5 Penny Stocks that Went Big

Everybody knows the story of stocks like IBM and Apple going from nothing to billion-dollar stocks worth thousands over night. But these tech giants are far from the only ones that have made such a drastic transition and there are far more recent examples that we can draw on to show you just how much money can be made if you’re able to correctly predict the success of a relatively low-priced stock.

True Jeans

In the summer of 2004, the Canadian designer jeans brand, True Religion, was trading for as little as $0.67 per stock. It was a penny stock that few people predicted would do well, but just 9 years later the owners agreed a deal that saw the company change hands for over $800 million, returning a price of $32 a share for every lucky shareholder.

To put this into perspective, if you bought $32 worth of shares in July 2004 and then sold them when they were trading at $32 apiece 9 years later, you’d have over $1,500. If you invested just $500 in those penny shares when they were at their lowest then you could have sold them for a high of just under $24,000.

BJ’s Restaurants

These shares, which trade on the NASDAQ, took a little longer to go from their lowest to their highest, but the story of them is still worth telling as it’s raw for a chain restaurant group to experience such highs and lows in such a short space of time.

BJ’s Restaurants had their IPO in 1996 when their shares were priced at a reasonable $5 each. Just a couple years later they dropped to less than $1 and things weren’t looking very good for the US restaurant chain.

However, around a decade later the shares hit $50, before climbing to around $75 in 2018. They have now dropped below $50, but if you had bought at their lowest and sold now, or when they hit $50 a few years ago, your ROI would be over 5,000%. If you bought at their lowest and sold at their highest, it would be closer to 8,000%.

General Growth Properties

Around 10 years ago General Growth Properties, a real estate investment firm, went though some really tough times. They dropped to a low of around $0.30 towards the end of 2008, when the market was in a slump, and in 2010 they declared bankruptcy, causing many shareholders to jump ship.

Those who didn’t, however, were rewarded for their loyalty as the shares went through the roof, hitting $25 just 8 years later for a ROI of over 8,000%. At the time of writing they have remained stable at around $22, without many ups and downs to worry about since they hit their highest point a few years ago.

Plug Power

The NASDAQ traded Plug Power manufactures hydrogen cells and they epitomise everything that penny stock traders look for. In 2013, these stocks were trading for an all-time low of $0.15 apiece. Fast forward just 1 year and those shares were trading at over $10 each for a profit of over 6,500%.

The stocks have been up and down since then, hitting $5 shortly after they reached their highest ever count and then going on a free-fall after that. They went down to below $1 in 2017 and at the time of writing they are trading at $2.55. Not as high as $10, but if you bought at $0.15 you’d still be pretty happy with the current price.

Monster Beverage

The Monster Beverage brand is everywhere these days and if you asked the average consumer when this brand was founded they’d probably guess at 10 years ago, maybe less. In actual fact, they have been around since the 1930s, they just took a long time to become a household name and went by the name Hansen Natural in the early days.

Monster, which is traded on the NASDAQ, hit their low point in the mid-90s, when their share dipped below $1 and then dropped to an all-time low of $0.69. If you were around to speculate at this time, you took a chance on Monster Beverage and you held onto those shares over the years, you could have cashed in for a high of over $70.

That’s an ROI of over 10,000%. To put that into perspective, if you dropped just $100 on those penny stocks back in 1995 and then forgot about them until they reached their highest point, you could cash-in for a staggering sum of $10,000!. If you were to have spent $1,000 you would how $100,000, while $10,000 would have netted you a cool $1 million.

Predicting Penny Stock Success

There is no easy way to predict the success of a penny stock. If there was, the stock market would be the easiest game in the world and would be as surefire as MLM products for turning speculation into cash. However, a little research and luck can go a long way. The trick is to look into the market trends and the way that certain industries are shifting and then find the stocks that match.

For instance, if you had predicted the rise of streaming services 10 years ago you may have sunk your money into Netflix (although there is just as much chance you would have leaned towards bigger media companies at the time) and you would have been rewarded in kind. If you think that 3D printing or virtual reality is going to be huge and a mainstay in everyday life, find the companies that will profit from it the most.

