Opportunity

By John Lumbard. It’s springtime, and investor doubts and fears are in full bloom.  Profit margins are too high, unemployment is too high, the Fed is printing too much money, China’s growth is slowing, Europe is never, ever going to get out of its funk, and we don’t have high speed...
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On Medical Insurance and Personal Responsibility

By James Schaefer. Paying routine medical bills out of pocket, as our parents and grandparents did before us, is part of life. It is no different from our obligations to put food on the table, to pay the rent or mortgage, to work, and to be productive, law-abiding citizens. Insurance protects against risk, and...
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It’s Time for a Diet

By James Schaefer. In "Blotting the Balance Sheet", (Wall Street Journal, April 26-27, 2014), James Grant reviews the book, The Reckoning, by Jacob Soll. In it, Soll highlights the fall of successful societies, and points some of the finger of blame at accounting, and the behaviors that follow. And he lays  blame equally...
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Health Insurance Is Not Health Care

By John Lumbard, CFA. In late December movie mogul Michael Moore, writing in the NY Times, described Obamacare as “awful” and said that he’d known this all along---but didn’t want to say so because it would give comfort to the President’s “enemies”.  Maybe it’s time we stopped the hyper-partisan hyperventilating, and...
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Young In America

By John Lumbard, CFA. According to The Daily Kos, 27% of recent college graduates (ages 21 to 24) are either unemployed or underemployed.  The Democratic Underground says that recent college graduates earn $3,200 less than they did 13 years ago.  Of course, it’s not just college graduates;  low starting salaries and...
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On Tax Reform

By James Schaefer. By any measure, the tax code is too complex.  It currently totals 70,000 pages and defies both comprehension and easy compliance by mere mortals.  Collectively, Americans spend $168 billion each year in compliance costs. The latest attempt to simplify the code comes from Congressman David Camp of Michigan, who has...
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Happiness

By John Lumbard. Our economy is accelerating.  Monthly employment gains have grown from 150,000 to 200,000, and the net worth of US households has hit a new high. Dirt-poor farmers and ranchers are getting rich;  we just heard of a hardscrabble North Dakota rancher whose oil royalties are now $1.2 million...
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Another British Invasion

By James Schaefer. "[If] you have to have to gripe," says Jim Ratcliffe of Great Britain, "[it is that America] has the highest corporate taxes in the world.  They're too high in my view, [at] nearly 40%.  And that's a pity because in most other parts of the world corporate tax...
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Young In America

By John Lumbard. According to The Daily Kos, 27% of recent college graduates (ages 21 to 24) are either unemployed or underemployed.  The Democratic Underground says that recent college graduates earn $3,200 less than they did 13 years ago.  Of course, it’s not just college graduates;  low starting salaries and meager...
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(Dis)Ability

By John Lumbard. Guy walks into a bar, orders a beer, and stands there drinking it while he watches a Bruins game.  Orders another beer, and stands there drinking it . . . While he’s drinking the third one, he’s asked what he does for a living . . . . “I’ve...
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