An Economic Tale Of 2 Newsweeklies

The U.S. economy may be chugging along, but U.S. magazine editors still think the big story is the economy, stupid. But two major newsweeklies — Bloomberg Businessweek and Time — took different tacks with their cover stories, focusing on the inequity of the U.S. economic expansion and the disruption being created by the so-called “sharing economy,” respectively.

In a cover story entitled “America, The Relatively Beautiful,” Bloomberg Businessweek’s Peter Coy ticks off reasons that the U.S. remains the world’s largest economy and is continuing to expand, as well as the role the U.S. needs to play to push the rest of the world forward, especially vis-a-vis technology.

Time magazine, meanwhile, takes a closer look at how U.S. technological innovation is impacting the economy, spawning a new subset based on sharing services such as Uber, Airbnb, etc.

“In 2008, the concept of building a business out of letting strangers stay in your house was so preposterous, Airbnb was rejected by almost every venture capitalist it pitched itself to, and even the people who wound up investing in it thought it was unlikely to succeed,” Time columnist Joel Stein writes in the cover story of hitting newsstands now.

“Now, an average of 425,000 people use it every night worldwide, and the company is valued at $13 billion, almost half as much as 96-year-old Hilton Worldwide, which owns actual real estate. Five-year-old Uber, which gets people to operate as cabdrivers using their own vehicles, is valued at $41.2 billion, making it one of the 150 biggest companies in the world — ­larger than Delta, FedEx or Viacom.

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