Monday, June 12, 2017
2) Inexperienced investors
3) confuse the philosophy with the investment
4) flaws in the Block chain
5) the law of unintended consequences
6) legal issues
Thursday, June 08, 2017
the staff of the Ridgewood blog
Washington DC, The House on Thursday passed the Financial CHOICE Act, legislation to overhaul and replace the failed Dodd-Frank Act that has contributed to the worst economic recovery of the last 70 years.
“Every promise of Dodd-Frank has been broken,” said Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), as he read letters from Americans about how they were declined home, automobile and small business loans due to Dodd-Frank’s burdensome regulations. “Fortunately there is a better, smarter way. It’s called the Financial CHOICE Act. It stands for economic growth for all, but bank bailouts for none. We will end bank bailouts once and for all. We will replace bailouts with bankruptcy. We will replace economic stagnation with a growing, healthy economy,” he said.
“We will make sure there is needed regulatory relief for our small banks and credit unions, because it’s our small banks and credit unions that lend to our small businesses that are the jobs engine of our economy and make sure the American dream is not a pipe dream,” said Chairman Hensarling.
CHOICE, which stands for Creating Hope and Opportunity for Investors, Consumers and Entrepreneurs, has received strong support from community banks and credit unions. Large financial institutions did not offer their support for the Financial CHOICE Act. Instead, Wall Street CEOs have publicly said they do not support repealing Dodd-Frank.
The Congressional Budget Office reports the Financial CHOICE Act would reduce the deficit by $33.6 billion over 10 years and that the bill’s regulatory relief would benefit community banks and credit unions. The nation’s largest banks would be unlikely to raise enough capital to meet the bill’s requirement for substantial regulatory relief, the CBO reported.
FINANCIAL CHOICE ACT AT A GLANCE:
BANKRUPTCY, NOT BAILOUTS
No more bailouts: that’s at the core of the Financial CHOICE Act. With changes to the bankruptcy code, large financial firms can fail without disrupting the entire economy or forcing hardworking taxpayers to pay for more bailouts.
ACCOUNTABILITY FOR WALL STREET AND WASHINGTON
The Financial CHOICE Act includes the toughest penalties in history for those who commit financial fraud and insider trading. Holding Wall Street accountable with the toughest penalties in history will deter corporate wrongdoing and better protect consumers. At the same time the Financial CHOICE Act holds Wall Street accountable, it also holds Washington accountable. Tougher accountability for Wall Street and Washington will protect the integrity of our markets so they benefit ordinary Americans who are working, saving and investing.
STRONGLY CAPITALIZED BANKS
Dodd-Frank’s one-size-fits-all regulations treat all financial institutions the same, regardless of their size. That makes no sense and hurts smaller, hometown banks and credit unions that did nothing to cause the last financial crisis.
The Financial CHOICE Act is based on two important principles: First, all banks need to be well-capitalized and, second, community banks and credit unions deserve relief from the crushing burden of over-regulation. Under the Financial CHOICE Act, banks and credit unions will qualify for regulatory relief if they elect to maintain enough capital to ensure that if they get in trouble, taxpayers won’t be forced to bail them out. Ninety-eight percent of the financial institutions that met the Financial CHOICE Act’s requirements for being well-capitalized did not fail during the financial crisis. Of the miniscule percentage that did fail, none posed a systemic risk.
The Financial CHOICE Act grows our economy from Main Street up. Dodd-Frank tries to control the economy from Washington down. The Financial CHOICE Act will help get credit and capital into the hands of working men and women to fuel their economic growth.
Tuesday, June 06, 2017
the staff of the Ridgewood blog
Ridgewood NJ, President Donald Trump announced the U.S. would withdraw from the Paris climate pact. In a decision that spurns pleas from corporate executives who stood to gain , world leaders who would access US tax payer funds and even Pope Francis who warned the move imperils a global fight against climate change proving “Climate Change ” is religion not science . “The Obama-negotiated accord imposes unrealistic targets on the U.S. for reducing our carbon emissions, while giving countries like China a free pass for years to come,” the White House said.
