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That Was Close: The Reason You Did Not Get an A!!!

71157_244704062681_As an English major at one of the top universities for the fine subject, I’ve cranked out my fair share of essays. Needless to say, I’ve experienced the entire gamut of essay writing and essay grading, and I am here to tell you that it can be enormously frustrating to put in those hours just to get a less-than-stellar grade on your essay. Especially when it counts for 35% of your grade.


But fear not. The fact that you didn’t get an A on your essay means that there’s always room to improve. Writing is a craft that can only be honed through observation, exposure, and practice, which you will undoubtedly get plenty of when you have to write for your GE classes, your labs, your theses… you get the point.

Your essay didn’t fall short because of your procrastinating, caffeine-fueled habits (although that certainly may factor into the end result). These are the real reasons why your essay didn’t get an A:

The Thesis Has Yet to Be Perfected

While in class, I’ve had many fellow peers comment on how they’ve never really learned how to write a proper thesis statement.

The thesis statement is the crux of your entire essay. It presents your argument and how exactly you’re going to go about proving that. As such, make sure that there is no room for confusion regarding what point you’re trying to make. Your claim should also be one that can be debated, which gives you room in your essay to address any potential counterarguments, thus making for a more sophisticated argument and paper overall.


You Didn’t Read Closely Enough

When I came to college, I was introduced to the concept of “close reading”, something wildly different from the essays of broadly overarching themes that I wrote back in high school. Close reading is essentially paying really close attention to a specific passage and dissecting it for meaning.

Do not underestimate what I mean by really close attention. Sometimes, you have to read so closely that you’re not dissecting sentences but words and syllables. I would’ve scoffed at first too, but that was before I earned an A on essay that spent 6 pages talking about the different permutations of “just” and “justice” and their implications in Paradise Lost.

There Was Way Too Much Fluff

If we were to put an analogy to an essay, I’d compare an essay to a nice t-bone steak. The organizational structure, including the thesis statement and topic sentences, is the bone, and you want to make sure that there’s plenty of meat sticking onto that bone. The meat is your analysis.

Now, what about the fat?

There should be only enough fat to accentuate the meat. Fat is what makes part of a great steak, but you don’t want to go overboard with it. Likewise, you want to focus on making your essay nice and trim while providing enough evidence and expository information to give your analysis the proper context. Each sentence of your essay should serve a purpose, and by no means should you try to fill up page space with words that don’t matter.

Ignored the Audience

This goes hand-in-hand with writing too much fluff. When writing your essay, you need to remember that your intended audience is your grader, most likely the TA leading your section for that specific class. Your TA probably knows everything about the text content-wise, so don’t waste their precious time or your precious space rehashing the plot. In fact, they’ll most likely ding you for including too much “plot summary”.HITLER-FAILED-

Instead, spend your time making pointed and unique observations. You don’t have to be super out-of-the-box with your ideas, but prove to your reader that you are capable of making a nuanced and logical argument.

Follow the Directions

When given your prompt, you’ll realize that there’s a small chunk of text at the beginning of the page outlining the assignment. Some of those sentences will include directions on how to format your essay and turn it in. Don’t assume that just because you’re in college, you’re suddenly all grown up and exempt from the rules. Not making sure that your essay is properly formatted and complete with header and footer or that your citations are correct is the easiest way to get points knocked off of what would normally be a compelling essay.

See Also: Why You Received “D” or “F” Grades

Your professor and graders might have over 50 essays per person to grade, so make their lives easier by just following their directions. Just do it. Please.

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Compare and Contrast the UK and the US Health Care Systems

The UK and the US health care services are great examples of publicly funded and privately funded health care systems respectively. By assessing and analysing key findings from a microeconomic standpoint, we can see significant difference between the two approaches to health care provision.

