MEMBER SIGN IN
Not a member? Become one today!
         iBerkshires     Berkshire Chamber     MCLA     City Statistics    
Search
Home About Archives RSS Feed
The Retired Investor: The Hawks Return
By Bill Schmick,
11:47AM / Friday, December 03, 2021
On Tuesday, Nov. 30, during testimony before the U.S. Senate Banking Committee, Jerome Powell, chairman of the Federal Reserve bank, did an about face on monetary policy. Powell appeared to take on a new mantle, that of the nation's chief inflation fighter, casting aside his former dovish stance towards continued easing of monetary stimulus. Investors are asking "what changed?"   "We're now looking at an economy that's very strong and inflationary pressures that are high," Powell said. He went on to say that it might be "appropriate to wrap up our purchases a few months earlier."   Powell was referring to the planned

0 Comments
Read More >>

The Retired Investor: Thanksgiving Post-Pandemic
By Bill Schmick,
03:55PM / Thursday, November 25, 2021
Consumers are making up for last year's subdued Thanksgiving holiday. Air travel has jumped. Traffic on the roads is expected to be heavy. Grocery stores are crowded, and families are getting back together again all over the country. Hurrah!   As most readers know, last year's holiday was a bit of a dud largely because of the pandemic. Fewer people travelled. Instead, many of us decided to play it safe. Across the nation, family members decided to remain home, avoid the possibility of contagion, and postpone celebrating together until this year. That was a smart decision. In the meantime, the coronavirus cases have declined, vaccinations rates have risen, and America

0 Comments
Read More >>

The Retired Investor: The Teacher Shortage
By Bill Schmick,
11:46AM / Friday, November 19, 2021
The U.S. labor shortage is hitting the public education sector hard. Yes, COVID-19 and its mutations have had a lot to do with the lack of teachers, but the problem predates the pandemic. In just the last two months, 65,000 public education employees left the industry.   Across the United States, in October 2021, there were 575,000 fewer state and local education employees than in February 2020, according to the latest employment report of the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The pandemic, in some ways, was simply the straw that broke this camel's back.   Stagnant wages, or worse, falling wages, have beset the teaching industry for years. In 2018, for example,

1 CommentRead More >>

The Retired Investor: SALT Away?
By Bill Schmick,
01:43PM / Thursday, November 11, 2021
High-income tax states like Massachusetts, New Jersey, California, and New York would appear to be winners if President Biden's "Build Back Better" plan is finally passed by Congress. The Trump-era limit on state and local tax deductions could provide a $200 billion (or more) wind fall for wealthy Americans.   As it stands now, congressional Democrats, especially those who represent high tax states, are crafting a change in the SALT deduction cap. Presently American households can only deduct $10,000 of state and local taxes from their federal income taxes. That cap deduction is poised to end by 2026.   In a prior column, I explained that in

1 CommentRead More >>

The Retired Investor: Vicious Cycle Between Energy & Food Prices
By Bill Schmick,
05:07PM / Saturday, November 06, 2021
Rising prices at the gas pump, combined with soaring shopping bills at the supermarket, are having a noticeable impact on the consumer's pocketbook. But what's worse is that higher prices in oil beget higher prices in food in the future. Here's why.   Historical economic studies tell us that energy prices have a significant impact on food prices with 64.17 percent of changes in food prices explained by the movement of oil prices. But that only tells half the story. As energy prices climb, inputs to farm production are also impacted. Fertilizers, for example, account for between 33 percent to 44 percent of operating costs.    The production of

1 CommentRead More >>

NorthAdams.com is owned and operated by: Boxcar Media 106 Main Sreet, P.O. Box 1787 North Adams, MA 01247 -- T. 413-663-3384 F.413-663-3615
© 2008 Boxcar Media LLC - All rights reserved