President Trump once again defended US Taxpayers who would fund the so called “Paris Accord” , pointing out the the many instances where the accord sought to redistribute and strip America’s wealth and industry to the rest of the world and imperil the US economy.
The President also went to great lengths pointing out how the “Paris Accord” would reduce America’s sovereignty giving outsiders control of US domestic agenda .
NEW YORK -- Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) joined MSNBC’s Morning Joe and CNBC’s Squawk Box to discuss the Financial CHOICE Act – a bill to end taxpayer-funded bailouts of Wall Street banks and create more opportunities for Americans on Main Street.
On the CFPB:
"The best form of consumer protection is competitive, innovative, transparent markets that are vigorously policed for force and fraud. But the so called CFPB in many cases has actually hurt consumers since it has come into fruition...what we are trying to do is replace it with something called the Consumer Law Enforcement Agency that is there to actually enforce our roughly two-dozen major federal consumer protection laws, but it is there to enforce the law, not make up the law and this particular agency is making up the law."
On the failures of Dodd-Frank:
"Dodd Frank has broken all of its promises. It said it would lift the economy and yet we continue to be stuck in a one and a half to two percent GDP growth economy. It said it would end bank bailouts, but cynically it codified them into law. It said it would make our financial system more stable, but the big banks are actually bigger, and small banks are fewer. We are actually losing one a day. Then last but not least, again it said it would help the consumers, but in many cases consumers are worse off. We have had seven years of Dodd Frank, it has failed and we need economic growth for all and bank bailouts for none. The answer is more capital, not more regulation."
On next steps:
"I am willing to negotiate, but I am not willing to negotiate against myself. So I will wait to see what the Senate will produce. Again part of the CHOICE Act can be done through reconciliation, other provisions will have to be negotiated. I stand ready to negotiate in good faith with Democrat colleagues in the Senate, but they are going to have to get something passed and I think increasingly, the mere fact that we would pass the Financial CHOICE Act will create greater momentum for this to get done. I know it is still a priority of the Administration, I met with the Vice President last evening who reiterated it is a priority to get it done. This along with healthcare reform and tax reform, and reform of our banking capital market systems is what is key to getting America back on track."
For more on the Financial CHOICE Act visit FinancialCHOICE.gop.
Wednesday, May 24, 2017
the staff of the Ridgewood blog
Washington DC, House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) issued the following statement on President Trump's Fiscal Year 2018 budget proposal:
“The higher taxes, spending and borrowing that were the pillars of Obamanomics brought us the weakest economic recovery in our lifetimes, stagnant paychecks and more new debt than nearly all other presidents combined. Left unchecked, our nation is driving at breakneck speed toward a spending-driven debt crisis that will leave us a nation of downsized dreams and fewer opportunities. We cannot continue to grow Washington’s budget at the expense of the family budget. For the first time in almost a decade, a President has proposed a budget that puts us on a path to fiscal sanity. This budget is a sober document, and I’m pleased President Trump’s proposal takes a long overdue look at redefining the proper role of the federal government while simultaneously investing in our military at a time of increasing threats to our safety domestically and abroad.
“I am also pleased his budget proposal seeks to repeal the Dodd-Frank Act’s taxpayer-funded bailout scheme and bring spending accountability to the unconstitutional CFPB. Ending Wall Street bailouts and making Washington regulators accountable are key parts of the Financial CHOICE Act. If we want strong economic growth and more freedom, we must empower Americans, not Washington bureaucrats. I wish the White House had gone further in reforms to our entitlement system which is going bankrupt and represents the true driver of our nation’s spending driven debt crisis. I look forward to working with the administration and my colleagues in Congress to end bank bailouts, grow our economy and restore fiscal accountability to Washington.”
Sunday, May 21, 2017
the staff of the Ridgewood blog
Omaha, Nebraska , our friend Prince Dykes of the Investors Show wanted to share a recap of his first experience at a Berkshire Hathaway Annual Meeting . Hopefully you enjoy the footage as much as we did.
