Tuesday, March 31, 2009
Monday, March 30, 2009
If Chrysler succeeds in a setting up a "viable" plan with Fiat, they can expect to receive up to $6 billion more from the government to keep them alive. GM doesn't have a set amount of cash on the table, but will be under the close scrutiny of the administration to restructure the company or else. So what does this mean for you and me? Hard to say, so far, except that we taxpayers could be on the hook for at least $6 bil more. The real pressure is on the people who's jobs are on the line right now. Things could get real interesting in Detroit right now, and I'm not talking about the Final Four! The Big 3 might just be the Big 2 or the Big 1, a couple of months from now! But hey, at least our warranties are safe!
Friday, March 27, 2009
So my thanks to all of you who read my blog and especially those who take the time to make a comment or two.
Happy Friday and go Jayhawks!
Thursday, March 26, 2009
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
My Gosh! Banner Bank in Oregon
The news media likes to focus on the bad things that have happened with big banks and corporations, but small banks and small businesses are what keep this country going!
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
Monday, March 23, 2009
1. Keep adding new money to your retirement plan each month. This is called dollar-cost averaging. You add the same amount of money each month and buy shares of your funds at the market price. This takes the emotion out of investing and you will come out ahead in the long run.
2. Don't worry what the talking heads on CNBC say. Media focus is short term. Almost all discussion is centered on what to do in the short-term, but most people are or should be, long-term investors.
3. Save more for retirement. If you are able, increase your monthly with holdings by a percentage point or two. You will ultimately save more for retirement and make up your losses faster. If you can't save more, take a look at your family budget and trim expenses where possible to free up cash.
The light is beginning to shine at the end of this bear market tunnel. Don't give up this late in the game. As hard as these tips might seem to do, it could make the difference in how comfortable you live in your future retirement years, and it might help you be able to retire on time. Nobody wants to come out of retirement, except Brett Favre!
Friday, March 20, 2009
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
At that time I was talking about bonuses that were being handed out by Wall Street, to their investment bankers. If you think President Obama was mad about that, image how infuriated he must be about this AIG deal! Enjoy!
Friday, March 13, 2009
I will be thinking about this as I take some time off today to play golf (in 40 degree weather!) with some old college buddies. This will probably be some future blog material in the making!
Thursday, March 12, 2009
"A MC's now make up “the fourth most popular category online – ahead of personal email,” says Nielsen Online. The others are search, portals, and PC software. Nielsen Online says: Facebook - the world’s most popular social network - is visited monthly by three in every 10 people online across the nine markets in which Nielsen tracks social networking use."
I read recently than Mr. Zuckerberg's "plan" is for Facebook to actually replace e-mail, at least on a personal basis. I can attest to this personally. While I, like most, can't escape e-mail in my work related activities. I use my Blackberry to check messages and status updates on Facebook, not e-mail. In fact, my wife checks her e-mail about once per week, while she checks her Facebook pages, daily. She has told me that if someone wants to send her a message, they need to send it through Facebook, or she might not see it. Now, I send her messages and post notes on her "Wall", so I know she'll see them! Speaking of Blackberries, iPhones, and most other smart phones all have Facebook applications for download, so that you can keep in touch with your "friends" all the time. So one day in the not so distant future, e-mail programs like Outlook, Eudora, and GroupWise, will bite the dust like the pager, the Visor, and the Walkman. I wonder how many people can't start their day without reading "my" blog?
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
Don't stop, it'll soon be here,
It'll be, better than before,
Yesterdays gone, yesterdays gone."
These lyrics, by Christine McVie of Fleetwood Mac, are not just for those who may long for the Clinton years. They are a good motive for today's investors to not give up on saving for retirement. It will be here sooner than you think, too! My recent time on Facebook has been a reminder of just how fast time can go by. I have been reconnecting with high school friends that I have not seen in over 28 years! For those of you who have given up on the stock market because of the recent carnage over the past 16 or so months, my question is: what are you doing about your retirement savings? Just because your 401k has lost 30-50% of it's value and your employer is no longer matching a portion of your contributions is no reason to stop saving altogether. If anything, you may now need to save more! Social Security will only amount to perhaps 30% or less of what you will need to live on when and if you do actually retire (future blog). 401k and IRA savings plans are tax deductible, and if set up properly, are on automatic pilot. This means that you do not have to write a check to any financial institution to get your money to them. If you save automatically from your payroll or checking account, you will save more. Why? Because you are paying yourself first. When you pay yourself first, you are making sure that you are saving, instead of getting to the end of the month after the bills are (hopefully) paid, and realizing that you don't have any money left to save. So don't stop saving because you have lost money in the stock market, maybe you need to revisit your tolerance for risk. Saving for your future retirement is more important than ever, now that people are living longer and healthier lives. Oh great! Now I can't get that song out of my head!