There are no guarantees and you could spend a lifetime speculating and not get anything in return, but when these speculations do pay off they will more than make it worth your while.

The World’s Biggest MLM Companies in 2019

Multi-level marketing is one of the most effective marketing tools in business. It encourages customers to become ambassadors and salespersons for the brand, effectively super-charging one of the most fundamental aspects of marketing, word-of-mouth.

It’s a profitable business whether you’re one of the companies earning the big bucks, an MLM Consultant guiding others on the same path, or an affiliate with lots of signups and a knack for selling. To show you just how profitable it can be, take a look at these mighty MLM companies currently leading the way.

1. Amway

With a revenue of more than $8.6 billion, Amway are runaway leaders on this list, although they have been at the center of a lot of controversy in recent years. They sell beauty products along with home and health products and their range is as extensive as their base of employees and affiliates.

Amway were established in 1959 and they currently do most of their business in the United States, but can also be found in dozens of countries around the world.

2. Avon

Avon may be second-place in the United Staes, but they lead the way in many other countries, including the United Kingdom. They are also older than Amway, having been founded in 1886.

The cosmetics company has a staggering turnover of over $5.5 billion, and an operating income that exceeds $320 million. They are the fifth largest beauty company in the world and were built off the back of a door-to-door sales business, essentially kick-starting the MLM trend and becoming the pioneer that many other companies have since tried to emulate.

There are over 6 million people selling the Avon brand around the world. They all hand out Avon catalogs along with their Avon rep numbers. When the customer wants to place an order, they contact the affiliate, the affiliate passes the order on, and they earn a share of the spoils. Many people see selling Avon as an easy way to make a few dollars on the side which they can use—along with their store discount—to purchase some products of their own.

3. Herbalife

This MLM behemoth has over 2.3 million affiliates, all helping to sell their portfolio of health supplements. Herbalife are predominantly a USA based company, but their extensive advertising has helped to make them a household name around the world, including in countries where Herbalife is not available.

4. Vorwerk

The only European MLM company on this list, Vorwerk is based in Germany and sells a selection of products for the home, focusing on floors, carpets and coverings. They have nearly three-quarters of a million affiliates hoping them to generate a turnover of nearly $4.2 billion.

They also have history on their side, having been established over 130 years ago. They are actually older than Avon Products!

5. Infinitus

There are many MLM giants that didn’t quite make the cut for this list, including the much-loved Tupperware and Mary Kay. These are well-known American companies that have huge followings, but they were edged out by Infinitus, which is actually relatively unknown in the US.

Infinitus are an Asian MLM brand selling health supplements and food, as well as a selection of beauty products. They are not that well known in the USA, but they are moving in on the US market and they have a reputation, a following and a capital big enough to ensure they get a big slice of the US MLM marketplace.

How Much do American Hospitals Make?

You could be forgiven for thinking that US hospitals make an absolute killing (pardon the pun). After all, they charge an obscene amount of money for many basic services and medications, and they provide an essential service that every single American citizen will need at some point in their lives.

On the surface, this seems like it could be a very lucrative industry, but once you dig a little deeper it’s a different story altogether. Around 8 out of 10 US hospitals are non-profit for one thing, and even the ones that operate solely to profit from mending and curing American citizens don’t have the sort of margins that you might expect.

How Much do American Hospitals Make?

The average US hospital has a profit margin of just 8%. To put that into perspective, Apple, who operate on a much bigger scale and don’t have our lives in their hands, have a profit margin of just under 40%.

You could argue that both overcharge for what they provide, but the end result is drastically different. And the problem with operating on such small margins is that it doesn’t take much for your profits to take a nose-dive. That’s why many hospitals are scrambling, trying their best to change-up their systems. Static budgeting in hospitals is becoming a thing of the past, which is good, but hospitals may also look to cut staff costs and customer care, which is not good.