Check out Prince's interview with Bill Gates and a fun chat with a couple from New Jersey.
Prince can be found regularly on the "The Investor Show" channel on Youtube were he interviews investors and entrepreneurs
Tuesday, May 02, 2017
the staff of the Ridgewood blog
WASHINGTON DC, House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) delivered the following opening statement at today’s markup of H.R. 10, the Financial CHOICE Act of 2017. The Financial CHOICE Act is the Republican alternative to the failed Dodd-Frank Act. The Financial CHOICE Act ends taxpayer-funded bailouts for banks, holds Washington and Wall Street accountable with the toughest penalties in history for fraud, and promotes economic growth. For more information on the Financial CHOICE Act, visit www.FinancialCHOICE.gop:
When Dodd-Frank was passed nearly 7 years ago, Americans were promised it would lift the economy. Instead, we’ve had the slowest and weakest recovery of our lifetimes. We were promised Dodd-Frank would end bailouts. Instead, Dodd-Frank promises more taxpayer-funded bailouts for the Wall Street banks that unelected bureaucrats decree are too big to fail. We were promised that by turning more control over our economy to Washington, Dodd-Frank would make our financial system more secure.
Yet, with Dodd-Frank the big banks got even bigger; we’ve lost more than 1,700 community banks; and corporate bond markets are seeing historic levels of illiquidity and volatility. That’s not a more secure financial system. That’s increasing risk to our financial system and setting the stage for the next crisis. Even the former director of President Obama’s National Economic Council admitted Dodd-Frank has not made large banks any safer than they were before Dodd-Frank.
Instead of helping working families recover and achieve financial independence, university researchers concluded Dodd-Frank “triggered a substantial redistribution of credit from middle class households to wealthy households.” Indeed, the Federal Reserve tells us that when Dodd-Frank is fully phased in, one-third of black and Hispanic borrowers who were able to buy a home before the crisis will no longer be able to do so. Consumers who could depend on free checking at their banks no longer can because of Dodd-Frank.
Instead, consumers find their average monthly fees have tripled. For all the rhetoric we hear from the other side about how Dodd-Frank was supposed to be a “consumer protection law,” the reality is that with Dodd-Frank consumers are paying more and getting less.
And for all the rhetoric we hear from the other side about how Dodd-Frank is a “Wall Street reform” law, the reality is Wall Street is doing just fine under Dodd-Frank.
Wall Street CEOs themselves have openly stated their big banks are among the biggest beneficiaries of Dodd-Frank. They’ve said Dodd-Frank’s complexity and regulations help them maintain a competitive advantage over their competitors. No doubt this is one reason why so many Wall Street CEOs are joining with Democrats to publicly say they don’t want Congress to repeal Dodd-Frank.
Community banks and credit unions – well, that’s a different thing. In hearing after hearing, this committee has heard from dozens of community bankers and credit union leaders about the very real harm Dodd-Frank is causing on Main Street. We see this especially when it comes to small businesses, America’s job creating engine. Just listen to the former director of President Obama’s Small Business Administration, who lamented the fact that Dodd-Frank’s heavy-handed regulations on community banks “are getting in the way of their ability to make small business loans.”
No wonder entrepreneurship is at a generational low in America. Regrettably, thanks to Dodd-Frank, too many garages are full of old cars instead of new startup small businesses.
It’s time for the bailouts to end. It’s time to help small businesses on Main Street. It’s time to make Washington and Wall Street both accountable. It’s time for the Financial CHOICE Act.
The Financial CHOICE Act ends bailouts so Washington can never again pick taxpayers’ pockets and hand the money over to big banks. It ends too big to fail. It makes our financial system safer and helps avoid another crisis by replacing taxpayer funds with loss-absorbing private capital – far more capital than either Dodd-Frank or the Basel Accords requires.
