Thanks for the thread victor!
I must be exponentially daunting to families sending their first ever in the family to college. But our public high school gives lots of support that way. Or it tries, for those students that they don't drive out by being too big chaotic insane
impersonal full of lowlifes
Our state wants to raise the dropout age! from 16 to 18. They can't get all the kids to 'graduate' at the current standard!!!!!!!!!!!! WHat the heck is the use of raising that?
I'm still baffled ./disturbed about work study. If 100 kids accept work study the school has to make work for all of them? So the higher your tuition, the more student you expect to apply for work study, hence the more free (to school )labor the school gets and the more Fed has to subsidize? I can only hope that work study is limited and not a given for all that 'accept' it.
Sally, I doubt the colleges have any shortage of work for their federal work-study kids. Given the high cost of education, i doubt many of the expensive schools really get that many federal work stoudy kids anyway, and the large state schools can absorb large numbers of kids. Free labor for the colleges under the federal work study program.
Sally, I always thought the annuity payments would be better, too. And I would think you'd pay less taxes on them? Not sure. With a lump sum, what would you do with all that money? Put it all in the bank? No bank is insured to cover that much. I would be concerned. Oh, and there is no way I would be giving away 50 million to family and friends. I'm assuming they're talking about cash. What if you gave people gifts? Like cars and such. Does gift tax apply to that? Or say you wanted to help out family/friends by fixing up their homes and such. Gift tax on that? Cause that's what I'd want to do. Hmmm...
Rosemary, I don't think you can pass on an annuity to your heirs. I think you would have to set up an investment account with some of that money if you wanted to have something to leave your kids.
Gift tax might apply to value over 10 000 as well as cash over that. WHy can't you just buy houses yourself and let the family live there? If you really want them to have a house. Can it be called a gift to hire workers and fix someone elses house? SHeesh. Such problems.
I think I'd rent a big beach house for a whole summer and do come one come all. among other things.
Annuity to be inherited- I know it is possible to buy annuities in your kids names that they can make choices on when you die (continue for later payout,, take lump sum, take payments) When you think, people who've been rich for a long time have probably gotten the banking marketplace to come up with all kinds of suitable investments.
Usually an annuity is an investment through an insurance company. I don't know how the mega bucks handles it legally, but usually there are owners, beneficiaries and an option for contingent beneficiaries, and I believe they also avoid probate, and they certainly shelter one from legal liabilities--think of OJ Simpson.
Learning more about college aid. There are many institutional differences in how they offer aid packages. If I had grasped this deeply, I might have had each kid apply to 20 or more colleges in order to find out which highly respected college would apply the formulas in the most favorable way. Or there must be data banks held by some companies. Some colleges do publish the amounts they offer as merit sholarships and what the standards are, so that part is sometimes public information.
The interest rate on federal student loansis scheduled to rise in July to about 6.9%
Although federal work-study is based upon a formula, some financial aid offices offer it more than others. Some majors will have more offerings for non-federal aid than others, so that makes a reason to choose a major.
I feel I pay way more than my fair share of income taxes. I don't know what the percentage is, but it's at least 25%, and that's a huge chunk out of my paltry $30,000 a year income. And that's not poverty level for a single person. If I didn't live with my father and sister, etc., I would not be able to afford an apartment on my own. There's just no way, not when rent is over $800 a month for a crappy place. I get really anxious thinking about it, so I better stop.
I thought this was interesting. This woman won a lawsuit against a collection agency that was harassing her big time. The story is going to air on Nightline tonight, on ABC.
Just adding up my federal, state and property taxes paid last year, it is about 27%. Add in social security, medicaid, medicare, mass transit and sales tax and it must easily top 40%. Ludicrous. And what do I get? Schools are decent - no better. Have to pay for trash pickup. NYS is closing parks. It's really sickening. Yet the local cops all make six figures. Teachers too, and they pay NOTHING into their health and retirement. Don't get me started! My property tax is now more than the mortgage!
And fuel tax, road and use tax on tires, the payroll taxes that employers pay for their employees which is added to the cost of merchandise manufactured that the public purchases. One could go crazy thinking about taxes... revolting isn't it. LOL
Karen ~ I understand where you are coming from. When I was young and single, minimum wage was cheaper but the cost of living was even cheaper. How did it get so out of hand. I don't know any young adults that can move out on their own without the folks' assistance.
