How much do you need to retire?

July 27, 2015, by John Norris

What is a good rule of thumb about retirement? How much should I have to not worry about outliving my money? There are too many rules of thumb in the investment industry. You should have this much invested in bonds, or you should be doing this, that or the other thing. Since everyone is different, there isn’t a one-size-fits-all recommendation, so I don’t pay much attention to the old saws. (Read the full article as previously...

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Banking regulations could help lead to crisis

July 22, 2015, by John Norris

The situation in Greece seems to have blown over for now, and China’s stock market has been pushed to the back burner. If these things can’t or won’t start a global financial crisis, what could or would? After the 2008 financial crisis, Washington was up in arms about the risks it perceived banks had taken, and wanted to something, anything, about it. Well-intentioned, but not necessarily financially savvy, politicians drew up a litany of new...

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Some Common Cents for July 17th 2015

July 21, 2015, by John Norris

This week, I met with several people who are very concerned, extremely even, the worst case scenario is fast upon us. By that, I mean a global economy which doesn’t accept the US dollar, or any other intrinsically worthless paper currency, as a medium of exchange. Obviously, such a world would be unpleasant, at best. At worst, it would play out like a post-apocalyptic nightmare. It doesn’t take too much imagination to go down that...

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You can’t just wish away economic realities

July 16, 2015, by John Norris

After reading last week’s column, I have to ask: why don’t you ever write on how things should be instead of how they are? Nothing will ever change for the better as long the public gets a steady drip of your pro-business nonsense. The 19th century philosopher and psychologist William James was noted for saying: “There's nothing so absurd that if you repeat it often enough, people will believe it.” Over the years, this has...

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Some Common Cents for July 10th 2015

July 12, 2015, by John Norris

Last week, as everything was hitting the proverbial fan in Greece, I read any number of articles about how Greece had forgiven the debt Germany owed it after World War II, so turnabout should be fair play. I had not known this, but the majority of articles I read on the subject didn’t really go into just how much Greece forgave and the circumstances behind the forgiveness; only that Greece had done so at something...

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More overtime eligibility may not have desired effect

July 7, 2015, by John Norris

This week, the President announced new rules dramatically increasing the number of workers eligible for overtime pay. What impact will this have on workers and businesses? Under current law, employers do not have to pay overtime to salaried employees making in excess of $23,660 per year. The proposed new changes push that number up to $50,440. If the Administration's numbers are accurate, this could impact up to 5 million US workers. (Read the full article as...

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Some Common Cents for July 2nd 2015…Happy 4th, y’all…

July 2, 2015, by John Norris

Last night, my teenaged daughter was in a snit regarding what she perceives to be the stultifying conservative climate of our comfortable suburb. In truth, she is probably the most liberal of her closest friends; scratch the probably. But how is she liberal? Well, let me give you this, and I paraphrase only a smidgeon of a smidgeon: “Our country is over $17 trillion in debt; the rich keep getting richer; the poor keep getting...

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