Madoff’s Ponzi Scheme victims to be rewarded US$405 million
Jun26

Madoff’s Ponzi Scheme victims to be rewarded US$405 million

  The victims of Bernard Madoff’s infamous Ponzi Scheme are now set to receive US$405 million in a recent settlement. Clients of hedge fund manager J. Ezra Merkin will be rewarded $405 million, while New York state will receive $5 million to cover the costs of of the litigation process. Merkin had hundreds of investors in his firm. He managed over $4 billion in assets. Some from private investors, some from charitable...

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Is short selling evil?
Jun25

Is short selling evil?

  I’ve both witnessed and participated in debates on whether or not short selling stocks is wrong or harmful to companies or market participants. Short selling is essentially betting that the price of a commodity, stock, bond, or currency will go down in the future. It works through borrowing the stock from a broker, buying it back at a lower price, and keeping the difference. According to Investopedia.com ‘Short...

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US household wealth falls
Jun25

US household wealth falls

      The average American household has seen their wealth decline by thirty five percent between 2005 and 2010. The (American) Census Bureau’s points to falling real estate prices and stock market indices as main causes of this decline. The median has fallen from $102,844 in 2005 to $66,740 in 2010. The house net worth is calculated by the value of assets minus the debt. [1] “2010?” you say. I know...

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Asia now has the most millionaires
Jun22

Asia now has the most millionaires

Capgemini and RBC Wealth Management report that there are now 11 million millionaires in the world . That seems like a lot, I think. But, I can’t really picture what 11 million people look like. I’d then have to imagine those 11 million among the  7,021,480,637 humans in the world. [1]  That gives us around 0.16 percent. So, you take a hundred people that represent the world population, and stare at one guys shins. Those...

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Disappearance of cheap labor in China
Jun21

Disappearance of cheap labor in China

As China’s standard of living rises, so does it’s average wages.  The rising costs of manufacturing means that it is no longer an obvious placebo set up shop if looking for cheap labour. Over the next two years minimum wages are expected to increase an average of thirteen percent annually. [1] This is added to the dramatic increases in wages that have already taken place since 2001 when China became a member of the World...

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Japan’s aging population
Jun19

Japan’s aging population

Based on current trends, 40% of Japan’s population will be aged 65 or older by the year 2060. As of last October the senior population stood at 23.3%, numbering 29,750,000. [1] So, more grandparents, less kids. What’s the problem? More gifts and love from the elderly. More cookies, more candy, home cooking, and storytelling. Who wouldn’t want that? Well, a large senior population puts strain on the health and social...

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The cost of raising a child
Jun18

The cost of raising a child

How much do you really want a kids? Very much you say? $234,900 US for clothes, shelter and other necessities please! Relax, you have seventeen years! If you want to send them to college,  make that $295,560 inflation adjusted dollars. [1] A report by the US government predicts that middle class families  will spend on $234,900 in the first seventeen years of a fairly new (2011) kid’s life. If you didn’t know that kids...

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Change in Cuba?
Jun14

Change in Cuba?

The statistics office in Cuba said the average monthly salary of Cubans has seen a rise between 2006 and 2011 from $16USD reaching $19 USD.  The average low salaries in the country are a major bone of contention for Cubans. In Cuba’s one party Communist system, the government controls over 90% of the economy, keeping salaries low, and keeping salary ranges slim. In the current system, “A street sweeper might make US$17 and a brain...

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Can the BlackBerry be the CrackBerry again?
Jun12

Can the BlackBerry be the CrackBerry again?

    The BlackBerry became known as the Crackberry, because of its owners’ inability to put it down. It was launched in 1999. With this product, RIM (Research In Motion) started the trend of having a phone permanently attached to your hand, with your neck and back arched over an enchanted screen. Enter, the smartphone age! I graduated the year after the launch. My good friend would lock into the screen and be lost to the...

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China’s luxury product demand rising
Jun11

China’s luxury product demand rising

Tired of hearing about the rising economic power of the Chinese? Well I’ll tell you who isn’t, Chinese people. And who wouldn’t. Who doen’t want to hear that their team is rising and getting more powerful? Well here’s some more. A recent Paris, AFP post reports that Chinese consumers will be the leading buyers of luxury brands by the year 2015. Sound a bit vague? Maybe just to me. To be a bit. More...

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