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
Go to the original post: "Where's my bailout?"
Monday, March 9, 2009
Friday, March 6, 2009
"Baron Rothschild, an 18th-century British nobleman and member of the Rothschild banking family, is credited with saying that "the time to buy is when there's blood in the streets." He should know. Rothschild made a fortune buying in the panic that followed the Battle of Waterloo against Napoleon. But that's not the whole story. The original quote is believed to be "Buy when there's blood in the streets, even if the blood is your own!"This is contrarian investing at its heart--the strongly held belief that the worse things seem in the market, the better the opportunities are for profit.
To read more about this topic, click on this link:
CD's is not really an investor. This market is brutal, but it will eventually end. So what will you do?
Thursday, March 5, 2009
"The Italian branch of the Roman Catholic Church wants its followers to forswear text messaging, social-networking Web sites and computer games in the run-up to Easter."
For the full story, click here:
What makes this even more interesting to me is that I have read where the Catholic Church wants to embrace new technology by having a presence on facebook and UTube and other social networking websites. The St. Louis Archdiocese has even told people to sign up on their website for a text message to announce the new St. Louis Archbishop as soon as the Vatican makes the official announcement. So is this a contradiction? We want you to use facebook and text messages to communicate with the Catholic Church, just not during Lent? Ultimately, each person must decide what her or she will give up for Lent. While I am not Catholic, I consider myself a friend of the Catholic Church, as I am married to a Catholic. So while I am not giving up anything for Lent, I will continue my Water Experiment, which may not be a religious endeavor, but it is a noble one. At least I think so...I better lay off the chocolate anyway, the dentist told me I have 2 new cavities yesterday! Bummer.
Wednesday, March 4, 2009
"A bull market may be hard to imagine right now, but as Fidelity points out it can be very costly to miss the beginnings of one when it does happen. Researchers at the mutual fund company found that within six months of a new bull market more than a quarter of the gains have already been booked, while more than 40% of the gains come within the first year. Standard & Poor's has found that investors on average recoup 80% of their bear market losses within the first year of the next bull."
And this analysis by Pinnacle Group, a wealth manager in Midlothian, Virginia:
"If you remained fully invested in the S&P 500 for the 20 years between 1987 and 2007, your average annual return came to nearly 12%. However, if you missed just the 10 best days during that span, your return fell to about 9%. Miss the 30 best days in 20 years? Your average annual return came in at less than 6%. In other words, missing a trading months' worth of rallies over 20 years lopped about six percentage points off the annual average return. The upshot? The fully invested saw $10,000 grow into $93,000, while those missing the 30 best days got $28,000 for their trouble. Now get this: Pinnacle notes that investors who did nothing at the bottom of the market during the Great Depression watched their portfolios take more than four years to be made whole. On the other hand, those who plowed another $10,000 into stocks on June 1, 1932, recovered all their losses in just three months."
Read the full article, here.
So there it is. This is a serious game of chicken. Will you get hurt, or dodge the bullet? This is real life. Jim Cramer and Suzy Orman can't help you now.
Tuesday, March 3, 2009
Scientist Solves Mystery of Belly-Button LintThe "mystery" has been "solved", so the story goes. But that begs the question...do you care? And the even bigger question is...would you pay $31.50 for the full report? I wonder if this is where some of this stimulus package money is going.
If you have not seen this article and are dying to know more, click on this link for the...rest of the story. Good........................day!
Thanks Rich! I'll be back tomorrow with more thoughts on the market.
Monday, March 2, 2009
There are plenty of opportunities in bonds. If you're looking for better yields on your cash, forget CD's and money markets, go for bonds. Bonds are the new stocks! Forget gold. Didn't you learn anything from 1999? Buy low, sell high. Stocks and bonds are selling at a discount, gold is not. OK, class dismissed...see you tomorrow!