Crazy architecture: the 7 strangest structures in the world

Exotic and original. Some of these buildings are residential or offices and others are simply tourist attractions. Which are the most unusual

They are the strangest buildings in the world for their original architectural structures, which attract the attention of any tourist who visits the country in which they are located. Each of them inside has many environments.

The Twisted House, in Poland

It has an area of ​​around 4000 square meters.  It is located in Bohaterów Monte Cassino 53

Its real name in Polish is ‘Krzywy Domek’ and in English ‘The Crooked House’ and is located in Sopot, on the coasts of Poland. It was built in 2004 and was inspired by the comics by Jan Marcin Szancer and Per Dahlberg. With curved lines simulating movement is one of the most attractive buildings in the country. Inside there are shops, restaurants, and bars.

The dancing house, in Prague

The sculpture is formed by intertwined metal strips that form a half circle

In the capital of the Czech Republic is the ‘The Dancing House’, built and designed in 1992 to pay tribute to the dancers Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. It stands out among the most peculiar Gothic, Baroque and Art Noveau buildings in the city. Inside it is a restaurant overlooking the Vltava River where tourists often visit and taste the signature dishes offered by the menu.

The basket house in the United States

Dave Longaberger, founder of the group, devised this original property based on its best-selling product, the picnic basket

It is located in Newark, Ohio. It is a huge architectural structure in the form of a picnic basket and is one of the headquarters of the company ‘Longaberger Basket Company ‘, one of the most recognized for the ‘basket bags’ made by hand. It has 6 floors and 59 meters high and 38 meters wide. This receives thousands of visits a year for its strange and striking design.

The Piano house, in China

At night the illumination of the edge of the structure with blue and white lights makes it possible to see the profile of the piano and the strings of the violin.

In Hui, a province of China, is ‘The Piano House’, with a peculiar design, a giant glass violin, and a piano-shaped building. It was built by the government in 2007 with the intention that music students from the university could come together to practice. This has meeting rooms, offices, concert halls, exhibition, and trials.

WonderWorks, in the United States

This attraction is located in Orlando

In Orlando, you will find this tourist attraction simulating the inverted White House. It is an amusement park to exercise the mind in 10,000 square meters with more than 100 exhibitions, simulators of earthquakes and hurricanes. Its design was created with the intention of making tourists believe that a tornado passed through the house.

The Pez building, in India

The architects of this structure designed it to capture the image of a fish so that its employees feel comfortable in their work

Opened in 2012, it is located in the city of Hyderabad, in India and is one of the headquarters of the National Fisheries Development Council of the country justifying the reason for the strange structure. The building has 4 floors and extends over 5 hectares with an estimated cost of 4 million euros. It is not open to the public, only those who work there can enter.

Marina Bay Sands, in Singapore

It is built with 181 tons of stainless steel with a capacity for 3,900 people, considered the longest in the world with the invisible edge

It is the most famous hotel in Singapore and costly at 5,700 million dollars with more than 2,560 rooms, convention center, shops, art museums, theaters, restaurants, and casinos. The main feature of the hotel is its renowned platform that simulates being a boat that has one of the best bars and the infinity pool with stunning views of the city.

9 tips to make the most of online purchases

How to get the best deals and what to take into account to close the transaction

November can be a great month to shop. Settlements of what remains of winter and some merchants offer combos with discounts and payment facilities to tempt consumers. Is that the holidays are close and with it the gifts. If you take into account that inflation was around 3 percent per month, it is essential to make forecasts and not delay purchases at the last minute.

In this sense, e-commerce platforms can be a good alternative not only for the offers they usually offer (especially in some products) but because it allows time to be saved. According to PayPal data, it is estimated that up to 15 million purchases could be made through this payment system.

And the favorite areas for online transactions would seem to be smartphones. According to a report on Christmas shopping in Latin America that Deloitte produced, the most popular product in e-commerce is mobile devices (20%) followed by books (19%) and video games (18%).

Jamie Bonnifield, director of Cross-Border Marketing of PayPal Latin America, offers some tips to make the best use of online offers.


1. Search for offers with time: promotions do not happen in a day

In general, large online stores, as well as small ones, make very interesting pre-sales before important holidays. Last year, according to Deloitte, 71% of respondents preferred to make their purchases during the season prior to the festivities, either at the end of November or the first week of December.

