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    • When a migraine hits, you need to act quick.
    • Migraines affect over 38 million Americans.
    • There are several types of treatments including over-the-counter pain relievers, prescription medications, and lifestyle modifications.

    If you suffer from migraines, you know all too well how important it is to treat these painful headaches aggressively, especially since they can really disrupt your quality of life. With so many options for treatment, it can be difficult to choose the right one for you. That's why INSIDER asked several doctors to weigh in on how to treat different types of migraines, and here's what they had to say.

    What is a migraine?

    Before we do a deep dive into the different types of treatments, let's go over the basics about migraines. Dr. Evan Schloss, MD, neurologist, neuro-ophthalmologist, CareMount Medical, told INSIDER that a migraine typically has two parts: the headache, and the aura (if any).

    "A migraine headache is usually a one-sided, severe, throbbing headache, and the headache is often associated with sensitivity to light, sensitivity to sound, and nausea," he explained. "Most people just have the headache, however, in some people, the headache is preceded by an aura, which is often a visual disturbance which can look like a gradually expanding colorful shape in your vision, with a border that often looks like a zig-zag and has a shimmering quality to it," he added. But some people just have the aura, and no headache.

    Adding to the complexity of these headaches, are the different types of migraines. "There are several well-characterized sub-types of migraine including migraine with brainstem aura, hemiplegic migraine, retinal migraine, vestibular migraine, menstrual migraine, and chronic migraine," Dr. Cara Pensabene, MD, EHE told INSIDER.

    Over-the-counter pain relievers are an option.

    There are several categories of migraine treatments. Schloss said that the most common is symptomatic treatment, which most people are familiar with. "You get a headache, and you take an over the counter pain reliever such as ibuprofen (NSAID) or acetaminophen," he said.

    Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAID) medications such as naproxen or ibuprofen can be helpful in treating migraines. Dr. Robert Carson, MD, Ph.D. assistant professor of neurology at Vanderbilt and advisor toRemedy Review told INSIDER these are most helpful when taken as soon as a migraine is noted, so for those with an aura, as soon as the aura is detected, then you should take something.

    While caffeine can trigger migraines, Carson said that some individuals respond well to a combination of NSAIDs with caffeine. "Please note that taking NSAIDs more than two to three times per week for treatment of migraines can lead to chronic daily headaches, a notoriously difficult type of headache to treat which is best avoided," he warned. "If you are taking something two to three times per week, you might strongly think about more lifestyle changes or a prophylactic treatment of some type," he added.  

    Prescription medicine can be prescribed for preventative measures.

    If OTC products don't work, you might want to consider preventative prescription medicines. "Preventive treatment refers to prescription medicines you can take on a regular (usually daily) basis to prevent headaches in the future," explained Pensabene.Dr. Janette Nesheiwat, medical director at CityMD told INSIDER that prescription medications such as "triptans" and nausea medications are two types of medications doctors will use to treat the symptoms of migraines.

    Schloss also said that recently, a new type of migraine medication was approved by the FDA, called CGRP inhibitors. "These are powerful new medications which are capable of providing headache relief for patients with chronic migraine for which no medication has been successful, including Aimovig, Ajovy, and Emgality," he added.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    austin perine

    • Random acts of kindness remind us that the world is a good place after all.
    • This year was an especially good one for RAKs: Christmas was celebrated early by a town in Ohio for a terminally ill little boy, and strangers around the world got flowers on October 24. 

    Random acts of kindness tend to restore people's faith in humanity.

    This year was an especially good one for RAKs: Christmas was celebrated early by a neighborhood in Ohio for a terminally ill little boy, and strangers around the US received flowers on October 24 in honor of the "Petal It Forward" initiative. 

    From the simple act of footing a stranger's restaurant bill to a 4-year-old devoted to feeding the homeless, these 13 moments are sure to warm your heart. 

    Keep scrolling for more random acts of kindness. 

    A grocery store clerk let a boy with autism help him stock the fridge — and their compatibility went viral, inspiring people to help them both.

    Twenty-year-old grocery store clerk Jordan Taylor was restocking a refrigerator when he noticed that 17-year-old Jack Ryan Edwards was watching him, interested. Edwards has autism, and after a brief chat Taylor asked Edwards if he wanted to help him, and the two began stocking orange juice together. 

    The moment was captured on video by Edwards' sister, Delaney Edwards Alwosaibi, and she shared the heartwarming story on Facebook. In her post, she wrote: "We all know autism makes going out difficult and sometimes grocery stores can be a challenge. This young man (Taylor) took the time to slow down and allow Jack Ryan to help over 30 minutes, guiding him as he finished his task."

    "He could have ignored him. He could have made an excuse and said he couldn't allow him to help. Instead, he let him have his moment and in turn gave my family a moment we will never forget." 

    In return, Edwards Alwosaibi set up a GoFundMe page for Taylor to help pay for his college education. The campaign surpassed $50,000 within the first 24 hours. The grocery store also offered Edwards a job, and he accepted. 

    A college student in Birmingham walked 20 miles to get to his first day of work, so his boss decided to give him his car.

    Walter Carr, a college student from Birmingham, Alabama, was excited for his first day of work, until his car broke down the night before. With no other mode of transportation, Carr decided to walk from Homewood to Pelham overnight, in the dark. The trip was about 20 miles long. 

    Carr made it to Pelham at about 4 a.m., when four Pelham police officers found him, and provided him with food and shelter until morning. When they posted about him online, Carr quickly gained support and admiration from the internet — Luke Marklin, CEO of Carr's new workplace, saw the buzz, and asked Carr to meet "for coffee." Instead of coffee he announced that he was donating his own, barely-driven 2014 Ford Escape to Carr

    A 4-year-old boy in Alabama asked his parents to use his toy money to buy food for the homeless instead.

    Birmingham, Alabama native (and 4-year-old) Austin Perine didn't understand what "homeless" meant when his dad, TJ, tried to explain it to him. After the two visited a homeless shelter, Perine asked if they could help the people inside get something to eat. 

    The two headed to a nearby Burger King, and Perine told his dad that he could use his weekly "toy money" to buy an order of chicken sandwiches. And TJ did, thus beginning Perine's activism.

    Word of Perine's good will spread, and, according to CNN, Burger King soon gifted him a $1,000 monthly allowance so he could continue to feed people in the shelter. 

    Perine now dons a red superhero cape on his weekly visits — or, as he likes to call them, "missions"— to the homeless shelter, and continues to feed, inspire, and "show love."

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    The Insider Picks team writes about stuff we think you'll like. Business Insider has affiliate partnerships, so we get a share of the revenue from your purchase.

    best flower delivery service

    • A bouquet of freshly cut flowers is the perfect gift for your loved ones on Valentine's Day, Mother's Day, a birthday, or any day of celebration.
    • We've tested several online flower delivery services over the years to find the best ones. 
    • The Bouqs Co. is our top pick with its farm-fresh flowers that are sustainably harvested and beautifully packaged.

    Nothing says, "I love you!" or "Happy Birthday!" quite like a bunch of flowers. Whether it's Mother's Day, Valentine's Day, the holidays, or some other special occasion, freshly cut flowers are always a hit. They're also a wonderful way to express condolences in times of sorrow.

    If you don't have the time or inclination to head over to your local florist and order a bouquet, you're in luck — online flower delivery services are positively booming.

    We've researched and tested several online flower delivery services to find the best ones for different people's needs. All of our top picks offer same-day or next-day delivery on select flower arrangements and all of them are guaranteed to deliver perfect flowers every time.

    If you want farm-fresh flowers that are sustainably harvested from well-regarded farms, The Bouqs Co. is our absolute favorite. However, if you want extras like teddy bears and chocolates, 1-800-Flowers and Florists' Transworld Delivery have the best options. These two more traditional flower delivery services also offer same-day delivery — even on holidays.

    We highly recommend ordering flower arrangements well in advance of any holidays like Valentine's Day or Mother's Day, because you will end up with slim pickings if you wait until the last minute. You might also want to grab some chocolate while you're at it.

    Here are the best online flower delivery services:

    Updated on 12/14/2018 by Malarie Gokey: Added UrbanStems, a note about holiday gift guides, and our guide to the best chocolate you can buy to go with these flowers.

    Read on in the slides below to learn all about our top picks. Still shopping for gifts? Check out all of Insider Picks' holiday gift guides for 2018.

    The best online flower delivery service overall

    Why you'll love it: Bouqs partners with eco-friendly farmers to ensure that every bouquet is made up of the best freshly cut flowers.

    If you care about sustainable farming practices, you'll love The Bouqs Co. This florist partners with eco-friendly farmers around the world to bring only the best flowers to your door. We've sent many bouquets from The Bouqs Co to friends and family, and they have always been perfect.

