Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Fed Cuts Rate, Inflation on the Rise

From the Atlanta Journal today,

"The Federal Reserve trimmed short-term interest rates by a quarter of a percentage point Wednesday, the seventh cut in seven months.

But the central bank also signaled that it likely would pause its rate-cutting campaign, which so far has pushed down the federal funds rate to 2 percent from 5.25 percent."

I have been pretty displeased while watching the interest in my savings account decrease each month despite adding additional funds regularly. On the other hand, I plan on buying a house towards the end of this year, and will want interest rates to be as low as possible. When it comes down to it, I think the lower interest rate on the house will benefit me more than a higher interest rate on my savings. I do think the rate has gone low enough though. I am afraid that inflation is going to begin to take its toll.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Memorial Fund

Recently I had a coworker pass away. I'm not sure coworker is the right word, but that's all I can think of. Anyway, a bunch of us decided to create a memorial fund for his wife and unborn child. We wanted to make sure that they had enough money to get by until the baby was a little older and his wife could start working again. What I learned during the process is that each individual can give $12,000 as a gift tax-free each year. If you want to give more than that, then it will affect the limit you have on the dollar amount of the gifts that you give. The limit is $1 million dollars for your lifetime, and isn't affected unless you give more than the $12,000 to any one person. It is a combined limit, so if you gave $20,000 to three different people in one year, you would have an extra $8,000 for each person that would reduce your $1 million limit. You would then have $976,000 that you could give above and beyond the $12,000 limit before you would have to worry about the Gift Tax.

TurboTax has a good article about this.

The fund we set up is located here, if you'd like to contribute. Please read the information about Matthew.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Industry and Frugality

Benjamin Franklin once said,

"The way to wealth is as plain as the way to market. It depends chiefly on two words, industry and frugality: that is, waste neither time nor money, but make the best use of both. Without industry and frugality nothing will do, and with them everything."
I found this quote inspiring. So inspiring, in fact, that I decided to start this blog. This blog will focus on ways to use time and money wisely. In other words, ways to practice industry and frugality. It will mainly be a blog on personal finance, small business, efficiency at work and at home, and anything else along those lines. I hope that over time this will become an enjoyable forum for information and discussion. Welcome to my blog!