Yes, the thought of all the taxes and fees we pay is really sickening. I don't like to think about it too much. Don't forget excise tax.
Pod, and I'm not even young. Single, yes, but 49 I wouldn't consider young. Divorced, actually, and never got a dime, either. I make more than minimum wage, but still, I work 60 hours a week on average. When I mentioned my income above, that was before taxes. I would sooo love to make my living selling daylilies and other perennials, but I just don't see how I can do that other than at the hobby level. I work too much and don't have enough to put into a business. I get so discouraged and depressed, cause I feel like unless I'm extremely lucky and hit the lottery or find a man who wants to spend his life with me and get into the plant business as badly as I do (and has a bit of money), then I don't see how I'm ever going to realize that dream.
2 ladies that used to work for me at JCP just got let go from that store today...guess they are doing another restructuring...I have a hair appt in one of the other stores I used to work in tomorrow, I'll have to get the scoop
Guess if I lost my first job, I would just try and get more PCA hours and take the time to enjoy working in my gardens. I'd have to cut back on some of my expenses, but I could do it. My only concern would be health insurance.
My niece hasn't worked since last Oct., and her boyfriend lost his job about 2 months ago. They've been sponging off of us ever since, and my sister won't put her foot down with them. I said something to her the other day about it, and she basically shrugged her shoulders and gave me an "I don't care" look. Really makes me angry. They sit on their buts all day in front of the TV when they could be out looking for a job. For 2 or 3 weeks they were staying at her boyfriend's mother's house, but I think she got sick of them freeloading, so them came over here.
They were getting a free ride off of me with my niece on my cell phone plan, and her boyfriend was using the phone. They were racking up charges in 411 calls and using the web with no web plan, so more charges for that. My niece said she would pay me some money towards the bill when she got her tax return, but I never saw any money from her. Then she asked to borrow $20, and told me she would sign over her PCA stipend check to me when she got it, but she signed it over to her mother instead, whom she owed $50 to. That was the last straw for me. I was pissed! That was Easter Sunday that I found out about that. I called T-Mobile and had her line suspended. We didn't hear from her and her boyfriend for 2 weeks after that. I didn't care. She was probably mad at me for shutting her off. I won't be helping her out again. Now I'm stuck with having to pay $50 a month on her line. I think I'll just have to cancel it and pay the $200 early termination fee, cause I don't think the contract on her line expires for another 18 months, and it'll cost me a lot more if I pay $50 a month for that duration. I also heard her boyfriend has been collecting $200 a month in food stamps for awhile now, and he never reported to them all the time that he had a job. When they find out about, there's gonna be hell to pay. All I can say is, Karma is coming around, baby.
115K divided by how many cities and towns in the US? In 2002, there were 19,000 municipal governments throughout the US, but as many as 30,000 incorporated cities.
There are over 43,000 places with unique zip codes, and probably no "cities" without their own zip codes. Many large cities have 2 or more zip codes. A guess would be around 20,000 to 25,000 including larger towns and such.
That means an estimate of 4 jobs per city, more or less. (I'd bet many are temp. help in garden centers!)
I applied for a cashier job at a local conveinence store. I have not got a call yet and its going to open soon. I know people that work in another store that has ties and they told me there was close to 600 apps.
I do agree with the author's viewpoint that there are some predictable phases when a society de-evolves, and that classical Roman history contains many lessons for us today. However, there are so many events that can change and humble us as we try to think we understand the future. And the good is not the enemy of the best--whatever our ideals or woes, we have opportunities to do real good every day. This is the message in the arguably most popular movie with teens, The Hunger Games.
Well maybe not. Was that irony or sarcasm, Victor?
It's an aging population, and false disability claims are not all that easily made by that many people. SSDI goes to people who have a work history and who have made a contribution to the workforce.
I am glad we don't have rioting in the streets or still more crime because of hopeless poverty. Having just been in Ohio, I suspect it would be harder to have a postive outlook in more economically depressed areas, where public bus lines have been cancelled, further creating a jobless future or the necessity to move for those without transportation.
My personal take is that the number of disability claims is a measure of how society produces what sociologists call a "surplus population." Since the people I work with daily--criminals, mentally ill, and drug addicts--don't have either jobs or disability benefits, I can say that for public safety, I'd rather they did have the benefits.
