United States because of student debt, borrowers tell their stories of doing so in Facebook groups and Reddit channels and how-to advice is offered on personal finance websites.

“It may be an issue we see an uptick in if the trends keep up,” said Barmak Nassirian, director of federal relations at the American Association of State Colleges and Universities.

Outstanding student debt in the U.S. has tripled over the last decade and is projected to swell to $2 trillion by 2022. Average debt at graduation is currently around $30,000, up from an inflation-adjusted $16,000 in the early 1990s. Meanwhile, salaries for new bachelor degree recipients, also accounting for inflation, have remained almost flat over the last few decades.

Chad Haag at 1 years old. He grew up in Colorado. 

Source: Chad Haag

Haag’s student loan balance of around $20,000 isn’t as large as the burden shouldered by many other borrowers, but, he said, his difficultly finding a college-level job in the U.S. has made that debt oppressive nonetheless.

“If you’re not making a living wage,” he said, “$20,000 in debt is devastating.”

He struggled to come up with the $300 a month he owed upon graduation. The first work he found after he left the University of Northern Colorado in 2011 — when the recession’s effects were still palpable — was on-again, off-again hours at a factory, unloading trucks and constructing toy rockets on an assembly line. He then went back to school to pursue a master’s degree in comparative literature at the University of Colorado Boulder. After that, he tried to make it as an adjunct professor, but still he could barely scrape a living together with the one class a semester he was assigned.

Haag had some hope restored when he landed full-time work as a medical courier in Denver, delivering urine and blood samples to hospitals. However, he was disappointed to find that he brought home just $1,700 a month. He had little money left over after he paid his student loan bill. He couldn’t afford an apartment in the city, where rents have been rising sharply. He lived with his mother and rarely went out with friends.

“I couldn’t make the math work in America,” Haag said.

Milestones that seemed like pipe dreams back home, like starting a family,and owning a house, are now on his horizon in India. Last year, he married an Indian citizen, a professor at a local college. He has a five-year spousal visa.

If you’re not making a living wage, $20,000 in debt is devastating.

Adjusting to a new country, he admitted, has not been entirely easy.

“Some toilets here are holes in the ground you squat over,” Haag said. Recently, he ate spoiled goat meat at a local restaurant and landed in the emergency room.

Still, he said, “I have a higher standard of living in a Third World country than I would in America, because of my student loans.”

Chad Haag with his wife at their wedding this year. 

Source: Chris Haag

Moving to another country to escape student debt is risky, experts say. If the person wants or needs to return to the United States, they’ll find their loan balance has only grown while they were gone, thanks to compound interest, collection charges and late fees.

Total Student Loan Balances by Age Group chart 180913

Although the Education Department typically can’t garnish someone’s wages if they’re working for a company outside of the United States, it can take up to 15 percent of their Social Security benefits when they start collecting.

“The loans do not disappear when you become an expat,” said Mark Kantrowitz, a student loan expert.

The Education Department did not respond to a request for comment.

Chad Albright hasn’t checked his student loan account in eight years.

Source: Chad Albright

Chad Albright attended Millersville University, in Pennsylvania, where he studied communications and history. He graduated as the Great Recession was beginning in December 2007, and couldn’t find anyone to hire him in his chosen field. “I went to interview after interview after interview,” Albright, 39, said.

Still, he had $30,000 in student loans and was soon faced with a monthly bill of around $400. Unable to support himself, he moved in with his parents in Lancaster and worked as a pizza deliveryman. “There was anger,” Albright said. “I couldn’t believe I couldn’t find a job in America.”

He fell behind on his student loans and feared the Education Department would garnish his wages.

Albright’s credit score tanked as a result of his repayment troubles, making it difficult for him to buy a car and to land certain jobs, since some employers now pull credit reports. “I feel that college ruined my life,” Albright said.

“I’m much happier in Ukraine,” said Albright.