First, the role of government interventions in the provision of healthcare is to balance the demand and supply of the services; as well as prevent market failures in the form of monopoly, price fixing, and exploitation. Insurance system is also introduced to avoid information asymmetry in the market. We then look into the UK health care service and see that a public funded system will attempt to discourage market failures by avoiding information asymmetry, negative externalities and regional monopolies. However, the National Health Service (NHS) suffers from allocation and productive inefficiencies. The US system benefits from a competitive market model, this having higher levels of economic efficiency, innovation and quality of service. On the other hand, the US model is often criticised for not offering equal welfare to society, in addition, it leads to waste and the dominance of insurance companies. Finally, we will assess the role of a regulator when ensuring efficiency and competitiveness as well as discouraging market failures; whereas the role of a market form will ensure better allocative efficiency in healthcare provision.


In the UK, the NHS has existed for over fifty years and offers health care that is free at the point of delivery for everyone. This service is funded by taxpayers for the benefit of those same taxpayers. However, the option remains available for people to purchase private health insurance if they so choose.

In the US, the majority of citizens have health insurance that is related to employment or purchases directly. The federal government only ensures public access to emergency services, regardless of an individual’s ability to pay. They also have publicly funded health care programs that cater to the elderly, the disabled and the poor.

These are two significant examples of the two different approaches to health care provision: publicly and privately funded. In this report, we are going to look into the microeconomic aspects of the two models by assessing and analysing:Healthcare-System-UK-US

  1. Health care features as policy interventions in the market
  2. The microeconomic advantages and disadvantages of the UK system
  3. The microeconomic advantages and disadvantages of the US system
  4. The role of the regulators and markets in the provision of health care

Key Findings

Health care features as policy interventions in the market

In the majority of advanced societies, access to basic and emergency health care is considered an irrefutable moral right, regardless of gender, age or creed. But through what means should a government decide it has the right to control any health care system via administration and policy? Both systems contain state owned entities which provide free health services, funded by the taxpayer, although the limitations on state services differ greatly, defining the private and public services. By its very nature, a state owned entity requires policy interventions in its administration, in order to decide what services each government chooses to provide.

As a nationalised service, both UK and US government run monopolies on health care on some level. At the same time, medical institutions such as hospitals may create localised monopolies since no other alternative may offer their services and economies of scale incentivise ‘the emergence of one large hospital in an area rather than a large number of small hospitals’. By definition, monopolies create economic inefficiencies through social loss such that a monopoly firm may retain higher profits from their personal gain. Where health care exists as a privately provided system, the same regulations and policies that are inflicted on all free enterprise may be used. Such policies exist to ensure perfect competition where possible, to prevent the formation of cartels or price fixing, and to limit the exploitation and advantages given to any natural monopoly.

With free service, demand for health care from the common citizen is at its practical maximum. The role of government is to supply this demand to the best of its ability. Such, it can be seen that the government itself has a demand for a level of health care which creates an equilibrium against what the production firms can supply. Policy intervention is therefore required to choose the appropriate level of demand the government wishes to obtain, given the cost of supply, the health demands of the people and the level of funding from taxes.

As the demand for health care is not a constant for any individual consumer, since accidents are unpredictable, a system of insurance has been adopted in many markets, whereby a prepayment to a firm is made, such that when demand for medical care is required, all costs are covered by the firm. The free health market funded by taxes may act as a proxy to an insurance system since taxes are paid regularly in exchange for returns via public services. With any insurance system, problems may arise if contracts are improperly defined or information is asymmetric, such that consumers are refused service if they are not adequately covered, or are unaware of the full extent of their insurance coverage. A policy and regulatory body may be necessary in order to ensure fair contracts are held without exploitation.

healthcare-in-canada-uk-usThe economic advantages and disadvantages of the UK system


Health care is a complex, unique good and everybody demand it but it faces problems if it is distributed through a free-market system and not a state-funded system. Market failure can occur for many reasons and the problem of asymmetric information is one of these. This is when producers and consumers within a market have access to different levels of information, whereas a characteristic of a completely competitive market is when all economic agents have access to all information. This is the case between doctors and patients as patients have minimal information (individuals cannot treat themselves). They expect doctors to act in their best interests but this may not happen in a free market. A doctor working for a company motivated by profit may act in the best economical interests of the company when deciding how to treat a patient.

Other causes of market failure include externalities and the forming of regional monopolies. These problems do not exist in a state-funded health care system and neither do insurance related problems.

