Money in the (Foreign) Bank

You might have been reading worrisome comments in the financial press that corporate profits have come down from their highs, in part because unemployment is coming down and the labor markets are getting tighter.  None of this is really bad news, or particularly surprising, despite the breathless spin in the financial press and cable financial programs.

But does that mean that Corporate America will be starved for cash?  Hardly.  A recent report by The Economist notes that U.S. non-financial companies—including technology, consumer products, energy and health care firms—are collectively holding $1.73 trillion (with a “t”) in cash.  That’s more than the total gross domestic product of all but 11 countries around the world, and roughly 10% of the total gross domestic product of the American economy.

You might not see that money recycled into the American economy any time soon, however.  Moody’s Investor Services estimates that 64% of the total (roughly $1.1 trillion) is being held overseas.  The Economist reports that many companies are taking advantage of cheap borrowing costs in the U.S. to fund their business operations and expansions, meanwhile avoiding U.S. taxes on the money held abroad.  This does mean, however, that if/when interest rates rise as the economy grows and companies need to expand their operations to take advantage, there will be available cash, and the higher borrowing rates may not have a significant impact on Corporate America’s bottom line.

Sources:

http://www.economist.com/news/economic-and-financial-indicators/21651211-treasure-chests

About the Author: Bob Veres has been a commentator, author and consultant in the financial services industry for more than 20 years.  Over his 20-year career in the financial services world, Mr. Veres has worked as editor of Financial Planning magazine; as a contributing editor to the Journal of Financial Planning; as a columnist and editor-at-large of Dow Jones Investment Advisor magazine; and as editor of Morningstar’s advisor web site: MorningstarAdvisor.com.

Mr. Veres has been named one of the most influential people in the financial planning profession by Investment Advisor magazine and Financial Planning magazine, was granted the NAPFA Special Achievement Award by the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors, and most recently the Heart of Financial Planning Distinguished Service Award from the Denver-based Financial Planning Association. 

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Advice to Grow By

UnknownIn case you were looking for interesting (and possibly life-changing) bits of advice, a website called Raptitude (subhead: “Getting better at being human”) is offering 67 different ideas on better ways to live.  The list includes interesting fusions of practical and metaphysical (“Notice how much you talk in your head and experiment with listening to your surroundings instead.” “Don’t act while you’re still angry; anger makes the wrong things seem right and remorse lasts way longer than anger.”) along with the merely practical (“To eat fewer calories, eat a lot slower than normal and see what changes.”  “Consciously plan your life or others will do it for you.”  “Get rid of stuff you don’t use.  Unused and under-appreciated things make us feel bad.”  “Ledger all your income, purchases and expenses, at least for a whole month.  You can’t help but discover wasteful spending.  It’s like giving yourself a raise.”)

Some items go directly to personal development (“Watch experts perform their chosen art whenever you get a chance.  There’s something really grounding about it.”  “Experiment with meditation.  It gives you tools to mitigate nearly every thing human beings complain about—fear, boredom, loss, envy, pain, sadness, confusion and doubt—yet remains unpopular in the West.”  “Give classical music another shot every few years.”  “Imagine that this moment is the very first moment of your life and then build a future from there.”)

And a few open the doors to a new level of gracious living (“Write people letters.  Everyone loves getting letters.”  “Appeal to your friends for their expertise.  You get good advice, and they feel valued.”  “Become a stranger’s secret ally, even for a few minutes.  Your perception of strangers in general will change.”)

The website (http://www.raptitude.com/) says that it aspires to write about things that school never taught us: how to improve your quality of life in real-time.  Maybe it’s worth a try.

Source:  http://www.raptitude.com/2015/02/67-short-pieces-of-advice-you-didnt-ask-for/

About the Author: Bob Veres has been a commentator, author and consultant in the financial services industry for more than 20 years.  Over his 20-year career in the financial services world, Mr. Veres has worked as editor of Financial Planning magazine; as a contributing editor to the Journal of Financial Planning; as a columnist and editor-at-large of Dow Jones Investment Advisor magazine; and as editor of Morningstar’s advisor web site: MorningstarAdvisor.com.

Mr. Veres has been named one of the most influential people in the financial planning profession by Investment Advisor magazine and Financial Planning magazine, was granted the NAPFA Special Achievement Award by the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors, and most recently the Heart of Financial Planning Distinguished Service Award from the Denver-based Financial Planning Association. 

