vendredi 30 décembre 2016

2016, By The Numbers

Well, 2016 sure has been a year. From exploding phones to “glitches” that grounded thousands of flights to the ever-increasing, ever-depressing mountain of student loan debt. Let’s not forget bankrupt and shuttered retailers and restaurants, growing resistance to antibiotics, and the continuing opioid epidemic. Before we flip the calendar to 2017, let’s have our annual look at some of the numbers behind the year we’re finally leaving behind.

Fiery Failure

Reddit

The headline of the year? Samsung’s Galaxy Note 7 device debacle.
  • 2: Number of times Samsung had to recall the Galaxy Note 7…
  • …of which it had managed to sell about 2.5 million globally first.
  • The phone was only on the market for 27 days before the first recall…
  • …and for 53 days before Samsung scrapped production of the line…
  • …and ended everything with the second recall 55 days after launch.
  • The debacle is expected to cost the company at least $3 billion.

Airline Glitches Galore

Stranded in Punta Cana

It might be easier to count which among the biggest airlines didn’t experience some kind of catastrophic systems glitch this year, honestly.
  • At least 9 major airlines suffered a glitch of either their own or a contractors’ computer systems this year…
  • …leading to 100% of Delta flights worldwide being cancelled for hours in April…
  • …costing the airline at least $100 million in lost revenue.
  • Another glitch grounded more than 900 Southwest flights in July…
  • …leading to at least $82 million in lost revenue for that airline, and…
  • 1 (one) unanimous “no confidence” vote against the CEO.
  • And another 450 American Airlines passengers were stranded at O’Hare because the security screening lines were too long.

Bankruptcy Is The New Black

TheGlassPeople

While some retailers and restaurants have seen record-breaking sales this year, others have permanently shuttered, gone bankrupt, or quietly continued to downsize. Among them…
  • 2: the number of times American Apparel declared bankruptcy this year
  • Roughly 3,500 American Apparel employees expect to be laid off next month…
  • …and at least nine stores are already liquidating ahead of the official auction.
  • Dick’s Sporting Goods bought part or all of the assets of 2 defunct competitors this year…
  • …but 0 (zero) new sponsors have bid on Denver’s Mile High Stadium naming rights, formerly owned by the now-defunct Sports Authority.
  • 400:Aeropostale stores (out of 720) remain open after its bankruptcy proceeding…
  • 29: Cosi locations closed when the sandwich chain declared Chapter 11 bankruptcy in September
  • …joining 18 closing Logan’s Roadhouse locations when its parent company declared bankruptcy in August…
  • …and another 25 Fox & Hound and Champps bars shuttered when its parent company also declared bankruptcy.
  • 74 Ovation-owned buffet restaurants closed suddenly in February…
  • …giving employees 0 (zero) days of notice ahead of time…
  • …with the remainder closing just as abruptly, mid-day, 4 weeks later.

Tears for Sears

Scott Miller

The continuing slow-motion decay of Sears and KMart continues so strongly it merits its own header on this year’s list.
  • In Jan. 2016, there were 941Kmart stores and 705 Sears ones in the U.S…
  • …but in Jan. 2007, there were 1,388 KMarts and 935 Sears around…
  • Meaning 677 stores, or 29% of locations, have shuttered in the past decade
  • Along with another 30 closing in April…
  • including at least 11 KMart and 7 Sears locations disclosed so far.

The Fake Account Fiasco

Mike Mozart

After years of anecdotal accusations and reported rumors, Wells Fargo confirmed this year that its employees had been opening and closing unauthorized accounts in customers’ names.
  • More than 2 million fake accounts were opened without authorization.
  • At least 5,000 bank employees have been fired for allegedly opening these accounts.
  • Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf admitted he first heard of the fake account problem in 2013 — 3 years before the bank ultimately publicly disclosed the employees’ bad behavior.
  • Stumpf, who has since “retired,” has seen his compensation decreased by $41 million, while another recently “retired” Wells exec, Carrie Tolstedt, had $19 million clawed back from her golden parachute.
  • Federal and state regulators hit Wells with a $185 million penalty in 2016…
  • But analysts say the bank could ultimately lose $4 billion as a result of this mess.
  • One month after news of the fiasco broke, new account openings were down 44% at Wells Fargo.

