A recent study by the U.S. Government Accountability Office indicated that "some 155,000 older Americans are now seeing deductions from their Social Security checks to pay off their federal student loans - up from 31,000 a decade ago."
The wealthy continue to see significant income and wealth gains while the majority of people are experiencing stagnant living standards. Income inequality is one of the most significant financial stories right now, and there's no end in sight.
The growth of the American and global economies are the underlying drivers for most all equity investments. A clear discipline, dogged research, and dispassionate assessment are an investor's best friends.
That so many of our friends and neighbors face such profound financial insecurity after five years of supposed economic recovery tells me we have a lot of work to do if we're serious about America being the "land of opportunity."
This is not to argue against minimum wage increases as much as to argue that this remedy must not be substituted for reforms at deeper levels.
The value of a country's currency is basically dependent upon the country's integrity and having the assets necessary to pay its debt and back up its currency. This was a real problem for early Americans prior to, and for several years following, the Revolutionary War.
Any TV news organization would rather cover a train wreck than an on-time arrival at the station. But CNBC's constant denigration of the equity market begs a question: why on earth would the cable network do their level best day in and day out to scare viewers out of the markets that they covers?
The jobs report on Friday showed the economy created 248,000 jobs in September and the unemployment rate fell below 6.0 percent for the first time since the early days of the recession. This is good news for workers. While we are still far from anything resembling full employment, it is getting easier for people to find jobs.
ECB President Mario Draghi has been highly effective with his words alone -- moving markets with speeches and little action. However, by doing so he has also set the bar high and expectations for action are becoming the norm.
Today's generally solid report shows that employers are back on track after a dip in August. Nevertheless, the economy has substantial room for further expansion, allowing the Federal Reserve to keep interest rates low to spur higher employment without igniting unacceptable inflation.
Remember, markets go down from time to time, and it's normal. Cool heads and steady hands make money over time.
Glaringly absent in the Fed's policy platform is a commitment to a fair architecture for capitalism that equitably distributes the fruits of enterprise by providing incentives for ethically pricing each person's contributions to the sustainable public good.
The Bernanke and Yellen Feds have built a $2.7 monetary time bomb that should not be allowed to explode rapidly. The Fed should sell longer-term Treasury bonds to the public as the Fed reduces the interest they pay on the $2.7 monetary trillion time bomb.
We have the central bank of the US acting deliberately to keep workers from getting pay increases. They justify their actions over concerns about inflation, but we need not take these seriously. Who knows what they believe, but the real-world risk of a dangerous inflationary spiral ranks alongside the risk of attacks by Martians.
Even though the Fed is moving to reduce its purchase of bonds, it indicates it will keep interest rates at near zero indefinitely. Fed Chairman Janet Yellen is clearly more concerned about slow growth and modest labor market gains than about inflation or increased financial instability.
The word "speculator" has often been conflated with "entrepreneur," and both of them tarred with the brush of "con men."