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Forrest’s Great Investment

forrest-gump-imax-geeks-and-cleatsIf you watched the popular Forrest Gump movie, you may have noticed that moment when the perplexed young man opened his brokerage statement and noticed that a big chunk of his shrimp operation profits had been invested in (as he said) some kind of fruit company. He had opened a brokerage statement and comically misinterpreted the iconic Apple computer logo.

The movie was released on July 6, 1994, when Apple Computer stock was trading at 93 cents a share. Recently, a commentator looked at what Mr. Gump would be worth today if he’d held onto his shares through last February, when the column was written and the stock price had climbed to $128.66 a share. The stock split 2 for 1 in June 2000 and again in February 2005, and split 7 for 1 in June 2014, so every $1,000 investment would have grown to $136,894—an increase of 13,589%. A $100,000 investment, which seems more likely (by that point in the movie, Gump had become a millionaire, with his picture on the cover of Fortune) would simply add a couple of zeros to the terminal value.

This may be the most extreme example in history of a single stock rewarding its shareholders over a long holding period. Does it make you wish you had a working time machine?

Source: http://www.quora.com/What-would-1000-of-Apple-Stock-bought-at-the-release-of-the-Forrest-Gump-film-be-worth-today

About the Author: Bob Veres has been a commentator, author and consultant in the financial services industry for more than 20 years.  Over his 20-year career in the financial services world, Mr. Veres has worked as editor of Financial Planning magazine; as a contributing editor to the Journal of Financial Planning; as a columnist and editor-at-large of Dow Jones Investment Advisor magazine; and as editor of Morningstar’s advisor web site: MorningstarAdvisor.com.

Mr. Veres has been named one of the most influential people in the financial planning profession by Investment Advisor magazine and Financial Planning magazine, was granted the NAPFA Special Achievement Award by the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors, and most recently the Heart of Financial Planning Distinguished Service Award from the Denver-based Financial Planning Association. 

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The Value of Objective Planning

images-2What is the value that people get when they work with an objective, client-focused financial planner?

Most planning firms are reluctant to toot their own horns—partly out of modesty, and partly out of a conviction that you probably have better things to do than read about how they help you with your financial life.  But every once in a while, it’s a good idea to stop and think about what you get for what you pay.

This list is organized in rough order of value, and if you feel you aren’t getting any of these benefits, please let us know immediately.

1) An independent financial planner helps protect you from financial predators.

It’s a touchy issue in the profession whether advisors who put their clients’ interests first should be “bashing the competition,” but in fact the Wall Street firms that pretend to offer financial planning guidance are seldom (if ever) looking out for the best interests of their customers.  When you work with a broker (also known, on the business card, as a “vice president of investments,”) you will be presented with separately-managed accounts that look like mutual funds except they share their fees with the brokerage firm, plus a lot of investments that have to pay people to recommend them—never a good sign for the end investor.

And since the investment markets are extremely complicated, it’s usually hard for a layperson to know when there are much better alternatives than the “opportunities” being presented.

2) An independent financial planner helps you keep track of–and make more efficient–your financial affairs.

It is not uncommon for financial planners to talk with clients who once had a will drawn up, but they’re not sure exactly when.  Now that you mention it, they’re curious about what, exactly, it says.  There’s an insurance policy in a drawer somewhere, and it may be term or it may be a cash value contract; all the client knows for sure is that he writes a check to the insurance company every year.  Upon inspection, it turns out the auto insurance policy he happens to own is way more expensive than the lowest rate available in the market, and the homeowner’s policy hasn’t been updated since the Clinton Administration.

And the investments are not uncommonly a hodgepodge of what a broker sold the client based on what he was told by his bosses to recommend at different times during the relationship.

Hopefully, this was never you.  But it does offer a certain peace of mind to know that everything is organized, in one place, and that somebody is paying attention to the details.  Because in your financial life, the details matter.

3) An independent financial planner will stand between his/her clients and the dysfunctional emotional decisions that everybody makes with their own investments.

Do you remember how it felt when Lehman Brothers went down, and the U.S. government was bailing out General Motors?  Many people sold everything at the bottom, and then waited, and waited, and waited to get back into the markets until it was “safe.”  They never dreamed that the markets would go on a six year bull run that would take us to new record highs.

