Big Vote in Europe

Brexit

The big question in Europe this year is how the British people will vote on June 23.  Will they vote to leave the European Union (what’s being called the “Brexit”) or decide to continue to be part of the 28-nation economic alliance?

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Name Timelines

Names

We all know that baby names go in and out of fashion.  But recently, the website fivethirtyeight.com looked at Social Security Administration records going back to the 1880s, to determine the median age of people with different first names.

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Money From Heaven

Money from heaven

A term you’re likely to be hearing more of in economic reports is “helicopter money,” which might replace “QE” in our lexicon of Central Bank policy terms.

What is it?  “Helicopter Money” basically means dropping money out of the sky; the term is shorthand for a government printing money as a way to stimulate the economy, pay down government debt, create inflation as a protection against a threat of deflation—or all three.

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(Astronomical) Cost of Living

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The rule of thumb in financial planning circles is that you shouldn’t spend more than 25% of your income on housing costs.  But if you live in certain cities, it might be a tad difficult to follow that rule.  Pity New Yorkers, whose rent costs 63.1% of their income.  And New York is cheap compared with other locations.

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Under Water in the Caribbean

Puerto Rico

By all accounts, Puerto Rico is a beautiful, sunny place to visit, especially in the Winter. But it’s hard to fathom how this U.S. island territory of 3.5 million people could have racked up $70 billion in public debt—roughly $20,000 per citizen, which happens to be almost exactly the population’s average yearly income. Now that Puerto Rican bonds are trading at 20-50 cents on the dollar, a lot of people are starting to wonder what happened.

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An Independent Fiduciary

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