Capital appreciation bonds, when combined with economic ignorance and political expediency, make up a toxic brew that is likely to explode long before they come due.
The great Seattle gun buyback program was essentially worthless in removing "dangerous" weapons from society, but it did serve to teach essential truths about free enterprise and human behavior.
Amid an ongoing debate over raising the debt ceiling and Congress’ seeming inability to rein in wild deficit spending, some proponents of even bigger government proposed the minting of a $1-trillion platinum coin to get around stubborn lawmakers seeking budget cuts. Seriously. Originally, the Obama administration refused to rule it out when asked by reporters, leaving analysts to speculate about whether or not they would really do it.
Then, suddenly, the privately owned Federal Reserve put its foot down and killed the scheme. In a joint statement issued with the U.S. Treasury, the central banking cartel, which holds a virtual monopoly on currency production, said no way. The Fed would not accept such a coin even if the federal government were to mint it. While never mentioned in the mainstream media, the implications of the whole episode are enormous.
The decline in the purchasing power of the dollar has finally caught up with the U.S. Mint, which is planning to remove pennies and nickels from circulation. Also, the GAO wants the United States to stop printing paper one-dollar bills and to switch instead to one-dollar coins.
One of the best indicators of a state’s economic health, according to John Merline, writing in Investor’s Business Daily, is the “U-Haul Index” (first publicized by economist Mark Perry) to see what people are paying to move into, or out of, the state. Renting a 20-foot truck one way from San Francisco to San Antonio, Texas, for example, costs $1,693. Going in the other direction, however, costs only $983 for the same truck.
As Perry explains, "The American people and businesses are voting with their feet and their one-way truck rentals to escape California and its forced unionism, high taxes, and high unemployment rate for a better life in low-tax, business-friendly, right-to-work states like Texas."
In 2010, the U.S. Congress cut the Social Security payroll tax from 6.2 percent to 4.2 percent for 2011 as part of a compromise between the president and congressional Republicans. This temporary reduction in Social Security payroll taxes is due to expire at the end of the year.
After 42 years of building an immense real estate and time share company, with 7,000 employees and revenues of $1 billion, its owner is close to giving it all up and, in his words, “calling it a day.” David Siegel, the owner of Westgate Resorts, started his company out of his garage in the early 1970s and, working full time including weekends and holidays, slowly built the company into a powerhouse which, in 2007, just before the real estate crash, employed more than 12,000 people and served more than 3 million customers a year.
But the start of the Great Recession left Siegel and his company with nearly $1 billion in debt which forced him to give back the Las Vegas project to lenders and stop work altogether on his massive 90,000 square-foot home.
Business is better now, but Siegel is nervous about the election and what it means to his company if President Obama is reelected.
The U.S. economy grew slower than previously reported during the second quarter of the year, according to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). The economy grew at just an annualized rate of 1.3 percent rate, down from the 1.7 percent growth previously reported.
The anti-tax foundation Americans for Tax Reform has labeled the end of the Bush-era tax cuts that are scheduled to expire at the end of this year — in conjunction with the start of new taxes, such as those brought on by ObamaCare mandates — "Taxmageddon," but would the tax increases built into the law by Congress actually be a catastrophe for the economy, keeping in mind that automatic spending cuts are set to begin as well?
To hurdle the federal government’s looming “fiscal cliff,” Congress and the president must enact a combination of higher taxes and spending cuts, says a group of business economists.
Due in large part to an explosion of government spending and less secure property rights, the United States plunged to its lowest ever ranking on the Economic Freedom of the World report, dropping from second place out of 144 nations in 2000 to a humiliating 18th in this year’s annual survey. The global average scores, meanwhile, actually increased slightly.