Source: Chad Albright

Seeing no future for himself in the United States, he decided to move to China in 2011. In the city of Zhongshan, he discovered he loved teaching students English. Unlike when he was delivering greasy boxes of pizza, he found his work meaningful and fulfilling.

Though he earned just around $1,000 a month in China, the school where he was teaching covered most of his rent and the cost of living was much lower than in Pennsylvania.

A few years later, Albright moved to Ukraine, where he is now a permanent resident. He first taught in Kiev and now does so in Odessa, a port city on the Black Sea. He has no plans to return to the United States. “I am much happier in Ukraine,” he said, adding that he hasn’t checked his student loan account in nearly eight years.

There are more reasonable ways of dealing with student debt, said Nassirian, at the American Association of State Colleges and Universities.

Struggling borrowers should enter into one of the government’s income-based repayment plans instead, in which their monthly bill will be capped at a portion of their income, he said. Some payments wind up being as little as $0 a month.

But the fact that people are taking this drastic measure should bring scrutiny to the larger student loan system, said Alan Collinge, founder of Student Loan Justice.

“Any rational person who learns that people are fleeing the country as a result of their student loan debt will conclude that something has gone horribly awry with this lending system,” Collinge said.

“I try not to think about America,” Williams said. “It’s heartbreaking.”

Source: Katrina Williams

Katrina Williams was in a rush to find a job after she graduated from the University of South Alabama in 2013. She was looking at a monthly student loan bill of $700.

“I had to take whatever I could so I could pay on the loans,” Williams said.

She picked up multiple jobs, as a part-time barista at Starbucks, a substitute teacher and a delivery-woman for the United States Postal Service. At one point, she worked full time at a call center for Sears.

“I was working every day,” Williams said. “I had enough money left over to put gas in the car.”

She lived with her mother and couldn’t afford health insurance.

Williams had a friend who had moved to Japan, and the idea of leaving the United States grew on her. In 2015, she moved to Chiba, also to teach English to students. “I love my work,” she said. Her job sponsors her visa.


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How the ‘Change Generation’ Is Motivating Businesses to Commit to Sustainability

People under age 30 identify “climate change and the destruction of nature” as the world’s most urgent problem.

4 min read

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

As climate change intensifies, what’s under-recognized in the global debate is that one of the most powerful antidotes to the escalating destruction is also one of the simplest and most affordable: trees.

Trees absorb more than two billion tons of carbon globally every year — equivalent to one third of annual fossil fuel emissions, while cleaning our air and protecting our precious drinking water. Just one acre of hardwood trees can offset the entire carbon footprint of 18 people. Each tree we plant is a stalwart protector of our planet, but leading experts warn we’re not planting enough trees to mitigate the impact of a changing climate.

Between 1990 when scientists from around the world gathered for the World Climate Conference in Geneva and 2017, carbon emissions increased 163 percent. During this same period, diplomats crisscrossed the globe again and again, negotiating the Kyoto Protocol, the Rio de Janeiro Earth Summit and the Paris Climate Accord. Yet carbon emissions have continued to skyrocket.

Related: It’s Official: Customers Prefer Sustainable Companies

Billions have also been invested in renewable energies to replace fossil fuels. These non-carbon energy sources show great promise, but after decades of concerted effort, renewable energies – like wind and solar power – account for only 20 percent of total energy consumption worldwide.

These solutions alone have not been successful.

A future that’s coming into sharp focus — of a planet with unbreathable air, polluted water, and devastated parks and forests — is landing most powerfully with young professionals. People under age 30 identify “climate change and the destruction of nature” as the world’s most urgent problem, ahead of war and inequality, according to global surveys by the World Economic Forum in 2017 in 186 countries.

Related: Amazon Employees Call for a Company-Wide Climate Change Plan

Dubbed the Change Generation, Gen Z and younger millennials are taking over the global workforce. Increasingly, they seek employment with socially responsible companies committed to a greater purpose. Nearly 90 percent of millennials would consider taking a pay cut to work at a company whose mission and values align with their own, according to LinkedIn’s 2018 Workplace Culture Trends report. Further, 89 percent expect employers to provide hands-on activities around environmental responsibilities in the workplace.