‘The main aim of the NHS is to provide a comprehensive, high quality service available on the basis of clinical need and not ability to pay’. It is also a huge job provider, increases the productivity of the economy by keeping the workforce healthy (including preventative treatments like vaccinations) and increases real GDP by raising life expectancy and therefore lengthening the average working life (Riley, 2006).

The NHS also benefits extensively from economies of scale because of its size and is good value ‘at a total cost of around 6% of the GDP’, compared with 16% of the GDP for the US (Team project guidelines).


Since profit is not the main incentive behind the NHS, and prices do not play the same role as in a free market system, inefficiencies exist. The power of a competitive market suggests that the correct quantity and quality of health care would be provided at minimal cost to meet consumer demand. This would not be the case for the NHS. The distribution of resources would not produce a Pareto efficient outcome.

Demand for health care simply outstrips supply and demand will continue to grow because of ‘changes in the age structure, increasing real incomes, improvements in medical technology’ (Office of Health Economics, 2009). As the population of the UK ages, the larger number of older people will put a greater strain on the NHS, increasing real incomes cause people to raise their standards and medical developments simply increase the number of conditions that can be treated. Government expenditure on health care will therefore need to increase or health care will have to be rationed to a greater extent.

The economics advantage and disadvantage of the US system


Health care in the US is provided by many separate legal entities both in the private sector and public sector. This is a contestable market (or free market system) where anyone, any unions, any groups, regardless public or private, can provide health care. Hence, it increases the competitive level of health care provision to consumers, increasing economic efficiency. In addition, contestable markets also rule out the chance of monopoly rule and in doing so, prevents deadweight loss to the customers. In order to stay in the market, each entity needs to maximize quality of products (insurance, drugs price, medical fees) and minimize the costs. The contestability system opens up many opportunities for businesses which allow more research about drugs and health technology which will help cost saving in medicine. Furthermore, the US has some of the best medical research systems such as the Harvard Medical School, Mayo Clinic and the Cleveland Clinic.


In an article discussing the US health care crisis, Paul Krugman and Robin Wells state that the US health system favours the wealthy especially the employer (Krugman & Wells, 2006). Whereas those with higher incomes pay medical fees using pre-tax income, some firms and wealthy people get a ‘tax-break’ in the form of access to all medical services available. For example, instead of paying the tax, some corporations pay the health insurance for their employees instead.

Furthermore, Paul and Robin also argue on the heavy reliance of the Americans on health insurance which leads to waste and the domination of the insurance companies (Krugman & Wells, 2006). As of 2008, private health insurance paid for 33.5% of the total spent on health expenditures account while out-of-pocket-payments consists of only 11.9% (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, 2008). As health insurance in the US is mostly distributed by the private sector (67.5% in 2007) (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, 2008), many people lack health insurance. This leads to a portion of Americans who have no jobs, have no insurance and hence they are not able to get any medical services. As of 2007, there is at least 15.3% of Americans who have no insurance (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, 2008).

This system helps both the government and the consumers by creating greater savings on health services. Because the government is not the only one who provides health care, the government’s share in health care should be lower compared to economies where the government provides full services to all citizens. Also, as stated above, advances in technology that reduce cost in drugs production also benefit the public sector. In 2008, the US government only accounted for 47.3% (or $1.1 trillion) in the $2.3 trillion spent on health care services and products (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, 2008).

The US health care seems to favour private business over public services. However, it also creates jobs and saves money for its customers which could lead to an increase in average disposable income.

The role of a regulator and markets in the provision of health care

Health care is a good that is, generally, under-supplied and over-priced in competitive markets. The role of the government, with regards to health care, should be to sustain supply at an optimal level that would not otherwise exist in a competitive market. Therefore, given this supply of health care provided by the government, regulators should exist to ensure the efficient operation of the NHS in the UK. Due to the lack of direct competition to the NHS, supply is only a function of costs, rather than being a function of price as well as costs, only because it is provided for free to consumers who demand it. In the US, where competitive markets determine the price and quantity of health care provided, there are high fixed costs in terms of capital and equipment and that those that supply health care engage in discriminatory prices as a result of the existence of market power (Glied, 2003). Shelly Glied notes that ‘[t]hese patterns suggested that per unit costs of health care could be reduced’ (Glied, 2003). Therefore, regulators should also act to ensure the competitiveness of the entire health care market in the US and the private health market sector in the UK.

