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Economics in the News - Aug. 9-15 HOW ECONOMICS IMPACTS OUR LIVES ON A DAILY BASIS

Economics impacts our lives every day. Below are some of the top storylines from this past week related to economics.

"Talent is cheaper than table salt. What separates the talented individual from the successful one is a lot of hard work." -- Stephen King, author
The Delta variant of COVID-19 is taking its toll on businesses since the CDC reinstated its mask recommendation amid a rise in cases. While consumers appear eager to spend on industries hit hard by COVID-19, many are waiting out the current spike of infections.

Lines at the grocery store, restaurants and retail stores are shorter, while domestic travel has declined last week for the second time since mid-April. Many companies had started to plan for workers to return to the office, but those plans are now on hold. [The Wall Street Journal]

Afghanistan’s government has collapsed to Taliban forces. The swift takeover from the Taliban comes as the United States is scheduled to end its combat role in Afghanistan on Aug. 31.

How much has the longest war in American history cost? The Associated Press compiled data from the Linda Bilmes of Harvard University’s Kennedy School and the Brown University Costs of War project. The article takes into consideration the economic costs of the war, along with the human lives that were lost. [Associated Press]

At least 1,297 people in Haiti are dead following a magnitude 7.2 earthquake, while thousands are injured and are displaced from damaged or destroyed homes. Officials say that more than 7,000 homes were destroyed and nearly 5,000 damaged, leaving thousands left homeless.

The latest earthquake comes more than a decade since a 2010 earthquake ravaged Haiti’s capital of Port-au-Prince. Saturday’s disaster comes in a country dealing with political instability, rising gang violence, malnutrition among children and the COVID-19 pandemic. To make matters worse, Haiti is preparing for Tropical Depression Grace, which is forecast to make landfall Monday night. [Associated Press]

Many Americans took the opportunity during the pandemic to reassess their work and life. That has prompted one-third of those under the age of 40 to consider a career change, according to a Washington Post-Schar School poll.

According to the poll, the reasons for considering a new career vary. Many have used the pandemic as an opportunity to return to school or open a business. Others have moved to areas that offer a more relaxed lifestyle and more flexibility in their job. [The Washington Post]

The recently concluded summer Olympics were the most expensive games ever held with a price tag of at least $15.4 billion dollars. Even though fans were banned from stadiums and a lack of foreign tourists due to a COVID-19 state of emergency, host nation Japan is already seeing benefits of hosting the 2020 Olympics.

One industry set to see a big boom is construction which oversaw the construction of the National Stadium and other venues. Without fans able to attend, technology saw an increase in sales with more Japanese customers paying for televisions, internet and cable. New interest in some lesser-known sports, such as skateboarding, and athletics among female athletes are showing early signs of being an economic benefactor for the Tokyo-based Olympics. [TIME]

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All images credited to iStock