Economy and Trends

How Secure is Your Public Pension Fund

If you are an employee and have your retirement savings tied up in one of the public pension funds, you should stay active and be abreast of how your fund is performing. A percentage of your income is taken each payday and put into an investment fund that will purportedly provide you income when you can no longer work or ...

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Consumer Confidence Is High, But That Isn’t The Concern

Since the market started experiencing the major swings back in late January, the biggest question that seems to be on everyone’s mind is whether this is the start of the next bearish phase or not. After watching the market go straight up in 2017, all of the sudden investors are concerned. But I don’t think we need to be worried, ...

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American Consumers Gain Confidence in the Economy

Getting a boost from this year’s tax cut, the weekly consumer comfort index and bi-monthly consumer sentiment index have been hitting expansion highs as has the monthly consumer confidence index, according to today’s release by the Conference Board. If he hasn’t done so already, this is a Tweetable moment for President Trump. In what may be the most significant development, ...

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The Fed is Disconcerting to the Banking Industry Right Now

The Dodd-Frank Act is being scrutinized currently by banks, both large and small, as well as investors in the banking and finance sectors. Dodd-Frank Act stress testing (DFAST) is a forward-looking component conducted by the Federal Reserve and financial companies supervised by the Federal Reserve to help assess whether institutions have sufficient capital to absorb losses and support operations during ...

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Trump Tweets that OPEC is at it again

The latest topic of tweets coming from President Trump are in regard to oil prices.  West Texas crude closed at $68.40 Friday, continuing is strong run from the low $40’s in June. Gas prices in Washington and elsewhere in the country have topped $3.00 per gallon, a psychologically important point. With summer approaching, prices traditionally are likely to rise further. ...

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Manufacturing Jobs Hit 3 Year High

“The job market is rip-roaring,” says Mark Zandi, Moody’s Analytics’ chief economist. The economic report released by ADP and Moody’s Analytics on April 4, 2018, beat analyst expectations for manufacturing job growth for the month of March.  Private sector payrolls were anticipated to increase by 205,000, but rose a whopping 241,000, the largest single month increase in 3 years. In ...

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Why the U.S. Economy Will Stay Strong

Fear and extreme volatility have swung into the marketplace of late. President Trump is at the crux of several major issues, including tariffs and political drama in Washington.  However, if consumer sentiment is any indicator, short-term financial growth will remain strong in the short term, as shown in the latest University of Michigan economic survey: A couple of things to ...

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Precision Agriculture

A Google search of “Precision Agriculture” yields over 13 million results and will lead the searcher down a never-ending path of related sub-topics, each replete with dedicated websites, publications, organizations and conferences. So what, precisely, is ‘Precision Agriculture’?  Very simply, precision agriculture is an unfortunately imprecise term that is applied to the myriad applications of technology in the agriculture industry.  ...

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Despite Wage Pressure, Inflation Stays in Check

When world equity markets got spooked at the end of January and beginning of February, it was inflation concerns that seemed to start the selling and caused a big spike in volatility. We saw the longest stretch without a five percent correction come to a halt and February ended up being the second down month for the indices in the ...

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