Federal individual income tax must be paid to the U.S. government, but the amounts paid vary widely. The December 2016 issue of Page One Economics®: Focus on Finance addresses basic facts about the tax—its history, purpose, and current structure.
As Adam Smith said, everyone lives by exchanging. They exchange—buy and sell—to make themselves better off. Does the same principle apply to international trade? Do nations benefit from importing and exporting? The November Page One Economics explains the basics of international trade and its importance to the economy.
Stocks and bonds offer potential gains for investors, but they can also help fuel the economy. The October 2016 issue of Page One Economics®: Focus on Finance explains how stocks and bonds can help companies grow, entrepreneurs start businesses, and governments fund public projects.
With prices of new vehicles at all-time highs, many buyers are looking for used vehicles. It can be challenging, though, to figure out what is or isn’t a good deal. The September 2016 issue of Page One Economics explains why asymmetric information makes it difficult for used-car buyers to avoid “lemons” and why lemons are a larger problem for the used-car market.
What skills do you need to develop for future success? Academics for sure, but soft skills are also important. Learn more about soft skills, the labor force, and unemployment in the May 2016 Page One Economics: Focus on Finance essay.
Stock market mutual funds offer investors diversified stock market portfolios, but there are several types. Actively managed funds attempt to “beat” the market by using research, forecasts, and judgment to pick stocks with the best growth prospects. Passively managed funds attempt to replicate the market by buying a representative sample of the stocks on a specific stock market index. Which to choose? This issue of Page One Economics explains the efficient market hypothesis and how it might influence your investment decisions.
The familiar magnetic stripe credit cards used for decades in the United States are being phased out. Read about the new smart-chip credit cards, designed to reduce fraud and improve security, in the March issue of Page One Economics: Focus on Finance.
Job growth has been healthy over the past five years. However, many people are still concerned about the overall health of the labor market. This issue of Page One Economics explains what the unemployment rate does—and does not—measure and whether it is a reliable indicator of the health of the labor market.
myRA is a retirement savings account for people who don’t have access to employer-sponsored retirement plans. This new U.S. Treasury tool reduces some of the barriers people face when saving for retirement. It’s a way for people to build up some savings and then move on to investments in the private sector to continue their savings journey. The January 2016 issue of Page One Economics: Focus on Finance explains how to get started planning for the future using this new financial product.