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Most of us have heard about Bitcoin. Bitcoin is a digital currency alternative designed to facilitate online transactions between users providing a sort of currency neutral medium of exchange between buyers and sellers worldwide.
My mind is in kind of laid back mood this week. I guess you could say I’m in holiday mode.
The S&P 500 index of stocks traded briefly above the psychologically significant level of 1,800 this week.
On Thursday the Senate conducted the most important confirmation hearing of the Obama administration. The hearing involved the confirmation of Janet Yellen, the President’s nominee to take over for Ben Bernanke as the next Chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank.
I’m feeling pretty positive nowadays. The column on the emergence of America’s energy sector as a global powerhouse and the resurgence of American manufacturing got me quite a bit of feedback.
I was privileged this week to attend a discussion presented by Jim Bowen, CEO of investment product company First Trust. With his boundless energy and entertaining style Bowen is always fun, but it is the scope of his material that leaves the crowd most inspired by the end of his talk.
After the government shutdown and debt-ceiling circus, it seems like the U.S. government is doing everything it can to diminish the stature of our dollar.
As I write the column it looks like the Federal government will find a way to kick the can down the road a bit and defer any major spending decisions until next year.
Last week we began to discuss the practical implications of what could occur if the U.S. federal government made the deliberate decision to miss a U.S. Treasury security interest or principal payment, which is called default.
The long dreaded government shutdown has arrived and to make a point about how important the government really is to all of us, whoever makes these decisions has decided to close our parks and attempt to provide the maximum level of inconvenience possible.
In my experience, few topics elicit as much emotional response as the Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as Obamacare.
Every American can tell you where they were the morning of Sept. 11, 2001. Those over 59 can probably tell you where they were Nov. 22, 1963. As someone heavily integrated into the financial world, I have similar a frame of mind when it comes to Sept. 13, 2008.
Investing is never easy, and building a balanced portfolio is one of life’s most difficult endeavors.
We’ve all seen those fun Lexus commercials with the beautiful new car wrapped in a big bow somehow sitting under the indoor Christmas tree (that never happens to me). The tag line is the “December to Remember."
The Federal Reserve is charged with managing our money system, and by association, much of our economy. It is therefore of the utmost importance the Fed maintain a high level of credibility in this important role.
The stock market pulled back again this week, almost quite predictably following comments by the Federal Reserve reminding us it would wind down its money printing, bond buying, quantitative easing (QE) program.
Like many Americans, I have been using web based portals to do banking, conduct investment transactions and I even prefer to use PayPal to send money to my college-aged daughter.
Perhaps no other substance in the world is more enigmatic, maligned and revered than gold.
I remember 1993. I was finishing up at Purdue and the U.S. was in a nasty little recession. Not a good thing for a new college grad.
A study released in April by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York showed home ownership among individuals paying off student debt is 36 percent lower than among individuals of similar age without student loan debt.
I went fishing in Canada last week with a great group of guys. I was motivated to do my part on the night of our walleye feast, and after watching some YouTube videos on filleting I was sure I was ready to deliver.
I continue to observe the Japanese markets with interest, not because I am heavily invested there, but because I continue to be concerned with how the “Japanese experience” may foretell trends that could occur in the U.S.
What’s good is bad; what’s bad is good. There have been a few times in my investing career when this paradigm has existed, and we may be heading into this topsy-turvey market environment once again.
In case you didn’t notice, the stock market has been reaching new highs on an almost weekly basis for most of 2013.
A dear family member passed away last week, and some of the activity required to deal with the affairs of the estate has fallen to my Mom.
My wife is from Cincinnati, and she misses her family dearly. We do a good job of staying connected with frequent visits, but she tells me she misses everyday stuff like lunch with her sister or a nephew’s soccer game.
In August 2011, I refinanced my primary mortgage. It was right about the time S&P downgraded the credit rating of U.S. Treasury debt, which strangely enough caused interest rates to dive. I got a 4.12 percent rate. I was quite confident this would be the last mortgage I would ever have o…
Like it or not, Obamacare, or parts of it at least, look here to stay with a number of provisions starting this year.
I recently attended an investment conference. These types of conference are typically structured with daily group sessions, interspersed with breakout sessions allowing attendees to explore ideas they find of particular interest.
Late last week the financial world was stunned by an announcement from the Bank of Japan that the central bank would begin a program of buying financial assets including not only Japanese government bonds but stock market based investments and real estate investment trusts.
We have discussed a number of times of the past few months the concept of Modern Monetary Theory, or MMT.
Perhaps the most difficult financial planning subject to address is the question of long-term care.
I’ve always been fairly decent at geography, so Sunday evening when headlines were buzzing with news of Cyprus, I turned to the globe for some frame of reference.
Some of the most common questions posed to me have to do with gold.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average exceeded its 2007 record peak with great fanfare this week.
After subjecting readers and myself to what seemed like endless discussion of the frightful “fiscal cliff,” I was done talking about the incessant shenanigans coming out Washington, D.C.
“Currency War” is the most recent buzz term in the financial media.
On March 23, 2000, the most widely used index of stock values, the S&P 500, reached 1,527. Over the next 2 1/2 years to September of 2002 the index dropped in value by 47 percent.
I’m a fan of the writing style of Bill Gross, the co-founder of the asset management firm PIMCO and manager of the world’s largest mutual fund.
The economy unexpectedly shrank in the fourth quarter of 2012. Such was the headline on Wednesday when the government released its report on total economic activity, a metric know as GDP.
History shows it has never been a smart idea to bet against the culture of American entrepreneurialism. We have consistently shown the capacity to innovate and get the job done.
A relationship with a financial advisory firm can be one of the most important professional relationships in our lives. The world of finances is confusing and perilous. Assistance navigating the many decisions to be made can be invaluable.
I have to admit I’ve never been a big believer in the rising China theme that has captivated the business world in the past decade.
After more undue hype than a heavyweight boxing match that results in a first round knock-out, our nation has avoided the dreaded fiscal cliff.
This year has been my seventh year writing “Your Mind on Money.” Also, 2012 was also the year I elected to move the column to The Times, which has proven to be a smart move.
A couple of weeks ago I addressed the concept of Modern Monetary Theory, or MMT, in this column. I was a bit nervous about addressing this type of subject in this limited forum, but I have received more feedback regarding the MMT column than any other column written in the past few years.
I attended some interesting education sessions and this week, and I thought I might recap some of the more interesting factoids regarding Social Security planning and pass on a personal story as well as a disturbing trend of which I was made aware.
This week retail giant Costco became that latest high-profile company to announce a “special dividend” payment to shareholders. The special dividend will be paid before the end of the year.
Sometimes it’s no fun when you’re right.
I’ve been a student of economics my whole adult life. Not academic guns-and-butter type of economics, but I follow “popular” economics much in the way other guys might follow sports, and yes, I do still have a few friends.
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Should the Illiana Expressway be built?