    If you order a Farm to Table bouquet, you can rest assured that the flowers were cut on the day you placed the order. The bouquets are also shipped directly from the farm instead of being re-routed to a middleman. You can even see a picture of the farmer, a map showing where the flowers are from, and a video of the farm. Bouqs also promises that it only cuts the flowers it sells, so there aren't any cut blooms going to waste.

    In addition to supporting small farms, Bouqs also works with talented local florists to make the Hand Crafted bouquets. These bouquets can even be delivered on the same day, with some blooms arriving just two hours after your order is placed. Of course, on busy holidays like Mother's Day and Valentine's Day, these bouquets may be sold out or impossible to get.

    As with any flower delivery service, the more you plan ahead, the more likely your shipment will arrive on your loved one's doorstep on time. Bouqs makes it easy to see the earliest available ship date for its bouquets, too, so it's easier to figure out which bouquet will suit your timeframe.

    If it's your first order, you can get 10% off when you sign in using your email address. 

    Pros: Eco-friendly farmers, same-day delivery on some bouquets, local florists make many of the bouquets, gorgeous flowers, lots of options

    Cons: Some bouquets sell out on holidays

    Shop bouquets from The Bouqs Co. for $40 and up 

    The best online flower delivery service for last-minute shoppers

    Why you'll love it: You don't have to call 1-800-Flowers anymore to get gorgeous bouquets delivered to your loved ones on the same day you ordered them.

    1-800-FLOWERS may sound like a retro throwback, but the venerable flower delivery service is still transporting beautiful flower arrangements to loved ones around the country. The 40-year-old company is family owned and takes pride in delivering beautiful bouquets.

    Because it's a larger company, 1-800-Flowers has hundreds of different flower arrangements and you can also get bouquets along with teddy bears or chocolates, among other things. The flowers themselves are beautiful, of course, and you have tons of options.

    If you want farm fresh flowers, there's a special selection of bouquets to suit your needs. 1-800-Flowers is also offering a lot of classic roses and succulents. Some arrangements offer same-day delivery, but your choices may be limited.

    If you're aiming to send flowers for a special holiday like Mother's Day or Valentine's Day, it's best to order ahead. You can order online or in the company's mobile app.

    Pros: Same-day delivery on some arrangements, many choices, mobile app

    Cons: Some may sell out, not as eco-friendly as some options

    Shop bouquets at 1-800-Flowers for $30 and up

    The best classic online flower delivery service

    Why you'll love it: Florists' Transworld Delivery sends beautiful flowers anywhere in the US with same-day delivery.

    Florists' Transworld Delivery (FTD) has been delivering flowers since 1910, so the company really knows what it's doing. FTD has many different beautiful flower arrangements available, but you can also get succulents, chocolates, and other gifts delivered.

    The bouquets are handmade and the flowers are carefully selected at farms before they arrive at the FTD florist's shop. Most of the arrangements come in nice vases, and you can choose how full you want the bouquet to look.

    There's even a helpful section for bouquets that cost $50 or less, and you can choose from a selection of potted plants if you prefer to send a living plant instead of freshly cut blooms.

    FTD offers same-day delivery of some arrangements and others come from FedEx or UPS. Of course, on big shopping days like Mother's Day and Valentine's Day, it's best to order early so you get the best blooms and service.

    Although we haven't tried FTD's flower delivery yet, expert reviewers from Consumer Reports and rate the service highly.

    Pros: Long history of quality, lots of flower arrangement options, same-day delivery

    Cons: Some may sell out, not as eco-friendly as others

    Shop bouquets from FTD for $27 and up

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    tesla model s

    • Tesla has lowered the price of its Model S sedan and Model X SUV in China after the country temporarily lowered some tariffs on cars imported from the US, CNBC reports.
    • Tesla did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
    • The Chinese government will temporarily remove 25% tariffs on 144 US vehicle and auto parts and 5% tariffs on 67 auto-related items between January 1 and March 31, Reuters reports.
    • China has also reportedly decided to lower tariffs on some cars and auto parts from 40% to 15%.

    Tesla has lowered the price of its Model S sedan and Model X SUV in China after the country temporarily lowered some tariffs on cars imported from the US, CNBC reports.

    Tesla did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

    Read more: Tesla employees were reportedly told not to walk past Elon Musk's desk because of his wild firing rampages

    For Chinese customers, the Model S starts at around $107,000, while the Model X starts at around $115,000, according to Tesla's Chinese website. For US customers, the Model S starts at $78,000 and the Model X starts at $84,000.

    The Chinese government will temporarily remove 25% tariffs on 144 US vehicle and auto parts and 5% tariffs on 67 auto-related items between January 1 and March 31, Reuters reports. China has also reportedly decided to lower tariffs on some cars and auto parts from 40% to 15%.

    Have a Tesla news tip? Contact this reporter at

    SEE ALSO: A quirky French SUV you’ve probably never heard of has a dashboard strikingly similar to the one in Tesla's Model 3 — take a look

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: This spray paint lights up at the flip of a switch, but it's not glow-in-the-dark

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    Johnson & Johnson

    • Johnson & Johnson plunged by more than 9% on Friday after Reuters reported the company had known "for decades" that some of its baby powder contained traces of asbestos.
    • The selling has wiped out $38 billion of market cap.
    • JPMorgan, however, says the selling is overdone.
    • Watch Johnson & Johnson trade live.

    Johnson and Johnson shares were down more than 9% on Friday after a Reuters report said the company had known "for decades" that some of its baby powder had contained traces of asbestos, but at least one Wall Street firm says the weakness is overdone. 

    "We note that all issues reported were previously disclosed as part of talc litigation discovery," a team of JPMorgan analysts led by Chris Schott wrote in a note to clients out Friday.

    "As we think about the risk to JNJ here, on one hand, we believe it is highly unlikely the company's exposure to this talc issue will even come close to the ~$40bn in lost market cap today (for context, the largest historic drug liability ~$21bn for fen-phen). Along those lines, we see today's move as an over-reaction, especially from a longer-term perspective."

    JPMorgan notes that this story isn't likely to go away anytime soon and that shares could trade at lower multiples for an "extended period of time."

    Johnson & Johnson issued a statement Friday afternoon in response to the report, saying that the article was false and that its baby powder is "safe and asbestos-free."

    Shares were down about 5% this year, including Friday's sell-off

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: The world's largest cruise ship just landed in Miami — here's what it's like on board

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    woman laptop

    • You're never too young to begin investing, and you don't have to be rich to open your first investment account.
    • Don't let your emotions rule your investment decisions. When the market turns down, smart investors wait it out.
    • Understand your investment goals. That will help you decide where to put your money.
    • Angela Moore, a certified financial planner (CFP), has some advice to get you started.


    Angela Moore's first job after college was as a finance director for a car dealership. She spent all day looking at other people's credit and, she said, "I quickly realized that there was a huge financial literacy problem in the community."

    Moore decided to go back to school so she could help people close this gap. She is now a CFP and a certified financial education instructor with her own firm.

    Whether you have a little money saved up or you just got a windfall, Moore thinks "everybody should look at opening some type of investment account." She noted that most bank accounts pay interest rates that don't keep up with inflation, so your savings lose value over time.

    Your investment account can be an IRA, 401k, or any brokerage account that hold funds made up of stocks, bonds, and other investments. Here are six things to think about before you open your first investment account.

    SEE ALSO: How to easily find a savings account that will earn you more money

    Create a rainy day fund first.

    "You don't want to take all your cash and put it in investments and then not have any cash in case of an emergency," Moore said. That could force you to withdraw money from your investment account when the market is down.

    Instead, set aside between three and 12 months of living expenses in an emergency fund, Moore suggested, noting that "the amount that you need depends on the stability of your income." Freelancers need a bigger cushion than someone with secure employment. Plan on having at least a couple months of emergency savings before you begin investing.

    Understand the costs associated with investing.

    There are two primary types of costs associated with investment accounts, according to Moore: management fees, charged by your investment manager, and fees charged by the funds you invest in.  

    Total fees are usually in the range of 1% to 2%. If you start investing at a young age, Moore said, those fees will "add up over time."

    Don't let this discourage you from investing – just understand the costs associated with your accounts and look for low-cost alternatives.

    Get investment help from a robot.

    Moore has a suggestion that can save you some management fees: "There's a lot of robo-advisors where there's a very little fee or no fee at all." A robo-advisor is AI that asks you a set of questions about your goals and your tolerance for risk then uses an algorithm to recommend investments.

    "For the average investor who's just getting started, a robo-advisor is great," Moore said. "I'm a financial advisor with a master's degree, and I use robo-advisors for myself."