Dangit, darius, hate that
Yes Rosemary, it is true that we get some societal benefit by making some people less desperate
Meanwhile, our local fancy carwash is surprisingly busy with people whose recent model cars do not look very dirty. Just funny some things that are the last thing I would spend money on, have high value to others.
Things have not improved on the homefront, here. Waiting for my niece to piss off her mother. It will happen sooner or later, and there will be a big blowout, and then we won't see Chrystal for awhile. Praying, praying, praying...
One of these days I'm going to blow up at her if she and her boyfriend spend another day in marathon TV watching, then later in the day complain that they can't watch what they want cause my father doesn't want to watch what they're watching. Ummm... it's his house. Hello!
Maybe, but markets were already affected by anticipation of the election, and european unemployment. Noone seems to agree about whether the European debt crisis will cause us significant pain in the market at some point this year. Meanwhile, the first quarter runup has gone as expected.
Well our financial woes aren't over. DD1, whose academic qualifications are pretty near to unbeatable, is starting to get offers from college waiting lists, to other fine colleges to study language education and global studies. I told her when the admissions offices call her, she has to tell them to send their financial aid/scholarship offers before she can decide. (One is in Virginia which honors Massachusetts Commonweatlh scholarships for a small break). And it also means I can't decide how much more of our investments to sell in this whipsawing market...I may be suddenly buying plane tickets too.
Rosemary don't know if you know this but many 'off the beaten path' colleges have some sort of travel to/from major airports for studennts especially at peak times/breaks, etc. Check Student Affairs or similar office,
I favor Southwest Air because any unused travel funds stay available for a year and there is no fee for using them. Plus I can haul a lot of stuff in two free checked bags and carry-on! When they have a sale I prebuy several round trips and then just change specific dates and times as necessary. Last time I checked they had no change fee. Their deals are only available on line on their site. Baltimore is a hub.
Sometimes I have felt like the rollercoaster ride had already begun only to find out it was still racheting up the first hill! lol
The latest college in question is College of William and Mary. Not the most expensive of colleges, but many colleges don't offer their own grants or scholarships to the waiting list kids they invite, so we don't know the final figure.
These days, Jetblue and Southwest air have caught my attention (I didn't know about the unused travel funds policy) Williamsburg VA is on an Amtrak line, so it might work to fly into Wash Dulles or Richmond and then take the train.
I agree that the college quest is not for the faint of heart! AP exams are going strong this week, so it will be hard to achieve the college's time limit to visit and then reply. Getting one viable waitlist offer does something to the brain,too, so there's a temptation to try to wait for some more offers that might not come.
Jen, you must have gotten more than just the burger and salad. Fries???? Beverages???? Anyhow, fast food may be fast, but it's not cheap anymore unless you're ordering off the dollar menu.
coleup, I like Southwest as well for the reasons you mentioned, though last year when I went to TX I went with whoever was cheapest at the time. I'm often able to get some good deals last minute, but can't pick the airline, and they aren't nonstop, which I would prefer.
College final choice here! All kids stuck with their choices. Waiting lists are bad news. It is impossible to negotiate a a scholarship, and they act like you would just take anything, when maybe the college really isn't all that great either. Then, DS was awarded a $1,000 scholarhip from our church because he sang in the youth choir! We are so pleased with the recognition. I hope maybe he does like my brother, who became a cantor once he had tenure, but for now he thinks he can't sing.
Rosemary- what will you do with all the rewards points from the credit card(s)? You can do Hilton for hotel, and then an airline one for flights...it lessens the pain when you get something in return LOL. Our second college, I believe, does not accept American Express, so we may want a third credit card just so we can get max rewards. Our Citi card maxes out at 300$ cash rebate per year; thats 30 000 in charges in a year. Stores are becoming less welcoming to American Express card. We got an American Airlines Visa just so we could get an instant $100 off our vacation flights. We'll have to decide whether it is worth keeping after the initial 'no annual fee' year.