Will a global movement from these activist employees who comprise nearly 30 percent of the workforce compel businesses to find real solutions for climate change? Will the competition for talent drive more and more companies to take a hard look at what they can do to attract and retain these eco-focused workers?

If so, tree planting and what it represents is a corporate social responsibility (CSR) pathway that any business can adopt and scale to create authentic employee engagement opportunities. You don’t need to be a multinational corporation to do it; even a single tree can have impact, absorbing as much as 48 pounds of carbon dioxide every year. A 10-employee start-up can participate and contribute easily and cost-effectively.

A global awakening to the urgent need to plant more trees is already underway. Reforestation of historic proportion is transforming the landscape in many countries, notably in China, India and most recently Australia, which earlier this year committed to a massive tree planting program that will continue for decades.

Related: The Far-Reaching Impact of Embedding a Sustainable Workplace Culture for World Earth Day — Today!

The Arbor Day Foundation is proud to be part of this broad global crusade. Our new Time for Trees™ initiative pledges us and our corporate partners to plant 100 million trees worldwide by the year 2022. The companies that have joined us range from small businesses on the cusp of expansion to global brands with deep sustainability roots; all are connected by a common passion to preserve our planet.

Companies that commit to sustainability efforts like tree planting enjoy not only increased brand loyalty – and in turn, increased sales, but a more committed, engaged workforce that recognizes their employer shares their values and reflects a greater vision for a healthier planet.

Together we can address the most critical challenge we all face, provide powerful experiences for employees and plant a better future for all of us, one tree at a time.

Source: Entrepreneur
Author: Dan Lambe

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The Most Important Trait Shared by Successful Athletes and Entrepreneurs

Trying to becoming a professional baseball player gave Lukas Krause the tools to become a successful real estate entrepreneur.

1 min read

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Lukas Krause, real estate entrepreneur and author of The Business of You, sits down to discuss the lessons he learned during his quest to make the major leagues in baseball, and how his gameday preparation has helped him to thrive in the real estate industry.

Krause chats with the host of The Playbook, David Meltzer, about how he landed in the New York Mets’ organization despite not playing college baseball and how he was able to reinvent himself as a baseball player while working a full-time job. The pair discuss how to separate yourself from your competitors, the importance of pushing your limits and lessons entrepreneurs can learn from Krause’s book.

Related: How Philanthropy Drives This Billion-Dollar Liquor Brand

Source: Entrepreneur
Author: David Meltzer

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Microsoft, once considered a stodgy software maker, has outperformed tech unicorns since 2015

A man wearing an unicorn costume plays at a computer during the Intel Extreme Masters Katowice 2019 event in Katowice on March 2, 2019.


In November 2015, tech investor Marc Andreessen weighed in on a hot debate about whether Silicon Valley’s start-ups were frothy from all the cash propping up so-called unicorns, or venture-backed companies valued at $1 billion or more.

Andreessen noted at a Fortune conference that the whole class of billion-dollar start-ups, headlined by Uber and Airbnb, was “worth half of Microsoft, ” and he opined on the hypothetical choice of investing in Microsoft or the “basket of unicorns.”

He suggested the unicorns were a better value.

“As a basket, it’s almost certainly too low,” Andreessen, co-founder of Andreessen Horowitz, told Fortune’s Alan Murray. “Microsoft’s a fine company, but you need a couple to really take off, and it becomes very clear in retrospect that they’re under-valued.”

(Microsoft was actually worth $433 billion at the time, and the unicorns were valued at a combined $504 billion, according to the Wall Street Journal’s “Billion dollar start-up club” tracker. Andreessen, through a spokesperson, declined to comment.)

In the long run, Andreessen could still be right. But three and a half years after those comments, the straight Microsoft bet would have yielded stronger returns than the non-existent unicorn index.