Why are the Margins so Small?

So what is the issue here, why the small margin? Well, contrary to what they may want you to believe, it’s not because the service they provide costs them a lot of money. Medical equipment purchasing and maintenance certainly doesn’t come cheap, but the average hospital bill is over 3.5x greater than the cost of the service provided.

It’s also not the result of something known as “uncompensated care” which is when hospitals provide care that isn’t paid for, and that’s because this is something they rarely do. Not only will Medicaid cover many patients who can’t pay, but hospitals are relentless in chasing debt.

The simple fact is that a single service, and indeed a single patient, requires a great deal of care from numerous staff members; the machines are ridiculously expensive; and, perhaps most importantly, they are constantly being sued for negligence.

Multi-million dollar medical negligence lawsuits are commonplace in hospitals and are a direct consequence of them taking on more patients. On the one hand they need to take on more patients and assign these to fewer staff members if they want to keep their profits high, but on the other hand busier staff members mean more mistakes, which leads to an increase in medical negligence lawsuits.

Increasing Profits

Don’t feel bad for the hospitals though. The margins may be small, but we’re dealing with billions of dollars in turnover here, so there is still plenty of cash to go around. These margins are also on the increase, and have nearly quadrupled since 2008, when they reached the lowest they have been for a long-time.

Who Will be President in 2020? A Look at Probabilities

A few years before Donald Trump became the 45th president of the United States of America, few would have predicted that the former reality TV star and billionaire would ever lead the nation. Fast forward to the GOP race, and it still seemed like an impossibility, with bookmakers in Vegas and around the world offering staggering odds on a Trump presidency.

But those odds deceased, the inevitable happened, and history will now remember the 2016 race as one of the biggest shocks in US politics. The only question now, as the race to 2020 begins in earnest, is “Who will become the 46h president of the United States?”

Will Trump hold onto a position that few expected him to claim in the first place; will we see another surprise outcome?

In this article we’re going to take a closer look at the 2020 presidential race to see who the likely contenders are based on the data available to us.

A Second Term

Of the 44 US presidents prior to Trump, 17 were elected for a second term (Franklin D. Roosevelt was actually elected for 4, while Grover Cleveland served his two terms non-consecutively).

Based on that stat alone it means that 38.8% were reelected. However, modern presidents seem to have the odds a little more in their favor, as four of the last five US presidents served two full terms. This is no doubt the main reason why the vast majority of oddsmaker still have President Trump as the favorite to win the 2020 presidency race.

But then you have to factor approval ratings into consideration. Reagan saw his ratings peak prior to his first and second term; while Obama and Clinton experienced relative stability throughout their terms.

The only exception is George W. Bush. His approval rating was sky high a year into his reign, only to slide to one of its lowest points when he was re-elected. Trump’s approval rating is currently lower than all of these re-elected presidents suggesting that he may struggle to win the race.


Turnout is always key. The US presidency is a two-horse race, with democrats/republicans rarely switching sides. Throughout the 2016 race Republicans were more engaged than Democrats. The majority supported their representative even if they didn’t entirely agree with the choice, while the same couldn’t be said for Democrats, with many supporters of Bernie Sanders refusing to back Hilary Clinton.

In recent years, there has been a change in the tides. There were far more democrats voting in 2018 and if this is paired with a strong, popular and charismatic representative, it seems likely that they’ll give Trump a good run for his money.

Democrats are also doing a better job of capturing votes from growing demographics, such as young women, African-Americans and Latinos.

The Odds

The bookmakers consider all likelihoods, using vast algorithms to better understand the race and to try and predict the outcome before anyone else. That’s how they make their money after all.

We looked at the odds of all major bookmakers across Europe, where gambling is more widely accepted and available, and in all cases Trump was the favorite. What’s more notable, however, is that they seem to be convinced that the Democrats will choose a female representative. Kamila Harris is currently leading the race, but Elizabeth Warren, Tulsi Gabbard, Amy Klobuchar and Kirsten Gillibrand are all high up on the list.