    She noted that accounts associated with robo-advisors often have lower minimums than accounts managed by humans. Some have no minimums, so you can start building your portfolio with a small monthly investment.

    Nerdwallet has a list of the top robo-advisors for 2018.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    female doctor

    • According to the American Cancer Society, most cancers are commonly diagnosed in older adults.
    • Cases of Hodgkin lymphoma are more commonly diagnosed during early adulthood when someone is in their 20s.
    • Testicular cancer is most commonly diagnosed in young adults.
    • Prostate cancer is more likely to be diagnosed in someone who is 50 or older. 

    According to the American Cancer Society,most cancers are commonly diagnosed in older adults. However, a wide variety of cancers can occur in people of any age. And age isn't the only risk factor to keep in mind — differences in hormones, genetics, environmental conditions, and lifestyles can lead to varied risks of developing certain cancers over the course of a lifetime.

    Here are the common ages of diagnosis for 10 types of cancers. 

    Hodgkin lymphoma is most commonly diagnosed during early adulthood.

    Lymphomas are a group of cancers that affect the lymph nodes, which aresmall glands that act as filters for your immune system, trapping viruses and bacteria before they can spread around your body.

    Cases of Hodgkin lymphoma are more commonly diagnosed during early adulthood when someone is in their 20s, according to the American Cancer Society. But the risk of developing this type of lymphoma increases again at age 55, making the average age of diagnosis approximately 39 years old.

    Read More: 10 signs of Non-Hodgkin lymphoma

    Breast cancer is rarely diagnosed before age 30.

    According to the American Cancer Society, breast cancer is more commonly diagnosed in individuals who are older than 30. Although it's possible,it's somewhat rare to develop this type of cancer before that age. 

    The chances of being diagnosed with breast cancer increases with age, but according to the National Cancer Institute, family history, breast density, and alcohol consumption are some of many factors that can increase one's risk of developing breast cancer, regardless of age. 

    Read More: 10 subtle signs of breast cancer

    Testicular cancer is more commonly diagnosed in young adults, with the average age of diagnosis being 33.

    The average age of someone being diagnosed with testicular cancer is 33, according to the American Cancer Society. It's a very rare type of cancer, accounting for just 1% of all cancers that occur in people with testicles, according to the National Health Service.

    Although it's an uncommon cancer overall, it's the most common type of cancer to affect men between the ages of 15 and 49.

    Testicular cancer can affect one or both testicles and it commonly presents itself as a hard or painful lump that can be felt in the scrotum. Fortunately, Cancer Council reports the five-year survival rate for testicular cancer can be as high as 99%, depending on the time of diagnosis and whether or not it has spread. 

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Insurtech 2.0

    Tech-driven disruption in the insurance industry continues at pace, and we're now entering a new phase — the adaptation of underlying business models. 

    That's leading to ongoing changes in the distribution segment of the industry, but more excitingly, we are starting to see movement in the fundamentals of insurance — policy creation, underwriting, and claims management. 

    This report from Business Insider Intelligence, Business Insider's premium research service, will briefly review major changes in the insurtech segment over the past year. It will then examine how startups and legacy players across the insurance value chain are using technology to develop new business models that cut costs or boost revenue, and, in some cases, both. Additionally, we will provide our take on the future of insurance as insurtech continues to proliferate. 

    Here are some of the key takeaways:

    • Funding is flowing into startups and helping them scale, while legacy players have moved beyond initial experiments and are starting to implement new technology throughout their businesses. 
    • Distribution, the area of the insurance value chain that was first to be disrupted, continues to evolve. 
    • The fundamentals of insurance — policy creation, underwriting, and claims management — are starting to experience true disruption, while innovation in reinsurance has also continued at pace.
    • Insurtechs are using new business models that are enabled by a variety of technologies. In particular, they're using automation, data analytics, connected devices, and machine learning to build holistic policies for consumers that can be switched on and off on-demand.
    • Legacy insurers, as opposed to brokers, now have the most to lose — but those that move swiftly still have time to ensure they stay in the game.

     In full, the report:

    • Reviews major changes in the insurtech segment over the past year.
    • Examines how startups and legacy players across distribution, insurance, and reinsurance are using technology to develop new business models.
    • Provides our view on what the future of the insurance industry looks like, which Business Insider Intelligence calls Insurtech 2.0.

    Subscribe to an All-Access pass to Business Insider Intelligence and gain immediate access to:

    This report and more than 250 other expertly researched reports
    Access to all future reports and daily newsletters
    Forecasts of new and emerging technologies in your industry
    And more!
    Learn More

    Purchase & download the full report from our research store

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    The Insider Picks team writes about stuff we think you'll like. Business Insider and The Points Guy Affiliate Network receive a commission from card issuers if you apply through these links and are approved.

    december best credit cards 4x3

    • The fastest way to earn credit card rewards and frequent flyer miles is to open a new card and get the new membership bonus.
    • For the last month of 2018, there's an excellent slate of both consumer and small business cards offering excellent, but limited-time, offers — there's even a huge new sign-up bonus on a United Airlines credit card, perfect for those looking to score an award flight on United or its partners.
    • We've also included a few of our favorite ongoing offers.
    • You can use the points from these cards to fly or stay in hotels for virtually free, or for upgrades, cash back, gift cards, and more.
    • Read on for the best offers of December 2018.

    It's easy to earn frequent flyer miles and rewards points from everyday credit card spending.

    To step up your rewards and get serious points, though, the best thing to do is open a new card and earn the bonus offered to new members.

    Credit card issuers offer huge bonuses to attract customers, and while each card may have different eligibility requirements, in most cases you can get the bonus as long as you haven't had that card before — or, in some cases, as long as you haven't had it in the past few years.

    Over the course of 2018 we've seen some incredible offers on new cards, refreshed products, and old standbys — and right now, some of the best offers we've seen are available as we get ready to close out the year.

    Even after you earn the bonus, it's easy to keep the rewards and benefits coming. All you need to do is use a card for your normal spending — and pay it off in full each month — and you'll earn tons of bonus points in categories like grocery stores, dining, and travel.

    You can read more about earning new card member bonuses and how that will affect your credit score here, or scroll down to find some of the best offers available this month.

    Keep in mind that we're focusing on the rewards and perks that make these cards great options, not things like interest rates and late fees, which can far outweigh the value of any rewards.

    When you're working to earn credit card rewards, it's important to practice financial discipline, like paying your balances off in full each month, making payments on time, and not spending more than you can afford to pay back. Basically, treat your credit card like a debit card.

    1. United Explorer Card

    Sign-up bonus: Up to 65,000 United miles (40,000 after spending $2,000 in the first three months, and an additional 25,000 miles after spending a total of $10,000 in the first six months). For a limited time only.

    Earlier this year, United and Chase re-launched their co-branded credit card, slightly changing the name, but more importantly, tweaking the benefits and improving how the card earns points. Previously, the card earned 2x miles on every dollar spent with United Airlines and 1x dollar on everything else. Now, the card also earns 2x points at restaurants and hotels. 

    This sign-up bonus is one of the best public offers we've ever seen on this card, but it's only available until January 8, 2019.

    The card offers a free checked bag when you use your card to purchase your tickets, priority boarding as long as you have the open card attached to your MileagePlus account, 25% off in-flight purchases, and a fee credit to cover your application to Global Entry or TSA PreCheck.

    The United Explorer also has two benefits that are unique among US airline credit cards in the same class. First, you'll get two complimentary United Club lounge passes each year. In the lounges, you can enjoy comfortable seating, Wi-Fi, free food and drinks, and more before your flight. Normally, one-time entry to a United Club would cost $59 if you didn't have a membership.

    Second, although this is an unpublished benefit, United cardholders also get access to more saver award space than other United members — that makes it easier to find good flights when it's time to use your miles..

    The card has a $95 annual fee, which is waived the first year.

    Click here to learn more about the United Explorer Card from Insider Picks' partner: The Points Guy.

    2. American Express® Gold Card

    amex rose gold new york 12

    Welcome offer: 25,000 Membership Rewards points (after spending $2,000 in the first three months). Until January 9: Get up 20% back at US restaurants within the first three months, up to $100 total.

    Last month, American Express launched a massive reboot of its Premier Rewards Gold card, rebranding it as the American Express Gold Card, releasing a new metal design and limited-edition rose gold version, and totally overhauling the rewards and benefits on the card. Because that wasn't quite enough, AmEx also introduced a fairly unique new welcome bonus.

    The new Gold Card earns 4x points at US restaurants and on up to $25,000 per year at US supermarkets (and 1x after that), 3x points on flights booked directly with the airline, and 1x point on everything else.

