February 17, 2017

Best of Blogs for Week of February 17th

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

DQYDJ tells us the What is the Median Income Per State and Who are the One Percent?


What Caused Changes in Labor Force Participation 2007-2016

The below information and the graphic are a direct copy/paste off of the Federal Reserve of Atlanta page

The following factors put downward pressure on the labor force participation rate between 2007 and 2016.

Aging of the population: The aging of the population has had a significant effect on the LFP rate. Without the shifting distribution of the population towards older individuals since 2007, the overall labor force participation rate in Q4 2016 would have been 2.1 percentage points higher.
Rising education: Education has become increasingly important in the last couple of decades. Young people are devoting more of their time to schooling instead of the labor market, and older individuals are more likely to return to school to move forward in their careers than in the past. The recession likely amplified these trends as it allowed youth to delay entry into the job market and gave others an opportunity to retool. Rising school attendance explains about 0.9 percentage points of the overall decline between 2007 and 2016.
Health problems: The percent of the population who say they are too sick or disabled to work has been rising for some time, and the rise has been occurring even among young and prime-age individuals. Holding the age distribution of the population fixed at 2007 shares, the increase has contributed 0.6 percentage points to the overall decline in labor force participation.
Shadow labor force: The percent of the population on the margin of the labor force who say they want a job but for some reason are not actively looking for work rose during the recession across all age groups. The contribution of this factor has shrunk over the last couple of years, but still accounts for about 0.4 points of the overall decline between 2007 and 2016.

The following factors put upward pressure on the labor force participation rate between 2007 and 2016:

Retirement: A significant factor that has worked against declining participation is that a larger share of older Americans are staying in the labor force than in the past. All else being equal, if those people older than 60 were just as likely to retire in 2016 as they were in 2007, the labor force participation rate would now be about 0.90 percentage point lower.
Family responsibilities: The share of the population who chose not to participate in the labor market because they were taking care of their family declined during the Great Recession—especially among women. This pushed the labor force participation rate of women about 0.55 percentage points higher than it would have been between 2007 and 2010, but this effect has largely dissipated.


February 14, 2017

Ebates 14% Promotional Cash back Rate Today

For St. Valentienes day today Ebates has 14% cashback promotion for many stores.

There are 175 merchants on the list with the 14% cashback rate today.

Some notables : 

J. Crew
Dick's Sporting Goods
Rite Aid

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 does contain referral links which will hopefully pay this site a big commission for purchases made at the sites.

February 9, 2017

Bank CD Interest Rates vs Inflation

Around eight or so years ago I distinctly remember getting paid 4% interest on our simple savings account with Washington Mutual bank.   That was a promotional deal of some sort if I recall right but I didn't have to do anything special to get it.    Now it seems like that kind of interest rate on savings is something of the distant past.     I think we're getting 0.000001% from our bank right now.   Or more or less close to it.   1 cent a month.    With the interest rates we've got right now your savings are not keeping up with inflation.    But is this the norm?     I remember that 4% interest rate not long ago and that should have been able to keep up with inflation.

I couldn't find good history of interest rates for CDs or savings specifically.   But I did find Federal Reserve H.15 tables for interest rates on 3 month commercial paper.  
I got the inflation figures off the BLS site.

For both I'm representing the annual averages of the interest rate and the inflation rate.

Here's a chart showing the interest rate versus inflation for 1997 to 2016:

(click for full size)

You can see there that the rates paid by banks were quite a bit higher in the not too distant past.

For about the past 10 years we've had interest rates that are pretty low and don't keep up for inflation.   But if you look back to the previous 10 years from 1997 to 2006 the opposite was true for many of those years.  

Overall for the 20 year period the annual interest rate averaged 2.4% and the inflation rate averaged 2.2%.


Blog Widget by LinkWithin