Karen, hubby's meal was a combo meal, I just got the salad and iced tea...all the time thinking while I eat it, "I could have made this myself"
Whew, shopping for wood flooring for daughter's room...CRAZY...went to Lumber Liquidators whose prices I think went up considerably because they are featured on Extreme Home Makeover, but once seeing prices from regular flooring places, I've realized it really is good deal
Good idea, Sally. I have priority club and Quicken rewards at the moment, one for hotel stays and the other toward airlines. We have to investigate Southwest Airlines more since DD1 isn't going to a Jetblue city. There are other local moms to carpool to Cleveland for driving if desired, though.
Wood flooring is so nice compared to the alternatives.
Health care is likely to have some winners and losers. Geez, our kids have very uncertain job futures in any sector.
They have changed the retirement rules in my state. Many who want to retire after 60 and before 65 can't because the retirement board is downgrading their grade for level of contact with dangerousness in the workplace. I wish one one those board members could have followed me around on Wednesday. My problem is I wonder how many more years I will have the wits and strength to defend myself against an unexpected attack, or I wouldn't mind working a long time. Russian fiction comes to mind.
And very misleading. It only dropped because of so many people giving up looking. Despite the claims of all the 'jobs created' the past few years, the FACT is there are fewer people working today than any time in the past 30 years. Scary.
Talk about mind-boggling. The biggest obstacle to solar power becoming a significant portion of the nation's electricity output has been cost. I never would have installed mine without the tax incentives. Well, now that the Chinese have been able to produce panels cheaply, our government slaps a huge tariff on them to help out our struggling solar industry. Ludicrous.
Not arguing that. Lots of what they make is absolute crap. However, as long as you are not dumb enough to do it yourself, it's the installer who guarantees all the work. With the incentives program in NY, installers are approved by the sites agency that provides the program. This puts the onus on them to do all the quality assurance necessary.
By the way, like it or not (and I don't), these days even lots of electronics used in sensitive applications in our country is made in China. They have made a lot of progress in some areas.
Gas prices are still very high here in northern California. I filled up last week for $4.27 a gallon. Unemployment is right around 11% in Sacramento and our state's budget shortfall keeps getting worse (now about $16 billion!).
We've been investigating solar. State of MA has been offering huge incentives and tax credits, and because we don't have municipal power, we could signficantly reduce our electric bill, if the sales people are correct. Once a certain power percentage is reached, supposedly the price guarantee for returns is for the next 10 years, and system pays for itself in six, plus tax savings come with getting a home equity loan.
We did discover that the marketing is misleading. The company that talked to us had big American flags on all their compenents, and said all was made in America, but the senors clearly aren't.
The area on our roof that wouldn't need any tree trimming is flat. We have been worried about leaks. There used to be a free-standing product you could clamp on, and supposedly all US made, but they went out of business.
The big outdoor retail store REI is building a commercial solar roof over their parking lot in Framingham. I thought I might ask if the manager there knows anything to share with us.
We're wondering why more adventurous folks aren't installing solar, if there's something we've failed to recognize about it. If its best production is in summer, that's when the ac is running, so that's also when we need it most.
Also, the state offers an energy audit. It's a no-brainer to get that. We're just too busy to do anything right now.
Apparantly there's a provision here that assessments of home values are not allowed to go up because of solar. This is odd--if I sold the house, i could even keep the earnings for energy saveings off the grid, but usually people would sell that with the house.
And this will make my investment even more valuable:
Last week the U.S. Energy Information Administration reported a shocking drop in power sector coal consumption in the first quarter of 2012. Coal-fired power plants are now generating just 36 percent of U.S. electricity, versus 44.6 percent just one year ago.
Last week PJM Interconnection, the company that operates the electric grid for 13 states (Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia and the District of Columbia) held its 2015 capacity auction.
The market-clearing price for new 2015 capacity – almost all natural gas – was $136 per megawatt. That’s eight times higher than the price for 2012, which was just $16 per megawatt. In the mid-Atlantic area covering New Jersey, Delaware, Pennsylvania, and DC the new price is $167 per megawatt. For the northern Ohio territory served by FirstEnergy, the price is a shocking $357 per megawatt.
Why the massive price increases? Andy Ott from PJM stated the obvious: “Capacity prices were higher than last year's because of retirements of existing coal-fired generation resulting largely from environmental regulations which go into effect in 2015.” Northern Ohio is suffering from more forced coal-plant retirements than the rest of the region, hence the even higher price.
These are not computer models or projections or estimates. These are the actual prices that electric distributors have agreed to pay for new capacity. The costs will be passed on to consumers at the retail level.