Since Andreessen’s session on Nov. 3, 2015, Microsoft shares have gained 133%, closing on Friday at $126.24. The value of unicorns over that stretch, based on the Journal’s tracker, has climbed by 89%, with a good chunk of the value creation coming from companies that have since gone public or been acquired.

The start-up group has still done fine against the broader market, solidly beating the S&P 500, which is up 34%.

But Andreessen’s view reflected both the tendency for Silicon Valley investors to downplay the ability for Microsoft (and probably other mega-cap tech companies) to continue growing in the face of stiffer competition, and their willingness to pay up for companies that in many cases were years away from being able to justify their price tags.

Source: CNBC

For example, ride-hailing company Uber was valued at $55 billion at the time, and is now only at $68 billion following its IPO this month. Investors valued Snap at $16 billion in late 2015, and the company’s inability to find a profitable business model since its 2017 IPO has left it worth $15 billion on the public market. Pinterest went public in April and has a market cap of $12.9 billion, up just a bit from its $11 billion valuation in 2015. Dropbox has slipped from $10 billion then to a market value of $9.4 billion now.

Microsoft, meanwhile, is cranking out earnings from its dominant Windows products and its ability to push legacy clients to emerging cloud products like Azure and Office 365. Under CEO Satya Nadella, Microsoft has recorded eight straight quarters of year-over-year double-digit sales growth. In April, it became the third public company to reach a $1 trillion market cap, though it’s fallen some since then.

There have also been plenty of solid gains within the unicorn basket, many coming from enterprise software companies. Twilio, Zscaler and Okta have been some of the best-performing tech stocks since their fairly recent IPOs, and others like MuleSoft and GitHub were acquired for huge premiums. (In a fitting bit of irony, Microsoft bought GitHub for $7.5 billion in June 2018, paying nearly four times GitHub’s last reported valuation.)

Andreessen has benefited handsomely from some of these, including Okta and GitHub. His firm was also an early investor in Lyft, which was worth $2.5 billion in November 2015, and now has a market cap of $16.9 billion.

On the downside, there are several significant companies that have lost value since late 2015 and others that are in limbo. Palantir, for example, was valued at $20 billion, and Bloomberg reported on Friday that the data analytics company has pushed out its IPO likely to next year. Meanwhile, its private market valuation is flat.

And the worst performer? No contest there. Theranos was worth $9 billion in November 2015, and today the blood-testing company no longer exists, while founder Elizabeth Holmes and former president Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani are awaiting trial and potential jail time on fraud charges.

Here are a few significant themes from the unicorn data:

  • Biggest companies have hardly budged: As mentioned earlier, the IPOs of some of the biggest companies in the group — Uber, Snap and Pinterest — have done little for investors. China’s Xiaomi, which was second on the 2015 list at $46 billion, has actually lost significant value since going public in Hong Kong last year.
  • Enterprise IPO excitement: Twilio went public in 2016 and is now worth $16.8 billion, up from $1 billion in 2015. Okta has gone from $1.2 billion to $12.4 billion, Zscaler from $1 billion to $9.1 billion and Coupa from $1 billion to $6.8 billion. Slack isn’t yet public, but secondary investors are valuing it at as much as $17 billion, up from $2.8 billion in 2015. Among consumer companies to go public, Lyft has provided the best return for 2015 investors, going from $2.5 billion to $16.9 billion, followed by Spotify, which has jumped to from $8.5 billion to $21.6 billion. Adyen, an Amsterdam-based payments company, has a stock market value of $21 billion in Europe, up from $2.3 billion.
  • M&A: MuleSoft went public before getting snapped up by Salesforce last year for $6.5 billion, up from $1.5 billion in 2015. GitHub was worth $2 billion then and was purchased by Microsoft in 2018 for $7.5 billion. Qualtrics, previously valued at $1 billion, was headed for an IPO late last year before SAP bought it for $8 billion. Online retailer was acquired for $3.3 billion by Walmart in 2016, more than doubling its $1.4 billion valuation.
  • Private but gaining value on paper: Some companies could still be overvalued, but we don’t know yet because they remain private and continue to attract capital. China’s ride-hailing giant Didi Chuxing has jumped from $16 billion to $55 billion. Elon Musk’s SpaceX has climbed from $12 billion to $31.5 billion. WeWork is now at $44 billion, up from $10 billion.
  • Flameouts and disappointments: Theranos went from $9 billion to zero, but it’s not the only bust. Digital media company Mode Media shut down in 2016 after achieving a $1 billion valuation. Shazam was valued at $1 billion but sold to Apple last year for $400 million. Blue Apron was worth $2 billion, but has lost more than 90% of its value to $144.5 million.

