Steve Jobs passed away this week at the age of 56. Whether you loved him, hated him, or fell somewhere in between you must admit Jobs impacted the technology world greatly. Even if you are anti-Apple, competition – good, strong competition – is healthy for an industry. It forces companies to stay on their toes and constantly innovate. Let’s hope Apple continues to do that.
This week the Federal Reserve went back to the playbook and pulled out a trick that is 50 years old.
They called it Operation Twist. In Federal Reserve terms, the twist is selling off some short term debts it is holding in order to buy long term Treasuries. The goal is to bring down long term interest rates in hopes of spurring home purchasing. A side effect of the twist is there is pressure on banks to make money through lending as the long term debt rate becomes very close to short term rates. This makes it difficult for banks to borrow short term money to finance long term debt at a higher rate. Whether or not Operation Twist will have a positive impact on the economy is yet to be seen.
Whether or not Operation Twist impacts you, you need to stay on your personal finances. These articles will help you do that:
The east coast is getting hammered with its second natural disaster in a week. For the usually calm area (from a nature perspective), many are not sure how to react. Some in the coastal regions of the impacted states are ignoring warnings to evacuate at significant risk to their own lives. An earthquake happened earlier in the week, Steve Jobs resigned from Apple, and now a hurricane. Quite the eventful week.
Is your portfolio and personal finances prepared for a natural disaster? Use this week as inspiration to consider disasters moving forward. Check out these great articles to get started:
It’s a day in celebration of Dad. Maybe he taught you how to build things with your own two hands. Maybe he taught you how to mow. Or maybe he taught you how to balance your checkbook. Whatever your Father’s specialty was, he likely imparted part of it on you as you were growing up.
We can all agree we wouldn’t be here without good ole Dad, so take time today to reach out and let him know how much your appreciate him.
While you are kicking back with Dad this weekend, don’t miss these great personal finance articles:
The US Stock Market was shaken this week by seemingly bad job growth numbers. Only 54,000 jobs were added to payrolls. That sounds like a lot of people, but economists were expecting about 170,000 to be added. Over 230,000 jobs were added in April, and all the numbers this year aside from January were over 200,000. May’s number of 54,000 was much closer to January’s number. It’s a big step back according to economists, and with unemployment on the rise, fear affected the stock market. The S&P 500 dropped 1.93% for the week.
With the uncertainty in the market, Warren Buffet’s quote on fear came to mind: “We simply attempt to be fearful when others are greedy and to be greedy only when others are fearful.”
So, should you be greedy and jump into the market? Is it time to wait for the stock market to go down before hopping back in? Or does that qualify as timing the market?
While you consider whether to run with the herd away from the stock market or to step boldly into the stock market, check out these great personal finance articles:
Prince William and Kate got married over in the British Empire. They are now known as the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. It was rumored so many people might tune in and tweet about the wedding that major websites and services like Twitter might crash. Thankfully the wedding started at 3am Eastern time, well enough early not to disrupt much of anything on my end of the world.
You may have no interest in the Royals — neither do I — except this one curious fact: it is estimated that up to 80 million pounds (about $134 million) was spent on the wedding. Even if a hefty chunk of that is security, and if you’re off by a factor of 50%… that’s a ton of money. And they say there’s a global recession!Continue Reading
There was an interesting and kind of odd article up at CNN Money this week. Donald Trump either doesn’t know how much he is worth or doesn’t have a solid understanding of what net worth is. One author (that he sued!) claimed he was only worth $150-200 million, while trump says $3.7 billion is a conservative estimate. This may not seem like a big deal, but with Trump allegedly considering a Presidential campaign in 2012 I find it intriguing. Understanding what net worth means is kind of important especially if you claim to be a business mogul.
While you ponder exactly how much Trump might be worth, check out these other great articles from the week:
President’s Day is pretty nice in the Free From Broke household. Well, not the day actually, the whole week. Here in New York kids get off of school for President’s week as does the Mrs. It’s nice to get a week together with the family. Of course we’ll also be doing a lot of errands and such like our taxes this week as well. President’s week could not have come sooner!
Hope you have a great President’s Day (and week)!
Here are some great personal finance articles to check out:
As a personal finance blogger I get the opportunity of receiving books about well, personal finance from time to time. I don’t always get to read them all (yet) but some I do while others are moved to the front of my reading list for when I get a chance. I wanted to tell you about one that’s on my short list to read.
The Power of Passive Investing by Rick Ferri
I haven’t read this book yet but I will soon. In The Power of Passive Investing, Ferri makes the case for owning only low-cost index funds and ETF’s. I’ve heard a lot about how active funds tend to not beat the market and that most of us would do better with low-cost index funds (Warren Buffet and Tom Gardner come to mind).
I certainly don’t want to have my returns eaten up by commissions and taxes. Investing in ETF index funds is something I’ve slowly been doing but I want to learn more. I was excited to get a copy of this book and start expanding my investing knowledge.
Have you heard of eBillme? I keep hearing about them but wasn’t sure what they are. I looked into it and it seems like a pretty neat site. For people who don’t want to use their credit cards to pay online, you have an alternative with eBillme. eBillme allows customers to use their bank’s online bill/pay option to pay for online transactions.
Here’s how the process works – You go to the eBillme site and look for the retailer you want to buy from. You buy through the eBillme site. You then get a receipt code from eBillme. Open up your bank’s bill/pay option and use the code you were given to pay for what you bought. Done! No credit card. No giving your account information to a retailer. Pretty neat, huh?