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Prospects: Corporate Culture and Entrepreneurship

Since the beginning of the credit crisis in the fall of 2008, companies both large and small have struggled with sharp declines in revenue and decreased lending by banks. This has led, predictably, to the rise in unemployment throughout the United States and Europe; in particular in the U.S. the unemployment rate increased from 4.4% in 2008 to 9.5% in 2009. The credit crunch has also led to a steep decrease in mergers and acquisitions (M&A) reflecting the difficulty corporations face in raising capitals in the current environment.

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Global Commodity Crunch

The summer of 2008 saw three unprecedented market spikes: 1) the spike in oil prices, reaching $147 per barrel; 2) the spike in food prices rising 50% casting millions in the developing further into poverty and 3) the spike in the prices of steel, copper and pulp and paper. While each of these events had different causes and in fact, different consequences, each shared a common factor: that the price of each commodity was pushed up due to real and perceived pressures on supply.

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Ms. Laura Tyson

Laura D'Andrea Tyson (born June 28, 1947) is an American economist and former Chair of the US President's Council of Economic Advisers during the Clinton Administration. She also served as Director of the National Economic Council. She is currently a professor at the Haas School of Business of the University of California, Berkeley.
 

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Mr. Larry Stone

Mr. Stone has had a varied and long career as a working sommelier.  He became the first American to win the title of International Best Sommelier in French Wines and Spirits in Paris and remains the only American to have earned the title of Maitre Sommelier from the Union de la Sommelerie Française. He is also an English-certified Master Sommelier, one of a handful who has passed the examination on the first attempt.  He was the 9th American Master to pass the exam in its history.
 

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