Coffee Is Both Too Cheap and Too Expensive, and 4 More Things to Know Today

Getty ImagesHere’s a quick rundown from the world of business and economics this morning: the things you need to know, and some you’ll just want to know.

• If your brain isn’t really firing on all cylinders until after your first cup of coffee, here are a couple of tidbits you might find interesting: First, Colombian coffee growers are losing money on every bean they sell right now, despite government subsidies from Bogota. According to the USDA, it costs between $1.27 and $1.54 cents a pound to produce that high-quality Joe, but the average price paid to growers in October was 78 cents a pound. And second, it’s not your fault, because Americans are clearly willing to pay more for their morning cups. Sales of single-serving coffee — Keurig and its imitators — have tripled since 2011, pushing the volume of coffee sold that way to about half that of traditionally-sold coffee. And in terms of price per cup, those K-cups are significantly more expensive than brewing by the pot.

• A new sign that the labor market is improving a bit: The number of Americans filing new jobless claims fell more than expected last week, declining by 21,000 to a seasonally adjusted 323,000, according to the Labor Department. The consensus of economists polled by Reuters had been for a new claims number of 335,000.

• Tesla’s (TSLA) Model S has caught fire in good way — with buyers. The trendy electric vehicle topped the new Consumer Reports owner satisfaction survey with a remarkable score of 99 out of 100, the highest score a car has received in years.

• In other automaker news, Chrysler’s IPO could happen as early as December, insiders report — but that’s if it happens at all. Fiat owns 58.5 percent of Chrysler, and wants to buy the rest from the union-affiliated health care trust for Chrysler’s retired workers. The two sides couldn’t agree on a price, so they’re performing this IPO dance to let the market set the company’s value.

• And finally, European workers by law are allotted more vacation days than people in the rest of the world, and by and large, they tend to use them, too. But a study from travel website Expedia reveals that Europeans are also more likely than workers elsewhere to feel “vacation deprived.”

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