Wow. I think I see some Ohio college tuition hikes on the horizon. Oberlin has geothermal energy in some of its newer buildings, though.
Having spring as the best output period for solar energy does make sense. The salesperson's charts told us summer on the basis of New England being cooler than the southern states such as Texas, and saying we have more clear days, and longer sun around solstice in summer. I don't know if there's a regional difference compared to mid atlantic states, since we might be a little cooler. Our growing season is a bit shorter.
Was shopping for a fancier dress for my daughter for her k garduation, was at Kohl's everything was on sale but the regular prices were INSANE!!!
For a little girls dress(and not for a wedding) $58!!!!!!!!!! really what the heck...so I remembered the little consignment shop in town... found the perfect dress $2.50 baby!!!!!!!!!!!
yes you read that right 2 dollars and 50 cents!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! woo hoo!!!!
Don't look at the market numbers. In addition to the pathetic May jobs number, the already disappointing April number of 115K was revised down to just 77K. How are they off by so much?!! That is a 33% decrease.
Re: unemployment numbers: One of our employees is retiring and the young turk at the office in charge of human resources decided to send the job off shore instead of hiring a replacement. We keep getting 30 year olds put at the helm of the ship and they do nothing but reduce head count by sending jobs off shore. They went to good schools without student loans, got MBAs and had connections to get into a big corporation in management positions right after school. They think that the bottom line is the ONLY thing that matters - not quality - not customer service - not people - not history. It is a sad, sad state of affairs.
Hey sox, I share your sentiment. I actually split the difference and only sold some stock this year. If the stock yields high dividend payments, it is worth the risk to try and keep it, in my view. I think it's all about how much risk one can tolerate. I had to keep something safe for kid education, which is a short time window.
"The warnings from the bond markets could hardly be clearer. German 10-year Bund yields closed at 1.17pc. The two-year notes turned negative. British Gilts closed at 1.53pc, the lowest in 300 years. US Treasuries fell to 1.45pc, lower than at any time during the Great Depression."
More than jitters. A breakup of the Euro will be huge. It is not limited to Europe. To boot, China and India are slowing greatly, unlike during the crisis of '08 when they kept chugging. There is a good chance in my opinion that we may be in for a bigger jolt than four years ago. And don't forget the confluence of bad news in this country. Terrible job numbers. Anemic GDP growth and the fiscal time-bomb at the end of the year.
I'm not sure about that Victor, nor am I sure about anything with the market. Economic growth is slowing, clearly, but still growing, though at slower pace internationally. There's a lot of alarmist press out there because that sells the papers, in my opinion. An important reason for the low job figures in May is that there's a bump of people entering the job market. Many retirees wait until end of June to retire, also. I'm hoping we are having a market correction.
On the contrary, the state of the economy is greatly underreported in this country. Try to find a story about the situation in China in any major paper or network. You have to dig into alternative sources, not newspapers. Who buys newspapers anymore anyway? No one, especially not younger people.
With all due respect, I think you are totally off on the job numbers. Labor participation rate is horrendously low. That is why the unemployment rate is so artifially below where it would really be. And the underemployment rate is in the high teens.
I think that can only go so far. I think the main reasons they are not hiring are that, a) they are not convinced the economy will grow steadily anytime soon, and, b) they have so many uncertainties on the expense side - taxes, healthcare mandates, regulations, etc.
Also great for the transfer of wealth from the public to the private sector as muttiple billons of govt mortgages are liqudated into private investor hands and then rented back to less than perfect credit individuals or written off as losses which the banks are loathe to disclose the details on how much these security backed assets are worth.
Just wanted to post this to back up what I have been saying about the teachers where I live. This is from a site that posts public employee salaries. Keep in mind, this is salary only - does not include benefits, into which they contribute ZERO. I blurred over her name.
My property tax bill came over the weekend. It now tops $5100 for my 2 bedroom, 1 bath house on a 1/10th acre. And I am getting a deal because I have a garage and a bedroom in the attic that my neighbor doesn't have and his taxes are about the same. Reminded me to keep the old car running so I don't have to pay $41 per thousand on a new car.