2. Register in online stores

It is a matter of practicality and time-saving. Most of the electronic stores ask the consumer to register to make any kind of purchase. Take the time to register on the websites where you are interested in buying. This is important because, the closer the discounts and promotions are, the higher the risks of having a bad connection due to the intense flow of people accessing the site at the same time.

3. Anticipate Christmas gifts

It is convenient to take advantage of the previous days to do Christmas shopping. November can be a good month to get low prices and avoid long waits in stores or connection problems on the web.

4. Review the offers carefully

If the discounts are too good, it is convenient to look for information about the store or the product, to avoid falling into the hands of a scammer.

5. Compare prices

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Search, check and search again. Ideally, have a list of what you want to buy before the offers begin. This will also help you with your impulse to buy things you do not really need and pay higher prices.

For his part, Gustavo Sambucetti, president of the Argentine Chamber of Electronic Commerce (CACE), shares these tips to close online purchases:

6. Data on shipments

Analyze the available shipping options and delivery times before finalizing the purchase. These options may vary depending on the product purchased and the geographical area in which the user is located.

7. Order tracking

Enter the order number and the shipping tracking code at the moment of closing the purchase that will be used to track the package.

8. Find out all the conditions

Check the policies of changes and returns of each store to know the options if you are not satisfied with the product.

9. Have the contact details of the company

In case of any inconvenience in the purchase, communicate directly with the company in question to help them solve it.

Finally, Victoria Blazevic, responsible for Branding and Communication of Tienda Nube, suggests being alert to special promotions. “Merchants usually offer discount codes, reduce the prices of certain products and/or offer free shipping, and being aware of this is essential so as not to miss a great opportunity,” he concluded.

The Bosch plant will be the most modern in America

The governor of the Mexican state of Guanajuato, Miguel Márquez, said today that the plant that the German industrial group Bosch will install in his region will be the most modern in the entire American continent and will involve an investment of 120 million dollars. In an interview with Efe at the Hannover Fair, the largest in the world industry, Márquez said that the plant with industrial technology 4.0, whose installation agreement was signed today in the exhibition, will create 1,500 direct jobs.

“We had been pursuing the presence of Bosch for 15 years, which was one of the largest companies absent in our state,” said the governor, who also stressed that this week in Hannover the presence of two other German companies and a French company in Guanajuato. These three companies together with Bosch will represent a total investment of 250 million dollars and the creation of 4,000 direct jobs in the state, he said.

Márquez said that in the last eight years the investment of the German companies already adds 2,000 million dollars in the state, where there are already installed more than 40 companies in the European country, including several “very important” in the development of technology, about everything in the automotive sector.

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The presence of Guanajuato at the Hannover Fair represents “being in the best showcase of the 4.0 revolution, which is the technology that we want to be developed and applied in our state,” he said.

The governor stressed that Guanajuato has “established itself as the most important automotive cluster in Latin America” and that the state has six manufacturers in the sector such as Volkswagen, General Motors, Ford, Toyota, Honda, and Mazda. In addition, he noted that they have increasingly sophisticated companies that are investing in laboratories and research jointly with companies such as Pirelli or Michelin.

He also said that they have developed eight innovation parks of public and private universities, in addition to “eight research centers of the most prestigious in Mexico and Latin America.”

Among them, he cited the center of research in mathematics Cimat, the biotechnology Agrobiotec, the technology applied to footwear and leather Ciatec, which now will also be dedicated to the automotive sector or research in optical CIO, which he considered “the best of Latinamerica”.

“This has allowed us to come working in high-tech developments, students no longer have to do the traditional, today we see them studying nanotechnology, aeronautics, pharmaceuticals, robotics, we have taken a very important turn to engineering,” he said.

He noted that in the last six years have reached the 13,000 million dollars of investment in the state, which “is a historical record.”

In 2017, exports from Guanajuato increased to 23,000 million dollars from the 11,000 million that they had marked six years earlier.

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He also noted that the current unemployment rate of 2.8 percent is “the lowest in history, and almost full employment.”

“We have taken a very important leap in industrial development without neglecting agriculture,” he said and indicated, in this regard, that they have just signed an agreement in the Netherlands with the Ministry of Agriculture to export vegetables and berries for the first time. to that European country.

Among the advantages of Guanajuato to attract foreign investment, the governor cited the geographical location in the center of the country, five hours from the port of Manzanillo, the main destination for Pacific products, or nine hours by road from the US.

“We have very good connectivity, an excellent road infrastructure and we have also opted for education, in which we have tripled the investment,” he said.