The Morningstar organization has calculated the difference between investment returns and investor returns—that is, between the returns people get vs. what the markets (or individual mutual funds) have delivered.  Results?  It is not unusual, during various time periods, for individual investors to get about half the returns of the market.  How is that possible?  They may be moving the portfolio around, or buying an attractive-looking hot fund or selling a great fund that’s going through a rough patch.  They may sell out at the bottom of a scary period, or go all-in when the markets are about to take a nasty tumble.

For many of us, the best approach is to find good, solid investments and stay the course through thick and thin, ups and downs.  But it’s very hard to do those things on your own.  An independent advisor provides a dose of objectivity right when you need it.

4) An independent financial planner is a strong advocate for your future.

You know the statistics about the savings rate in America (the 2000-2008 numbers hovered around 0% of income, spiked briefly after the Great Recession and are now back in the 1% range again).  But the keepers of these statistics don’t tell you that they probably overstated the actual rate, because they didn’t include things like increasing credit card balances or home equity loans.  When people put money in their savings account, and at the same time run up more debt, it counts as an increase in their savings.

The problem for most consumers is that there is no voice in their environment advising them to pay themselves a fair percentage of the income they earn.  Instead, they’re bombarded by messages which make powerful arguments to do the opposite: to buy this, that or something else.  The entire advertising community conspires to take those dollars out of their hands before they ever hit an investment account.

Advisors become that rare voice speaking out in favor of saving.  And in some cases, they help identify expenditures that are not in line with your stated future goals.  Which leads us to:

5) An independent financial planner helps people identify what is important in their lives and prioritize their goals.

How many people do you know who have taken the time to identify what they really want out of life?

The incredibly sad truth is that the vast majority of people in our advanced, prosperous society have not taken the time to figure out what they really want out of the all-too-brief time they will spend on this planet.  And because they don’t know their destination, they will never reach it.  They are, in a very real sense, at the mercy of whatever agenda others have for them.

An independent financial planner will ask questions in your initial interview which help you recognize what you don’t know about what you want, and help you identify your most personal goals and desires.  That, alone, can be a priceless service.

6) An independent financial planner can help people turn seemingly impossible goals into a routine that can achieve them.

After years of running retirement planning spreadsheets, and working with successful individuals in the community, advisors eventually master one of the truly magical lessons of life: that any enormous goal can be broken down into manageable, monthly increments, and achieved by routine and persistence.  You save X amount of dollars every month in a portfolio that gets something close to what the market offers, and you will retire with a sum of money that seems impossible to you now.

Clients who have goals that they don’t believe they can achieve are put on a schedule that will get them there as a matter of routine.

Of course, this list doesn’t include specialized services like making retirement planning projections, charitable planning, creating special needs trusts for a disabled child, evaluating disability and long-term care insurance—and it doesn’t mention the comfortable knowledge that you can call an expert for advice on virtually any financial subject, and you’ll get an answer that is not tainted by a sales agenda.

The point is that the services offered by an independent financial planner can have enormous value to people who are motivated to enjoy successful, prosperous lives.  An independent planner’s only goal is your success and prosperity, which should not be—but is—unusual in our financial world.

About the Author: Bob Veres has been a commentator, author and consultant in the financial services industry for more than 20 years.  Over his 20-year career in the financial services world, Mr. Veres has worked as editor of Financial Planning magazine; as a contributing editor to the Journal of Financial Planning; as a columnist and editor-at-large of Dow Jones Investment Advisor magazine; and as editor of Morningstar’s advisor web site: MorningstarAdvisor.com.

Mr. Veres has been named one of the most influential people in the financial planning profession by Investment Advisor magazine and Financial Planning magazine, was granted the NAPFA Special Achievement Award by the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors, and most recently the Heart of Financial Planning Distinguished Service Award from the Denver-based Financial Planning Association. 

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Peace in Our Time

images-3What was the most peaceful era of human history?  The 200-year-long Pax Romana in the Roman Empire?  The peaceful period in Asia following the Mongol conquests?  The Ming dynasty in China?

You probably haven’t considered our present times, since we’re constantly reading about the spread of ISIS, incursions by the Taliban in Afghanistan, and what appears to be an escalating conquest of Ukraine by neighboring Russia.  Every day you read about the threat of terrorist attacks.

