A wing and a prayer retirement plan: Two-thirds of Americans are not saving enough for retirement. Income inequality at record levels in the US.
It is interesting to see what passes for financial journalism in the press. This morning a guest was on one of the major news stations and she was mentioning that Americans need to save $1 million or more to retire comfortably. In the next sentence, she mentioned that two-thirds of Americans don’t even save enough [...]
Bread, butter, and food stamp economy: Is the US developing a permanent under-class of citizens economically?
The American economy has developed a deep disconnect between its financial markets and the working and middle class. The stock market has soared by 138 percent from the low reached in 2009. Yet very little of this has trickled down to the majority of Americans. In fact, most Americans actually saw little to negative growth [...]
Spend or be financially doomed: Idolizing the gods of consumption and stoking the fires of debt based speculation. Has the Fed crossed the line of no return?
The Federal Reserve has created the perfect environment where savers are chastised and debt based spending is glorified. Our economic engine is powered by the fires of consumption. This has been true for many decades. What is different about our current space in time is the punishment savers are taking. Many banks through savings or [...]
What does it mean to be retired in the United States? The age of disappearing pensions, dependence on Social Security, and stock market speculation.
A few days ago the stock market experienced a mini panic as someone hacked a reputable news source Twitter account and posted a sensational headline. The markets quickly reacted to this news. What was troubling is many algorithm-based trading systems are setup to scour internet information for these kinds of dramatic changes. Many of the [...]
Reinventing GDP: US GDP to be revised in July by adding “intangibles” to the tune of $500 billion. The make believe economy.
The US debt-to-GDP ratio is now quickly reaching insurmountable levels. It is interesting that a paper citing this issue is now being openly discredited as if this is reason enough to put on the rocket boosters of quantitative easing. Japan has gone so far off the deep end that they are now intervening in their [...]
US households are tapped out on debt: While US households are forced to eat austerity measures financial institutions load up on debt and purchase assets at rock bottom prices.
US households are tapped out with debt. Debt matters. Contrary to what is being spouted out over the airwaves having too much debt does cause problems. American households tipped over this point when total household debt reached annual GDP. This is a critical juncture and results in massive deleveraging. There doesn’t seem to be answer [...]
Debt based delusion: Fed spending far outstripping revenues, balance of trade, and business inventories decline.
One clear symbol of our new Gilded Age is that of the peaking DOW while food stamp usage is at a peak as well. Even though the DOW is only a reflection of a handful of companies, the media focuses on this as if it were a barometer of the real economy. It isn’t. Household [...]
Part-time America: How we increased our part-time for economic reasons workforce by 4 million people since the recession began. Healthcare costs encourage low wage employers to hire more part-time employees.
The rise of part-time employment in the United States is part of the low wage system that is spreading throughout the country. Part-time workers are cheaper to hire and easier to fire. You also avoid paying benefits from a healthcare system that is seeing skyrocketing costs. Prior to the economic crisis, the number of Americans [...]
The United States of Debt Addiction: Our reliance on debt has created an entire economy fortified in the fires of moral hazard and fiscally dangerous leverage.
16 point 7 trillion dollars. That is our current national debt. 12 point 8 trillion dollars. That is the amount households carry in mortgage and consumer debt. We are now addicted to debt to lubricate the wheels of our financial system. There is nothing wrong with debt per se, but it is safe to say [...]
Young riding out recession by going into debt for college: Millennial unemployment jumps by two percent.
As the animal spirits of the economy rage wild, there are still difficult challenges ahead for younger Americans. While the stock market is up highlighting corporate euphoria, many companies are doing this with 4 million fewer workers. So the economic recovery is not evenly distributed and they rarely are. Yet younger Americans are still facing [...]