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Showing posts from December, 2012

The Virtual Wallet

For the big holiday spenders and yuletide ballers know the importance of the that trusty 'ole credit card. This time next year, life may be a bit easier thanks to new payments technologies. 

Introducing the rise of the mobile wallet: software and applications capable of securely storing credit card information and make purchasing from the phone a bit easier. 

Last year some $6.7 trillion was channeled through credit cards according to the Nilson Report, an industry newsletter. Throw in debit and prepaid cards and the number exceeds $15 trillion (see chart). 

This explains why start-ups want in on the industry. Hardware firms like Square and iZettle, which develop tiny card readers that hook onto smartphones, allow small businesses to swipe cards quickly and cheaply. Software companies like Visa's and M-Pesa, make purchases possible from any technological device. 
The start-ups and financial technology companies would place a dent in the cards giants' earnings; however, th…

3 Things Everyone Needs To Know About The Economy

1. Your Choice Counts. This thing we call the economy is simply layers of decisions driven by choices. Your choice, as a consumer, determines what producers will make and sell. If there is a good or service that no one wants, demand for that service goes down leading to a decrease in its supply. The market will arrange for the production of goods that society wants, in the quantity society wants.

2. It's Not Just $$$. It's not that money isn't important, but it isn't everything. Money is purchasing power. At it's core, it is a medium of exchange and a weighing scale for determining something's value. Investing and spending money begins with confidence. Yes, confidence. Monetary exchange begins with the faith of the money's owner that their investment will bring them a satisfactory return. Yet, who can quantify confidence? How can anyone measure satisfaction? Sentiment- mental attitude and judgement- is a major determinant of the economy's health. We inve…

The Fiscal Cliff

The Bush tax cuts are a set of temporary tax relief measures enacted by President George W. Bush in 2001 and 2003. The tax cuts included lowering federal income tax rates for everyone, lowering capital gains taxes, eliminating the phaseout on personal exemptions for higher-income taxpayers and eliminating the estate tax, among a few other cuts.

Faced with an ailing economy, President Barack Obama extended those tax cuts for temporary economic relief. The expiration date for those tax cuts is a looming 26 days away (December 31, 2012). If Congress fails to act, it means higher taxes for you and I in 2013 and an increase in unemployment. On average, most families will pay $1,600 more in taxes. 

Washington has yet to find a solution. Democrats demand tax increases for those making over $250,000 a year. Republicans say the disaster can be avoided by closing tax loopholes.

If Congress does not come to an agreement by Dec. 31, we reach the fiscal cliff. On Jan. 1, for example, defense spending…

Wealth Defined

Wealth comes from the English word "weal" which is the state of being "well off," or having ones wants supplied. This includes health, happiness, and the abundance of good things. Wealth, as defined today, is the things that make a man/woman rich.

What makes wealth? Anything that makes the possessor better off than they would be without it. The substance of the form is wealth. For example, air, which is abundant to everyone everywhere in unlimited quantity, does not make anyone rich because there is equal supply for everyone. But if you and I were in the desert, parched and near dying, and you possessed a full canteen of water, you are the wealthier of the two of us. That's because your water supply is high in importance, enriches your life (hopefully you'll share it), and makes you better off than you would be without it.

In conclusion, wealth is not just money, but any valued asset that can be leveraged and adds worth to its possessor. That means your cre…