He also highlighted the absence of labor strikes and that the state is the second with the most youth in Mexico and occupies one of the first three places in the country in the rating of the judiciary.

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“There is a legal certainty, when you sign something you know that it is going to be fulfilled, trust is very important and has made more than 30 countries invest in Guanajuato today,” he said.

In this regard, said that in his state what is approved today is respected in five or ten years, regardless of who governs, which “gives a lot of peace and confidence to companies.”

“We have understood very well the opportunities since the signing of the free trade agreement with the US and Canada in 1994, from being a predominantly agricultural and commercial state we have become a very industrial state,” he said.

In these professions you will find more job offers

If you think you have many titles, being a ‘luminary’ and shine for your ideas at work guarantees a good position, we tell you what they think of this year recruiters in the field.

We want to congratulate you if you are reading this and have a good position. Look no further what contacts you have on your LinkedIn profile and you will realize that you do not have to complain so much about hard work, those that are 8 or more working hours, where you have to put up with a boss who does not have a face like ‘few’ friends’, or where he has been doing the same thing for years and do not recognize his best effort with a salary that compensates.

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If you start reading among your contacts in this professional network, you will see updates from people who say they have been finding work for more than three months, with more than 500 resumes and vacancies applied, even accepting projects of two or three months. They question their lack of work commitment, but they are discriminated against because, unfortunately, working on these projects has been the only way to get income that has worked for them.

This perception is supported by what the employers themselves say. According to a report by the ManpowerGroup personnel recruiter on Employment Expectations for the second quarter of 2018, Employers report modest hiring plans for the aforementioned period.

While 15% of employers expect to increase their staff, 7% anticipate a decrease and 76% do not forecast any change, resulting in a Net Employment Outlook of + 8%. The intention of hiring, cleaning the results by seasonality, an expectation of + 6%, which is presented as the weakest reported in more than 8 years, declining by 2 and 6 percentage points quarterly, the survey indicates.

Which areas offer more employment?

In the most recent Labor Trends Report, 2018 of the search portal it is shown that the careers in business administration, industrial engineering, and computer systems engineering are the ones with the most job offers registered during the fourth quarter of 2017 and the first quarter of 2018. The figures show the sum of monthly offers in each quarter. Except for business administration and financial administration, all added more offers in the first quarter of 2018 compared to the last quarter of last year.

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This behavior is similar to that of the professions that applied the most employment to the offers of this portal. Business administrators were the most active in job applications during the first three months of the year. In January, 1,562,064 applications were received, in February they totaled 1,357,726 applications, and in March they reached 1,254,788.

Industrial engineers ranked second in the first months of 2018: 974,887 in January, a total of 876,134 applications in February and 795,057 in March. The third was shared between business managers and accountants. Social communicators and journalists appeared during the first two months of 2018; in March, its place was occupied by mechanical engineers.

The educational offer has more supply and demand in the degrees of university formation, followed by the average education and of the professional technical level. In the last places, the offer appears for those who have a master’s and doctorate degree.

The 5 tips to make your investment more profitable

With a little practice, you can become an investment expert. Do not be afraid of the terms of the market.

It does not matter if you have $ 500,000 or $ 10 million, investing will always be better than leaving the silver depreciating under the mattress or in savings accounts that in addition to not generate any profitability, you discount taxes such as 4 per 1000.

So whether you are new to the subject and want to take the big step, or have already soaked a little, this information will help you feel more confident when investing and especially to choose the product that best benefits you.

First of all, you have to know that there are two types of investments. The fixed income and the variable income. Fixed income investment instruments are debt issues made by the Nation and the companies, aimed at participants in the capital market.

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You can sell and buy securities directly with the entities that are supervised by the Financial Superintendence of Colombia, among which are the credit institutions, the fiduciary companies, the stock brokerage companies, the independent brokerage firms, the management companies of pension and severance funds, insurance companies, the General Directorate of Public Credit and National Treasury of the Ministry of Finance and Public Credit, the Social Security Institute – ISS, the Financial Institutions Guarantee Fund – FOGAFIN, the Financing of the Agricultural Sector – FINAGRO and the Bank of the Republic.

For the most conservative savers, this is the most striking option since they are instruments with a low associated risk and a profitability that, although reduced in comparison to other types of investments, is known in advance. The bonds that are granted give the right to collect the interests and the capital in the future and the collection of interest is determined for the entire life of the issue.

