McDonald’s Fattens the World; The Rich Get Richer… at a 75% Discount; Chinese Data Boosts Emerging Markets to Three-Month High

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Globesity: McDonald’s Fattens the World (Reuters)

Powered by stronger sales in Europe, McDonald’s posted an unexpected 1.9 percent increase in global sales. Analysts polled by Consensus Metrix had anticipated a rise of 0.3 percent, so results six-times stronger came as a surprise.  And, perhaps even more surprising, the surge was led by European stores’ 3.3 percent increase in August sales.  Perhaps Europe is finally figuring out what Americans have known for decades: the best way out of a recession is through expansion — of your waist line. We’ll see if this trend continues.

The Rich Get Richer… at a 75% Discount (Associated Press)

If you’re worried about your children’s or grandchildren’s education clearing out your investment portfolio, you may be in for a nice surprise. U.S. News & World Report found that students graduating from Harvard or Yale — typically two of the most expensive schools in the land — came away with smaller debts than students attending “lesser” schools. In fact, the study found these students actually paid about a quarter of the “sticker price” regularly attributed to these schools due to a wealth of alternative funding options, such as endowments, grants or low-rate loans. The report found that students laden with the most debt are coming from non-elite schools. So think of your offspring’s education as a long-term investment, a value-based one at that.

Chinese Data Boosts Emerging Markets to Three-Month High (Bloomberg)

Buoyed by China’s highest industrial output in 17 months, the MSCI Emerging Market Index rose 1.5 percent in August.  Specific markets participating in the uptick included India, where the S&P BSE Sensex Index rose 3.8 percent. Other rising markets featured Turkey and Poland, whose benchmark indexes both rose by 2.8 percent. Even China’s own Hang Seng Enterprises Index has risen more than 20 percent from June lows. Is this the beginning or a resurgent emerging market sector, or just a China-fueled blip? Stay tuned.

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