Business Content- Page 17
Very Good News
Finally some good economic news:
The U.S. economy grew in the third quarter for the first time in a year, beating
market expectations, as consumer spending and new home-building rebounded,
signaling the end of the worst recession in 70 years.Permalink
Google News Search
Google is a great tool and there's alot of fun things people can learn from doing simple searches. For example, have you ever wanted to know how many News Stories go out with some misspelling? You'll be surprise. Check out these two Google links for fun.
These are links to a Google News search for two common misspelled words and displays all the news stories in the past 24 hours with the misspelling.
- Received - Remember its "i" before e except after c.
- teh - Some people type in the word "the" too quickly. Microsoft Word has a functionality to fix this common mistake.
Cash for Clunkers
CNN reported the following headline this morning:
If you were one of the nearly 700,000 people who were able to cash in on the Cash for Clunkers program, congratulations, you probably got a good deal. On the other hand, if you bought without a clunker in the last month you've overpaid.
Ok, so there were 700,000 people that got cash for there clunker, and there was $3 billion budget. Simple math shows that the average payout per car owner was $4,285.71. This suggests that a lot of consumers qualified for the higher payout. I am a little surprise by this since I thought that the formula was set up to the lower payout option.
There are currently 304,059,724 people living in the United States today. This means that roughly 4% of the population got the benefit of using cash for clunkers.
Garage Parking Lines
At the MGH West Parc Office Building Garage in Waltham Massachusetts they did something very creative. To help people park center of their space, they extended the lines to the walls.
What a creative idea! The garage was a little challenging to drive around, but once I found a parking spot, I was able to easily center the car between the lines.
This simple idea probably have prevented many accidental dents when opening the car door because of not centering the car to the parking space.
Fuel Economy Website
Here's the official website to check to see if your car qualifies for the Cash for Clunker program. Remember the car has to have a combined fuel
economy of 18 mpg or less according to current EPA ratings.
Gas Mileage, safety, air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions for new and used cars and trucks.
Improve the MPG of your vehicle with our gas mileage tips
Seeking Alpha reports:
Obama adviser Laura Tyson wants lawmakers to draft a second stimulus package, calling the $787B
package approved in February 'a bit too small,' though she says she's speaking
for herself and not the White House.
How could $787 Billion not stimulate the economy? Where did all that money go? Who is getting it and why isn't it trickling through the economy?You can read all about the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and find out yourself on why the money hasn't stimulated the economy.
Citigroup Rate Increase
The Financial Times Reported yesterday the following news about CitiBank:
Citigroup has sharply increased interest rates on up to 15m US credit card accounts just months before curbs on such rises come into effect, in a move that could fuel political anger at the treatment of consumers by bailed-out banks.
People close to the situation said that Citi, which is about to cede a 34 per cent stake to the US government as part of its latest rescue, had upped rates on between 13m and 15m credit cards it co-brands with retailers such as Sears.
If you carry a Citibank credit card, make sure to watch your statements! If you are one of the 13 million that got a rate increase, you should check into moving your balance to another credit card company for lower rates.
Doing this could save you $100s a year in interest costs.
Send Mail with a Gift Card
Yesterday I need send a couple of greeting cards. For one of the cards, I need to get a Starbucks gift card, so at lunch time I went to Starbucks and the Post Office in Lexington, Massachusetts.
The Starbucks in Lexington, MA wasn't that crowded at lunch time. I was able to get right to the counter when I walked in and get the gift card with no problems. Pretty simple task.
The Post Office trip was a little strange:
When I went to the post office to drop off the cards, I decided to get some The Simpson stamps. Very cool idea to have The Simpsons as postage stamps!
I gave the clerk the two greeting cards to be mailed, which both had the 'Forever' stamp. She took the one that had a gift card in it and started to bend it.
"This one won't make it through our machines," she said. "It will have to go through Parcel Post."
"Ah, ok." was my reply.
"Its going to cost an extra .60 to mail this letter," she said.
I was a little surprise at that. It cost .60 more to mail an envelope with a gift card in it? Just because it can't fit through a sorting machine? That seems very weird. Instead of arguing, I took some stamps that I had with me and use that to increase the postage.
I'll have to test this out to see if this is really true. Is the Post Office charging more money to send gift cards when you hand it to the clerk?
I have a feeling that it would have gotten to the final destination just fine had I just put it in the mail slot.
Great Credit Card Battle
Robert Reich has it right with the next big finance battle, its going to be with the Credit Card companies.
What's happening to credit card lending is a smaller replay of what happened to mortgage lending. For years, banks used every gimmick possible to get the public to use their cards -- regardless of the credit worthiness of the customer.
Read his Blog titled, The Great Credit Card Battle To Come and see if you agree that some changes will have to occur to the Credit Card companies to end some of the big banks taking advantage of their customers.
Apple Inc. reports fiscal second-quarter earnings Wednesday after the closing bell today. Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters expect Apple to earn $1.08 per share on $7.9 billion in sales. In 1999, Steve Jobs said the the second-quarter was the toughest quarter for the company.
I project that Apple will beat the projected earnings and lower third quarter earnings due to the tight computer market. Sales of iPod and iPhones have certainly help Apple over the past years. This will be a key call to listen to see how they view the current market situation and probably an update on Steve Jobs.
There's a lot of speculation among Apple users that a new product will be announce soon. Some people think that Apple is working on a product that would just bigger than iPhone and smaller than a laptop. Will this be the return of the Apple Newton?