The role of markets is to, by incentivising individuals to respond to signals in the market, achieve efficiency and equity in the health care industry (Le Grand, 1998). In order to maximise the supply of health care services, maximising efficiency should be the priority role for both the National Health Service, and the private health care providers that exist in the US and the UK. Due to the competitive nature of the market for health care in the US, maximising supply should not be the priority, otherwise you may end up with an excess of supply over demand for health care – hardly an efficient allocation of resources. Instead, ensuring effective resource allocation subject to the demand and supply for health care should be the primary role for the competitive market for health care in the US.

Imperfect competition, in the form of oligopolies and asymmetric information, in the health care industry in the US, however, causes the role of the markets to be distorted often resulting in market failures such as niche markets and market segmentation (Grembowski, Diehr, & Novak, 2000). In addition, regulators should also intervene to eliminate these market failures, where possible, in the US health care system in an attempt to maximise the provision of health care to individuals.

In summary, the role of the regulators is to encourage the production of health care and the role of the markets is to allocation resources in the most efficient manner.


The demand for health care, when it is provided at no cost to consumers, exists at a maximum level. The supply of health care, provided by the government, is determined by a number of variables, including the costs of production and the level of funding received through taxation. When health care is provided at a positive cost consumers enter into contracts with insurance providers, this creates a situation where policy intervention becomes necessary to ensure all parties enjoy the benefits of information symmetry and properly defined contracts.

The UK model benefits from a service that is provided when needed and is not based on an individual’s ability to pay. The lack of a profit-maximising incentive within the institutions providing health care results in aid provided primarily to heal the injured rather than efficient operation becoming more important than the quality of service. However, because prices play little role in incentivising agents, inefficiencies can occur in the UK system of health care provision and is the main disadvantage of the model.

The competitive market for health care in the US means that the provided level of health care is likely to be closer to the socially optimal level of provision given the demand and supply for health care. It is also a much more contestable market, with fewer monopolies, further increasing economic efficiency. However, the positive cost of health care creates the social and political issue of whether your access to health care should be a function of your disposable income.

Regulators’ role in health care markets should be to encourage the production of health care from the sub-optimal level initially provided in competitive markets, to the more efficient level. This is achieved by regulating firms’ costs and the minimization of them in order to maximize production. This is especially important in the UK market where output of health care is only a function of costs due to the lack of competition and the publicly-funded nature of the industry. The role of markets is to determine the largest provision of health care at the lowest cost possible; the most efficient allocation of resources given the demand and supply for health care. Markets and regulators work in conjunction to solve a problem with health care under competitive markets, that they are inefficiently supplied in less-than-optimal quantities.


Throughout the report, we saw the characteristics, positives as well as drawbacks from the two different healthcare systems, public and private funded. We also evaluated the importance of government interventions and the role of regulators in order to avoid market failure.

In the case of the UK system, a state-funded healthcare provision ensures equal services for all citizens and no regional monopolies. The system is also benefited from massive economy-of-scale and being an effective economical tool to keep the workforce at a healthy state. However, it suffers lack of innovation and development, leading to insufficient in quality and quantity of healthcare services in long-term. Resources allocative inefficiency and waste are also major problems for the UK market. Therefore, the role of the government and regulators here needs to be more decisive. There are different ways to minimize these disadvantages in long-term, such as:

  • Increase the retirement age: Easing up the pressure from dependant population on the healthcare and insurance system.
  • Provide more vacancies as well as training for part-time staffs in NHS facilities: Enable to satisfy a higher level of demand as well as improve the quality of services.
  • Easing the immigration barriers for doctors from abroad: As high-skilled staff requires long time to train.
  • Improve the qualities of appliances in existed NHS facilities: Other than building new ones.
  • Encourage and subsidy researches: For low-price medicines, stem cell and gene technology.
  • Organize campaign and informative programs: To educate people live, keep their family and surrounding environment healthy and hygiene.

