Reading List for August 13-15

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Aug 13, 2021
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Current Events, Financial Literacy, Economics, Investing, Cryptocurrencies, Student Loans

FinLit/Financial Health

  • Extrapolating data from a collaborative report with LendingClub, “Reality Check: The Paycheck-to-Paycheck Report,” 43 of the 71 million millenials in the US are living paycheck to paycheck, even those with higher incomes.

“Per the August report, “Many millennials are beginning to make larger expenditures for the first time, whether that means purchasing a car, taking out a mortgage or preparing financially to have children. These are all life-changing events that can be difficult to manage. It follows that millennials would be more likely than all other generations to report living paycheck to paycheck…” (PYMNTS.com)

  • (PRNewsWire) reports results of a TIAA’s Digital Engagement Survey and reveals the impact of Covid and social media on financial behaviors.

 

Economics

  • Consumer prices were up 5.4% year-over-year in July, or 0.5% for the month, about as expected as used car prices finally stopped increasing. (CNBC) For more analysis on how prices are normalizing, read this Overshoot article.
  • Housing prices jumped this year, but are showing signs of slowing down as inventory is recovering. (Business Insider)
  • Covid upended the business of fitness. What role will gyms play in the post-Covid world? (AP)

 

Demographics

  • 2020 Census data has been released! (AP) The impact is not just political (redistricting and recalculating representation). Census data drive government funding of local programs, and drive marketing!
    • Non-hispanic white population dropped for the first time EVER!
    • Cities are gaining, rural areas are losing population.
    • Overall growth rate was the slowest since the 1930s, and the census took place before we lost 620,000 people to Covid.

 

  • Labor force participation is the lowest it has been in 40 years, and about 30% of today’s unemployed have been so for over a year. This article tackles the impacts of Covid and demographic shifts on this statistic.  (Bloomberg Businessweek-subscription may be required if over monthly limit)

 

Investing

  • NYT Upshot takes a look at today’s low real returns.
  • John Rekenthaler of Morningstar revisited a post about the impact of Robinhood and retail investors from back in April and tries to size the impact in terms of price and volume.  
  • This follows the predominant theme of the recent NGPF post “What’s New With Investing (2021).

 

Crytocurrency

  • Is cryptocurrency becoming more mainstream? AMC theaters announced they will begin to accept bitcoin to pay for movie tickets. (CNBC) and Venmo credit card holders can take their cash back in crypto. (Coindesk)

 

Student Loans

  • Late last week we learned student loan repayments won’t restart now until February 1, 2022. The Administration is also going to overhaul forgiveness and income-based repayment plans. (Forbes)

 

Career

  • Grocery store and restaurant worker pay is now over $15/hour. About 80% of workers now make at least $15/hour as folks reassess work in America and employers compete to hire. (WAPO-subscription may be required)
  • This CNBC article would make a good intro to interviewing by reviewing the basis steps to prepare. (CNBC)

 

Retirement

  • This article provides a good explanation of how COLA (cost of living adjustments) impacts social security benefits. (Investment News)

 

Olympics

  • Olympics are over, but this reality dark remains: Most Olympic athletes are broke. (YouTube)

About the Author

Beth Tallman

Beth Tallman entered the working world armed with an MBA in finance and thoroughly enjoyed her first career working in manufacturing and telecommunications, including a stint overseas. She took advantage of an involuntary separation to try teaching high school math, something she had always dreamed of doing. When fate stepped in once again, Beth jumped on the opportunity to combine her passion for numbers, money, and education to develop curriculum and teach personal finance at Oberlin College. Beth now spends her time writing on personal finance and financial education, conducts student workshops, and develops finance curricula and educational content. She is also the Treasurer of Ohio Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy.