Back In Action! Well that was quite the hiatus. Apologies for the delay in knowledge dump. It’s been over three years since my latest post to this site, and things have changed. I am no longer the aspiring unemployed college student, hoping for a chance to prove himself and become the next corporate legend. Reality has set in, and I have fallen in line with the rest of the worker bees. […]
Back to the grind. While reading economist.com the other day I found an interesting fact. On January 10th of this year, Spain had faced the first time its 10-year government bonds fell below 5% in over a year. That means the cost of government borrowing has gone down significantly. Italy also faced this same topic, with their 10-year bonds reaching 4%. So we are making progress! The countries stuck down at the bottom of the pits have grabbed onto the ropes tossed down by the world and begun to climb. Italy and Spain are beginning to sell their bonds within the market, proving that there is still hope. Although everyone has not even come close to crossing the finish line of economic optimization, one study by an analyst showed that banks may repay as much as 20% of the trillion euro they borrowed from the ECB. That's the green light. Let's go. The 2013 forecast for GDP growth even shows Ireland predicted to gain over a 1% increase. This is a country that was on the verge of collapse under the weight of it's own deficits. And that's coming from an optimistic man of Irish descent! So we have a European Union that is showcasing some growth, lower payback rates on bonds, and increased movement within the buying and selling bond market. All I hear is check check and check. Correct? The only problem is countries such as Greece and Spain still face piles of debt, unprecedented unemployment rates, and other factors that make one think they are not out of the muck yet. But they do have their hands around that rope. They just have to pull themselves out. My guess is that we will see a gradual, slow [...]
The life of a senior economics student at a major university. Currently unemployed, the job search has been heavy on my mind for some time. Three days in a row have landed me in three different career fairs seeking out the job of my dreams. (Scratch that – any job at all big enough to pay my loans.) So its as easy as walking in and handing in a resume, correct? I was so wrong. As a boy from a smaller populated area in upstate New York, I did not grow up knowing any ‘important connections’ to land me in the area of my […]
Now welfare is an interesting topic. Do we lend an even bigger hand to the people that have been dragged down by the economy, or simply blame them for their own wrongdoing in the financial system? It is a puzzle that many people have their own opinions on. Things such as the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and the Tax Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) are both programs designed to help the downtrodden families. But during the Clinton era something happened. TANF decreased, so the money allotted to families who were unemployed decreased from $5000 to $3000. In the situation of welfare, what side do we take? You know I am going to give my opinion. We need to find a medium that not only helps to eliminate the “free rides” on […]
Paycheck is coming tomorrow. Let's see how Mr. Reform and Mr. Cliff feel about meeting. Hopefully it's a positive outcome for this pup in the long run. $200,000 is middle class? You bet it is. Oh baby, let me have that 2% FICA tax increase and let's get the ball rolling on this shivering economy.
So, the "Fiscal Cliff" is upon us. The House and Senate, with the president, are tangled up in a web of disagreement and frustration. What to do with the country's situation? The way I see it is simple. People are arguing that we will turn into a recession once again with the increased taxes and lower welfare that will occur if there is no agreement made. They fear a recession in the economy will be bad at this time and could hurt the ongoings and status of our country. But why? I believe that we should go with the tax hikes. What will it do? Currently our economy is sitting upon a massive debt. Trillions upon trillions of stacked debt that includes foreign influence such as India and China. If we don't do something about this now our situation will only become worsened as we slowly transition into the man who just can't make the monthly rent. So we bite the bullet. Accept the taxes now. Lower the debt for our children, and childrens' children. So our economy may slide into a slight recession. We always find ways to come out of the rut. We must lower this debt. Even if they cut the welfare, I believe the government should make a mandatory drug test for welfare as well. That would restrict the number of people that are free riders on welfare. We can't have people feeding off the fruits of our labor. So my conclusion? Accept the tax hikes. Pay a little more and live a little less luxurious. So you may have to downgrade to wonder bread instead of artisan bakes. There are countries that have people much more impoverished than ours. We [...]