On the other hand, there are the instruments of variable return or also called financial assets in which neither the return of the invested capital nor the return on the asset is guaranteed. We do not know the interest that they are going to pay us, even if the return is negative and we lose money on the investment. This is because profitability depends on various factors such as the evolution of the company, the economic situation, the behavior of financial markets, etc. Stocks, currencies, and commodities are the products that offer the most profitability.

When it comes to investing in variable income, it is best to go to the bank or a professional advisor, with the ability to offer a solution tailored to your profile and your particular investment objectives.

Where to invest?

To know where to invest, you must make a thorough study of the market, making a good analysis of your economic possibilities, your appetite for risk and your profit objective with the operations that you are going to carry out.

Everything depends on the tastes, their economic capacities and their preparation and financial experience. The only clear thing is that the less you risk, the less will be the booty (if it comes to be).

If you are going to invest in CDT:

-In general, an investment is profitable when its profitability is greater than inflation. This, because inflation is the loss of value of money over time. For example, if a product rents 6% and inflation is 3%, the real return on your investment is 3%, because of 6-3 = 3. It’s low, but it’s safe. In the very long term, equities are the only asset that manages to beat inflation.

-It is important to see the rating of the entity that offers the CDT, the better the risk rating you have, whose maximum can be triple-A, it means that it is more solid and that your investment is safer.

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If you are going to invest in commodities:

  • Take into account that there are f external actors referring to geopolitical, climatic and conjunctural issues that can affect the behavior in the prices of goods. A clear example of climatic factors that affect the prices of raw materials is the “El Niño” phenomenon that has occurred in previous years, which has caused droughts and other variations that directly affect the production of raw materials.

If you are going to invest in the stock market:

  • Diversifying is paramount. So you will not lose all your capital in one go. On the other hand, if you bet all your money on a single investment, and it goes wrong, that’s where the problems will start. When you see that an action goes up, consider selling at once.

Europe warns US protectionism

The president of the European Central Bank, Mario Draghi, said that these exchanges cannot be said to be a commercial war yet, so he asked President Trump to question who the enemies are.

President Trump weakens business relationships by signing an executive order

President Trump signed as he had promised the previous week, the executive order in which he imposes tariffs on imports of steel and aluminum. In this order, it was clear that both Mexico and Canada will be exempt until they reach a new trade agreement – NAFTA – more “fair”. This order imposes a tariff of 25% on steel and 10% on aluminum and will take effect within 15 days. The decision is against a letter passed by 107 Republican congressmen in which they asked the President not to sign this increase since it will worsen the country’s trade relations globally and will probably start a commercial war.

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The president of the European Central Bank (ECB), Mario Draghi, hardened his speech today after ruling out the possibility of increasing the volume of bond purchases if financial conditions worsen; the international market has taken for granted that the stimulus program advances in this way to its end. This speech this morning is far from what was expressed in the last meetings on rate decisions, which has led the euro to turn around and has reached up to 0.20%.However, at the end of the day, the European currency resumed the fall with the dollar against the fears of the currency war and lost about 0.8% to 1.23. Mario Draghi continued to defend a more restrictive monetary policy, doing everything possible to play down the importance of the change of discourse, ensuring that it is not going to be a classic monetary policy contractionary cycle. He also assured that they will continue to monitor the exchange rate due to its effect on inflation, but he also stressed that the stimulus program is necessary to achieve that core inflation reaches the target close to 2%.

And in front of the Commercial War?

President Draghi has warned about incipient global protectionism and its possible effect on the currency market and exchange rates. Although he underestimated the short-term impact of the protectionist policies promised by the United States. assuring that these exchanges cannot be said to be a commercial war yet, so he asked President Trump to question who the enemies are if friends want to impose these tariffs on them.

Growth and inflation forecasts

Growth projections have been revised up again to 2.4% in 2018, compared to 2.3% announced at the previous meeting. While for 2019 and 2020 expectations of growth of 1.9% and 1.7% remain. As for inflation forecasts, they have remained stable at 1.4% for 2018, but have been reduced to 1.4% for 2019 from the previously forecast 1.5%.

Global debt markets are awaiting US labor market data

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In the United States, the interest rates of treasury securities decreased throughout the day. The movement occurred on the eve of the non-farm payroll data that will be known tomorrow. The market already expects the interest rate to increase in the meeting of the Federal Reserve next Thursday, however, speculation about the pace at which the next increases will be carried out is still in doubt, and the forecasts that will be known in The press release may shed new light on the path the entity will take in the coming months.