    Based on the fact that you can easily redeem Membership Rewards points for more than 1¢ of value each, that makes this the highest-earning card for everything food-related.

    The Gold Card keeps the old card's $100 airline fee credit each calendar year, and adds up to $120 of dining credits — split into $10 each month — at Grubhub, Seamless, The Cheesecake Factory, Ruth's Steak House, or participating Shake Shack locations. If you use those credits in full, that's a guaranteed $220 of value each year.

    New card members — those who haven't previously had the Premier Rewards Gold — can earn a welcome bonus of 25,000 points when they spend $2,000 in the first three months. Additionally, those who apply before January 9 can get 20% back on all US restaurant charges — up to $100 total — in the form of a statement credit. Keep in mind you may be able to be targeted for a higher offer.

    While it's difficult to assign a single objective value to Membership Rewards points, due to the many ways you can redeem them, travel website The Points Guy subjectively estimates each point as worth 1.9¢. That makes the welcome bonus worth $575 — $475 for the points, and up to $100 back from restaurants. Even without factoring in the annual credit benefits, that's more than enough to make up for the card's $250 annual fee.

    Click here to learn more about the AmEx Gold Card from Insider Picks' partner: The Points Guy.

    3. Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card


    Sign-up bonus: 50,000 miles (after spending $3,000 in the first three months).

    The Capital One Venture has historically been a useful card, thanks to a solid earning rate of 2x miles on everything, even though the rewards program was just...fine. Unlike cards offered by competitors, miles had a fixed value of 1¢ each toward travel purchases. Generally, transferable credit card points— those that you can transfer to an airline frequent flyer program, should you choose — are more valuable, thanks to the way that booking frequent flyer award tickets works. You can read more about that here.

    However, Capital One has announced that as of December 10, Venture cardholders will be able to transfer miles to 12 new airline partners, significantly increasing the potential value of each mile.

    Capital One had a month-long promotional sign-up bonus (up to 75,000 miles) when it first made the announcement. Although the bonus has returned to its normal amount — 50,000 miles when you spend $3,000 in the first three months — it's still a solid value worth pursuing. 

    The Capital One Venture earns miles at a rate of 2x per dollar spent on all purchases, and an incredible 10x points per dollar spent on hotel stays when you book and pay through has its own loyalty program that rewards you with a free night after 10 paid nights, so that equates to a staggering 20% return on hotels.

    Between the ability to transfer miles to airlines, and the chance to earn up to 10x miles on hotels, this is one of the best cards available right now.

    The card also offers a credit to enroll in TSA PreCheck or Global Entry. It has a $95 annual fee, which is waived the first year. 

    Click here to learn more about the Capital One Venture from Insider Picks' partner: The Points Guy.

    4. Capital One Spark Miles for Business

    Sign-up bonus: Up to 200,000 miles (50,000 miles after spending $5,000 in the first three months, and an additional 150,000 miles after spending $50,000 in the first six months). For a limited time only.

    Like the Venture, the Capital One Spark Miles is gaining the ability to transfer miles to 12 airline frequent flyer partners. Unlike the Venture, the Spark Miles is still offering a limited-time sign-up bonus to mark the change.

    The spending requirement to earn the full bonus — $50,000 in the first six months — is high, but it's definitely achievable for plenty of small- and medium-sized businesses — particularly those that lay out for materials, equipment, or services on behalf of a client.

    The Spark Miles is fairly similar to the Venture, aside from the fact that it's a business card rather than a personal one. It earns 2x miles on all purchases, with no limits, and has a $95 annual fee that's waived the first year.

    It was already a solid card; with the ability to transfer miles to airline partners, plus the massive sign-up bonus, the Spark Miles becomes a major player.

    Click here to learn more about the Capital One Spark Miles from Insider Picks' partner: The Points Guy.

    5. The Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite Mastercard

    Sign-up bonus: 70,000 miles (after spending $5,000 in the first 90 days), for a limited time only.

    This is the highest sign-up bonus we've ever seen for this card — an exciting development, coming near the end of a busy year for Barclaycard's flagship US product.

    Earlier this year, Barclays closed applications for one of its most popular credit cards, before relaunching the card with a new all-time highest sign-up bonus. Then, this fall, Barclays began waiving the card's $89 annual fee for the first year, a first for the card.

    The Barclaycard Arrival Plus earns double miles on every dollar spent. Miles can be redeemed for one cent each on travel purchases (applied as a statement credit to negate the cost of that purchase), or a half-cent each for cash back or gift cards. Best of all, you'll earn 5% of your miles back every time you make a redemption.

    Effectively, that means that the sign-up bonus is worth $700 toward travel, plus an extra $100 from the miles you'll earn meeting the spending requirement.

    The card comes equipped with Chip-and-PIN service, which, combined with the fact that the card has no foreign transaction fees, makes it a great option when traveling internationally.

    Depending on your spending habits, it is easy to get more value from the card than what you pay for the annual fee, thanks to the 2x earning rate on all purchases. Of course, the sign-up bonus alone will cover the annual fee for more than eight years.

    Click here to learn more about the Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite Mastercard.

    6. Platinum Card® from American Express

    amex business

    Welcome Offer: 60,000 points (after spending $5,000 in the first three months)

    The American Express Platinum card has one of the highest annual fees of any consumer credit or charge card — $550 — but as AmEx's flagship product, this premium credit card offers a tremendous amount of value to offset that fee. For example, I got more than $2,000 worth of value in my first year with the card.

    The card earns Membership Rewards points, the currency in AmEx's loyalty program, which can be exchanged for statement credits or cash back, used to book travel through AmEx's travel website, or, to get the most value, transferred to any of 17 airline and three hotel transfer partners (transferable points are among the best). Travel website The Points Guy lists a valuation of 1.9¢ per Membership Rewards point; based on that, the welcome offer is worth around $1,140.

    Because $5,000 is one of the steepest spending requirements of any consumer credit card, this is an ideal time to open it — with holiday spending going on, you can take advantage of those planned expenses to meet a higher minimum required spend than you would normally be able to.

    Plus, you can take advantage of the card's airport lounge access to make holiday travel a little bit less hectic.

    The Platinum Card earns an incredible 5x points on airfare purchased directly from the airline, and offers a $200 airline fee credit each calendar year, and up to $200 in Uber credits each card member year. It also grants the cardholder access to more than 1,200 airport lounges around the world, including Delta Sky Clubs and AmEx's own Centurion Lounges. Other benefits include automatic gold elite status at Starwood, Marriott, and Hilton hotels, a statement credit to cover enrollment in Global Entry/TSA PreCheck, concierge service, and much more.

    If you're an active military servicemember, you can get the AmEx Platinum Card's fee waived.

    You can read our complete review of the card here.

    Click here to learn more about the American Express Platinum from Insider Picks' partner: The Points Guy.

    7. Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card

    capital one savor

    Sign-up bonus: $500 (after spending $3,000 in the first three months)

    If dining and cooking are your thing, and cash back is what you're after, the Capital One Savor is sure to please.

    The card earns unlimited 4% cash back on all dining and entertainment, 2% back at grocery stores, and 1% on everything else. Plus, the card offers a whopping $500 sign-up bonus when you spend $3,000 in the first three months.

    The Savor carries a lower annual fee than the AmEx Gold — $95, waived the first year. The earning rate will make up for the fee in many cases, based on normal spending, but if that's too high for you, there's an alternative: the Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card.

    The SavorOne card has no annual fee, and offers a slightly lower — but still valuable — earning rate of 3% cash back on dining and entertainment, 2% back at grocery stores, and 1% on everything else. It offers a lower sign-up bonus of $150 when you spend $500 in the first three months.

    Click here to learn more about the Capital One Savor card from Insider Picks' partner: The Points Guy.

    Click here to learn more about the Capital One SavorOne card from Insider Picks' partner: The Points Guy.

    Read more: The Capital One Savor offers 4% cash back on dining and entertainment — here's how much the average American saves each year with the card

    8. Chase Sapphire Preferred

    Card Group — Chase Sapphire Preferred Chase Sapphire Reserve_21 1

    Sign-up bonus: 50,000 points (after spending $4,000 in the first three months)

    The Sapphire Preferred is one of the most popular all-around rewards credit cards, and it's easy to see why. This card earns 2x points per dollar spent on just about all travel and dining purchases, and 1x point on everything else. It also comes with a ton of travel and purchase protections, such as rental car insurance, trip delay coverage, and extended warranty.

    The sign-up bonus — 50,000 UR points — is worth, at the very least, $500 as cash back or gift cards. However, if you book travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and use points to pay, you'll get a 25% bonus, making points worth 1.25 cents each. That means that the sign-up bonus would be worth $625.

