The Dow Jones Industrial Stock Index started the week on Monday, January 26 standing at 17,672.6, where it had closed the previous Friday after a 141.38 sell-off. Monday morning it lost another 100 points, but by the end of the day it had recovered and was up 6.1 points. On Tuesday, the Dow Jones Index lost 291.49 points. On Wednesday the index lost another 195.84 points. Thursday seemed brighter, with the index moving up 225.48. Alas, the Dow Jones Industrials fell 251.9 points on Friday, to end the week at 17,164.95, a loss of 513.75 for the week, and a loss of over 650 points if you add in the previous Friday.
To put these numbers into perspective, the Dow would have to rise an average of 27 points per week to gain an 8% return for the whole year, close to its historical average return. The last six trading days wiped out nearly a half-year of average gains.
There are many explanations. Oil prices, Fed statements, European currency moves, elections in Greece, violence in the Ukraine, etc, etc. But these are not satisfying to the average Sally and Joe. They just want to get off the roller coaster, and find a safe place for their retirement savings. They would just like to earn a little more than inflation, to improve their life in retirement. more >>
The overarching theme of President Barack Obama's Tuesday State of the Union Address was that his first six years as president have been a success. Do his claims match reality?
The White House intentionally asked that the address take place on January 20 so it would mark the six-year anniversary of his first State of the Union. Obama then began the speech with a remark that recalled that address. more >>
The Department of Labor announced that 252,000 new jobs were added to the U.S. economy in December. The Obama administration is trying to pander to voters by touting a recent decline in government unemployment figures, but the official unemployment figure is dishonest because it excludes from the count the million unemployed Americans who have given up looking for a job. You don't count as "unemployed" unless you are actively looking for a job.
Prospects are especially dismal for those who have been out of work for a half-year or more. A shocking 31.9 percent of the unemployed, about 2.8 million, have been out of work for 27 or more weeks, and that figure remained virtually unchanged last month despite rosy claims by the Obama administration.
You would never know that by listening to spokesmen for the Obama administration. Obama's administration claims that unemployment has fallen to 5.6 percent. In fact, the more accurate U-6 unemployment rate was twice as high, 11.2 percent for December. more >>
President Obama came to Knoxville, Tenn., last week to give away $60 billion more in taxpayer money. He said he wants to give most everyone free community college. What a guy! There is nothing more magnanimous than giving away other people's borrowed money to political supporters.
Obama was elected with the support of college kids, the unemployed and union members, the same cohorts who elected Budweiser "The King of Beers," and for the same reason. Obama and Bud both provide a temporary, drunken, feel-good shield from reality – until you sober up, and the tab comes due.
In a Pew study, 57 percent of parents say higher education no longer provides value for the money spent. Parents have to start considering outrageous college costs within the framework of the basic tenets of economics. That way, their kids do not become tenants in their parents' basements. more >>
WASHINGTON — Texas Sen. Ted Cruz laid out 10 issues with policies and structure of the federal government that the newly-elected Republican Congress should fight hard to change in a keynote speech at the Heritage Action for America Conservative Policy Summit on Monday,
Although many of the ideas that Cruz, a prospective 2016 Republican presidential candidate, laid out would likely be vetoed by Democratic President Barack Obama, Cruz was adamant that the 12 freshman Republicans in the Senate could have a "transformable effect" and make significant headway for when Obama leaves office. But as Cruz admits, that would require them actually acting on what they said they would do while campaining for election.
1. Create Jobs, Growth and Opportunity more >>
Saving money/paying off debt typically vies for one of the top three resolutions Americans make for each New Year. The beginning of another year offers a fresh start to achieve our goals, to focus on important milestones we need to reach and a renewed supply of optimism; but not for all.
A recent survey by CreditCard.com found that about one in five Americans don't believe they will ever get out of debt, a conviction that casts a tone of gloom amidst the celebrations and exuberance expressed by those ringing in the year with renewed hope.
But the real story in that survey is that four out of five Americans do believe they can be free – and for some timeless advice for a problem impacting most of us, the Bible offers clear help. more >>