WATCH: An IPO of IPOs could be about to hit the market. Is the unicorn mania a sign of the top?


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Mega Millions jackpot soars to $418 million. Here’s how much the winner would owe in taxes


Mega Millions Jackpot estimated at $540 million dollars.

Getty Images

The Mega Millions jackpot has spilled over $400 million and would be the ninth largest winning since the game began in 2002

With no one hitting the right numbers Friday night, the next drawing on Tuesday is at  $418 million.

The top prize has been climbing for more than two months now. Your chance of wining is 1 in about 302 million. 

For Tuesday night’s Mega Millions drawing, the cash option — which most winners go with — is $263.3 million.

The 24% federal tax withholding would reduce that amount by $63.1 million. However, the top marginal tax rate of 37% means owing a lot more to the IRS at tax time.

Assuming you had no reduction to your taxable income — such as large charitable contributions — another 13%, or $34.2 million, would be due to the IRS. That would be $97.3 million in all going to Uncle Sam.

This means that after federal taxes, you’d be left with $166 million.

Then there are state taxes, which range from zero to more than 8% depending on where the ticket was purchased and where the winner lives.

Nevertheless, the after-tax amount would be life changing. Experts say large lottery winners should assemble a team of experienced professionals — an attorney, a tax advisor and a financial advisor — to help navigate the windfall.

The last time there was a top-prize winner was on March 28, when a Wisconsin man nabbed a $768.4 million jackpot. Manuel Franco, who claimed his haul in late April, chose the lump sum cash option of $477 million. After federal and state tax withholdings, he received $326 million.

CNBC’s Sarah O’Brien contributed to this report.

More from Personal Finance:
Younger generations say ‘I don’t’ to high-cost engagement rings
Layaway loans are back, with a new look
These are the 10 most affordable vacations in the US


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Trump claims stock market would be 10,000 points higher if Fed didn’t raise interest rates

President Donald Trump looks on as his nominee for the chairman of the Federal Reserve Jerome Powell takes to the podium during a press event in the Rose Garden at the White House, November 2, 2017 in Washington, DC.

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President Donald Trump criticized the Federal Reserve for raising interest rates, claiming that economic growth in the U.S. would have been higher than 3% and the stock market would be 7,000 to 10,000 points higher. 

“But they wanted to raise interest rates,” Trump said, according to CNN. “You’ll explain that to me.”

Trump was speaking at a meeting of Japanese business leaders in Tokyo during his state visit to Japan on Saturday. 

The Fed raised rates four times in 2018, but pivoted after markets fell late last year. The central bank held rates steady at its March meeting and minutes released last week showed it does not expect any hikes “for some time.”

Trump has repeatedly criticized the Fed for raising rates, singling out Chairman Jerome Powell for criticism. In April, the president called for the central bank to lower rates by one percentage point and to implement more quantitative easing. 

After a strong start to 2019, the stock market has become volatile after U.S.-China trade talks collapsed and Trump escalated the trade war with Beijing.  

Trump has increased tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods, threatened to slap tariffs on all remaining Chinese imports to the U.S. and has blacklisted key Chinese tech company Huawei. 

