Spend Matters Afternoon Coffee

It'll be interesting to how Mattel responds to this...
Greenpeace says Barbie is forest vandal -- Greenpeace on Wednesday accused Mattel, the US maker of Barbie dolls, of contributing to the wanton destruction of carbon-rich Indonesian forests and habitats of endangered species like Sumatran tigers. The environmental group said packaging used in Barbie and Ken boxes contained timber products from Asia Pulp and Paper (APP), which it described as a "notorious" destroyer of Indonesia's dwindling natural forests.

The Budget Crisis Should Usher in a New Era of Innovation in Defense -- For the U.S. military to succeed and prevail, and to equip America's men and women who risk their lives fighting unconventional warfare, the Pentagon has no choice – no more blank checks from the American taxpayer. The Department of Defense must innovate.

Cashing in on black swans.
Wall Street's Black Swan Copycats -- Now Wall Street is looking to cash in on investors' need for black swan or tail protection. While researching the article on Universa Investments for the June 27, 2011 issue of Forbes Magazine, I spoke to the "quants" at nearly every major investment bank. Almost every institution said they are or will soon be offering a product to guard against black swan events or tail risk. Large fund managers are looking to get into the game too. For example, Guggenheim Partners is considering opportunities for its investors in the tail risk space, according to a person with knowledge of the firm's plans.

Cuttin' gas.
Consumer Reports' Best Cars For Fuel Savings -- Although the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) assigns a fuel economy rating to all new vehicles, Consumer Reports magazine conducts its own independent testing. The magazine recently concluded testing on 2011 models and has released its list of the best and worst new cars for fuel economy. Consumer Reports looked beyond a car's fuel efficiency and also weighed each vehicle's test performance, reliability and safety records in making its best cars recommendations.

- Sheena Moore

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