Local market; in line with a lower perception of risk

In the Colombian debt market, the interest rates of government debt securities in pesos showed decreases with respect to the close of the previous day, a movement that is in line with the flattening registered in the yield curve of treasuries and less uncertainty regarding President Trump’s tariff plans once the executive order is signed. Regarding the yield curve of the securities in UVR, the rates continued to show reactions to the recent inflation data for the month of February. Interest rates for the short part of the curve showed increases of up to 5 basis points as investors discount a decrease in inflation in the coming months. This movement that is characteristic of this time of year could continue over the next months, which would end up consolidating a flattening in the yield curve.

The Colombian peso depreciates in line with its peers

The Colombian peso continued to register bullish intentions in line with what happened on the previous day. The currency responded to the strength of the US dollar and at the same time to the fall in oil prices. This movement led the currency from the $ 2,860 opening to a maximum of $ 2,880 in line with the volatility context of the day, where Latin American currencies, with the exception of the Brazilian real, showed depreciation against the US dollar.The total volume negotiated throughout the day was the US $ 915 million, slightly lower than the average of the last 90 days (the US $ 968,000 million). The maximum of the day respects the range of transaction that the currency has maintained since mid-February ($ 2,830 – $ 2,880). If volatility is maintained and prior to the electoral process over the weekend, we could expect the level of 2900 to be exceeded by the end of the week.

The currency markets will continue to be characterized by increases in volatility and uncertainty as tomorrow we will know the pulse of the labor market in the United States for the month of February, a figure that will refine the sentiment of investors on the next rate hikes. interest on the part of the FED going forward.

Oil is affected by the largest production in the United States

The price of oil for the second consecutive day closes with devaluations, trading at levels lower than the US $ 60 per barrel amid a strengthening of the dollar, reacting to the rebound of shale oil production in the United States. Inventories of US crude rose by 2.4 million barrels during the week ended March 2, a figure that does not improve confidence on the stability of the international price in the face of the persistent increase in production in the United States that has already reached 10. , 3 million barrels a day , reaching a maximum of 4 weeks, a historical high that surpasses the second largest producer of the commodity – Saudi Arabia.

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As investors continue to forecast oil prices above the US $ 60 per barrel in the WTI reference, both OPEC and Russia are expected to keep production quotas limited until the end of 2018.

Expectations of growth in the national production of crude valorize Ecopetrol

The stock market capitalization index of the Colombian Stock Exchange, Colcap, remained relatively stable, increasing 0.04% and closing at 1,474.31. The most negotiated action during the day was Ecopetrol, which was valued 1.02% after the statements of the National Hydrocarbons Agency, in which it indicated that crude production this year would increase 5.4% reaching a daily average of 900,000 barrels per day. On the other hand, Cemex Latam Holdings had the best performance during the day, which was valued at 2.22%, reaching $ 9,680 at the close. Finally, the most devalued share was Corficolombiana Preferred with a fall of 3.75% and a closing price of $ 20,000.

How to identify a business idea?

Undertaking an idea or business is like having a baby when you think of carrying out the business, you worry, you plan, and once you see its fruits, you feel proud. But you should keep looking ahead and supervising.

However, to identify a business idea should not be left there, it should be investigated first to know about the viability of the matter and to evaluate if this idea will really solve a problem or need. On the other hand, business ideas must adjust to the pace of life of today’s consumers, as it is obviously not the same as 10 or 15 years ago.

People today go from one place to another with their mobile phones and spend a good part of their day reviewing their profiles in Social Media. Therefore, to exploit its full potential by identifying this idea that will not go away, it is necessary to pass it through a filter that evaluates that it really is an idea that will win it in the business world.

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Equally, it is necessary that you know if that idea is suitable for you as a professional and even as a person, lest you abandon it to the first problem that arises. A business idea is a challenge that requires dedication and discipline. That is why we want to help you identify what that business idea is that will lead you to success and become the route to achieve your dreams.

Ask yourself: What do you know and what you like to do?

If you are going to develop an idea, the best thing is that this idea makes you fall in love because if not, believe us !, it will be reflected in the ROI. The passion for what you do is the key to getting things right so your idea should be related to your skills, your professional training, and even your personality to make things work.

Search if you have a good base of contacts to which you can satisfy a need and from there you could get that longed for an idea. Take advantage of your experiences and acquaintances to start from scratch.