But evolutionary psychologist Steven Pinker, author of “The Better Angels of Our Nature,” has compiled statistics which make a compelling case that fewer people are dying as a result of violence in today’s world than at any time in history.  The wars we hear about are relatively contained—when you add up the populations of Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan and eastern Ukraine (and not every citizen in those nations is directly impacted by war), it comes to just 1.37% of the world population.  And the peaceful zones in between are much greater in this century now that we’ve given up the habit of waging world wars.

Pinker offers some interesting perspectives; for instance, deaths in warfare among certain aboriginal tribes in New Guinea and Fiji were higher than in Germany throughout two world wars.  But his definition of peace is broader than simply fewer armed conflicts; he also takes into account murder rates and civilian violence in countries around the world.  The murder rate during the gold rush in California was among the highest in recorded history; today, California is hardly a bastion of violence.  In Europe, torture and public executions were common, and it was not uncommon to see severed heads resting on spikes as you entered a city.  Today this kind of thing is rare globally and virtually nonexistent in the Western states.  Slavery has been abolished, and the laws have had a significant dampening effect on the once-common instances of rape, infanticide, lynch mobs and cruelty to animals.

The conclusion of the book is that not only are we living in the most peaceful time in world history, but that this may be the least-appreciated development in the history of our species.

Which countries are the most and least peaceful?  For that information, you turn to the Global Peace Index, which was created by the Economist magazine from data compiled by the Institute for Economics and Peace.  The methodology is detailed; each country is ranked based on its relations with neighboring countries (being at war earns a low score; the U.S./Canadian border earns the highest); level of internal conflict (countries embroiled in civil wars receive low scores); political instability; terrorist activity; number of homicides per 100,000 people; level of violent crime; number of jailed persons per 100,000 citizens; military expenditure as a percentage of GDP; and citizen access to small arms and light weapons.

In general, the Institute found that peace tends to be found in countries with higher income, schooling, high levels of government transparency and low corruptions.  You also find greater measures of peace in stable countries that are part of regional blocks (think: Eurozone).

The most recent ranking, completed in 2014, lists Iceland, New Zealand, Switzerland, Finland, Austria, Norway, Belgium, Japan, Canada and Denmark as the top ten most peaceful countries, and their overall rankings are pretty similar.  To find the United States, you have to go all the way down to number 101, where the high homicide rate, highest per-capita number of people in jails, huge military expenditures and high number of external conflicts that the military is engaged in all pull the ranking down.  Not surprisingly, the bottom of the scale includes Iraq, Afghanistan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Syria, Sudan and Somalia—the most well-publicized war zones.

Sources:

http://history.howstuffworks.com/historical-events/most-peaceful-time-in-history3.htm

http://www.theguardian.com/science/2012/nov/19/better-angels-nature-steven-pinker-review

Global Peace Index – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

About the Author: Bob Veres has been a commentator, author and consultant in the financial services industry for more than 20 years.  Over his 20-year career in the financial services world, Mr. Veres has worked as editor of Financial Planning magazine; as a contributing editor to the Journal of Financial Planning; as a columnist and editor-at-large of Dow Jones Investment Advisor magazine; and as editor of Morningstar’s advisor web site: MorningstarAdvisor.com.

Mr. Veres has been named one of the most influential people in the financial planning profession by Investment Advisor magazine and Financial Planning magazine, was granted the NAPFA Special Achievement Award by the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors, and most recently the Heart of Financial Planning Distinguished Service Award from the Denver-based Financial Planning Association. 

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Life Satisfaction and Economic Growth

You’re probably tired of hearing about the Greek debt crisis, but sometimes it helps to connect the abstract with the concrete—that is, the huge numbers involved with the actual lives of the people living in the country.

The Greeks today live in a vacuum of uncertainty, with their banks closed at least another day, limited access to their funds, and the knowledge that the banks don’t actually have much of the money they’ve deposited there unless a somewhat uncaring European Central Bank decides to provide a backstop package of guarantees.

And they’re not alone. The chart, with statistics compiled by the Organization for Economic Cooperation, shows the percentage change in the “life satisfaction” of the average person in different countries since 2007—which roughly marks the beginning of the financial crisis around the world. As you can see, there has been a small decline in the U.S., probably reflecting wage stagnation and a slow recovery in jobs and economic activity. But look at the bottom and you see that the Greeks have experienced a 27.3 percent decline in their life satisfaction. According to the report, only 47.8% of Greek citizens agree with the statement: “I generally feel that what I do in life is worthwhile.” In Denmark and the Netherlands, 91.4% agree with that statement.

 

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Other countries that are experiencing a debt crisis and high unemployment—Italy, Spain and Ireland—have gone through lesser (but still significant) declines. Meanwhile, at the other end, the German people, who hold all the cards in the various debt crises, have been experiencing a mild euphoria, matched only by Slovakia and Chile, which have been among the fastest-growing economies over the past seven years.

Overall, there was a strong correlation between the growth of GDP per capita and perceived life satisfaction among the countries studied—with a few exceptions. The people of Denmark and the Netherlands seem to have been consistently satisfied with their lives before, during and after the crisis. The people of Poland and Turkey seem to be unmoved by the rapid economic growth their countries have experienced recently. And the U.S. and Canada, which are better off than most of the world economically, have experienced a decline in their general life satisfaction. Maybe we should realize how lucky we are in our situation compared to the Greeks’.

Sources:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/niallmccarthy/2015/07/06/life-satisfaction-in-greece-has-plummeted-infographic/?utm_campaign=Forbes&utm_source=TWITTER&utm_medium=social&utm_channel=Business&linkId=15339276

http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/rel/wellbeing/measuring-national-well-being/measuring-national-well-being–international-comparisons–2015/art-mnwb-international-comparisons–2015.html#tab-Personal-well-being

About the Author: Bob Veres has been a commentator, author and consultant in the financial services industry for more than 20 years.  Over his 20-year career in the financial services world, Mr. Veres has worked as editor of Financial Planning magazine; as a contributing editor to the Journal of Financial Planning; as a columnist and editor-at-large of Dow Jones Investment Advisor magazine; and as editor of Morningstar’s advisor web site: MorningstarAdvisor.com.

Mr. Veres has been named one of the most influential people in the financial planning profession by Investment Advisor magazine and Financial Planning magazine, was granted the NAPFA Special Achievement Award by the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors, and most recently the Heart of Financial Planning Distinguished Service Award from the Denver-based Financial Planning Association. 

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The Doctor On Your Wrist

images-4Chances are you think that medical costs are going to bankrupt America, and if we assume that Medicare and Medicaid costs will rise as they have for the past 20 years (despite the brief interlude these last three years), then there is reason for alarm.  But ask yourself: how much of those costs are related to expensive diagnostic tests?  How much are related to fixing major health problems after the fact, when they could have been prevented if we had only known where to look at what lifestyle changes to make?

What the bean counters are missing when they simply project ever-larger expenditures based on past experience is the enormous impact that wearable diagnostics are going to have on healthcare in general.  You already know about Fitbit, which helps you get in shape by tracking the number of steps you take each day and week, and now also tracks heart rate, calories burned and stairs climbed.  More recent innovations are the Sensoria smart sock, which diagnoses your running stride and can reliably identify a runner’s rookie mistake of heel striking.  If you’ve gone to a hospital to evaluate your endurance, well, you could have used the PerformTech heart-rate monitor, which calculates your endurance simply from five minutes on a stair-stepper.

Not getting enough sleep?  Or the right kind of sleep?  The Withing’s Aura bed pad will diagnose the quality of your REM cycle.  An app by Sleeprate will tell you when you have restless cycles.  And if you’re one of those people who has trouble getting into meditation, you might try the Muse headband, which contains an EEG device that measures brainwaves, and helps coach you into a state of meditative peace.  It also tracks your meditative progress over time.

Wouldn’t it be nice if all of these devices were included in the same device?  As you read this, ten different companies from around the world are competing for an X Prize that will be given to the first “tricorder,” the device from Star Trek that was used to diagnose the damage to crew members after a rough battle with the Klingons.  The winner of the Tricorder X Prize will be able to monitor your body temperature, oxygen levels and heart rate, tell if you’re anemic, check your blood pressure and perform a constant EEG.  It will diagnose common maladies like stroke and less common ones, like tuberculosis.

Meanwhile, if you saw the episodes of Jeopardy where a computer named Watson cleaned up the board, well, you saw the next major diagnostic engine.  At this moment, Watson is busy absorbing all the medical literature, and is helping real doctors make proper diagnoses and offer remedies.  IBM, the maker of Watson, expects to put the program in the Cloud, where it will be accessible to, among other things, mobile devices.