The EU summit ended a little over a month ago, with negotiations of course ending in a standstill, with no deal met to save the falling Euro. So they are going to postpone the talks and pick them up once again in the spring of 2013 over in Brussels. In order to at least stabilize the Euro zone, the budget has switched around for the Euro zone. What the budget is is that member countries contribute into a pool of money that is used to help ailing countries in the zone in order to stabilize the currency. It is only about 1% of Europes GDP, but it goes a long way. Some countries are aching for it, while other countries have to pay out big time because their pockets are so full. Places such as Luxembourg, where the average wage is much higher than many other countries, end up paying more to support the other ailing countries. While places such as Great Britain do pay out, but also receive rebates to help along the way. Why do they do this? Because when these leaders decided to join the Euro, they decided to join a team. This team supports one another, because if one person lets a goal in they all lose the game. So measures are put into place so that their currency can be stabilized by the stronger 'players' on the field. This is a very effective way if leaders are willing to pay out, and it shows a true support circle for gathering countries. In the coming months there will be an agreement on the EU budget for 2014- 2020, and many are eager to see how it shores up. One thing is [...]
Hello Well here is the next topic. Amazing as it is, the national icon known as Walmart may be more powerful than some can fathom. Here is some information that may intrigue you. Walmart is the top retail chain in all of the United States, as well as the World. It retains more revenue than the next four retailers in the world combined (for example, Costco.). What a powerhouse. For every super-center constructed, it employs over 500 persons. That's enough to effect a well sized area significantly. So what is the secret to their success? How do they surpass every retail store in the world? The secret is cost minimization. Walmart has mastered the art of maximizing profit while minimizing operating costs. Originally, the first big step the company made was to jump onto the IT bandwagon, and be some of the first to do it. With utilizing items such as the bar code and "price check gun", basic tasks were turned luxury. Also, the IT push included a new system of itemizing. This allowed the company to see what items they were low on, and reorder the shipment. So next time you are around a Walmart, you must realize you are dealing with one of the strongest and most successful companies in the world. They have created their own monopsony, and because of this have developed a Pull system by which they control what the buyers sell to them. Not only do they take over retail areas, but put many hard working Americans with local stores out of work. So what do we want, an inexpensive product or the integrity of the local American person? The decision is ours as a whole. Think about [...]
This economy is slowly approaching 100% debt to GDP ratio. The deficit is outrageously climbing, and we face an imminent fiscal cliff at the start of 2013. So what do we do? The tax cuts from the Bush regime, along with the stimulus package from Obama has soared our expenditures and debt. Soon enough we may cease to exist as a sole country if foreign influence such as China and Japan continue to buy out our debt. Answer: There is no clear cut answer. No guidebook to solving this cataclysmic mystery. But there are some answers that could help lower the deficit while taking it easy on the economy. For example: what I propose and what 'theeconomist.com' supports is an increase in taxes. Why not? It will lower our debt while providing some inflow to the government to ease the payments for things like social security that are not completely covered by the FICA tax. Also, maybe a higher taxing on the rich. Things such as the social security tax on FICA are regressive, meaning there is an income tax cap of around $100000. The rich can afford it, and the economy could use it. I would consider myself an independent with right wing influence, but in this current economic condition there is not many other options. Let's dig ourselves out of this hole.
So a new article by the Huffington Post was posted on January 19th that I found very interesting. It listed What The 1% Majored In when they attended college. What followed was a list that was surprising and at some points shocking. Pre-med and preparatory majors for medicine were first, which was completely understandable. But after that followed Economics at #2 (What a breath of fresh air that was). To know my major was #2 for the top 1% of earners was shocking to me, but also very nice to hear, and somewhat understandable. What followed were several expected majors such as finance (falling to a shocking #13 spot which was surprising), molecular biology, and physiology. However, several majors made me question how they were possible. Zoology came in at #4, which I couldn't really put into perspective. Art history and criticism, and civilization studies followed as well. What a shocking turn of events. I was sure these top majors for the 1% would include accounting, management, entrepreneurship, etc. Basically the business school was in my head when I thought of the 1% but what I got instead was several topics that could even be found in the Arts and Sciences department. Very shocking, yet quite interesting. Glad to hear my majors in 2nd, let's see what I can do with it.