Theo Wayt

Theo Wayt

Senior Reporter, Business & Economics and Social Sciences

Theo Wayt, based in New Orleans, is the senior reporter for Business & Economics and Social Sciences for The Academic Times. He has also reported for the Associated Press, NBC News, the New York Post, Vice, Gothamist and Business Insider, covering topics like finance, politics and labor. He graduated from New York University in 2020.

Background checks hit a new record nationwide in 2020. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)
Background checks hit a new record nationwide in 2020. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)A record number of background checks for firearm sales were conducted in 2020 -- and unlike most previous surges of gun-buying, the checks were just as concentrated in Democratic states as Republican ones, according to new research.

The layout of the ballot might have affected the outcomes of recent presidential elections. (AP Photo/Mindaugas Kulbis)
The layout of the ballot might have affected the outcomes of recent presidential elections. (AP Photo/Mindaugas Kulbis)Researchers from universities including Stanford and Harvard have published new evidence that the order in which candidates are listed on ballots can change how people vote — and the effect is so strong that they claim it likely would have changed the outcomes of presidential elections in 2000 and 2016.

Where are we clearing land, and what are we using it for? (AP Photo/Andre Penner)
Where are we clearing land, and what are we using it for? (AP Photo/Andre Penner)The amount of South American land impacted by humans skyrocketed 60% from 1985 to 2018, and an area the size of Spain has been cleared by humans but is not being used for any discernible economic purpose, according to new research using satellite images and machine learning technology.

A four-day workweek might not just be a dream sometime soon. (AP Photo/Mark Duncan)
A four-day workweek might not just be a dream sometime soon. (AP Photo/Mark Duncan)Proponents of the four-day workweek scored a victory earlier this year when the Spanish government revealed plans to fund a trial of the long-debated policy as soon as this fall.

Fossil fuel stocks are doing better under Biden than Trump. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)
Fossil fuel stocks are doing better under Biden than Trump. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)Donald Trump's election and decision to remove the U.S. from the Paris Agreement both paradoxically led to significantly lower share prices for oil and gas companies, according to new research in a leading financial journal, while Joe Biden's presidency has so far been great for fossil fuel stocks.

Women tend to take a financial hit after divorce. (Unsplash/Bill Oxford)
Women tend to take a financial hit after divorce. (Unsplash/Bill Oxford)Incumbent judges levy harsher sentences when they are in a competitive re-election campaign, but in states where competition for judgeships is low this does not come to the forefront.

A plan to tax groceries to fight climate change would hurt the poor the most. (AP Image/File)
A plan to tax groceries to fight climate change would hurt the poor the most. (AP Image/File)Adding the costs of greenhouse gas removal to food prices through taxes can help combat climate change, but would also lead to considerable increases in food prices that would disproportionately impact poor countries, researchers in Switzerland found in a paper published Wednesday.

Academic freedom is in decline. (AP Image/Chiang Ying-ying)
Academic freedom is in decline. (AP Image/Chiang Ying-ying)Academic freedom declined around the world in 2020, driven in part by crackdowns in Hong Kong, Belarus and Sri Lanka, according to new data shared on Thursday by a group of European political scientists and watchdogs who say the ability to research and express opinions freely is threatened on campuses across the globe.

Sober fans are law-abiding fans. (AP Photo/Ed Andrieski)
Sober fans are law-abiding fans. (AP Photo/Ed Andrieski)Significantly less crime is reported around baseball stadiums when fans have time to sober up after alcohol sales are stopped at the end of the seventh inning, according to new work by researchers who used nearly a decade of data from Philadelphia.

A college degree is the ticket to a longer life, research says. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
A college degree is the ticket to a longer life, research says. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)The one-third of adult Americans who have bachelor’s degrees have been living progressively longer over the past three decades, while the two-thirds without bachelor’s degrees have been dying younger since 2010, according to new research by two Princeton University economists who first sounded the alarm on “Deaths of Despair.”

Tests for U.S. cancer drugs are moving overseas, and Black people are not being represented well in them. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)
Tests for U.S. cancer drugs are moving overseas, and Black people are not being represented well in them. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)Black people are increasingly underrepresented in U.S. trials for cancer treatments, a disparity that could lead to the approval of unsafe or ineffective drugs, according to new research published Monday.

Almost a fifth of available food goes to waste. (AP Photo/Steven Groves)
Almost a fifth of available food goes to waste. (AP Photo/Steven Groves)About 17% of all food produced around the world is wasted, a drain on resources that contributes significantly to climate change, United Nations researchers revealed Monday in what the organization called the most comprehensive study of global food waste to date.