Pricey EpiPens

M

After years of price increases amid dwindling competition, the EpiPen emergency allergy treatment was thrust into the spotlight of the ongoing debate about soaring prescription drug prices.
  • The retail price of a twin-pack of EpiPens is currently more than $600, and has increased by around 600% since Mylan, the drug’s current owner, purchased the brand from Merck in 2007.
  • Mylan CEO Heather Bresch testified before Congress that the company only makes around $50 profit per EpiPen…
  • However, it was later discovered that the profit is closer to $80 per EpiPen, a figure that some in Congress still find hard to believe.
  • Between 2011 and 2015, Medicaid spent $960 million on EpiPen purchases…
  • But the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services confirmed that Mylan had misclassified EpiPens as a generic drug, resulting in the company shortchanging the government on refunds by hundreds of millions of dollars.
  • Before the exact amount of that underpayment could be determined, Mylan quietly reached a settlement deal with the Justice Department for $465 million — an arrangement that has been criticized by some lawmakers as “shamefully weak.”
  • In December, Mylan finally introduced a generic EpiPen that is identical in every way to the original product, but at a price of $300 for a twin pack.

Higher-Ed Hijinks

ittad
Student loans still suck… but several for-profit education chains that received billions of dollars in student loan aid won’t even see 2017.

  • At least 68% of graduates of four-year schools owe some debt…
  • …with an average loan burden of $30,100 per borrower.
  • A total of roughly $1.6 trillion in student debt is held by the feds…
  • …and $171 million was garnished from retired debtors social security checks last year to pay some back.
  • About 8.1 million student loan borrowers are currently in default, but…
  • …under current plans, $108 billion in student debt will be forgiven… eventually.
  • 130 ITT Technical Institute campuses shuttered forever…
  • …and another 22 Brown Mackie schools stopped enrolling new students.
  • The CFPB has demanded Wells Fargo pay $4 million for illegal student loan servicing…
  • …and Xerox owes Massachusetts $2.4 million over allegations it overcharged borrowers…
  • Trump University settled its fraud lawsuits for $25 million…
  • …which pales next to the $100 million DeVry has to pay up over years of misleading ads.

Hacks, Breaches, and Other Data Thievery

Flyinace2000

Through mid-December, there had been…
  • 980 data breaches and “security events”…
  • …totalling more than 35.23 million stolen records this year.
  • That’s almost 28% more incidents than in 2015, but with…
  • …an 80% decrease in the number of records illegally accessed.
  • But the 2013 and 2014 records may need to be revised, thanks to 2 breaches Yahoo only disclosed this year…
  • …in which a total 1.5 billion user records were stolen (some twice).

Not Just Pocket Change

frankieleon

It’s the era of the app-based payment, with cash vanishing from storefronts nationwide. And yet humble pocket change still adds up.
  • Coinstar says you have $68 in spare change sitting around your house…
  • …and a sample of Americans told a pollster they probably had about $41 in coins.
  • As a country, we throw away $62 million worth of coins in the trash ever year…
  • …of which one single Philadelphia-incinerator finds about $360,000 annually…
  • …and another $100 million of which has been repatriated from trash heaps overseas since 2009.

What We Stand to Lose

Jason Knight

There’s been a lot of tragic loss this year… with more potentially waiting in the wings.
  • An estimated 80 Americans die every day from opioid overdose…
  • …with opiod poisonings of children and teens up 303% over the last two decades.
  • More than 140 medically important antibiotics are still being abused to promote growth in livestock, even though they don’t…
  • …while only 52% of patients with common infections are getting the recommended, first-line antibiotics…
  • …and 30% of antibiotics prescriptions are totally unnecessary…
  • …and at least 16 restaurant chains are still earning “F” grades on their antibiotics policies.
  • When the new administration begins in January, the House Freedom Caucus hopes to immediately reverse 232 federal rules adopted in the past few months.

And, of course, us.

archibald
In 2016, here at Consumerist…

  • A staff of 6 editors…
  • …brought you more than 5,460 stories…
  • …for an average of about 22 stories per working day…
  • …including 1 about bringing Jeremy Bentham’s mummified head through airport security (which you shouldn’t do)…
  • …while running 0 (zero) ads, because that’s what we do.


Aucun commentaire:

Publier un commentaire