Understanding Financial Modeling

Financial modeling has long been used by financial analysts and corporate executives in an effort to organize historical data in a manner that can be helpful in projecting possible outcomes for future events.  Models are also used as a method of assessing the impact of recent events on potential developments in the future.  Models relating … Continued


Cobots are robots intended for direct human/robotic interaction within a shared space, or where humans and robots are in close proximity.  According to Wikipedia, cobots were invented in 1996 and have been successfully deployed to support human activities, in contrast to robots that typically work separately from humans.  Their 1997 U.S. patent entitled “Cobots” describes … Continued

Productivity: The Key To Economic Growth

Productivity describes various measures of the efficiency of production.  There are many different definitions of productivity.  Perhaps the most common, and probably the easiest to understand, is an aggregate labor productivity measure, such as GDP per worker.  In other words, how much economic benefit is derived from the contribution of each worker. In order for … Continued

Small Business and Covid-19

It is generally accepted that small business is a significant driver of job growth in the US.  While precise data is not available, it has been suggested that, historically, startups have accounted for approximately 20% of job creation. Currently, small businesses appear to be suffering more than larger concerns, probably due, at least in part, … Continued

Creative Destruction

Creative destruction can be described as the dismantling of long-standing practices in order to make way for innovation.  The process is sometimes referred to as disruptive and inevitably results in winners and losers. Consider the emergence of Lyft, Uber and similar companies and their impact on more traditional taxi and car service enterprises. The path … Continued

Child Care and the Economy

It is generally accepted that a strong economy is based on high levels of employment with rising wages that can support positive trends in consumer spending.  This is where we were last January.  Going forward, it is important to remember that the U.S. economy is highly dependent on consumer spending.  Historically, fluctuations in consumer spending … Continued

Check Your Rate…Again

As of September 16th, 2020, the Bankrate weekly mortgage rate survey has once again touched all-time lows with the average 30-year fixed rate mortgage sitting at 3.09% and the average 15-year fixed rate mortgage coming in at 2.53%. For homeowners who have a mortgage, many have already taken advantage of falling interest rates by refinancing … Continued

“If we make it through December”

This is the title and first line of a Merle Haggard song.  The second line is, “Everything’s gonna be all right I know”.  Thinking about the message in the song, which was written in 1973, and looking at where we are now, provides some food for thought.  By the end of December 2020, the election … Continued

How Bad is Bad?

We can probably all agree that Covid-19 is bad, causing unacceptable death rates, hospitalizations and economic pain.  How bad?  Commentators have sought to find comparable events in an effort to measure the potential long term impact of the pandemic.  While this is of obvious importance to investors, definitive answers are hard to find.  Most observers … Continued

The Alphabet Recovery?

Almost immediately after the Covid-19 induced March collapse in stock markets and the economy, the usual pundits began to speculate on the timing and shape of a possible recovery.  The most optimistic were talking about a V shaped rebound with a rapid and broad recovery to pre Covid-19 levels.  A more cautious group were contemplating … Continued

Economic Bifurcation

The U.S. economy appears to be bifurcating at an unprecedented rate.  Unemployment, particularly in the service, retail, live entertainment, hospitality and other sectors is epidemic, while many professionals, able to work at home, are maintaining their income, enjoying a lower cost of living, and for some, significant gains in their corporate stock plans. Pandemic driven … Continued

The Rule of 72

Investopedia defines the rule of 72 as a quick, useful formula that is popularly used to estimate the number of years required to double the invested money at a given annual rate of return.  Of course, there are calculators and spreadsheet programs that can accurately calculate the precise time required to double invested money to … Continued