May 29, 2016

Average Profit Margin is 7.5% For 212 Industries

Apparently the public opinion is that businesses have a profit margin of 36%.     However the actual average profit margin for 212 industries is 7.5%.

I'm simply paraphrasing what is covered in the article The public thinks the average company makes a 36% profit margin, which is about 5X too high from the American Enterprise Institute.

This isn't the same as saying that the average business has a margin of 7.5% but that the average among industries is 7.5%.   But its useful to know that a lot of industries have lower margins.

That article got their data on industry margins from Yahoo's business site.

A lot of industries have low profit margins.     Grocery stores are at 1.4%.    Movie theatres are 1%.   It also includes those industries that are losing money (at least temporarily).      Oil and gas drilling and exploration is at -6.8%.       On the other hand there are industries that make pretty high profit margins.    Wireless communications is at 29.7%.   Real estate development is at 38.7%.      Regional Midwest banks made 24.1%.    Around the middle are things like restaurants at 7.5%, jewelry stores at 7.6% and multimedia and graphics software at 7.1%.

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May 27, 2016

Best of Blogs for Week of May 27th

Every Friday afternoon I share some of the more interesting or notable posts that I have seen in the personal finance blogs and other sources for the past week

MyMoneyBlog tells us about Free FICO Score For Everyone via CreditScoreCard, No Credit Card Required

MMB also talks about Credit Card Churning vs. Sustainable, Efficient Sampling

DQYDJ made a Compound Annual Growth Rate Calculator (CAGR)
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HSN and Ebates - $10 Cash Back With NO Minimum Purchase -YMMV

I recently had a $10 cash back deal for QVC with Ebates and made about $5 on that one.   I checked my Ebates account again just now and found another very similar deal from HSN.    The offer is good till 6/26.



To find the offer I clicked on the link in the upper right hand corner to get to my account.    Then the offer was listed in the section "special bonus offer just for you".    I'm pretty sure these are targeted offers so YMMV.


Like the QVC deal this could be a money maker.    HSN has clearance deals some of which have free shipping.    I found a garment bag with free shipping for $5.    With $10 cash back that should net me $5.    Plus Ebates also pays 5% cash back on the purchase so I'll get another 25¢ on the deal.

For new HSN customers they also have a deal for $10 off of purchases of $20 using promo code BEAUTY10.    You could get $10 off and $10 cash back on a $20+ purchase.    That deal expires 5/31 though.


Standard Ebates blurb:To get cash back from Ebates you need to be signed up with Ebates.  Then simply go to Ebates to get the referral to the store before you do your shopping.  I also get a referral bonus if you use my links to sign up with Ebates.   


--This article may contain referral links which pay this site a commission for purchases made at the sites.

May 25, 2016

About 2/3 of Student Loan Debt Is Owed By People Over 30 Years Old

I saw an internet meme recently depicting a 20 something woman with a caption basically whining about student loan debt.    I'd expect that the common picture of a student loan debtor is someone who's in their 20's.   But in reality MOST student loan debt is held by people over 30 years old.

Sources are the Federal Reserve Bank of New York page Student loan debt by age group and report Household Debt and Credit: Student Debt.

As of 2012 the share of debt held by age group is as follows:

age group % of debt
60+ 5%
50-59 12%
40-49 17%
30-39 33%
under 30 33%

and graphically :

Of course that data is a few years old now but the trend is for the % of debt held by people under 30 to be dropping.   In 2005 the under 30 group held about 40% of the debt.

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