As for the US, having a competitive market model helps the healthcare system become economic efficient, offer opportunities for business which stimulate innovation and technology development, and most importantly, avoid waste for both government and citizens. But, like the UK, the US system also has its own drawbacks. The provision of special treatments is not equally distributed for everyone, and the heavy reliance of Americans on the insurance system creates exploitation and domination of insurance companies. Though, economically, the US system is working well, it still requires government interventions to ensure social welfare and equality.

Read Also: Critical Analysis Nursing Care for the Older Adult

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Theme Park Proposal Finance Essay: Net Present Value

Corporate finance over the last few years has really evolved, decisions regarding economic growth, resource allocation in projects by organiation requires a through systematic, analytical approach along with sound judgment. Investment (projects) appraisals and capital budgeting involves in-depth assessing of financial feasibility of the projects and the best recommended financials tools are Discounted Cash Flow (DCF), as this technique can effective be used to calculate the and carry out a costs and benefits analysis in different time periods and moreover most importantly the calculation of Net present value (NPV) uses DCF to project decisions, which would focus on the ones that generate maximum revenue and create value for the organisation undertaking the project. The costs and benefits associated with development programs can be either be social, environmental or economic in nature, but as often found has the involvement of all the three elements.

This investment review report, would look into the investment proposal made by Wonderland confectionaries Ltd, and involves diversification in business and investment in a theme park. Wonderland intends investing a total of £500 million in the project and wants to ensure the feasibility of the investment both in terms of financial and non-financial terms.

This report on the basis of the information provided by Wonderland would be using the Net Present Value (NPV) as the financial tool to calibrate the financial feasibility of the project, undertake and consider the project appraisal options and at the end recommend and comment on the overall feasibility of the proposed investment.The key objective of this report is to analyse, calculate and comment on the overall cost, in terms of employee cost, operations and insurance cost along with other overheads, also considering the source and cost of finance and its returns in regards to the expected revenue generated and the cola reflect and comment on the feasibility of the investment.


PepsiCo is found in the 1965 through the merger of the pepsi-cola and Frito Lays. Tropicana was acquired in 2001and PepsiCo merged with the Quaker Oats company including Gatorade, in 2001. PepsiCo’s main headquarter in New York. Now at present time there are around 200 brands available in the market. All around the world it is the 2nd number company in soft drinks. In 1987 it PepsiCo was ranked 29th in the fortune 500 whereas the cola was at 54th ranked. It is the most successful consumer product company in the world. Now it consist of Frito lays, Pepsi colas company and Tropicana products. Some of the established consumed brands are Doritos, Fritos, ruffles and lays (snacks food) and Pepsi cola; diet Pepsi and mountain dew (soft drinks).


We report our operations results as follows, by six segments:PepsiCo Americas Beverages (PAB)Frito-Lay North America (FLNA)Quaker Foods North America (QFNA)Latin America Foods (LAF)EuropeAsia, Middle East & Africa mission is:”To be the world’s premier consumer Products Company focused on convenient foods and beverages. We seek to produce financial rewards to investors as we provide opportunities for growth and enrichment to our employees, our business partners and the communities in which we operate. And in everything we do, we strive for honesty, fairness and integrity”.

Pepsico’s capital structure Objectives:-

To evaluate the standard of behavior and general directions in the corporate finance.To find out and assess the nature of different sources of corporate finance.To express deep and proper knowledge in the area of corporate finance development.To express effective pathway to examine the corporate finance students.Possess the ability to plan and effective tools at professional level; make decisions in complex and able to frhold context of using reasonable decision making approach.Brief introduction to the PepsiCo capital structure:

PepsiCo is the world leader in convenient food, snacks and beverages with revenue more than $60 billion and over 285,000 employees. It generates sales at the retail level of $98 billion. Over the next 30 years, net sale grew up at an average compound rate 15% per year, with the sale doubling about every five years.PepsiCo has book liability of $18.1billionand book value for stockholders’ equity of $7.3 billion. The market value of stockholders’ equity is much greater. With the 788million common shares outstanding and a market share price is of $55.875,the market value of its stockholders’ equity is $44.0 billion, roughly six times its book value.Pepsico’s capital investing has reflects strategic investment in both industry segments as well as acquisition and investment in unconsolidated affiliates.pepsico expects its investments to generate cash returns in excess of its long term cost of capital, which is estimates to be approximates 10%. About 75% of PepsiCo’s total acquisition and investment activity represents international transactions.