Though the Dow closed up 95.22 points at 25,585.69 on Friday, it was still down 0.7% for the week. That marks the Dow’s fifth consecutive weekly decline, its longest streak since 2011.

And J.P Morgan economists, meanwhile, have slashed their second-quarter growth forecasts to just 1% amid uncertainty over the outcome of the trade war. That forecast is down from the bank’s previous expectation of 2.25% and nowhere near the 3.2% growth reported in the first quarter.


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How Entrepreneurs Can Manage Their Health Like They’re Managing a Fortune 500 Company

The principles of building a billion dollar company or body are the same.

4 min read

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

When it comes to a club that many entrepreneurs dream of joining, it’s getting into the Fortune 500.

If you look at all of the Fortune 500 companies, you’ll notice that they share similar characteristics — adaptability, long-term focus, people-centric, clear communication, continuous growth and, last but not least, a clear vision.

Reviewing a handful of Fortune 500 companies, I noticed the similarities needed to succeed in the business arena were the same principles necessary to succeed with your health. I consult with a lot of entrepreneurs who don’t have the energy they want or are looking to lose those stubborn pounds so they can perform better.

As I remind them, to succeed long term with their health requires the same principles that were used to build their business up. In essence, they should treat their body like a Fortune 500 company. In a business, generating profit is a necessity — money is a businesses oxygen. Knowing this, one of the first things a business does is create a targeted marketing campaign to sell their products and services.

It’s no different with your health. Here are the three steps to get started building your billion dollar body (and company).

1. Craft strategies based on your intended result.

In business, you want to increase revenue. Therefore, deciding on a target audience with specific ways of communicating to them is the first step in line. A business may pick two marketing channels such as email and Facebook to stay consistent with.

With your health, perhaps your goal is to lose 20 pounds, have more energy, and perform better. You know your target, but what are the vehicles (i.e. marketing channels) to get you there. To keep things simple for the time being, focus on the core four factors:

  • Committing to a consistent exercise regimen
  • Getting the proper amount of rest (typically seven to nine hours)
  • Reducing stress by meditation, yoga, or some other method
  • Adopting a healthy eating regimen based on your genetics, personality, goals and unique lifestyle

Related: How to Escape From the Prison of Negative Thinking

2. Keep your expenses in check and spend only when necessary.

Making money is important, but keeping it is also important. After all, it means very little if you’re making seven figures but have seven figures in expenses. Track of your expenses to see where your money is going. For example, with marketing campaigns, such as Facebook ads, know your cost of acquisition.

A Fortune 500 company on its way to growth didn’t throw the kitchen sink of activities all at once. Instead, they meticulous implemented key actions along the way. The same principle applies to your health. Keep it basic and simple until you reach either a plateau or a threshold to expand. For example, I often see people who want to lose 20 pounds. They will start Day 1 on an ultra-restrictive eating regimen. They will lose weight but eventually reach a plateau.

What happens then? You can’t cut your calories any lower. The goal in health, much like in business, is to get maximum results from minimum resources to keep the margins wide.

Related: 9 Proven Ways to Lose Weight for Busy People

3. Outsource tasks to free up time and energy

Every morning, you start off with 100 percent of energy (think a fully charged iPhone in the green). Throughout the day, this naturally goes down and will rapidly go down if you find yourself committing to too many tasks. This is why maximizing your time and energy are of the highest priority for you.

To maximize those things, top entrepreneurs delegate a majority of tasks in business to other people who can do it better than them or it simply isn’t a high ROI activity for them.

In health, odds are, you aren’t highly interested in learning all the small nuances concerning nutrition and physiology. You simply want more energy, to perform better, and feel better. In this case, outsourcing your nutrition and health regimen to others who know it better is ideal as it helps you conserve energy and save time.

Related: 3 Surprising Reasons Entrepreneurs Consistently Fail With Healthy Eating

Look into meal delivery services that will guarantee you stay on track with your eating.