    Even more lucrative — the Chase Sapphire Preferred lets you transfer your UR points to a few different frequent flyer and hotel loyalty programs. This comes in handy because, in many cases, it costs fewer points to book a trip if you go through one of those programs, as opposed to using the points as cash. You can read more about why transferring points to frequent flyer programs gets you more value here.

    This all comes for a fairly standard annual fee of $95, which is waived the first year.

    Click here to learn more about the Sapphire Preferred from Insider Picks' partner: The Points Guy.

    9. Chase Sapphire Reserve

    Chase card

    Sign-up bonus: 50,000 points (after spending $4,000 in the first three months)

    The Sapphire Reserve is basically a beefier version of the Preferred. While the card comes with the same sign-up bonus, it earns points on everyday spending faster, nabbing a higher 3x points per dollar spent on travel and dining purchases, and 1x on everything else. It also offers similar, though in many cases, enhanced travel and purchase protections.

    Unlike the Preferred, the Sapphire Reserve comes with a Priority Pass Select membership, which gets you and any travel companions free access to more than 1,000 airport lounges around the world.

    You can use points from the Reserve the same ways as with the Preferred, except that you'll get a 50% bonus when booking travel through Chase, making your points worth 1.5¢ each.

    The card carries a higher annual fee than the Preferred: $450. However, it also comes with a $300 travel credit each card member year. Each year, you'll get statement credits for the first $300 in travel-related purchases you make, including things like subway fare, taxis, parking, and tolls, as well as airfare and hotels. When you subtract this credit from the annual fee, the card is effectively only $150 each year.

    If you're not sure whether the Preferred or Reserve is the better card for you, take a look at this breakdown. Also keep in mind that you can typically only earn the sign-up bonus for one Sapphire-branded card every two years.

    Click here to learn more about the Sapphire Reserve from Insider Picks' partner: The Points Guy.

    10. Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card

    Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card

    Welcome offer: 150,000 Hilton Honors points when you spend $4,000 in the first three months

    The premium Hilton Honors American Express Aspire card has a hefty $450 annual fee, but it comes with so many perks, benefits, and rebates that it's more than worth paying for Hilton loyalists — or even brand-agnostic hotel guests.

    In addition to a $250 airline fee credit per calendar year and a $250 Hilton resort statement credit each card member year, the Aspire also offers a $100 Hilton on-property credit every time you book a stay of two nights or longer at a Hilton property — you just need to book through a specific website for cardholders.

    The card also offers a free weekend night reward each year — regardless of how much you spend — and a second if you spend $60,000 on the card in a calendar year. It also comes with complimentary Diamond status.

    The Aspire earns a tremendous 14x points per dollar spent with Hilton, 7x points on flights booked with the airline, car rentals, and at US restaurants, and 3x points on everything else.

    Click here to learn more about the Hilton Honors Aspire card from Insider Picks' partner The Points Guy.

    11. Wells Fargo Propel American Express® Card

    https_%2F%2Fblogs City Cards wells fargo propel 8 1200x800

    Welcome offer: 30,000 Go Far points (after spending $3,000 in the first three months)

    This new card from Wells Fargo has one of the more attractive rewards offerings you'll find from a no-annual-fee card. The new Propel card is actually a re-launch of an old product — Wells Fargo stopped accepting applications for the old card back in February, before announcing the new product and reopening applications this summer.

    The card earns 3x points on all travel, dining, and select streaming services (and 1x point on everything else). If that sounds familiar, it's because it's almost the same as the popular Chase Sapphire Reserve.

    There are some key differences between the cards. The Propel lets you redeem points for 1¢ each toward cash back, merchandise, travel, or more, while the Sapphire Reserve offers a range of more valuable redemption options — it's easy to get at least 50% more value for Chase points. Plus, the Sapphire Reserve offers a number of premium perks that the Propel doesn't, like airport lounge access, a $300 annual travel credit travel delay insurance, and more.

    Of course, the Sapphire Reserve also comes with a $450 annual fee, while the Wells Fargo Propel doesn't have a fee. Between the new member offer, and the solid earning rate on popular spend categories, the Propel makes a decent option for those who don't travel often, or who aren't comfortable floating a large annual fee.

    We named the Propel the best no-fee card of 2018.

    Click here to learn more about the Wells Fargo Propel card from Insider Picks' partner: The Points Guy.

    SEE ALSO: I pay $1,000 in annual fees for the Chase Sapphire Reserve and the Amex Platinum — and as far as I’m concerned, the math checks out

    DON'T MISS: The AmEx Platinum is available to active duty servicemembers at no annual fee — but even with the fee, the credit card is a great value

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    David Neeleman TAP

    • David Neeleman is one of the most successful airline entrepreneurs in the world.
    • He's the founder of JetBlue and Azul as well as a cofounder of Morris Air and WestJet
    • He's also a co-owner of TAP Air Portugal.
    • Neeleman cofounded Morris Air in 1984, at the age of 25. 
    • The airline boss shared with Business Insider the advice he would give his 25-year-old self at the beginning of his career.

    David Neeleman is one of the most experienced and successful entrepreneurs in the history of the airline industry. The affable, Brazilian-born, Utah-raised businessman has had a hand in the founding of four successful airlines over the last 35 years.

    He's the founder of JetBlue and Azul Brazilian Airlines as well as a cofounder of Morris Air and WestJet.

    He's also one of the co-owners of Portuguese national airline TAP Air Portugal.

    Earlier this year, Neeleman, 58, announced plans to launch his fifth airline, an American low-cost carrier called Moxy.

    Neeleman's career as an airline entrepreneur started early, when he co-founded Morris Air in 1984, at the age of 25. 

    He served as Morris Air's president from 1988 until it was sold to Southwest Airlines in 1994 for a reported $129 million. 

    "I sold Morris Air to Southwest because [the airline] was really vulnerable," he told Business Insider in an interview earlier this year. "I'm sitting in Delta Air Lines's hub in [Salt Lake City, Utah], I didn't have a lot of capital at the time and one of my guys told me, 'You know if Delta just matched all your fares they'd be revenue positive' and take so much of our market share."

    David Neeleman JetBlue"We were pretty vulnerable and Southwest wants us, plus when someone hands you $15 million at 33 years old you're like, 'Yeah! I'll take it,'" Neeleman added.

    After working at Southwest Airlines for a while after the merger, he left and helped cofound WestJet, now Canada's second largest airline. In 1998, Neeleman founded JetBlue, a New York-based boutique airline that melded premium service and amenities with low cost. 

    He followed that up with the founding of Azul Brazilian Airlines in 2008, a venture that has now become one of the largest carriers in South America. 

    So what advice would the David Neeleman of today give to his 25-year-old self?

    David Neeleman AzulHave personal control of the business and know the industry in which you are working, Neeleman said. 

    "Everything I've ever been involved in that I didn't control or run and was outside of my area of expertise I've lost money in," he said. "It's almost unanimous."

    From there, the goal is to differentiate yourself from the pack.

    "Be passionate. Be the best and create something that no one else has," Neeleman told us. "Build a better mousetrap."

    "If you build a better mousetrap, people will beat a path to your door," the airline boss said. "I really believe that."

    SEE ALSO: The amazing story of how the Airbus A320 family became the Boeing 737's greatest enemy

    FOLLOW US: On Facebook for more car and transportation content!

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Craig Jackson of Barrett-Jackson Auction Company has one of the world's most expensive private garages — take a look inside

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    Lotte World Tower South Korea

    • The Lotte World Tower is the tallest in South Korea and the fifth tallest in the world.
    • The high-rise recently won the Emporis Skyscraper Award, which honors the top ten skyscrapers that have been completed in the previous calendar year.
    • The tower features a number of record-breaking features, like an elevator that whizzes people to the 121st floor in one minute.
    • It's also built to withstand major disasters like a 9.0 magnitude earthquake or winds as strong as those seen during Hurricane Katrina. 

    The world is witnessing a massive boom in skyscraper construction, led by nations like China, Saudi Arabia, and the United States. This year alone, China built more skyscrapers than at any other time in history. 

    Amid growing competition for the tallest and most innovative towers, one high-rise in South Korea managed to surpass all others.

    Read more:Stunning photos of the 10 best skyscrapers in the world

    Earlier this week, the Lotte World Tower in Seoul received the Emporis Skyscraper Award, the world's most renowned prize for high-rise architecture. 

    The tower's sleek design pales in comparison to its record-shattering features, which include the world's highest glass-bottomed observation deck and the world's fastest elevator.

    Take a look at how it was built — and what it looks like now. 

    The tower's construction began in 2011, more than two decades after the land was procured.

    The owner, Lotte Corporation, also oversaw the construction of the world's largest indoor theme park.