In fact, the list of the top 10 representatives is an even split between male and female, and the odds of a female winning the race are better than the odds of Bernie Sanders winning it.

So What Will Happen?

If the odds and the probabilities are right then Trump will either win or go very close, and he will be opposed by a female representative as he was in 2016. However, nothing is a sure thing and the figures also tell us that if the democrats choose a representative that can unite the party and attract many of the demographics that didn’t vote in 2016, and if Trumps’ rating continues to fall, then the 46th president may be a democrat.

Should You Invest in American Home Warranty Stock? A Closer Look at Frontdoor

Earlier this year, Frontdoor, Inc [NASDAQ: FTDR] took the market by storm after the announcement that the company would be spun off from ServiceMaster in the fall. Following the introduction of the new company, stock prices surged beyond $30 to just cents shy of $50 in barely more than a month. All things remaining equal, Frontdoor was looking to easily double in value in a short amount of time. That is, until things took a turn.

Courtesy of TradingView

Since its strong rise, Frontdoor’s stock price has declined significantly, closing the day at only $25.35 at the time of writing. The company’s current price is discounted nearly 50 percent from its previous high, but what’s behind the downturn and what lies ahead for this stock looking forward? Let’s take a look.

The Subsequent Fall

“What comes up, must come down,” and Frontdoor shareholders understand that sentiment well at this point. After its introduction to the market, Frontdoor peaked at just a few cents shy of $50 per share; an impressive climb for the spinoff during that occurred during the longest American bull market to date. Following a selloff early in October after the Frontdoor fire cooled to a sizzle, things took a significant turn after the company’s first earnings report since separating from ServiceMaster Global Holdings.

According to Bloomberg, Frontdoor shares plunged as much as 35 percent after the company’s first earnings call in November on the news that they were cutting adjusted EBITDA outlook from $245-$255 million down to $215-$225 million. Frontdoor noted higher claims costs and continued investments into sales and marketing as reasons behind the 2018 adjustment, something traders did not take kindly to as shares bottomed out at the $22.75 price point.

Ian Zaffino, an analyst with Oppenheimer included that “We are highly disappointed, given it is the company’s first earnings release and management recently provided guidance.” A combination of a small earnings miss and disappointing guidance led traders to consider that the profitability of the business is weakening, and that’s not all.

Besides the quantitative data behind the decline, Frontdoor hasn’t had excellent reception from consumers since successfully spinning off. Bad news isn’t coming from just the corporate side of things, but from American Home Warranty client reviews as well for brands like American Home Shield (AHS)—a part of Frontdoor.

Courtesy of ReviewHomeWarranties

Client reviews haven’t been overwhelmingly positive, with some sites reader reviews giving negative feedback over twice as much as positive. With that in mind, it doesn’t necessarily mean the company is a bad option, here’s why.

Looking Forward

Though the market hasn’t been kind to Frontdoor to close 2018, it doesn’t mean there isn’t a potentially good opportunity here moving forward. It’s important to remember that AHS is only one brand from Frontdoor with many others including Oneguard, HSA, and Landmark.

Paul Fanelli with Gabelli Funds is still looking at the company as a buying opportunity as he expects the company to show improvements on the issues mentioned in the earnings report over the next few quarters such as the higher rate of replacements vs repairs and part sourcing. At the same time, Oppenheimer’s Zaffino expects that the company has the potential to return normalized margins within the next year, and they’re not alone.

Contributing to SeekingAlpha, Cardon Capital still sees significant room for a strong return from Frontdoor. According to the Cardon, Frontdoor represents a company with an attractive business model, reasonable growth prospects and a wide moat.” Furthermore, Cardon believes Frontdoor is currently priced for a “60%-85% return over a 1-3 year horizon” stating that “we view this as an opportunity for investors to buy into a high quality company at an attractive price.”

With Frontdoor trading downward over the past two months, value investors are likely to see the current pricing not as a lost cause but as a great discount on a stock with high growth potential moving forward. As Cardon says, maybe you shouldn’t be shutting the Frontdoor—buy it!

