Apple takes a bite out of the US government12-Aug-2011
While stocks markets in Europe seem to be on a rollercoaster and the US government fights off the national debt, there seems to be someone staying very strong these days: it took Apple 15 years to move from the edge of the default to get to the position of having more cash than the U.S. government!
The U.S. government: $73.768 billion
However, the sad news for Apple is that as the U.S. gross domestic product is something of $14 trillion, they still can not buy the US. But, if the US government was able to buy businesses it could not afford to buy several companies that Apple could easily purchase. Not mentioning that if the US defaults, Apple could get much better credit than the government. It all sounds quite surreal.
At the same time it has been reported that Apple has become the largest and most valuable company in the US. It has been in the second place since May last year but recently managed to jump up to the leading spot (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-14485114).
What is the biggest company in your country? How is it possible that a company has got more money than the government? Would that be possible in the place where your students live?
You can use some of the Macmillan English Campus resources to talk about the economy: “International trade”, “Business news”,”Annual report”, ”The New York Stock Exchange”, “The European Central Bank”.
You could also find some business oriented lesson ideas on onestopenglish.com: American English: Finance – worksheet.