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Thursday's papers: Name-based discrimination, budget-friendly supermarkets and waving to pay

Finnish celebrities go undercover to raise awareness on name-based discrimination, Lidl keeps its prices down, and the future of contactless payments.

Arsalan Sherifi työskentelee kaupan kassalla.
Shoppers get more for their money at Lidl, finds a survey by Helsingin Sanomat. Image: Pekka Tynell / Yle

What’s in a name?

Four Finnish celebrities did not receive any call-backs from recruiters after applying for jobs using names typical of Finland’s Roma minority, reports Swedish-language daily Hufvudstadsbladet. The paper features an anti-discrimination project by the Diaconia University of Applied Sciences which aims to draw attention to employers' preference for Finnish-sounding names.

Celebrities, including media pundit and writer Tuomas Enbuske and business consultant Jari Sarasvuo, sent out a total of 54 job applications but failed to spark any interest from recruiters when using names like Rainer Lindgren and Dmitri Hagert on their resumes, despite stating their real work experience.

Diaconia's #TYÖNIMI ('work name') collaboration calls attention to the roughly 50 percent unemployment rate among Finland’s Roma minority.

Lidl cheapest supermarket

The Lidl supermarket chain had the best value on everyday items, finds a survey of eight supermarket stores in the capital city area by national daily Helsingin Sanomat. A sack of basic groceries averaged 37 euros at German discount retail chain Lidl while the same items cost 63 euros at the newly-opened K-market in Helsinki's Redi shopping complex in Kalasatama, where prices were some 68 percent more expensive than in Lidl and Prisma, on average.

Last summer’s hot and dry conditions have pushed up fruit and vegetable prices, and according to Natural Resources Institute Finland, shoppers will continue to feel the pinch at checkouts as the rising cost of animal feed affects dairy and meat prices, too.

’Wave and pay’ spreading

Credit card companies and retail banks are looking to raise the transaction limit on contactless payments from 25 to 50 euros next year, writes business magazine Talouselämä.

Petri Carpén of digital payment processor Nets Finland told the magazine that credit card companies and banks are raising the contactless payment limit to 50 euros in April of 2019. The change means that customers can debit their cards at checkouts by waving them in front of payment terminals instead of punching in four-digit codes.

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