The Biggest Companies in New York State (for Employees)

Biggest Companies in New York

New York is the financial capital of the United States. It’s home to some of the biggest and richest companies in the world—a global powerhouse that controls a lot of the products we buy and the services we use.

It’s a mecca for lawyers, accountants, tax attorneys (get details here) artists, writers and more, but it’s the retail, financial and service industry that dominates this list.

What follows is a list of the biggest companies in the state of New York based on the amount of employees that they have on their books.


Although they are no longer as big or as well known as they once were (the previous generation considered them a powerhouse; the current one barely considers them at all) IBM still play a major role in the tech sector.

They are based in the city of Armonk and hire nearly 400,000 employees, the most of any company in the state.


The soft drinks giant hires more than 250,000 workers and dominates a large part of the beverage industry.

PepsiCo do more than just offer an alternative to Coca Cola. In a huge number of countries they outsell Coke by a long way, and they also own brands like Mountain Dew, 7 Up, Quaker, Cheetos,Tropicana and even Gatorade!

When you read all of those brand names it’s easy to see why they are so large.

JPMorgan Chase and Citi

A financial giant that dishes out millions of credit cards, auto loans, mortgages and more in the United States. The Chase name is not well known in Europe or anywhere outside the US for that matter, but within the US they are huge.

It is a similar story with Citi, who sit one place behind JPMorgan Chase on a list of the biggest companies in New York. Together these two companies are responsible for over half a million paychecks.


Verizon operate out of New York City and are responsible for over 160,000 employees. They are one of the biggest telecommunications companies in the world and they have grown their brand by incorporating other well-known companies into it, including both AOL and Yahoo!

Verizon’s revenue is over $126 billion, showing you just how dominant they are.

ABM Industries

This facility management company will be a surprise inclusion on this list for many, but with more than 130,000 employees and locations all over the world, they are one of the biggest and best at what they do and they have a revenue of more than $5 billion.


Drugs are big business in the United States, more so than any other country. One of the biggest players in this industry is Pfizer, who hire nearly 100,000 employees.

Pfizer was founded in 1859 and has been one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world throughout much of that time, with a listing on the Dow Jones Industrial Average since 2004 and a revenue that regularly exceeds $50 billion a year.

Not only is Pfizer a big employer, but some of its research divisions have been voted as the best places to work in the industry.

How Big is Big Pharma? 10 Mind-Blowing Statistics

Big Pharma Size

The pharmaceutical industry, often known by the moniker “Big Pharma” is one of the biggest industries in the United States. It is dominant all over the world, but in the US it is at its biggest.

It is an industry that profits from illness, so it’s one that is constantly immersed in controversy. But just how big, how profitable and how successful is Big Pharma? These statistics will give you the answers you seek, and no doubt surprise you.

1. Over $1 Trillion Revenue

The global pharmaceutical industry is worth over $1 trillion, a simply staggering amount of money that far eclipses the GDP of many countries. A lot of this, nearly half in fact, comes from the US and Canada, showing you just how reliant on the privatized US system Big Pharma is.

The population of these two countries is still huge, but it makes up a little over a 20th of the world’s population, making this a hugely disproportionate figure.

2. 88% Stock Return

In 2016, Motley Fool estimated that the average stock return for Big Pharma stock was 88% over the ten previous years. Of course, most bluechip stocks return big profits over an extended period, but this figure eclipsed many other major industries.

3. 850,000+ Jobs in the US

There are over 850,000 US citizens employed by Big Pharma in many industries, from R&D, to vendors and more. And these also have a direct impact on countless other professions, from doctors, nurses and pharmacy assistants, to workman’s comp doctors and law firms that specialize in capitalizing on the mistakes this industry makes.

If you take Big Pharma out of the equation then you leave a gaping hole in the global workforce that leaves millions out of work and forces dozens of industries to implode.

