Numlock News: February 6, 2019

By Walt Hickey

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Eat Til The Pain Goes Away

A study that looked at 475 NFL games among 30 teams found that in cities where the home team lost a game on Sunday, the following Monday there was a 16 percent spike in the consumption of high-fat, high calorie processed foods. So from a certain point of view, moving the Rams out of St. Louis was merciful, as L.A. hasn’t had a carb in six years and even if they wanted to eat 16 percent more junk food to deal with the Rams loss, the line for Diddy Riese is always around the block anyway. Related research has found that when people are stressed or upset, maybe as a result of a dynasty securing its sixth ring, the noradrenaline released makes sweet things taste less sweet, which explains why everything has turned to ash in my mouth lately.

Maria Godoy, NPR

False False Eyelash Kits

Beauty company e.l.f. Cosmetics will pay a $1 million settlement with the US Office of Foreign Assets Control over that time that they kind of sort of bought 156 shipments of false eyelashes that contained materials from North Korea, which is considered a real no-go when it comes to outsourcing. Company leadership says they were not aware it was happening, as e.l.f.’s kits were made by Chinese firms that imported materials from North Korea. The company’s decision to self-report the good helped it avert a fine that could have reached $40 million. False eyelashes were huge in 2018, with sales hitting $270 million and revenue up 31 percent. This boom regrettably coincides with a Democratic People’s Republic of Korea push into cosmetics as a whole, which reportedly includes a handmade false eyelash business based out of North Korean gulags. I’m thrilled that the cosmetics I use are made with the typical amount of human agony, which is to say “substantial, but at least vaguely compensated.”

Tracy E. Robey, Vox

Rebound

In a turnaround that would have looked unthinkable as recently as 2011, the music business has turned a corner and revenue from recorded music broke over a decade of losses, pulled out of the tailspin and has been steadily increasing for the past four years. It’s a remarkable chart to behold honestly. Streaming revenue — which accounted for $6.6 billion, or 38 percent, of the $17.3 billion global revenue in 2017 — is almost entirely to thank, up from $0.6 billion (4 percent) in 2011. Labels get about 0.3¢ every time a song is streamed, which is great for the valuation of record companies and may even lead to some labels being sold soon.

Angelina Rascouet and Lucas Shaw, Bloomberg

Deinstitutionalized

Starting in the 1960s, the United States began to move away from psychiatric hospitals and even psychiatric beds in typical hospitals. This broad trend toward deinstitutionalization means that a person can be discharged from a hospital within days of a suicide attempt, which may not be the best course of action for those still at risk. This is one appeal for researching pharmaceutical ketamine use, as therapy using the drug may be promising for people who suffer from a mental illness. The number of psychiatric beds in state hospitals fell from 558,922 in 1955 to 37,679 in 2016, so Johnson & Johnson’s attempt to bring a version of the drug to the pharma market this year may fill a need for a fast-acting anti-depressant not currently met.

Cynthia Koons and Robert Langreth, Bloomberg

Returns

About 27 percent of apparel sales are made online, but that ability to buy with one click without trying the item on has made returns a shockingly common part of the shopping cycle. One survey found 40 percent of all online clothing purchases are returned. This makes intuitive sense to me, because even the headphones I order off Amazon somehow seem to be sized small. Still, those costs — monetary and environmental — add up, particularly because there are no consequences whatsoever for the actions.

Elizabeth Segran, Fast Company

Pickup

General Motors Co. invests $1 billion a year into its self-driving car unit, GM Cruise LLC. Those thorny problems are expensive to solve, as seen by the fact that GM has sold pieces of Cruise to Honda and SoftBank for $2.75 billion and $2.25 billion, respectively. But the money that will finance the self-driving hybrid electric future comes from a fairly reliable and old fashioned source: large pickup trucks, which have an operating profit of at least $12,000 apiece and given the 210,000 sold last year bring in roughly $2 billion pretax to cover those battery and AI bets. By 2022, the global auto industry will invest $255 billion developing electric vehicles and $61 billion developing self-driving tech, a revolution funded by the trucks of today.

David Welch, Bloomberg

IUD

A study of health insurance claims from 3 million women found that in October 2016, there were 13.4 long-acting reversible contraceptive insertions for every 100,000 women per day. Those included hormonal IUDs, copper IUDs and hormonal implants, basically long-term contraceptive coverage. Then, for reasons that will certainly forever remain an enigma, in the 30 business days following Nov. 8, 2016, the rate of women pursuing IUDs jumped to 16.3 per day per 100,000 women. The study’s findings corroborate a 2017 analysis that found IUD prescriptions and procedures rose 19 percent from October 2016 to December 2016. Ooh, do shotgun gay marriages next!

Megan Thielking, STAT News

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Previous 2019 Sunday special editions: Good To Go ·  California Football ·  Personality Testing ·  China’s Corruption Crackdown ·  Yosemite

2018 Sunday Editions: 2018  ·  Game of Thrones  ·  Signal Problems · CTE and Football · Facebook · Shark Repellent · Movies · Voting Rights · Goats · Invitation Only · Fat Bear Week · Weinersmith · Airplane Bathrooms ·  NIMBYs ·  Fall 2018 Sports Analytics ·  The Media  ·  Omega-3  ·  Mattress Troubles  ·  Conspiracy Theorists  ·  Beaches  ·  Bubbles  ·  NYC Trash  ·  Fish Wars  ·  Women’s Jeans  ·  Video Stores