PepsiCo’s vision and mission:-

Our Mission

Our mission is to be the world’s premier consumer Products Company focused on convenient foods and beverages. We seek to produce financial rewards to investors as we provide opportunities for growth and enrichment to our employees, our business partners and the communities in which we operate. And in everything we do, we strive for honesty, fairness and integrity.

Our Vision

“PepsiCo’s responsibility is to continually improve all aspects of the world in which we operate – environment, social, economic – creating a better tomorrow than today.”

Our vision is put into action through programs and a focus on environmental stewardship, activities to benefit society, and a commitment to build shareholder value by making PepsiCo a truly sustainable company.


Financial leverages:-

Leverage is the relationship between debt financing and equity financing, also known as the debt-to-equity ratio. A method of corporate funding in which a higher proportion of funds is raised through borrowing then stock issue, the use of fixed costs in order to increase the rate of return from an investment.Financial leverage is the ability of the firm to use fixed financial charges to magnify the effect of change in earning per share. It indicates the effects on earning due to rise of fixed cost leverage: operating income/net incomeThe tool which we used to identify the fianancial leverage of pepsico’s are the market value and historical cost and net debt play a prominent role in quantifying the financial leverage .Question :-

Calculate PepsiCo’s net debt ratio, assuming that the present value of operating leases is five times the annual rental expense and that remitting the cash and marketable securities to the United States reduces them by 25% due to taxes and transaction costs.

The most important factor before investing the money in a company is to consider that how much debt a company is carrying. It is helpful to find out the net debt of a company. After calculating the net debt ratio people who will be able to find out the financial position of the company in which they going to invest in.As per given in the statement:-The net debt ratio, L*, is defined as

L* = (D + PVOL – CMS)/(NP + D + PVOL – CMS)

Where D is the total market value of debt,PVOL is the present value of operating leases commitments which is five times the annual rental expense,CMS is cash and marketable securities (net of the cost of remitting these funds to the United States),N is the number of common shares,And P is the price of common stock.In order to determine the net debt ratio, we have to put the values in the formula mentioned above.L* = (D + PVOL – CMS)/(NP + D + PVOL – CMS)L* = ($9453 + [$479 x 5] – $1498)/([788.00 x $55.875] + $9453 + [$479 x 5] – $1498)

L* = ($9453 + $2395 – $1498)/($44029.5 + $9453 + $2395 – $1498)L* = ($10350)/(54379.5)L* = $0.19After ascertaining the net debt ratio, we can say that it has increased by 1% from last year and if we look at debt ratio graph above, we see that PepsiCo’s net debt ratio kept on fluctuating at a higher rate in last few years. But this year it has increased only by 1% which is good for the company.

Question 2

For each firm in the table above, calculate the interest coverage ratio, the fixed charge coverage ratio, the long term debt ratio, the total debt to adjusted total capitalization (recall that adjusted capitalization includes short term debt), the rate of cash flow to long term debt, and the ratio of cash flow to total debt.












$ 3,114.00

$ 479.00

$ 682.00

$ 1,498.00

$ 8,747.00

$ 9,453.00

$ 3,742.00


$ 55.875

Cadbury Shweepes

$ 661.00

$ 25.00

$ 135.00

$ 129.00

$ 864.00

$ 1,490.00

$ 492.00


$ 35.125


$ 4,600.00


$ 272.00

$ 1,315.00

$ 1,141.00

$ 1,693.00

$ 3,115.00


$ 40.250

Coca-Cola Enterprises

$ 471.00

$ 31.00

$ 326.00

$ 8.00

$ 4,138.00

$ 4,201.00

$ 644.00


$ 10.00



$ 2,509.00

$ 498.00

$ 340.00

$ 335.00

$ 4,258.00

$ 4,836.00

$ 2,296.00


$ 48.00

Interest Coverage Ratio = EBIT / Interest Expense