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Economy

Barack Obama’s 2009 Economic Stimulus Plan

by Luke Landes

Updated March 20, 2009: The stimulus plan has become a law, and we’ve rounded up the many ways you can benefit. President-Elect Barack Obama pitched his economic stimulus proposal to Congress earlier this week. Here are the main points. The total cost is $775 billion over two years. Tax cuts and breaks will account for ... Continue reading this article…

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Barack Obama is Increasing Your Paycheck

by Luke Landes

The company has spent the past few months managing expectations. With the economy tanking and our company’s performance following the trend of all other companies in the industry, there won’t be much in the way of annual raises and bonuses this year. (We receive these incentives a few months after the end of the year ... Continue reading this article…

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Government Extends Loans to Detroit Automakers

by Luke Landes

This is today’s big news, and you’ve probbably heard about it already. This morning, President Bush approved three-year loan to GM and Chrysler which would give these companies $13.4 billion now and $4 billion in February. There are strings attached. Although the loans have terms of three years, the government will require the companies to ... Continue reading this article…

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The Federal Reserve Cut is Irrelevant

by Luke Landes

The Federal Reserve is expected to drop the federal funds rate to 0.5 percent today, the lowest it has ever been. When the Fed drops rates, its intent is to increase lending between banks. This drop, however, will likely have no effect on the bank’s lending practices. This rate is just a target, and it doesn’t ... Continue reading this article…

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The Mythical Demise of Social Security

by Luke Landes

About the author: This guest post comes to you from Mr. ToughMoneyLove, a baby boomer who dishes the hard truth about money and personal finance at his Tough Money Love blog. I cannot count the number of times I have seen or heard statements proclaiming with great certainty that Social Security will “disappear” or that ... Continue reading this article…

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President-Elect Obama’s Approach to the Economy

by Luke Landes

CNN Money is presenting an in-depth feature explaining where President-elect Obama stands on a variety of economic issues. Here are some highlights: Temporarily eliminate taxes on unemployment benefits. Tax oil profits and use the money to help fund $1,000 rebate checks for consumers hit by high energy costs. Tax carried interest as ordinary income rather ... Continue reading this article…

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There is Almost No Excuse: Vote Today

by Luke Landes

If you do anything else today (and you live in the United States), make sure you find your polling location and vote. While the outcome of today’s presidential election may seem like a foregone conclusion, keep in mind that there are many other important issues and races that are in need of your vote. I ... Continue reading this article…

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Fed Cuts Two Rates: Federal Funds Target Rate and Discount Rate

by Luke Landes

The Federal Reserve Board responded to the economy yesterday by lowering the target for the federal funds rate to 1 percent and the discount rate to 1.25 percent. The first number is the rate usually in the news. The federal funds rate is the interest rate that banks charge to lend their balances to one another. If ... Continue reading this article…

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Economy in Shambles, Times are Tough: Oh Really?

by Luke Landes

Yesterday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 514 points, making October 22 yet another day among the top ten worst days on Wall Street. But it’s the credit crunch that we’re feeling on Main Street. Until the banks start lending to each other again, it’s difficult for small businesses and individuals to find loans necessary ... Continue reading this article…

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Ben Bernanke Agrees With Congress: Second Economic Stimulus Package Would Help

by Luke Landes

Back in June, Senator Barack Obama called for a second economic stimulus package. The idea has been tossed around Congress, but a stimulus package in which the government sends checks directly to taxpayers has not passed yet. Even following the bailout of the financial industry, the government is not yet satisfied with the economy. Today ... Continue reading this article…

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John McCain’s Proposal to Ease the Economic Crisis

by Luke Landes

Following Barack Obama’s proposals announced earlier, Republican candidate John McCain has outlined the steps he would take as president to help spur the economy in the United States. 1. Eliminate taxes on unemployment benefits. Like the Democratic candidate, McCain suggests eliminating taxes on unemployment insurance to make sure that those individuals out of work have ... Continue reading this article…

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Barack Obama Proposes Six Ideas to Ease the Economic Crisis

by Luke Landes

Each major presidential candidate is making his presence known and ensuring his name is constantly in the media as next month’s election approaches. Recently, Democratic candidate Barack Obama announced six action steps to help heal the economy in this country and across the world. Five of these are “new” ideas, and one was originally proposed ... Continue reading this article…

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Mostly Jargon-Free Economy Reporting

by Smithee

One of the most well-received stories about the 2008 financial meltdown is the This American Life episode titled “The Giant Pool of Money“. It’s from “way back” in May and goes into great detail without sounding like Ben Stein’s bored teacher character from “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off”. Don’t worry if you find Ira Glass off-putting; ... Continue reading this article…

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Knight Kiplinger’s Solution to the Economic Crisis (and America in General)

by Luke Landes

Knight Kiplinger is the editor in chief of Kiplinger’s Personal Finance magazine and Kiplinger.com, and in the November issue, he has published an editorial that gets to the core of what must be done to adapt to today’s economic reality. A link to the online edition of the article was sent to me by a ... Continue reading this article…

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House Rejects Bailout Bill

by Luke Landes

The stock market was hoping for good news today regarding the bailout bill. When the House of Representatives voted down the proposal which had support from only 60 percent of Democrats and 30 percent of Republicans, the Dow Jones Industrial Average, S&P 500 Index, and the price of oil dropped sharply. With pressure from the Executive branch, ... Continue reading this article…

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The $700 Bailout Bill Proposed By the Senate is Not Good Enough

by Luke Landes

In the original version of this article, I was under the impression that the Senate had passed this bill already. It hasn’t; they have only just released the details to the public. A vote will come later. Over the weekend as I watched the Mets end a frustrating season with a disappointing final series, the ... Continue reading this article…

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FBI Investigating Lehman Brothers, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and AIG

by Luke Landes

Thanks to Matt from Web Developer Guru who just a few minutes ago wrote in to let me know about this latest development. The FBI is investigating the financial firms primarily involved with the recent economic collapse, Lehman Brothers, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and American International Group (AIG), and those who have been running these ... Continue reading this article…

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Mark Cuban to Government: Show Us How the $700 Billion Will Be Spent

by Luke Landes

I swear I’m trying to write about topics other than the massive national bailout of the financial industry, but there always seems to be something interesting to say. Yesterday, it was Mark Cuban, owner of the Dallas Mavericks and chairman of HDNet who offered interesting insight. He suggested that the United States Treasury Department list ... Continue reading this article…

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$700 Billion to Bail Out the Financial Industry: Good Idea or Bad Idea?

by Luke Landes

Over the weekend, President Bush asked Congress to grant the United States Treasury Department the authority to purchase $700 billion in assets from troubled financial companies. The government would create a corporation, like 1933′s Home Owners’ Loan Corporation, to buy mortgage-backed securities at a discount and sell them later for a profit. This is by ... Continue reading this article…

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Bank of America Will Buy Merrill Lynch, Lehman Brothers Declares Bankruptcy, What’s Left for Washington Mutual?

by Luke Landes

Going into the weekend, it looked like Bank of America was poised to save the failing Lehman Brothers. In an interesting dramatic twist, Lehman Brothers will file for bankruptcy while Bank of America will buy Merrill Lynch for $50 billion in stock. After the deal, Bank of America will be managing assets of $2.5 trillion. ... Continue reading this article…

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