Money Minute: 'Open Internet' Threatened; Apple's 'Watershed' Moment

Before you go, we thought you'd like these...
Before you go close icon

A court ruling could make the Internet more expensive for some users.

Netflix (NFLX), Google's (GOOG) YouTube and other big Internet content providers could be the big losers in the wake of a federal appeals court ruling. They may have to pay tolls to Internet providers so that users can continue to watch and download their heavy bandwidth programs. The court struck down the Federal Communication Commission's "open Internet" rules that gave equal access to all Internet traffic.

That means companies such as Verizon (VZ), Comcast (CMCSA) and AT&T (T), which own the delivery pipes, could charge more to big users. Don't be surprised if consumers end up paying the added costs.

Online gambling in New Jersey is off to slow start. Revenue in the first five weeks it was available totaled less than $8.5 million, far short of expectations. %VIRTUAL-article-sponsoredlinks%Part of the problem is that some major banks refuse to let their credit cards be used for online gambling. About 150,000 New Jerseyans have opened accounts to play.

Overall gambling in New Jersey is on the wane. Revenue generated at Atlantic City's casinos fell below $3 billion last year for the first time since 1991.

Here on Wall Street, the Dow Jones industrial average (^DJI) jumped 116 points Tuesday, the Standard & Poor's 500 index (^GPSC) rose 19 and the Nasdaq composite (^IXIC) rallied 69. The tech-heavy index begins trading at the highest level since September of 2000.

Apple's (AAPL) iPhone goes on sale at China Mobile this Friday, and the Chinese company says it has already received millions of preorders. China Mobile also said its deal with Apple will go well beyond smartphones, but didn't specify what else might be involved. The potential for Apple is huge. China Mobile has more customers than the U.S. has citizens.

And General Motors (GM) says it will resume paying a dividend beginning in March. The automaker suspended its payment to shareholders in 2008, as it headed into bankruptcy. But the company has rebounded with a string of quarterly profits.

17 Tricks Stores Use to Make You Spend More Money
See Gallery
Money Minute: 'Open Internet' Threatened; Apple's 'Watershed' Moment

A big, bold "SALE" sign helps get people in the store, where they are likely to buy non-sale items.

Once you enter, there's the shopping cart. This invention was designed in the late 1930s to help customers make larger purchases more easily.


In supermarkets, high margin departments like floral and fresh baked goods are placed near the front door, so you encounter them when your cart is empty and your spirits are high.    
Flowers and baked goods also sit near the front of stores because their appealing smell activates your salivary glands, making you more likely to purchase on impulse.

Supermarkets like to hide dairy products and other essentials on the back wall, forcing you to go through the whole store to reach them.



Once customers start walking through a store's maze of aisles, they are conditioned to walk up and down each one without deviating.

Most stores move customers from right to left. This, combined with the fact that America drives on the right, makes people more likely to purchase items on the right-hand side of the aisle.

Anything a store really wants customers to buy is placed at eye level. Particularly favored items are highlighted at the ends of aisles.

There's also kid eye level. This is where stores place toys, games, sugary cereal, candy, and other items a kid will see and beg his parents to buy.
Sample stations and other displays slow you down while exposing you to new products.
Stores also want items to be in easy reach. Research shows that touching items increases the chance of a purchase.

Color affects shoppers, too. People are drawn into stores by warm hues like reds, oranges, and yellows, but once inside cool colors like blues and greens encourage them to spend more.

Hear that music? Studies show that slow music makes people shop leisurely and spend more. Loud music hurries them through the store and doesn't affect sales. Classical music encourages more expensive purchases.
Store size matters, too. In crowded places, people spend less time shopping, make fewer purchases (planned and impulsive), and feel less comfortable
Stores not only entice you with sales, they also use limited-time offers to increase your sense of urgency in making a purchase.
The most profitable area of the store is the checkout line. Stores bank on customers succumbing to the candy and magazine racks while they wait.
Finally, there is the ubiquitous "valued shopper" card. This card gives you an occasional deal in exchange for your customer loyalty and valuable personal data.
Read Full Story

People are Reading