Phil Hauck's TEC Blog

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Short Items ...

Retirement Savings: It's About Leadership!
Worker retirement saving is actually dropping, not increasing ... even though regular savings rates have skyrocketed.
According to the Employee Benefit Research Institute, during the 2009 recession, 35% of workers weren't saving anything for retirement. Now 41% aren't. Of workers offered a retirement savings plan at work, 21% don't participate, up from 19% in 2009.
If leaders promote it, workers will do a better job.
Good News: What's coming is the Auto-IRA ... a required vehicle in which every worker will put savings, matchable by an employer if desired, starting with your first real job. It'll be YOUR ACCOUNT, with investments directed by you from a limited selection, available to you when you retire. (A worker can "opt out," but if he doesn't, it applies.) No, it won't be an option. It will be government policy in a year or two ... as the supplement/replacement(?) for social security. Thanks to Michael Kiley, CEO of PAi, DePere, who has been part of the DC group developing it.

Oil & Gas Industry Tax Breaks
There has been controversy about whether deficit reduction should include these. But what are they? Fortune magazine explains:
"For example, they are allowed to deduct 'intangible drilling costs' -- including labor and drilling fluids - the moment a well is tapped (even it proves to be dry). And then there's the 'depletion allowance,' which allows certain extractors to shelter around 15% of a well's production from the IRS. And deductions for royalties paid to foreign governments. And the oil and gas liability cap that remains at just $75 million, more than a year after the BP rig explosion. Then there's Section 199, which allows profitable oil and gas companies to deduct 6% of net income."

The World's Power Is Shifting Fast
In the last two decades, "more than 2 billion men and women have joined the ranks of industrial producers, trebling the size of the world's industrial economy. This year, for the first time in history, both America and Europe are being outproduced, out-manufactured, out-exported, and out-invested by the rest of the world. The corollary of this change is that the next 20 years will also see another worldwide revolution, this time in consumerism, and it will be dominated by Asian workers, who will treble the world's middle class."
--- Gordon Brown, writing on thedailybeast.com.

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