That's the mentality these days - figure out how to play the system. WAY too easy to be classified as disabled these days. I know this firsthand because of my wife. The Americans with Disabilities Act was hailed as a positive thing when passed, but it has been grossly abused. In the past 20 years, we went from 3.3 to 8.7 million 'disabled'. The ironic thing is - many, if not most, truly disabled people - like my wife's spinal cord patients, WANT to work. It's the leeches who are not really disabled who just want checks. She designated one patient as only 60% disabled and he threatened her!
I encounter disabled people in my work every day too. I do wish we had a better way to handle people whose disability is because they drink or do drugs. However, even this is at least 60 % affected by genes, so the rest of us can be happy about our family history.
The manner in which SSI disability determination is done deserves a better look because its usually based upon a half hour interview and a record review. I could do that work if I moonlighted, but i don't want the responsibility. I can tell you that I do not rely upon the SSI diagnosis but i ask about it anyway just to see how close they are to what I know for my work in the courts. It's the criminals whose information is the most divergent from apparent reality. The good news is that law inforcement is always trying to lock those guys up for their crimes, and there are some truly dedicted probation and parole officers who are onto them.
The genetic basis for drug and alcohol abuse is a hotly debated topic. I do not believe it is anywhere near settled yet. And it's not just that. It's the people who get some injury on the job who want to milk it into a permanent disability check. Also, these days, it's obese people claiming disability for their problems which are a result of their life choices.
There's something screwed up about getting an injury due to a specific job meaning you should get paid forever and NOT have another job. Don't we have OSHA and regs to keep workplaces from being overly dangerous?
If my only skill is running a cash register, and I get carpal tunnel syndrome from doing it too much, can I get disability? Isn't it my fault for not having or finding any other skills?
I believe the debate about genes and substance abuse is mostly about how much is affected by genes, but most say it's between 40-60% and that is the SAMSA figure. It's apparently genetic that some people can tolerate more alcohol than others, and the more a person can "hold their liquor" the more potential there is for addiction.
Different disability insurances also affect whether a person would want to claim a partial disability or not.
It's always a problem when a person decides to fake "bad." If a person is exaggerating a symptom it is not easy to tell. This is at the crux of what I do for a living. If I'm not sure, I still have the option to send someone to a psychiatric hospital so it is easier to decide if they are faking using tests and observation.
Well speaking from personal familial experience, predisposition does not equal disability nor disease. My very large maternal family has its share of alcoholics. They still ate the minority, luckily. So choice, control, etc., plays a large part. Siblings, who have the same predisposition, have totally different outcomes.
I believe only doctors can/should determine level of disability. And the patient's insurance should have no influence on what the doctor determines. It's not up to the patient to choose his level of disability!
I am considered a doctor but a determination is done after reading MD reports. Most MDs would not want to work for such low pay, and it's even low pay for me to do the eligibility determinations because I would try to do it carefully. I'm not saying the insurance affects the doctors, but it might affect what someones motivations might be to exaggerate their illness.
Genetics never completely control us, thankfully, but they do stack the deck, and it's a mistake to think behavioral conditions are much different than diabetes or other medical conditions. This battle for parity in insurance for psychiatric conditions was a long and hard battle.
Guess that's certified to install a rain barrel system? pretty soon only licensed professionals will be able to do so they'll need a business license and have to pay the state and fed gov every year, and then if you install it yourself you'll get fined
I have no $ in stock market so makes no diff to me
schickenlady, that's very true, yet almost no one in most areas (esp. the NE US where there is still some viable economy) are making provisions, even something as simple as a vegetable garden. We need a different mindset, because the huge digital screen tv's and iPhones are never going to feed us or keep us warm.
The golden days of cheap fuel that came from 500,000 years of decaying stuff underground are gone, and fracking shale for a few thimblefuls of gas/oil isn't going to replace it.
We drove through northwest North Dakota today. It is a booming area because of the oil. It was amazing. I think the majority of the vehicles were pickup trucks and construction vehicles. We were told not to try to find a motel room there and we found out why. There also are temporary 'cities' set up with modular structures and fields and fields of all sorts of mbile trailers. My mind thought this is what the gold rush was like to some extent.
We don't believe in overdoing the credit in our family. I am sooo glad we didn't let our kids go to the most expensive colleges, and that they are fine with that. They don't understand yet why I have them put their savings into a credit union. Keep explaining to them that these institutions are honest money for the little guy (i.e. student) and a better return for their debit accounts.