    The structure is designed to hold up under a 9.0 magnitude earthquake.

    It's also intended to withstand gusts of wind as strong as those seen in Hurricane Katrina (around 180 miles per hour).

    At more than 1,800 square feet, it's the tallest building in South Korea and the fifth tallest building in the world.

    The structure, which opened in in April 2017, has 123 floors and 42,000 windows. Construction of the roof alone required 3,000 tons of steel.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    luxury home house mansion

    • Luxury developers are building expansive and extravagant underground spaces in multimillion-dollar homes. 
    • This is often a way to get around strict zoning laws in Los Angeles meant to limit the construction of large mansions.
    • These lavish lower levels include luxurious spas, sports facilities, "living" plant walls, wine cellars, art galleries, and in one case, even a ballroom.


    Developers are taking luxury homes in an unexpected direction: Underground.

    Rochelle Maize, a Los Angeles luxury real estate agent, said she's seeing more and more "extravagant basements" or lower levels being built into homes.

    "While this square footage isn't considered as valuable as above grade, it still allows for a higher selling price and return on investment," Maize told Business Insider.

    But these spaces are nothing like the dingy, unfinished space you might picture when you think of a typical basement. 

    "The other big trend that I am seeing in the basement level build-outs is interesting details that are being installed by landscape architects," Maize said. "They are creating gorgeous 'living-walls' on the concrete wall areas below ground. This is actually making them more inviting than some of the above-ground areas!"

    Some of these lavish subterranean spaces include spas, wine cellars, art galleries, tennis courts, and other sports facilities.

    Read more: Super rich people are paying up to $500,000 for luxe panic rooms, and as gun violence picks up, they're more popular than ever

    In Los Angeles, these spaces are often a way for developers to get around "red tape" that restricts the size of new construction single family homes, known as anti-mansionization laws, Maize said.

    Hacienda de la Paz, a 51,000-square-foot home in Los Angeles county, was built to be mostly underground in order to comply with such zoning requirements, according to the Los Angeles Times. Only one of its floors is above ground, and the other five levels are underground and include a 10,000-square-foot Turkish spa, a 15,000-square-foot tennis court, a ballroom, a yoga room, and a wine cellar.

    Just Sold at $22.4 million - Hacienda de la Paz (1 Buggy Whip Dr.) - Represented buyer and seller.

    A post shared by Jason Oppenheim (@jasonoppenheim) on Oct 31, 2018 at 7:19pm PDT on

    It sold at auction in October for $22.4 million, the Times reported.

    Then there's the most expensive home for sale in San Francisco, an ultra-modern complex listed for $45 million, which has a two-story underground art gallery, as Business Insider's Lina Batarags previously reported.

    These over-the-top basements are not just a West Coast trend. Jeffrey Collé, a custom home builder in the wealthy Hamptons community of New York, told the New York Times about a house he built with a 5,000-square-foot underground space that included a bedroom, a wine cellar, a home theater, a gym, a sauna, and a steam room.

    "You don’t have a feeling like you're underground," Collé told the Times. "These are open, airy spaces."

    The super-wealthy of London have also been building downwards, Business Insider previously reported, sometimes adding up to five levels underground in some of the city's most sought-after neighborhoods.

    SEE ALSO: Here's what the most expensive house for sale in every US state looks like

    DON'T MISS: This $245 million Los Angeles mansion is the most expensive home for sale in the US — and it costs 960 times more than a typical US home

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: You've probably been cooking your turkey all wrong — here's how to do it in 90 minutes flat

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    Coast Guard icebreaker Polar Star McMurdo Station Antarctica

    • Countries are looking to take advantage of the opening of the Arctic for shipping and exploration.
    • Operating there requires specialized icebreakers, of which the US has just one.
    • That icebreaker is in such poor shape that the Coast Guard declined to send it north, fearing it would break down.

    Countries are jockeying for position as the changing climate makes the Arctic more amenable to shipping and natural-resource extraction.

    Conditions in the high north are still formidable, requiring specialized ships. That's felt acutely in the US, mainly because of the paucity of ice-breaking capability compared to other Arctic countries — particularly Russia.

    Moscow, which has the world's largest Arctic coastline, has dozens of icebreakers, some of which are heavy models for polar duty and others that are designed to operate elsewhere, like the Baltic.

    The US has just two, only one of which is a heavy icebreaker that can operate in the Arctic and Antarctica.

    US Coast Guard Polar Star icebreaker Arctic Antarctic Ross Sea

    That heavy icebreaker, the Polar Star, is more than 40 years old and clinging to service life — something former Coast Guard commandant Paul Zukunft was well aware of when he was asked to send the Polar Star north.

    "When I was the commandant, the National Security Council approached me and said, 'Hey, we ought to sent the Polar Star through the Northern Sea Route and do a freedom of navigation exercise,'" Zukunft, who retired as an admiral in 2018, said this month at a Wilson Center event focused on the Arctic.

    Read more: The former head of the Coast Guard says Russia has 'all the pieces on the chessboard' in the Arctic — but the US has 'only got a couple of pawns'

    "I said, 'Au contraire, it's a 40-year-old ship. We're cannibalizing parts off its sister ship just to keep this thing running, and I can't guarantee you that it won't have an catastrophic engineering casualty as it's doing a freedom of navigation exercise, and now I've got to call on Russia to pull me out of harm's way. So this is not the time to do it,'" Zukunft said.

    The Polar Star was commissioned in 1976 and refurbished in 2012 to extend its service life. It's the Coast Guard's only operational heavy icebreaker, and it can chop through ice up to 21 feet thick. (The Healy, the service's other icebreaker, is a medium icebreaker that is newer and bigger but has less ice-breaking capability.)

    Coast Guard icebreaker Polar Star Polar Sea McMurdo Antarctica

    The Coast Guard's other heavy icebreaker and the Polar Star's sister ship, the Polar Sea, was commissioned the same year but left service in 2010 after repeated engine failures.

    Like Zukunft said, the service has been stripping the Polar Sea of parts to keep the Polar Star running, because many of those parts are no longer in production. When they can't get it from the Polar Sea, crew members have ordered second-hand parts from eBay.

    Read more: The former head of the US Coast Guard describes countering drug smugglers' 'free pass,' facing Russia in the Arctic, and how to 'think beyond the tyranny of the present'

    The icebreaker makes a run to McMurdo Station in Antarctica every year. On its most recent trip in January, the ship faced less ice but still dealt with mechanical issues, including a gas-turbine failure that reduced power to the propellers and a failed shaft seal that allowed seawater into the ship until it was sealed.

    Harsh conditions wear on the Polar Star — it's the only cutter that goes into drydock every year. It also sails with a year's worth of food in case it gets stuck. As commandant, Zukunft said the Polar Star was "literally on life support."

    Coast Guard icebreaker Polar Star propeller hull dry dock

    The Coast Guard has been looking to start building new icebreakers for some time.

    In 2016, Zukunft said the service was looking to build three heavy and three medium icebreakers. Along with the Navy, it released a joint draft request for proposal to build a new heavy icebreaker in October 2017.

    Read more: The former head of the Coast Guard describes how the US remains unprepared to deal with the effects of climate change

    The Homeland Security Department, which oversees the Coast Guard, requested $750 million in fiscal year 2019, which began October 1, to design and build a new heavy polar icebreaker. (That request included $15 million for a service-life extension project for the Polar Star.)

    But the department is one of several that have not been funded for 2019, and it's not clear the icebreaker money will arrive, as lawmakers focus on other spending priorities, including a wall on the US-Mexico border.

    US Coast Guard cutter icebreaker Healy Alaska Russia

    The $750 million was stripped by the House Appropriations Committee this summer — a move that was protested by House Democrats. The current Coast Guard commandant, Adm. Karl Schultz, said earlier this month that he was "guardedly optimistic" that funding for a new polar icebreaker would be available.

    The need for Russian assets to support the US in the high north would not be unprecedented, however.

    Read more: The former head of the US Coast Guard wants to cut a vital artery in the heart of the global cocaine trade

    When asked what infrastructure was needed in the Arctic to support US national defense, Zukunft stressed that much of it, like ports, would be dual-use, supporting military and civilian operations.

    "But the immediate need right now is for commercial [operations], and that was driven home when we didn't get the fuel delivery into Nome," Zukunft said, likely referring to a 2012 incident in which the Alaskan city was iced-in and a few weeks away from running out of fuel.

    "At that point in time we were able to call upon Russia to provide an ice-capable tanker escorted by the Coast Guard cutter Healy to resupply Nome."