4. $5.2 Billion on Advertising

Over $5 billion is spent on advertising pharmaceuticals every year, the majority of which is spent on TV commercials. And this is predominantly a US stat, because many other countries don’t allow prescription drugs to be openly advertised. It’s illegal in the UK and many other European countries.

5. Billions on Research

It has been estimated that there are more than 7,000 drugs in development around the world at any given time. Many of these will see clinical trials, but of those only 12% will be approved and from there a very small number will actually make it onto the market.

In 2015, only 45 drugs were approved and this was the highest number for decades! In other words, there are millions of potential chemicals out there, but only an infinitesimal amount will actually end up being approved for use.

It lends credence to the notion that there is a cure for cancer out there just waiting for someone to discover it. But that discovery process is far from easy or cheap.

6. 19% to Charity

It is said that Big Pharma donate over 19% of their pre-tax profits to charitable organizations. This may help to change the image that million of Americans have of this industry, or rather it would if the bulk of those donations didn’t come in the form of products. In other words, they’re giving away free drugs. Still, if you’re sick, those drugs are worth more than money and any form of charity has to be commended.

Facebook, ZeniMax, Oculus and the $500 Million Lawsuit

Oculus Lawsuit
Virtual reality is one of those things that promised so much and got us all excited, but didn’t really deliver, at least not in a way that was affordable and able to match our standards. One of the biggest hold-ups with this tech is the fact that Oculus, the Facebook owned company, has been embroiled in a lawsuit with game publisher ZeniMax Media.

What the Lawsuit Was About

The lawsuit alleged that Oculus had stolen trade secrets from ZeniMax Media to create the virtual reality device back in the spring of 2014. They claimed that their copyrights were violated, with the lawsuit being filed shortly after Facebook acquired Oculus for a fee believed to be $2 billion.

It has hung over the media giant ever since and has been another obstacle for them to have to clear, what with the data scandal that has followed them around throughout 2018.

Recent Developments

A federal court ordered Facebook and Oculus to fork over $500 million to ZeniMax Media, only to change their verdict at the end of June when they announced that the amount would be half that. Still, $250 million is a lot of money for a company still trying to get off the starting blocks and it will no doubt have a big impact on Oculus’ future.

It is also 25% of the amount that Facebook paid for the company, so the reduction to $250 million goes a long way to continuing to make Oculus a viable company for Facebook.

After all, they weren’t the ones who invested the time and money in creating the software, so they will no doubt cut and run if it stops being financially viable, and that would disappoint the company, its founders and all of its fans.

Where is Oculus Now?

The Oculus Rift is a virtual reality headset that was launched in 2016. Initially, the price was very off-putting, made worse by the fact that it needed a high-powered PC to run. These days it has come down slightly, as has the price of the PCs needed to run it, but it is still an expensive headset and is a far cry from the affordable, all-in-one devices that many tech-lovers were hoping for.

Still, they have the basic set and now Oculus can look to improve and create more. They are already getting into more mobile units, although doing so could require the need of an accident and injury lawyer, as well as copyright lawyers, if the world is suddenly filled with perpetually distracted gamers wondering the streets wearing headsets.

Ten Top Tips for Stocks in 2018 (NEW and UPDATED)

Best Stocks in 2018

2018 has been a tough year for stock investors, what with trade wars and the apparent threat of World War Three looming large. But amongst all of this chaos and negativity there have been a few stocks performing better than expected, stocks that have a bright future.

Here are our top picks for the best stocks in 2018.

Adobe Systems

The software giants are on the up-and-up, even though they seem to spend most of their time in the shadows. But that’s because there is much more to Adobe than PDF and PhotoShop. They are a powerhouse online and offline and they are growing all of the time.

They have a market value of nearly $120 million and are one of the most promising industries in the computing sector right now.


The company behind Google are ever-growing. They ave a market value of nearly $750 billion right now and thy have their hands in many pies. They are getting involved with many different sectors and are the industry leaders in most of them.

It may look like they can’t climb much higher, but they definitely can and the world is at their feet right now.