The state colleges are growing by leaps and bounds because they have learned how to partner with businesses that will give internships that lead to jobs. Umass Lowell only gets 23% of its support from the state, but they have five huge building projects, including its new nanotech and plastics engineering building opening this fall. Amherst is creating a megasized complex of biological science research buildings and an honors dorm next to it.
I think the working stock market formula is to overweigh large cap growth stocks, and watch what sector--great returns on the media stocks, but I don't think I trust them though I probably would make quick money if I did. Sadly, just as we see in Victor's article, some of the financials are booming too--also scary. I've always done well with consumer products that we have to buy.
Finally pulled the trigger on a re-fi. New 15 yr rate will be 3.25% with ZERO closing costs. Been with Chase for ten years and they're offering this to their existing customers who always pay on time, etc. It's part of a Fed program. Will save $240 a month and pay off sooner.
Jen, I don't follow your comment. Could you elaborate?
All of us world wide who grow things are dependent on the sun shining, the wind blowing and the rain falling. Maybe next years garden will return to normal for our areas but for me, I'm leaning towards more and more 'challenges' ahead.
In Nevada, 400+ year old tress as well as 150 + year old trees are dieing when they have withstood all of the changes up til now. What to make of this?
Pays to be persistent. Just off the phone with tech support for the Roomba floor robot. Started acting weird - going backwards in a tight radius. They had me blow it out, etc., but to no avail. They said the bumper sensor was shot. Could not be replaced so a new unit was needed. Out of warranty, of course. They offered a discount on a better model. Would cost $200 instead of over $500. I said I would think about it and was very disappointed, as this was my second one to crap out after not very many uses. They then reduced the price to $160. Said I would still have to think about it but was very hesitant to put any more $ into these. Off to speak with the supervisor again and - voila - free replacement! Just not getting the accessories, which I have already. And I have to pay shipping to send the old one back. Should not have to go through all that, but it does pay!
yep pays to be persistant, guess you just have to ask for the ceo as soon as you get on the phone, LOL
Coleup, I can't elaborate on here, I'll get kicked off
Just that because they can't grow the corn to produce the ethanol, so they need to blame it on a unrealistic theory and then force us to use other means
Jen - maybe there is a bright side to the drought and lack of corn - maybe we will finally start producing from some of the other energy sources that haven't been used yet because of the availability of corn.
I convinced DH to at least talk to the solar company but I bet we missed the $2,000 tax credit by now.
Financial energies are percolating here. Driven by desire to avoid college debt. Considering how last wednesay the market was up 200 point s until the jobs announcement caused the Dow to close 36 points lower than before---all I can say is--- dollar cost averaging for any new investment. Hold your hats for the ride we'll have in the next six months.
Any bets on whether the Bush tax credits will be extended by either a republican or a democratic administration? My money is on increased taxes including on middle class, and rising interest rates after the election.
I agree, but I think the uncertainty is causing lots of ripples, and then who will get the tax cuts? Interest rates won't rise much for a while but college loans costs are already in the balance, and interest rate increases would be tough for our kids getting their homes.
I believe status quo on rates will hold. I also believe, as I have maintained for a very long time, that the worst is yet to come from Europe. Two other bad possible (if not probable) scenarios include a financial crisis in China and military action against Iran.
Oh - guess I haven't bought white sugar in awhile then. Canning "season" is coming up and I want to be prepared. Looks like I can can asian pears - didn't think of that last year. I am going to pick the Aronia berries as they get ripe and store them in my neighbor's freezer until the weather cools down to make jelly. Kind of a puny year for jam and jelly with no gooseberries. Have new "lifetime" lids to try out this year.
Bill - this isn't where I bought them - but here they are. http://www.directive21.com/products/tattler-reusable-canning-lids/ I was disappointed that the lids are plastic. I haven't tried them out yet - so don't buy on my recommendation - cause I don't have any experience. What I think would be best are the jars that have glass lids and use a rubber ring and two metal clips - but they are hard to find. I still need the metal canning lids for stuff that I give away.
I have seen the life time lids but dont dare to try them. I see them as plastic and what plastic last for ever?
If I cant hear the metal lids pop, I am never happy.