Find an interesting niche

There are trends in other countries that could be adaptable to your community and you can undertake them with your seal. Not all businesses have to go, necessarily, directed to the masses, there are small niches that can provide great satisfaction but their job is to detect them and offer them their business idea.

And once you have detected them, study the community in depth to get where they are and give them the content they are looking for, that’s where good content marketing comes in.

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Improve old processes

Look at the technology and how far it has come: it has managed to optimize and even simplify the processes that used to take hours, such as, for example, making a deposit to the bank. Think about what old process you could make a difference to make life simpler for your future consumers.

Do it better than others

A typical error when wanting to undertake is that enthusiasts think that a business idea is 100% innovative and never seen before, which could be, but there is also the possibility that it does better than others. Maybe there is a service out there that you would do better, optimize processes and make your users feel more comfortable. Does anyone come to mind?

Explore in your daily life

We all have a routine that sometimes wears out, think of yours and ask yourself: Do I have a problem or need that could be solved/satisfied with an innovative idea?

You are a user or consumer of many things and we are sure that if you think about it a bit, you could offer a solution to any concerns you have and create your winning idea.

Make entrepreneurial friends

We do not talk about copying your ideas, but about getting around these people who are on the same wavelength as you and are filled with inspiration. Maybe when you hear them talk about their anecdotes, comes the energy of creativity and should look for paper and pencil as soon as possible so that the idea does not go away.

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It is also recommended that you explore on the Internet, see the profiles on social networks of entrepreneurs who have achieved it in a surprising way and take the confidence you need to carry out your project.

To conclude, keep in mind that:

  1. Creativity comes when it comes out into the real world.
  2. A Brainstorming can help you get to that idea.
  3. There are no bad ideas, you just have to develop it and adapt it to a specific audience.
  4. Do more research and write down everything that catches your attention.
  5. If you identify an idea, pass it through a filter to see if it really is viable in time and space.

So, Success and start!

Emergency tricks to start saving

According to the World Economic Forum, the people of eight of the largest economies on the planet will soon suffer the lack of $ 400 billion dollars for pensions. Right now the situation of many retirees is desperate. But it’s so hard to save! We consult an expert.

How good or good are you to save? It is estimated that most people need the equivalent of about 70% of their labor income to survive once they retire. However, the states are less and less prepared to face this expense: the World Economic Forum warned that the eight largest economies on the planet will have a deficit of $ 400 billion dollars for pensions in the next 30 years.

That figure is equivalent to multiplying by five the value of all the stock exchanges of the world added. And the news about the pension funds of the developing countries is also not rosy. That is to say that many of us could have to live on what we save.

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Are you ready or prepared to do so? To help him tackle this difficult task, the BBC Business Daily program consulted the famous behavioral economics expert and author Dan Ariely of Duke University in the United States.

Ariely just published “Small change: money mishaps and how to avoid them” ( Small change: monetary mishaps and how to avoid them) and has devoted to studying some simple tricks that we can use to encourage us to save.

Bad savers

To begin with, the expert explained why it costs us so much to save so much.

“One of the main challenges of behavioral economics is that the environment matters, we do not act simply based on our preferences, the decision has to do with what surrounds us,” he said.

Ariely refers to all those things that invite us to spend: from a cafeteria to a new cell phone model. “How many of those around us care about our well-being in the long term? Very few,” he concludes.

For the expert, it is important to realize that “there are not many entities that are on our side” when we propose to save. On the contrary, most want our “money, time and attention”.

“They want quarterly income, not that you do well in the long term,” he sums up. Then a key to start saving is to realize that “the world is not neutral, but is designed to try to get things out.”

Murderous temptation

The economist warns that living in a world of temptation not only conspires against our efforts to save but that it is even leading us to an earlier death.

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That concluded a study conducted in the USA. that analyzed causes of death and more specifically how likely we are to accelerate our end as a consequence of our own actions.

“Before that probability was 10% but now it’s 43%,” he explains. What is the increase? ” Obesity, diabetes, smoking, using the cell phone while driving … are all temptations that kill us,” he says.

But even though our choices are causing us more and more damage, it is also true that we live more and more, thanks in large part to medical advances. That is why another factor that we have to take into account to start saving is the increase in life expectancy.

“If we all died at age 65, at retirement age, life would be simpler,” Ariely acknowledges. But many live to 80, or more.

That means that we work for 30 or 40 years and then we must subsist another 20 years or more. In theory, that should lead us to save about half a year for our retirement for each year worked. But how?