It’s easy to get side-tracked and fall into a rabbit hole or suffer from the information overload of tactics and strategies concerning health and business. However, it doesn’t need to be this way. Success doesn’t require complexity, success requires a ruthless focus and daily execution of the fundamentals.

Source: Entrepreneur
Author: Julian Hayes II

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NFL Agrees to Study Medical Marijuana for Pain Management

The NFL has been slow to allow ailing players an alternative to opioid painkillers.

3 min read

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As part of effort to study “a variety of pain-management issues and strategies for players,” the National Football League and the NFL Player’s Association have agreed to form two new joint medical committees, with a particular focus on marijuana as a pain management tool. This move could represent a potential shift in the NFL’s long-held taboo around cannabis, reports Mark Maske of The Washington Post.

The news is revealing ahead of the two sides engaging in upcoming Collective Bargaining Agreement negotiations. Previous reports have indicated the NFL would be willing to make concessions around marijuana in the CBA, and this latest move could be a step toward that goal.

Related: Cannabis Offers Battered Pro Athletes Both Hope and Healing

While 10 states have legalized cannabis for adult use and 33 states for medicinal purposes, marijuana remains a banned substance in the NFL. Players still undergo marijuana testing and receive suspension if those tests prove positive. Though these two new committees are not solely focused on marijuana, their goal “will include a review of teams’ policies and practices for the use of prescription medication by players,” according to the Post.

The committees will each focus on different areas of research: one for pain management and the other for mental health and wellness. A prescription drug monitoring program will provide the pain management committee with reports “that will monitor all prescriptions issued to NFL players by club physicians and unaffiliated physicians.” This practice, according to the league’s chief medical officer, Allen Sills, is “happening throughout medicine, not just in the NFL.”

“We’re asking our pain management committee to bring us any and all suggestions,” Sills told the Washington Post. “We’ll look at marijuana.”

Related: Here’s the Medical Cannabis Super Bowl Ad CBS Refused to Run

More former players in recent years have been outspoken about the league’s need to engage in honest dialogue around medical marijuana. Former superstar receiver Calvin Johnson, who is a “true believer” in cannabis,” is now entering the marijuana business with his former teammate Robert Sims. Meanwhile, former running back Tiki Barber recently launched an investment firm that guides marijuana startups through the tricky legal requirements of the young cannabis industry. He told FOX Business the NFL’s marijuana drug tests were notoriously easy to beat.

Still, any official changes to the league’s drug policy will have to go through official channels, like the CBA, which will expire following the 2020 season.

Source: Entrepreneur
Author: Brendan Bures

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Kurt Cobain’s pizza plate sold for $22,400. Here’s more celebrity garbage that sold for big money.

Kurt Cobain’s paper plate sold at auction for $22,400.

Source: Julien’s Auctions

One person’s trash is another person’s treasure, as the saying goes. This was proven on May 18, when a paper plate was sold by Julien’s Auctions for $22,400.

But this wasn’t just any old paper plate. No less a celebrity than late Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain had eaten a piece of pizza off of it, then wrote the band’s setlist on it for their April 23, 1990 performance at Washington, D.C.’s 9:30 Club.

If that seems either excessive or unusual, it isn’t. While it’s true that many celebrity artifacts that make it to Sotheby’s or Christie’s are more valuable in their pristine, flawless condition, it’s also true that some which reach the auction block are things that almost anyone would throw away, frequently for sanitary reasons.

Here’s a look at some of the items that celebrities left behind, and fans fished out of the garbage, to sell for unexpectedly large sums of money.

Britney Spears’ partially eaten food: $520

In 2006, pop siren Britney Spears and then-husband Kevin Federline supposedly ate an egg salad sandwich and a corn dog, respectively, at a catered affair at an unidentified hotel. The “Oops!… I Did It Again” singer didn’t finish her sandwich and Federline didn’t finish his corn dog, but when the server came to take away their plates, Spears took a bite of the corn dog, saying, “I can’t let that go to waste.”

