The Week in Review: Funny Money Stories

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1. Analyst raises $100K with run up Empire State

You’ve heard of charity 5K runs. You might have even participated in, or donated to, one of them. But the Empire State Building Run-Up stands above them all. The 35th annual event was held last week, and the winner was a 25-year-old security analyst who ran up 1,576 steps in 12 minutes and 52 seconds – and raised six figures for the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation.

2. Meetings can make you, uh, stupid

So researchers at Virginia Tech’s “Human Neuroimaging Laboratory” ran MRIs on the skulls of student volunteers who were sitting through meetings. The conclusion? “You may joke about how committee meetings make you feel brain dead, but our findings suggest that they may make you act brain dead as well,” the lab director told MSNBC.

3. Take a breath: You can get a caffeine fix from an inhaler

Speaking of smart people doing dubious research: “A Harvard professor thinks the next big thing will be people inhaling their caffeine from a lipstick-sized tube,” USA Today reports. “The product, called AeroShot, went on the market late last month in Massachusetts and New York.” It costs $2.99 – or about a dollar more than a can of Red Bull.

4. The Web’s perpetual love machine

With all the TV commercials for EHarmony and Match.com, online dating services must be raking it in, right? Nope. “The industry has grown at a measly 1 percent annually since 2006,” Bloomberg reports. Why? Simple. The business model stinks: “Every time their product is successful, they lose two customers.”

5. Sprint sells 1.8 million iPhones but posts huge loss

Warning: iPhones can make you bleed. Money, that is. Just ask Sprint. “It sold a better-than-expected 1.8 million iPhones over the past three months. That helped Sprint show its biggest customer base growth in six years,” CNN reports. “But selling the iPhone, for which Sprint pays a gigantic up-front subsidy, came at a heavy price: Sprint posted its biggest quarterly loss in three years.” Concludes CNN: “The iPhone is a nightmare for carriers.”

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