Eric Reed is a freelance journalist who specializes in economics, policy and global issues, with substantial coverage of finance and personal finance. He has contributed to outlets including The Street, CNBC, Glassdoor and Consumer Reports. Eric’s work focuses on the human impact of abstract issues, emphasizing analytical journalism that helps readers more fully understand their world and their money. He has reported from more than a dozen countries, with datelines that include Sao Paolo, Brazil; Phnom Penh, Cambodia; and Athens, Greece. A former attorney, before becoming a journalist Eric worked in securities litigation and white collar criminal defense with a pro bono specialty in human trafficking issues. He graduated from the University of Michigan Law School and can be found any given Saturday in the fall cheering on his Wolverines.
The value or price of gold has risen since mid-March 2020, reflecting worries across the financial world about how much purchasing power major paper currencies hold. In light of the deep recession caused by the coronavirus pandemic, the world’s most powerful central banks have responded in two ways: with a combination of quantitative easing – essentially money printing – and lowering interest rates (to sometimes even negative rates). The combination of these two monetary actions could possibly lead to inflation. As a result, many people seek gold as a more reliable store of value than normally stable paper currencies. Read more
The federal poverty level is a key consideration in assessing anyone’s eligibility to receive government benefits. Your access to many state and federal safety net programs is often based on where you or your household falls on the federal poverty guidelines. For example, premiums on the federal health insurance exchange are defined against this metric, as are many forms of tax relief. Read more
The Trump administration has decided to allow defined contribution plans, like 401(k) plans, to make private equity investments. Such investments will not be available as standalone options. Instead they will be bundled with other investments in, for example, target-date funds. This is a change from the traditional rules of a tax-advantaged defined contribution retirement plans, which have been limited to publicly available investments like market-listed securities. Here’s what you need to know about the change’s potential and pitfalls. And if you want help deciding whether private equity belongs in your 401(k), consider talking to a trusted financial advisor. Read more
8/25 Update: On August 8, President Trump signed an executive measure authorizing extra federal unemployment assistance to resume. Specifically, it calls for $300 in weekly federal assistance and … Read more
At time of writing the United States owed $19.3 trillion in public debt. It owed another $5.9 trillion in debt held by its own agencies. Together, these figures come to a national debt of $25.2… Read more
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