Edit to say - I hate to say it but I think I belive what Victor said, that the worse it yet to come. Something is going to tip something. There is a sour taste, simply when it comes to the number of people on unemployment, the people that do not have jobs that their unemployment has expired and people like me just looking for a stinking job. I know 4 people in one small city, like me...
Heard a guy on tv the other night . His theory/ view is that the big wave of baby boomers has ended their big spending time of their lives and are now hanging onto funds. It sure makes sense. Simple demographics.
Stupid irs, remember me telling you our book keeper made a mistake with a huge tax overpayment? I get a letter stating that we overpaid them but then they charged a late fee and penalty for the month after...IDIOTS
even programs like WIC need to be revamped, my friend's hubby lost his job they just had another baby, so they have a 2 yr old and a 7 month old, she went on WIC for awhile, they gave them 5 gallons of milk a week, come on now, a baby that is being breast fed and a 2 year old can NOT possibly drink all that milk, she was giving it away...what a waste of $
Just got 3 cards in the mail. It says give them to your family/ friends. Scriptrelief / Rxrelief. 75% off your prescriptions. Just use it, no strings attached. Nothing. It came from Healthcare Alliance Washington DC.
WHoa to WIC. That might be about guarateeeing $ to the dairy lobby--?
schickenlady- We recently shopped for private health insurance. We also got a seperate mailing for some sort of insurance discount card, seemingly unconnected to the insurance.. I just don't know what's up with it...If its legit I will need it for glaucoma eyedrops, IF it works on them and not just generic.
I work in Health Care regulation in California and have some experience with these plans. Some of these "discount plans" are legit but most are not. Make sure you check with your state's Insurance Commissioner before buying them. A lot of these plans offer steep discounts for doctor visits and medications and while the discounts might be valid, you could have a tough time finding a doctor or a pharmacy that has a contract with the discount plan which makes those discounts worthless. Caveat emptor.
I've been reading a lot of articles like Victors about the strength of lack thereof in our economy, economist Harry Dent from Forbes, for example. Not one of them has addressed the likelihood that baby boomers are not likely to just sit in their rocking chairs. Those who can will probably keep up some kind of work, especially if they are taxed highly enough. I see a future of an older generation that is taking care of other elders. We don't take summer-long vacations like the French. Then there is still a question of US innovation in addition to the work ethic. There is also immigration which can be adjusted if workers are needed, and even student visas are a factor in propping up the colleges, as international students come for a superior US college degree.
It's my bet we will still see a stock market run up to the election. By second quarter of 2013 it's anybody's guess. Anyone buying US LT treasury bonds? I read in one place (probably in Forbes also) that a person retiring today on an income of $100,000 per year needs to have saved 2 million of debt-free assets to have a decent lifestyle. I wish I even knew what that meant before I panic.
I just got my Federal tax return "Returned"! I was trying to get a jump on doing my taxes this year, but the IRS sent my tax return back!! I guess it was because of my response to the line which said: "List All Dependents". I replied: 12 million illegal immigrants, 3 million crackheads, 42 million deadbeats on food stamps, 2 million people in over 243 prisons, and 535 fools in Congress.
Apparently, this was NOT an acceptable answer. So I sent it back with a question …"Did I forget someone?"
What is a decent lifestyle for some is probably not anywhere near what I would consider decent. We try not to spend beyond our means and think we have done pretty well. Framing jobs come in when a little extra is needed. In looking toward what happens after he stops teaching we figured that we will actually have more coming in from SS than when he teaches. That is due to his years at a power plant. Christian school teachers don't make much.
On Monday I am planning on taking a few things to be appraised for free at Rago Auctions. I am anxious to hear the appraisal for 2 K. Hepburn self-portraits and the signed notes to my folks.
LOL Darius. A sad but true kind of LOL admittedly.
2 mill? Failed.
What IS a decent lifesdtyle? Good question. How many of us had parents that ever went to Europe on vacation, or cruised, or just went to a resort in Mexico? Not mine, but how many in our generation consider those normal now? My house, vehicles, and yard are all bigger and more sophisticated than what they had. Financial advisors want to scare people into using their service, so they'll inflate the decent lifestyle figure.
Granted, spending 5K on a vacation yearly is really not much compared to what it takes to run this household with three kids in Batl/WashDC area. Hmm.
I'm more appreciative now of all the scrimping we've done.