Bezos is one of the richest men in the world and his wealth is growing with every passing day. Sue, they have encountered their issues, and there have been many copyright and legal issues too. But with a highly skilled legal team behind every lawsuit, and some of the best innovators in the world, they will continue to grow.

The future is bright for Amazon as they look to venture into offline retail and to corner that market just like they have cornered the online one.


Never underestimate the airline sector and its biggest player: Boeing. They have a market value of more than $200 billion and every major airline looks to them for the latest innovations and the best fleets.

As more airlines are created and more planes are developed, this company will continue to grow. It will take a miracle or a complete disaster to bring a company like this to its knees or even to stop the flow of cash into the bank accounts of stockholders.

MGM Resorts

Things may not look great for the casino and resort giants right now, but there could be some changes afoot that will send them back to the top.

The US seems to be changing its stance on gambling and casinos and if that happens then these guys will shoot straight to the top.

Other Top 2018 Stock

2018 has been an interesting year for the stock market, and there are many more stocks out there that others are investing but that we just can’t recommend.

One of these is Facebook. This social network is still the biggest and will likely remain the biggest for 2018. But it’s not going to be there for long. Youngsters are turning away from Facebook in greater numbers than before.

It’s too big to go the way of MySpace as a company, especially when you consider that Facebook own Instagram and other platforms, but the main Facebook platform could certainly go the way of Myspace. And when that happens they will lose a viable chunk of their assets and will begin a free fall.

Trends don’t last forever, and they need to work hard if they are going to stop the flow of users away from the site. It may seem like a decent investment, but based on that it could be a risky one.

The Business of Death: How Much Money Funeral Homes Makes

The Business of Death

It is a scary thought, but we’re all going to die someday. It’s not something we can avoid, it is certainly not something we can hide from, so we might as well embrace it, right? Well that’s exactly what many businessmen and women are doing, profiting from an incredibly lucrative industry that is worth billions a year.

Every day over 150,000 people die. There are diseases sweeping through major populations, there are new cases of suicide every minute and then you have the many truck accidents and car accidents that kill thousands of people a day (click here to learn more).

So just how are people profiting from all of this?

The Funeral Business

A funeral is a ritual that most of us in the Western world go through, and it’s a very expensive one. It’s one of those once-in-a-lifetime things that we will all need and don’t mind spending a lot of money on. Also, unlike weddings, a funeral is the end, not the beginning, so for many it’s the last chance they will have to blow the money they spent their life earning.

This, combined with the millions of people that die every year, is why the funeral industry is worth over $11 billion in the United States alone. The average funeral costs over $6.500. This is a fraction of the cost of the average US wedding but for many of us it will still be one of the ten biggest expenditures of our entire life.

This money is spent on coffins, burial plots and a service that takes the stress out of the situation. A lot of it is profit, with people paying for a service, but it’s one that is shared out between a number of people, from the funeral home to the landowners and coffin makers.

Is a Rethink Needed?

One of the biggest changes in this industry right now is the shift toward environmentally friendly funerals, as well as funerals that offer something a little different. People are tiring of the traditional, and when you consider how much waste is involved, this could be a good thing.

Since 1960, the number of Americans choosing cremation has climbed from 3.56% to 42%, taking a chunk out of the 104,000 tons of steel that are used to build caskets every year, not to mention the acres of land that is taken up by those resting in peace.

Wicker coffins, ash scatterings, memorial diamonds, cardboard coffins and even viking burials are all helping to reduce the damage done to the environment by the business of death, but at the same time they are helping more businesses to earn their slice of the pie.

As gory as it sounds, this is a very lucrative business and with the population ever increasing, it’s only going to become more lucrative. It’s something that many businessmen and women just can’t bring themselves to do, which means that the number of potential customers is climbing at a far greater rate than the number of companies that can cater for them.

In that sense, it’s the perfect business and one that is just waiting for an intrepid entrepreneur to clean up. But, understandably, many are staying clear and focusing on the living instead.