The Kibera experiment

Ariely told about three saving techniques that were put to the test in the poorest settlement in Kenya, called Kibera. His team partnered with M-Pesa, a mobile phone service that allows money transfers very easily, and with an investment bank.

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Together they put into practice a savings system so that the inhabitants of Kibera could deposit a small sum of money daily.

They used three savings formulas:

  • Easy deposit, difficult withdrawal

They designed the system in such a way that depositing money was easy but removing it, very complicated.

People could make daily transfers to the bank with just a couple of clicks on their cell phone but in order to withdraw the money, they had to take a bus to the city and go to the bank in person, something that could take up to four hours.

  • Easy deposit, difficult withdrawal + reminder

The second system was like the previous one but in addition, the bank sent a weekly reminder incentivizing to make deposits.

  • Easy deposit, difficult withdrawal + personal reminder

The same system was applied again but this time the reminder came not from the bank but from the children of the potential saver, who encouraged him to make a deposit thinking about them and their future.

Which of these ideas was the most successful? Third. “The children make us more idealistic, the children were key in the anti-smoking campaigns and in the promotion of the use of the safety belt, for example,” says Ariely.

But in addition, the last option has an advantage: it offers a reward. “When you deposit money in a savings account, you do not receive any positive comments, but when you give something to your children, they thank you.”

The trick of the prepaid card

Another saving technique recommended by Ariely is to have a weekly budget allocated for discretionary expenses.

This formula has two keys: the first is to start applying the budget on Monday because if it is applied on Fridays it is highly probable that we will spend more during the weekend and we will run out of funds for the rest of the week.

The second key – and perhaps the most important one – is that to pay for all those discretionary expenses we use a prepaid debit card.

That is to say, a card to which the budgeted funds are deposited and which we can only use until that money is exhausted. In this way, we avoid the excesses in which we tend to fall many when we use credit cards.

It may interest you: You saved 50 million and went to travel the world how you did it

“Spending buddies”

A third idea he had Ariely was to gather a group of friends once a month to discuss together your expenses for a credit card.

“Each woman had to justify each one of her expenses,” explained the expert, who revealed why the technique – which he called ” spending buddies ” – was successful.

“After doing this exercise only once, the women told that they could hear the voice of their friends every time they bought something, which led them to change their behavior.”

Be careful with those dinner outings

A final advice from Ariely is that we analyze what we are spending our money to know if indeed that spending is making us happy.

The economist asked a group of people to analyze the details of their credit card expenses and tell them which expense they most regretted. The answer was surprising: most regretted a dinner outing.

“When we go out to dinner we end up eating too much and drinking too much and then we regret the experience,” he warned.

So if you want to start saving a little, you know where you can start …


It is important to find the balance, understand that the product is not the main thing and that the customer is the main thing and the need that the client wants to satisfy

Some years ago, in a class that was dictating in Argentina to a group of managers of an international chain of supermarkets, there was a conversation about the formats of stores that were coming for the future of the industry and the discussion revolved around large stores (hypermarkets) or small stores to compete with the rise of Chinese supermarkets that were capturing an increasingly large portion of the market.

My question was simple, why open so many stores? The answer was obvious. “Retail is a business of proximity and has to be close to the customer” and my response was: “What is closer, the supermarket on the corner or the computer?”. Nobody imagined their mothers, at that time, buying online but neither their children losing four hours a day in a store making purchases of food and beverages. The exponential increase in technology that we all have available in its various formats, whether computer, tablets, smartphones and others, brought products closer to customers, with increasingly intelligent buyers, who demand memorable experiences of purchase by any point of contact they have with the places of sale.


Now, is everything going to be online? Do not forget that tomorrow there will be large consumers with purchasing power that will tip the balance of online shopping. As the population ages, higher percentages of consumers will be connected and online purchases will continue to grow. Building trust at the start is the basis for sustaining lifelong loyalty in buyers. These customers stepped forward using all the elements they had to maximize their benefits, either in price, when there is no differential value in the products or in personal satisfaction when a service or product meets a personal need relevant. To do this, they use all the elements at their disposal generating a growing challenge to companies,

They want them to recognize them, understand them, understand them and attend when they want and that can be at any time of the day and anywhere in the world where they are, but it is not clear that everything will be online in the future ; each occasion of sale will have its preferred channel, this occasion is generated by the buyer and the need that it wants to satisfy, so omnichannel, which happens to be a key concept, seems to be an option for companies where technology It becomes a differential element to meet these needs. Today, the biggest challenge that companies have is to know more and better customers, make the best deals, bring the products they need, when they need it and where they require it. For this, there are tools that collect data,