The server put the unfinished foodstuffs on Australian eBay and after 43 bids, the Golden Palace Casino emerged victorious, winning the leftovers for $520, according to NBC’s Today show website.

Justin Timberlake’s abandoned french toast: $1,025

In 2000, Justin Timberlake, then still a member of the boy band ‘N Sync, was the subject of a morning interview on New York City radio station Z-100. He was fed French Toast, which he did not finish, and after the interview a station employee put the food on eBay, where 19-year-old fan Kathy Summers of Madison, WI snapped it up for $1,025.

“I’ll probably freeze-dry it, then seal it… then put it on my dresser,” Summers said when asked what she planned to do with the leftovers. As to why the French Toast was unfinished in the first place, Entertainment Weekly reported that she said it looked “a little bit on the burnt side.”

Britney Spears’ used pregnancy test: $5,001

In 2005, a year before her unfinished egg salad sandwich sold for hundreds of dollars, Britney Spears and Kevin Federline stayed at a Los Angeles hotel, where she supposedly used a home pregnancy test. She is said to have left it in the bathroom garbage, but that didn’t stop it from somehow winding up in the hands of the Morning Hot Tub show on the Hot 89.9 radio station in Ottawa.

As with her egg salad sandwich, the Golden Palace Casino won the bidding war once again but this time, it cost them $5,001, nearly ten times what they had paid for the sandwich. According to CNN, proceeds from the sale went to the Candlelighters Childhood Cancer Foundation and the Easter Seal Society.

Scarlett Johansen’s used tissue: $5,300

In 2008, “Avengers: Endgame” star Scarlett Johansen appeared on the “Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” even though she was suffering from a cold. Leno offered her a tissue, she blew her nose into it, then put it in a baggie and signed it.

The diseased tissue showed up on eBay shortly thereafter, where it fetched a winning bid of $5,300, which was donated to the charity USA Harvest. It was not the first time Johansen had lent her star power to charity – BBC News added that earlier that same year, a fan had paid £20,000 for a 20-minute date with her, with all proceeds going to Oxfam.

Elvis Presley’s empty quaalude bottle: $8,320

Elvis Presley may have left this mortal plane 42 years ago, but the effort to make money off of his belongings lives on. Those belongings aren’t limited just to iconic items like his cape or jumpsuit either – in 2016, his empty prescription pill bottle for Quaaludes was sold at Julien’s Auctions for $8,320.

Dated January 20, 1977, the prescription was given to him by Dr. George C. Nichopoulos, known colloquially as “Dr. Nick.” According to Julien’s Auctions, it came from the home of Dr. Elias Ghanem, who treated Presley when he was in Las Vegas, and whose estate provided the auction house with a letter of authenticity.

Lady Gaga’s acrylic fingernail: $13,000

In 2012, singer Lady Gaga was performing at Aviva Stadium in Dublin when one of the black acrylic fingernails that she was wearing came off. The nail, which was designed by artist Aya Fukuda, was retrieved by a crew member when Lady Gaga’s performance was over.

The fingernail was put up for auction and according to E! News, the winning bidder paid $13,000 for the nail. The listing said that the bidder also won a photograph of Lady Gaga onstage at the event, minus the fingernail.

John Lennon’s tooth: $31,200

Beatlemania has been known to drive fans to extreme measures, and it was no different in 2011 when Canadian dentist Michael Zuk won John Lennon’s tooth from the Omega Auction House. He paid $31,200 for the rotten molar, which had been yanked from the late Beatle’s mouth. Lennon then gave it to his housekeeper, Dorothy “Dot” Jarlett, according to her son, Barry. But why?

“She was very close with John, and one day whilst chatting in the kitchen, John gave my mother the tooth… and suggested giving it to my sister as a souvenir, as she was a huge Beatles fan,” he said. “It has been in the family ever since.” Although the tooth was too fragile to withstand a DNA test, the auction house said that the fact that it came from Lennon’s housekeeper was proof enough for them of its authenticity.


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