Financial Advice for Retirement, Social Security, IRAs and Estate Planning

Bob's Blog on Retirement & Beyond

Raise Rates Faster?

May 11, 2017

Many people worry that the Fed will raise rates too quickly and damage the economy. But there are others who want the Fed to raise rates faster than its current schedule. One group of critics has been around for years. It opposed the quantitative easing and zero interest rate policies and believes they hurt economic […]

Savings from LED Bulbs

May 11, 2017

LED bulbs started making their ways into U.S. homes in a big way in 2007. In the 10 years since, the savings in money and electricity use have been dramatic, according to this article. It also argues that the savings are just beginning. LEDs use 85 percent less electricity than incandescent bulbs. Going on an estimate […]

The Withering of Sears

May 10, 2017

This article summarizes the sad story of Sears from upstart to its days as the country’s dominant retailer to its current status as a barely viable shell on the verge of liquidating. “The Sears catalog had an even bigger impact in 1900 than Amazon has had today,” said Robert Gordon, a professor at Northwestern University […]

A Good View of Europe

May 10, 2017

Tyler Cowen of Marginal Revolution blog recently wrote a piece saying that he somewhat changed his views on Europe and the euro and now takes a fairly positive view of the future of both. I now think of the 2008-2012 period as unwinding a long-term bubble of overinvestment in the EU periphery, and thus those […]

What Some Top Investors Like

May 10, 2017

The annual Ira Sohn Conference is a charitable fundraiser that features some of the top hedge fund managers and other investors naming their top investment ideas. I urge caution when considering these choices, because the investors already have their positions in these investments. You’re buying after they already have. But most of them have very […]

Life Expectancy by County

May 9, 2017

Life expectancy depends on many factors. Many people don’t realize how important where they live is in determining their life expectancy. A new research report presents the numbers by county in the U.S. The report has a lot of interesting details, not the least of which is that average life expectancy around the country varies […]

Highlights from the Berkshire-Hathaway Annual Meeting

May 9, 2017

The annual meeting of Berkshire-Hathaway is capped off each year with its two leaders, Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger, answering questions from shareholders and the media. It’s usually full of interesting and amusing comments. This article is a digest of some key points. And here’s a different take on the highlights. “I would say I’ve […]

The Rigged Labor Market

May 9, 2017

The unemployment rate is near record lows, yet wage increases have been very low since the end of the financial crisis. What gives? This article argues that large employers in the same industry often collude to suppress employee pay. It documents instances of competitors caught agreeing not to hire each other’s employees and take other […]

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