Posted on Monday, 12.29.08
Test your business knowledge of 2008
By DOUGLAS HANKS
1. Rank these local publicly traded companies by their market capitalization as of Dec. 10,
D) Office Depot
2. Which had dropped the least on a percentage basis for the year as of Dec. 10?
A)The median sales price of an existing home in Miami-Dade County
B)The price of a gallon of gas in South Florida
C)The Dow Jones Industrial Average
3. Rank these housing markets by their foreclosure rates, starting with the highest:
A) Fort Myers
B) Fort Lauderdale
C) Fort Pierce
D) Las Vegas
4. In December, the Fontainebleau Miami Beach resort reopened its main building,
constructed in 1954. How much did the owners say the renovation cost?
A) $50 million
B) $200 million
C) $500 million
D) $1 billion
5. In its Borrowers Betrayed investigative series on shady lending practices, which crime
did The Miami Herald find licensed mortgage brokers in Florida were convicted of:
A) Bank robbery
C) Cocaine Trafficking
D) All of the above
6. Lehman Brothers, the banking giant that collapsed Sept. 15 amid history's largest
bankruptcy filing, backed which of these local projects?
A) Aventura Mall expansion
B) Canyon Ranch Miami Beach resort
C) Trump Hollywood condominium tower
D) Icon Brickell condo and hotel tower
E) All of the above
7. In August, Florida Insurance Commissioner Kevin McCarty rejected State Farm's
request for a 47 percent increase on homeowner insurance rates as too high. After that,
what rate did the insurer propose for its policies?
A) 27 percent
B) 46 percent
C) 67 percent
D) No change
8. Which of these companies did not file for bankruptcy protection in 2008?
D) Levitt & Sons
9. These South Florida employers reported big job cuts to the state this year. Which
company slashed payroll the most?
C) Spirit Airlines
10. For the first nine months of 2008, nearly 13,500 South Floridans filed for personal
bankruptcy. How much higher was that pace compared to a year ago?
A) 25 percent
B) 75 percent
C) 100 percent
D) 200 percent
11. According to a November study by the Condo Vultures firm, what percentage of the
more than 17,000 condominiums recently built in downtown Miami have been officially
sold to buyers?
A) 10 percent
B) 30 percent
C) 50 percent
D) 70 percent
12. Which of the following employment categories gained jobs in South Florida during
2008? You may select more than one.
A) Food and Beverage Stores
C) Leisure and Hospitality
D) Wholesale Trade
13. Complete these statements about South Florida's tourism economy by connecting
choices on the left with choices on the right:
A) Room rates in Keys hotels . . 1) increased 8 percent for the first six months of 2008
B) Cruise passenger departures at Port of Miami . . . 2) decreased 5 percent through October.
C) Passenger arrivals at the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood Airport . . . 3) increased 10 percent
D) Foreign tourism in Miami-Dade . . . 4)increased 3 percent through September
14. Which CEO saw the biggest raise -- an $8.2 million bump -- in The Miami Herald's
annual salary survey of the region's biggest publicly traded companies?
A) Lennar's Stuart Miller
B) Vector Group's Bennett Lebow
C) World Fuel Services' Paul Stebbins
D) Office Depot's Steve Odland
15. In September, brothers Carlos and Jorge de Céspedes both pleaded guilty to
conspiracy to commit fraud related to fictional sales by their company, Pharmed, to a
South Florida hospital engineered by paying kickbacks to low-level hospital executives.
The hospital is demanding the de Céspedeses return roughly $5 million it claims it lost in
the scam. Which hospital is it?
A) Kendall Regional
C) Jackson Memorial
D) Broward General
E) Mount Sinai
And the answers are ...
1. C) Carnival, B) Auto Nation, A) Lennar, D) Office Depot
2. A) The median sales price of an existing home in Miami-Dade County
3. From highest to lowest foreclosure rates... A) Fort Myers, D) Las Vegas, B) Fort Lauderdale C)
Fort Pierce, E) Miami.
4. C) $500 million (The construction of two adjoining condominium towers cost an additional $500
5. D) All of the above.
6. E) All of the above.
7. C) 67 percent, which a state administrative judge also rejected in a December ruling.
8. D) Levitt & Sons, which filed for bankruptcy in November 2007.
9. B) PRC, by cutting 424 jobs in April.
10. B) 75 percent
11. D) 70 percent
12. B) Hospitals, up 4.9 percent and C) Leisure and Hospitality, up less than 1 percent
13. A = 2) Keys hotels down 5 percent B = 3) Miami cruise departures up 10 percent C = 4) Fort
Lauderdale airport up 3 percent D = 1) Miami-Dade foreign tourism up 8 percent.
14. D) Odland
15. A) Kendall Regional
HOW DO YOU RANK?
Give yourself a point for every question answered correctly. How did you do?
0 to 5 points: Too depressed to read the Business Section? Force yourself to stay informed in
6 to 9 points: At least you read the headlines.
10 to 13 points: Congratulations! You're obviously an informed consumer and investor.
14 to 15 points: Really? We didn't even score that high.
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