    SEE ALSO: We got aboard a Coast Guard chopper to see how they bust smugglers and save boaters in the crowded waters around Miami

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Arctic and Antarctic sea ice just hit record lows — here's what would happen if all the ice melted

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    quarterly global fintech fundingThis is a preview of a research report from Business Insider Intelligence, Business Insider's premium research service. To learn more about Business Insider Intelligence, click here. Current subscribers can read the report here.

    Fintech hubs — cities where startups, talent, and funding congregate — are proliferating globally in tandem with ongoing disruption in financial services. 

    These hubs are all vying to become established fintech centers in their own right, and want to contribute to the broader financial services ecosystem of the future. Their success depends on a variety of factors, including access to funding and talent, as well as the approach of relevant regulators.

    This report compiles various fintech snapshots, which together highlight the global spread of fintech, and show where governments and regulatory bodies are shaping the development of national fintech industries. Each provides an overview of the fintech industry in a particular country or state in Asia or Europe, and details what is contributing to, or hindering its further development. We also include notable fintechs in each geography, and discuss what the opportunities or challenges are for that particular domestic industry.

    Here are some of the key takeaways:

    • Most countries in Europe have made some formal attempt to foster the development of domestic fintech industries, with Germany and Ireland seeing the best results so far. France, meanwhile, got off to a slow start, but that's starting to change. 
    • The Asian fintech scene took off later than in the US or Europe, but it's seen rapid growth lately, particularly in India, China, and Singapore.
    • The increasing importance of technology-enabled products and services within the financial services ecosystem means the global fintech industry isn't going anywhere. 
    • Fintech hubs will continue to proliferate, with leaders emerging in each region.
    • The future fintech landscape will be molded by regulatory bodies — national and international — as they seek to mitigate the risks, and leverage the opportunities, presented by fintech. 

     In full, the report:

    • Explores the fintech industry in six countries or states, and identifies individual fintech hubs.
    • Highlights successful fintechs in each region.
    • Outlines the challenges and opportunities each country or state faces. 
    • Gives insight into the future of the global fintech industry. 

    Subscribe to an All-Access pass to Business Insider Intelligence and gain immediate access to:

    This report and more than 250 other expertly researched reports
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    And more!
    Learn More

    Purchase & download the full report from our research store


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    Omarosa Manigault

    • Trump's White House has seen a number of high-profile departures since the earliest days of the administration.
    • Scott Pruitt, Gary Cohn, Omarosa Manigault Newman, Hope Hicks, and Steve Bannon are only a few of the people who have left.
    • Some Trump administration alumni have gone back to their roots, while others have embarked on totally new ventures.


    President Donald Trump's White House has a doozy of a turnover rate.

    The Brookings Institution reports that 62% of top-level White House positions — excluding the cabinet — have seen turnover under Trump as of December 2018. Nine cabinet members have also left the administration in Trump's first two years of office, the same number of secretaries who left Obama's cabinet throughout his eight year term.

    Some of these top advisers were fired. Other officials decided to leave on their own, for various reasons. For example, chief of staff John Kelly recently announced his intent to resign after months of conflict and strife between him and Trump.

    Either way, many commentators have pointed out that sieve-like nature of the White House seems to speak to a turbulent environment. That's a characterization which Trump himself has disputed. "There is no Chaos, only great Energy!"he tweeted.

    So what happens to the people who leave? What sort of roles have Trump administration alumni been able to pick up once they exit the White House?

    It's too early to tell for most recent departures, like Kelly and Jeff Sessions. Former officials like Reince Priebus and Dina Powell have returned to their private sector roots. And still others are embarking on totally new ventures.

    Here's a look at where all of the White House's high-profile departures are today, from most to least recent departures:

    SEE ALSO: John Kelly is out — here are all the casualties of the Trump administration so far

    Jeff Sessions is out as attorney general.

    Attorney General Jeff Sessions submitted his resignation on November 7 after nearly two years in the position, with Trump announcing that Matthew Whitaker, Sessions' Chief of Staff, would serve as acting attorney general.

    Trump had frequently lambasted Sessions for recusing himself from overseeing special counsel Robert Mueller's probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election. 

    "You know, the only reason I gave him the job is because I felt loyalty," Trump told Fox News' Ainsley Earhardt in an August interview. "He was an original supporter." Trump lamented that he "put in an attorney general that never took control of the Justice Department."

    While Sessions has not announced his future plans, both Politico and Fox News reported he's eyeing a 2020 run for his old US Senate seat in Alabama, currently held by Democrat Doug Jones, who was elected in a December 2017 special election. 


    Don McGahn's next move is unclear

    Former White House counsel Don McGahn left the administration in late October following a turbulent 21 months in the White House.

    The New York Times reported in August that McGahn voluntarily gave 30 hours of testimony to special counsel Robert Mueller's team investigating Russian interference in the 2016 election and whether Trump obstructed justice as President. 

    It's not clear what McGahn, a former partner at Washington DC corporate law firm Jones Day and Federal Election Commission commissioner, will do next.

    Scott Pruitt was in talks to consult to coal mining companies.

    Former EPA administrator Scott Pruitt resigned in July amid several federal ethics investigations into his lavish spending habits, his suspected conflicts of interests with lobbyists, and for reportedly enlisting his official government staff to carry out his personal errands.

    In September, The New York Times reported that Pruitt was in talks to take on a new role independently consulting for Kentucky-based coal mining company Alliance Resource Partners, whose chief executive is a Republican donor. 

    While all Trump administration officials are bound to ethics pledges to not lobby for special interests within five years of leaving their government job, Pruitt's proposed consulting firm would reportedly not involve improper lobbying. 

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    • The Trump administration has provided no shortage of controversy and scandal in 2018.
    • From Trump reportedly referring to several nations as "s--thole countries" and multiple cabinet members implicated in ethics scandals, it was an eventful year for the White House and the administration broadly.
    • Here are the 21 biggest scandals that roiled the Trump administration in 2018. 

    It's been a long and eventful year in the administration of President Donald Trump, with nearly every day bringing with it a new controversy or scandal. 

    Between the release of two tell-all books that described the West Wing as dysfunctional, five cabinet members either ousted or mired in scandal, and several bombshell revelations in special counsel Robert Mueller's probe into Russian interference, there's been no shortage of scandal. 

    Here are the 21 of the biggest scandals that rocked the Trump administration in 2018:

    Michael Wolff's "Fire and Fury" left aides scrambling to do damage control.

    In early 2018, a controversial tell-all book about the Trump administration written by  Hollywood Reporter columnist Michael Wolff raised tensions among White House staffers as they tried to minimize the damage.

    Among the book's most salacious allegations were that former White House advisor Steve Bannon called Trump's oldest daughter Ivanka "dumb as a brick" and his son Donald Jr. "treasonous," that Trump repeatedly tried to have sex with his friends' wives, and that "everyone around him" questions his intelligence and fitness for office.

    While the book's claims were treated with cautious skepticism by other members of the media, Trump slammed Wolff and blamed "weak libel laws" for the book's allegations.


    Staff secretary Rob Porter resigned after his two ex-wives accused him of domestic violence.

    Rob Porter, a White House staff secretary and right-hand man to chief of staff John Kelly, resigned in early February after two of his ex-wives came forward with allegations of domestic abuse, sending the West Wing into chaos. 

    Many of Porter's White House colleagues stuck by him even as the women came forward with disturbing accounts of physical assault, photographs of black eyes, and protective orders they filed against Porter. The allegations were considered serious enough to deny Porter a security clearance, according to reports. 

    While Kelly publicly stated he was "shocked" by the claims, multiple news reports asserted the White House was aware of the allegations for months before they became public. 


    The Washington Post reported that Trump referred to a number of nations as "s--thole countries" in a meeting.

    In a bipartisan meeting with members of Congress, Trump reportedly referred to nations including Haiti, El Salvador, and a number of African nations as "shithole countries," and lamented why the US wasn't seeing more people immigrate from places like Norway.

    The remarks garnered heavy backlash from figures in Washington and the media. 

    "I don't know how to break this to you, but I think the president might be racist," Trevor Noah, host of "The Daily Show,"said.

    "Sir, they're not shithole countries," joked "Late Show" host Stephen Colbert. "For one, Donald Trump isn't their president."


    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    TAMPA, FLORIDA - NOVEMBER 02: U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham attends an event with Republican gubernatorial candidate Ron DeSantis, at Hillsborough Victory Office on November 2, 2018 in Tampa, Florida. DeSantis is running against Democratic challenger Andrew Gillum to be the next Florida governor. (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

    • Republicans lost the majority they held in the House of Representatives for the first time in eight years.
    • But several Republicans broke through the political turmoil and gained significant notoriety in 2018.

    Republicans did not have a banner year, losing dozens of seats in the House after the 2018 midterm election results were finally tallied.

