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A Week's Worth: Quick takes on the world of work and money

The Dow drops; Most Americans lack a strategy to pay off debts; Many dads go without gifts.

Analysts say a spike in US government bond yields sparked a three-day sell-off on Wall Street last week as the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 1.78 percent.

Except for what they owe on their mortgages, three-quarters of Americans age 19 and older say they can envision being debt-free at some point, according to results of a survey by loan-provider LendingTree. But 48 percent of respondents said they're "uncomfortable" with their current debt level and, alarmingly, 54 percent admitted to having no definitive strategy for managing it.

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The most outdated myths in corporate culture are that only teamwork, communication, and centralized control can accomplish a mission. Or, so says Kevan Hall, author of "Speed Lead," a new book on simpler ways of managing people. As companies grow, he says, the entrepreneurial spirit that made them successful fades, bureaucracy increases, and progress becomes the victim. The solution: looser groups of individuals who know how to separate important information from trivia and whose productivity isn't dragged down by micromanagement.

Father's Day is pretty much of a yawn, even for fathers, according to results of surveys by Discover Card and TiVo, the digital video recording company. TiVo got only a 51 percent "yes" response when it asked Americans if they plan any observance of the day. Only 42 percent of respondents told Discover Card they planned to give Dad a gift on his day.


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