It creates a true cop on the beat to protect consumers. We will have a consumer agency fully focused on enforcing consumer protection laws instead of losing valuable time and resources making up their own laws with no accountability, checks and balances or due process. The Financial CHOICE Act will ensure that the shadow regulators come out from the shadows and that government will be accountable to We, the People.
The Financial CHOICE Act holds Wall Street accountable with the toughest penalties in history for fraud and insider trading.
Instead of trying to grow our economy the old way, with top-down Washington regulations, the Financial CHOICE Act will unleash a wave of capital formation to grow America’s economy – not Washington’s government economy.
And the Financial CHOICE Act offers desperately-needed regulatory relief for our community banks and credit unions.
That’s why community banks and credit unions, who sometimes don’t always agree, have joined together in support of the Financial CHOICE Act.
Americans are tired of waiting. They have struggled for far too long. It is time to end bailouts. It is time to hold Washington and Wall Street accountable. It is time to make our financial system safer, stronger and more secure. And it is time for a healthier economy, with equal opportunity for all. It is time for the Financial CHOICE Act.
Thursday, April 27, 2017
BY GARY COHN
Washington DC, We have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to do something big. President Trump has made tax reform a priority, and we have a Republican Congress that wants to get it done. This is something that Democrats should support too because it’s good for the American people.
The President is going to seize this opportunity by leading the most significant tax reform legislation since 1986 – and one of the biggest tax cuts in American history.
The President has focused on three things since his campaign: job creation, economic growth, and helping low and middle-income families who have been left behind by this economy. He understands that there are a lot of people in this country that feel like they work hard and still can’t get ahead. They are sick of turning their paychecks over to Washington and having no idea how their tax dollars are spent. They are frustrated by a tax code that is so complicated that they can’t even do their own taxes.
That’s why tax reform is such a big priority for this President. He cares about making the economy work better for the American people.
We are going to cut taxes for businesses to make them competitive, and we are going to cut taxes for the American people – especially low and middle-income families.
In 1935, we had a one-page tax form consisting of 34 lines and two pages of instructions. Today, the basic 1040 form has 79 lines and 211 pages of instructions. Instead of a single tax form, the IRS now has 199 tax forms on the individual side of the tax code alone. Taxpayers spend nearly 7 billion hours complying with the tax code each year, and nearly 90% of taxpayers need help filing their taxes.
We are going to cut taxes and simplify the tax code by taking the current 7 tax brackets we have today and reducing them to only three brackets: 10 percent, 25 percent, and 35 percent.
We are going to double the standard deduction so that a married couple won’t pay any taxes on the first $24,000 of income they earn. So in essence, we are creating a 0 percent tax rate for the first $24,000 that a couple earns.
The larger standard deduction also leads to simplification because far fewer taxpayers will need to itemize, which means their tax form can go back to that one simple page.
Families in this country will also benefit from tax relief to help them with child and dependent care expenses.
We are going to repeal the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT). The AMT creates significant complications and burdens by requiring taxpayers to do their taxes twice to see which is higher. That makes no sense; we should have one simple tax code.
Job creation and economic growth is the top priority for this Administration, and nothing drives economic growth like capital investment. Therefore, we are going to return the top tax rate on capital gains and dividends to 20 percent by repealing the harmful 3.8 percent Obamacare tax. That tax has been a direct hit on investment income and small business owners.
We are going to repeal the death tax. The threat of being hit by the death tax leads small business owners and farmers in this country to waste countless hours and resources on complicated estate planning to make sure their children aren’t hit with a huge tax when they die. No one wants their children to have to sell the family business to pay an unfair tax.
We are going to eliminate most of the tax breaks that mainly benefit high-income individuals. Home ownership, charitable giving, and retirement savings will be protected – but other tax benefits will be eliminated.
This is not going to be easy. Doing big things never is. But one thing is for certain: I would not bet against this President. He will get this done for the American people.
Gary Cohn is the chief economic advisor to President Donald J. Trump and Director of the National Economic Council.