    But a handful of Republicans broke through the party's big losses to make a name for themselves or experience a massive shift in their reputation among conservatives. 

    Here are some of the GOP's biggest breakout stars of 2018.

    SEE ALSO: Republicans and Democrats agree: Trump can't just do what he wants with NAFTA

    Dan Crenshaw

    Republican Dan Crenshaw, a former US Navy SEAL, won the House race in Texas' 2nd congressional district in November.

    Crenshaw became one of the most widely-known new Republicans running in 2018 after becoming the subject of a joke on "Saturday Night Live," in which Pete Davidson mocked his eye-patch. Crenshaw lost his eye while fighting in Afghanistan.

    Davidson and Crenshaw ultimately made up by allowing the incoming freshman congressman to roast him on the next episode of the NBC show. But Crenshaw made a lasting impression to become a breakout GOP star.

    Liz Cheney

    Wyoming Rep. Liz Cheney has served in Congress since 2016 but gained new notoriety in the aftermath of the GOP's poor performance in the 2018 midterm elections.

    House Republicans elected Cheney chair of the entire conference — a position her father, former Vice President Dick Cheney, had held during his time in Congress.

    Lindsey Graham

    Sen. Lindsey Graham has been relatively well-known for years. But in 2018, Graham became a virtual pit bull for President Donald Trump and his agenda in the Senate, allowing him to shed his reputation of being a "RINO" (Republican in name only).

    Graham unloaded on Democrats during the contentious hearings for then-Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, changing the tone and pace of a pivotal moment in the Senate.

    The result of Graham's new attitude has been laudatory praise from Trump and his allies in the Republican Party, along with winning access to the president's ear on key issues.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Yes, the United States is a democracy. However, this doesn't mean it doesn't have its own powerful family dynasties. 

    Four families in America have had two members serve as U.S. presidents, giving them prime slots in the history books, but also making Americans wonder how they did it. That's why we have ranked the 11 most powerful and influential political familes in the U.S. by taking into account their historical legacy, net worth, current influence, and potential to continue producing political heirs.  

    SEE ALSO: The 23 Most Impressive Dynasties In America Today

    1. The Bushes

    The Bush family is one of two families in American history that produced two presidents — the late George H. W. Bush and George W. Bush.

    George Sr., the son of Connecticut Senator Prescott Bush, was a congressman, diplomat, CIA director and vice president before winning the presidency in 1988. His eldest son, George W., went on to win 12 years later. In 2016, H.W.'s son Jeb, former Florida governor, ran for president too, ultimately losing the Republican primary. Combined, George Sr. and wife Barbara Bush were worth an estimated $25 million. But the family, overall, is worth an estimated $400 million. Currenty, George P. Bush, Jeb's oldest son, is serving as Texas land commissioner, setting him up as the leader of the fourth generation of Bush politicians. 

    2. The Kennedys

    The Kennedy family is, perhaps, the most recognizable political dynasty in American history. Patrick Joseph Kennedy, the first Kennedy to run for office, was elected to the Massachusetts state legislature in 1884. Ever since, the Kennedys have been a mainstay in American politics, producing the 35th president, John F. Kennedy, as well as a number of senators, representatives and ambassadors.

    Forbes estimates that the top 30 members of the Kennedy family, combined, are worth $1.2 billion. Joseph P. "Joe" Kennedy III, the grandson of former U.S. Attorney General and Senator Robert F. Kennedy, is currently serving his third term as Massachusetts Representative. 

    3. The Adams

    The Adams family was the first in American history to produce two presidents. John Adams, one of the nation's founding fathers and its second president, first served as vice president to George Washington. Together with his wife and advisor Abigail, John Adams raised son John Quincy Adams to become the 8th president of the U.S. John Quincy's son Charles Adams served in the Massachusetts House of Representatives and unsuccessfully ran for vice president in 1848. His son, John Quincy Adams II, also served in the Massachusetts state house before unsuccessfully running for governor multiple times in the 1860s. Currently, the only member of the Adams family that remains politically involved is John Donley Adams, a Virginia lawyer who unsuccessfully ran for Virginia Attorney General. 

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    • President Donald Trump's former longtime lawyer Michael Cohen has pleaded guilty.
    • It marked the climax of the Cohen controversy.
    • Here's the full timeline of events.

    President Donald Trump's former longtime lawyer Michael Cohen has been sentenced to three years in prison after pleading guilty to a list of federal crimes he committed while employed by the president. Cohen's sentencing culminates a months-long controversy surrounding his fraudulent conduct during the 2016 election. 

    During his December 12 sentencing, Cohen apologized for his actions and said he acted out of "blind loyalty" to Trump. Days earlier, on November 29, he pleaded guilty to lying to Congress about his involvement with the construction of the Trump Tower in Moscow.

    Earlier this year, on August 21, Cohen cut a deal with federal prosecutors and pleaded guilty to five counts of tax evasion, one count of making a false statement to a financial institution, and two counts related to campaign-finance violations. Cohen said under oath that Trump directed him to violate campaign-finance laws just before the 2016 presidential election to boost his candidacy.

    The latter two charges were in connection to payments to the former Playboy model Karen McDougal and the porn actress Stormy Daniels to silence their allegations of affairs with Trump.

    As Cohen said he committed the campaign-finance violations "at the direction of the candidate" and with the "purpose of influencing the election," there were audible gasps in the reporter-packed courtroom in lower Manhattan courtroom.

    The federal prosecutors Cohen struck a deal with said they had evidence corroborating Cohen's admissions, stemming from records obtained from him that included audio tapes, texts, phone records, emails, witnesses with knowledge of the transactions, and records from The National Enquirer.

    Later in the week, The Wall Street Journal reported, federal prosecutors investigating Cohen granted immunity to Trump Organization CFO Allen Weisselberg and American Media Inc. CEO David Pecker, who struck the deal with McDougal.

    Cohen faced 65 years in prison, but the deal narrowed that sentence down to a much more palatable three years.

    Lanny Davis, one of Cohen's attorneys, told Business Insider after Cohen pleaded guilty that Cohen felt "pain for his family" that he could go to prison but relief that the plea deal was done. Cohen's also not done opening up on what he knows about Trump, Davis said.

    "This is the time he knows he's going to jail, and he feels liberated that he can finally speak his mind about his concerns about Donald Trump without a criminal lawyer telling him to 'be quiet' because 'you'll upset the prosecutors,'" he said.

    Moving forward, all eyes are on what happens next, particularly for Trump.

    "The plea, under oath, establishes that the president was a co-conspirator in the campaign violations to which Cohen pleaded guilty," Philip Allen Lacovara, who served as counsel to the special prosecutors investigating President Richard Nixon's role in the Watergate scandal, told The New York Times.

    Before Nixon resigned from office, a grand jury named him an unindicted coconspirator. Lacovara said Trump had "technically" become that as well.

    Though Cohen implicated Trump in multiple felonies, it appears highly unlikely Trump will be indicted in this instance — at least while he is still in office.

    Here's the full timeline of events in the Cohen investigation:


    SEE ALSO: Democrats are still incredibly cautious about discussing Trump's impeachment even after 2 of his top aides have been convicted

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Anthony Scaramucci claims Trump isn't a nationalist: 'He likes saying that because it irks these intellectual elitists'

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    • More than half of American employers gave their employees bonuses last holiday season.
    • If you're expecting a bonus this year, one financial planner suggests using 80% of it to pay off debt and increase savings, and 20% to spend however you like. 

    It's bonus season.

    According to a survey of 500 US businesses by recruiting agency Accounting Principles, 63% of employers spread holiday cheer via check at the end of 2017, gifting workers an average cash bonus of $1,797.

    If you're expecting an end-of-year or holiday bonus, Katie Brewer, CFP and founder of financial planning firm Your Richest Life, suggests making a plan for the money before it appears in your account.

    Generally, Brewer told Business Insider, you should commit 80% of your holiday bonus to "serious money," using it to pay off debts, increase savings, and top off retirement funds. The other 20% can be fun money, she says.

    Read more: 11 signs you're about to get a holiday bonus

    It's easy to think of a dozen uses for your "fun money." But what about that 80% you're dedicating to building wealth? Where should you start?

    Below, we've put together a flow chart to help you figure out where your serious money can make the most impact. The chart assumes that you're making regular payments toward any debt and are without extenuating circumstances, like an expected end-of-year medical bill or other urgent charge to which you've already committed your bonus.

    what should you do first with your holiday bonus graphic

    SEE ALSO: The 7 dumbest things you can do with your end-of-year bonus

    DON'T MISS: How much to tip everyone in your life for the holidays, from your landlord to the mail carrier

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Tim Cook's estimated net worth is $625 million — here's how he makes and spends his money

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