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Eric Reed

Retirement and Investing Expert

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.

Posts by Eric Reed:

by Eric Reed Aug 25, 2020

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

by Eric Reed Apr 20, 2022

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

by Eric Reed Aug 14, 2020

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

by Eric Reed Aug 12, 2020

Geographic arbitrage is a term coined by the FIRE movement (Financial Independence, Retire Early). FIRE advocates combine investments and a typically high-paying job to achieve the dream of retiring… Read more

by Eric Reed Jul 29, 2020

A publicly traded company is required by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to disclose substantial information about its governance, business model and finances. This information allows… Read more

by Eric Reed Jul 29, 2020

A quick ratio tests a company’s current liquidity and solvency. It is a measure of whether the company can pay its short-term obligations with its cash or cash-like assets on hand. (Short term… Read more

by Eric Reed Jul 29, 2020

The Misery Index, otherwise known as the Economic Discomfort Index, is used to measure overall hardship in an economy. It is a back-of-envelope calculation that putatively indicates how the average… Read more

by Eric Reed Jul 28, 2020

Growth stocks are sometimes seen as the holy grail of investing. Many investors hope to find them; many traders promise to know them already. Finding a growth stock can help your portfolio gain years… Read more

by Eric Reed Jul 22, 2020

Your credit score is a numerical representation of how responsible you are with your finances and, by extension, how trustworthy you are as a borrower. So if your credit score has fallen, whether… Read more

by Eric Reed Jul 17, 2020

With millions of Americans depending on 401(k) and IRA assets for their retirement income, a market downturn can wipe out decades of investment in a single go. And while young workers at least have… Read more

by Eric Reed Aug 25, 2020

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

by Eric Reed Jul 13, 2020

Portfolio risk is one of the most essential challenges for any investor. More ambitious portfolios can generate greater rewards, creating more wealth in a single year than cautious portfolios can… Read more

by Eric Reed Jul 13, 2020

Discounted cash flow, or DCF, is a tool for analyzing financial investments based on their likely future cash flow. When an investment will cost more money to buy, generate less money in return, or… Read more

by Eric Reed Jul 08, 2020

They say that hindsight is 20/20. There’s also an old joke that economists have predicted nine of the last five recessions. These two sayings encapsulate, respectively, the concepts of “lagging” and … Read more

by Eric Reed Jun 30, 2020

A tax cliff happens when a small increase to your income triggers an increase in your tax bill. Personal income taxes increase gradually as a proportion of income; even if your income increases to… Read more

by Eric Reed Jun 23, 2020

A PEG ratio is a tool used in fundamental stock analysis by investors to assess a share’s value. It measures a stock’s price-to-earnings ratio against the anticipated earnings growth for the… Read more

by Eric Reed Jun 23, 2020

The phrase “buying to cover” describes the final step in an investment tactic, known as short selling, that seeks to profit from a bearish market. Investors who believe a security or index is going… Read more

by Eric Reed Jun 18, 2020

Unemployment is a messy statistic. Every month the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics publishes its civilian unemployment rate or what is more commonly referred to as simply “the unemployment rate.”… Read more

by Eric Reed Jun 10, 2020

Times of economic uncertainty and market instability tend to affect the housing market, frequently including drops in average home prices. Yet for all the economic and financial convulsions of the… Read more

by Eric Reed May 27, 2020

Despite a recent bounce-back, stock prices have fallen sharply since the coronavirus first emerged. For some investors this may not prove much of a problem. Historically stocks have rebounded… Read more

by Eric Reed Jun 09, 2020

By some estimates, nearly one in four Americans is out of work. A steady stream of bankruptcies has begun, both out loud and quietly, and many businesses have shuttered for good. The full extent of… Read more

by Eric Reed May 20, 2020

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

by Eric Reed Sep 25, 2022

When the stock market is plunging, or at least stagnant, it may make sense to move your assets out of equity markets and put them into bonds or even cash. These don’t offer much in the way of growth,… Read more

by Eric Reed May 12, 2020

The $2.1 trillion CARES Act, which Congress passed in response to the coronavirus pandemic, includes a ban on corporate stock buybacks. Specifically, the law prohibits large corporations that receive… Read more

by Eric Reed Jun 10, 2020

The coronavirus pandemic has hammered the U.S. economy and Americans’ incomes. The National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) said on June 8 that in February 2020 the economy fell into recession,… Read more