Artificial intelligence is taking giant steps to help companies at this point, virtual assistants who “talk” with clients as if they were human, are always available (and in a good mood!), And are the spearhead, since they not only serve and help customers but also help companies to collect data on tastes and preferences, in a transparent manner. If we talk about retail, the challenge is constant because it requires transforming a business that is impersonal, massive and made up of several segments, in a more personalized and focused on the specific tastes of each person. All this is something totally new for the industry, with different and disruptive rules. Companies need to know more about their customers, have a one-to-one contact. Is this consumer requirement new? People who are between 3540 years old will remember from their childhood, that their parents went to the neighborhood retailer, talked with the owner of the place, who asked them about relatives, usually by name, suggesting them to buy something specific (“I know that you make that cake so rich and here came this ingredient you need for this weekend “). Or for example, when one of the children was going to make purchases and doubts about a product, it was the merchant who told him which product to carry with phrases like “it’s the one your mother always carries”. I suggested to them to buy something specific (“I know that you make this cake so rich and here came this ingredient that you need for this weekend”). Or for example, when one of the children was going to make purchases and doubts about a product, it was the merchant who told him which product to carry with phrases like “it’s the one your mother always carries”. I suggested to them to buy something specific (“I know that you make this cake so rich and here came this ingredient that you need for this weekend”). Or for example, when one of the children was going to make purchases and doubts about a product, it was the merchant who told him which product to carry with phrases like “it’s the one your mother always carries”.


Therefore, to guide its customer experience and revenue growth management strategies, both in the retailer and in large physical stores or online, is that companies are relying on innovations in artificial intelligence. They are managing to combine the strengths of the most disruptive technologies to obtain as much information as possible about their clients, allowing them to make better decisions and transform their companies into companies that continuously learn and therefore grow sustainably.

Finally, it is important to find the balance, understand that the product is not the main thing and that the customer is the paramount and the need that he wants to satisfy. The one that considers the buyer as a robot that will always choose the cheapest and most accessible will be wrong. There are elements that make a person choose one or another option for situations or circumstances that go beyond economic value, which go on the side of human needs and how they are served, depending on time and circumstances. Understanding and decoding this is a central element of any strategy you want to perform. This is not new, as the neighborhood retailer did many years ago.

Annual maximum decreases versus annual return

The variation of short-term prices is the price that must be paid in exchange for long-term profitability

Since last January 25, the date on which the SP500 reached a maximum of 2,872 points, the bags fell by just over 8% in a few days. Last Tuesday the media rushed to report that the US stock market had experienced the largest decline in its history, with the Dow Jones, an index composed of the 30 largest US companies, 1,175 points.

Given that the media knows for certain that viewers pay more attention to negative news than to positive news, because our brain is programmed to survive and otherwise it would have led to failure, they rushed to tell the story of the way they find it most convenient, and give the absolute value of the fall instead of the relative. And that data, in percentage, is the 531st worst day in the history of the Dow Jones.

Image result for Annual maximum decreases versus annual return

Evidently, it is not the same, in points, a fall of 4% on a value of 13,000 points that was in 2008 that of the environment of 24,000 as it is currently. And the data, to be representative, has to be given as a percentage.

The media do not favor the investors, frightening them with distorted and short-term data that take them away from the market and create the uninformed saver with the feeling that the stock market is a casino in which all the money can be lost at any time and that you have to run at the minimum correction.

The variation of short-term prices is the price that must be paid in exchange for long-term profitability. It is an inevitable part of the process, and we must remember it again and again so as not to be carried away by fear and lose the opportunities that arise.

In the attached graph you can see the annual revaluation of the SP500 from the year 1980 to 2107 in the vertical bar, while the point represents the maximum decrease during the year.

Related image

Reviewing the history always gives us a good reference, and if we analyze the historical data since 1980, we see that in all but one year (in particular 2012) there have been more intra-annual decreases than the final annual result and that Although the average value of the maximum annual decrease was 13.8%, profitability has been positive in 29 of the 37 years.

The last two years have not been normal in the markets, being exceptionally stable.

A return to normality should be seen as positive since it will generate an environment in which opportunities to buy at good prices due to corrections that last days, weeks or even several months will appear. For this, having some liquidity will give us the right tools to take advantage of the situation when it arises.

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