The combination of the next generation of wearable diagnostics uploading data to Watson for instant analysis will allow all of us to have our health monitored constantly in real time—by affordable devices that are as sensitive as the expensive hospital equipment that currently hits the global healthcare budget so hard.  When you begin to have a problem, the wearable device will schedule a medical exam.  If you start to experience the early stages of a heart attack or stroke, the ambulance will arrive at your door—before you realize you have a problem.  The treatments will be much less expensive, because the problems will be caught in the very early stages.

How many billions of dollars will this save?  The bean counters who draw the alarming graphs haven’t even started to realize that they’re living in the middle of a health care revolution.  But now you do.

Sources:

http://readwrite.com/2013/08/29/readwritebody-scanadu-scout-tricorder

http://readwrite.com/2015/03/19/tricorder-x-prize-home-diagnostics

http://techcrunch.com/2014/01/11/ive-seen-the-future-of-health-tech-and-its-going-to-improve-your-life-in-2014/

About the Author: Bob Veres has been a commentator, author and consultant in the financial services industry for more than 20 years.  Over his 20-year career in the financial services world, Mr. Veres has worked as editor of Financial Planning magazine; as a contributing editor to the Journal of Financial Planning; as a columnist and editor-at-large of Dow Jones Investment Advisor magazine; and as editor of Morningstar’s advisor web site: MorningstarAdvisor.com.

Mr. Veres has been named one of the most influential people in the financial planning profession by Investment Advisor magazine and Financial Planning magazine, was granted the NAPFA Special Achievement Award by the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors, and most recently the Heart of Financial Planning Distinguished Service Award from the Denver-based Financial Planning Association. 

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Is This The Right Time To Go Off The Grid?

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The world is buzzing about the latest innovation by Elon Musk, founder of the Tesla battery-powered cars.  Soon you’ll be able to hang a 220-pound battery on the wall of your garage, hook it up to solar panels, and cut the electrical wires to your house.  The solar panels will give you electricity and hot water during the day while the sun is out, and the batteries will store excess electricity to power your home at night.

According to the company, in the first week after the announcement, 38,000 homeowners asked for more information about the home batteries.  Musk says the technology will “fundamentally change the way the world uses energy.”

But will it really?  Pulling thousands of homeowners off the grid would benefit Tesla, because the more batteries the company sells, the more scale the company will achieve at the factory level and, therefore, the less each future battery will cost—in Tesla cars as well as in the homes.  But for you and me, there’s a catch: the full installation of solar panels plus batteries would cost roughly $98,000.  And that assumes that you live in a sunny region such as Southern California.

Moreover, the battery-plus-solar-panel arrangement is actually less efficient than having solar panels hooked up to our electrical grid.  An analysis by Bloomberg New Energy Finance, which made the $98,000 cost estimate, points out that our power grid is actually much more efficient, collectively and individually, than a battery could ever be.  If you stay on the grid, the excess electricity your panels produce during the day is sold back to other consumers at retail prices, and then you simply buy back some of that electricity at night.  Why store excess power when it can be sold directly back into the grid?

Bloomberg analysts think that the most viable market for Tesla’s Powerpack batteries will be businesses—which, in some states, have to pay extra charges for electricity during peak hours—and utilities, which can use the technology to make the grid still more efficient.  That means that down the road, as the Powerpacks become less expensive, the power grid will also be becoming more efficient—for all of us.  We’ll be changing the way the world uses energy, but perhaps not the way Musk envisions.

Source: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-05-21/your-home-doesn-t-matter-for-tesla-s-dream-of-a-battery-powered-planet

About the Author: Bob Veres has been a commentator, author and consultant in the financial services industry for more than 20 years.  Over his 20-year career in the financial services world, Mr. Veres has worked as editor of Financial Planning magazine; as a contributing editor to the Journal of Financial Planning; as a columnist and editor-at-large of Dow Jones Investment Advisor magazine; and as editor of Morningstar’s advisor web site: MorningstarAdvisor.com.

Mr. Veres has been named one of the most influential people in the financial planning profession by Investment Advisor magazine and Financial Planning magazine, was granted the NAPFA Special Achievement Award by the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors, and most recently the Heart of Financial Planning Distinguished Service Award from the Denver-based Financial Planning Association. 

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An Independent Fiduciary

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