The Decline in Gas Prices

Mar 10, 2015 by

automobile gas pricesI started driving in 2002, when “high” gas prices were around 2 or more dollars per gallon. That being said, it was definitely a much different world. Driving your car and filling it up with gas would take about $25 at the most, thus making it relatively inexpensive to go from place to place. This is when more people started buying SUV’s and other large vehicles – in short, they weren’t really concerned about the gas prices going up as much as they have.

Fast forward to college, where I was horrified as I saw gas prices climb up to almost $4 a gallon (and in some states, it was even close to $5 a gallon). People started driving less, getting rid of their SUVs, and pushing companies to work on getting more economical vehicles out on the market. Hybrids started to become a lot more popular, thus making it so that people could at least try to save some cash in the long run.

Gas Prices Dropping

That being said, we’ve seen a different phenomenon going on. While gas prices had remained pretty steady at about $3 to $3.50 per gallon, about two or so months ago, we started to see the gas prices plummet. We watched (many of us excitedly) as many places started to plummet – now, most states have gas for less than $3 a gallon, which is the lowest it has been in several years. This change was very welcome, especially now that the holidays are coming up and many people are traveling quite frequently.

Why has this happened and what does this mean?

There are a few theories about it, but the main one is that the economy has finally stabilized in many countries all over the world. And even though there is still a lot of unrest in the Middle East, we’ve been able to get gas prices at a reasonable level. Our inflation is no longer out of control, despite of attorney work (check this attorney page to see their work against abusive price increases), which can also be seen by the fact that prices in the grocery store and other prices are finally stabilizing.

Hopefully, this means that we are finally getting out of the recession that we have been fending off since the early 2000’s. The unemployment rate has being doing better as well, and even though many people are still struggling financially, it at least seems to be evening out.

What do you think? Is this a sign that we’re finally getting back on track?

 

 

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How Do We Solve The Debt Problem

Jan 5, 2015 by

car debtThis is a question that seems to come up every time the topic is at hand. Is there really anything we can do to help prevent the issues related to debt from happening in the future? The government has already put organizations and laws in place to protect consumers from debtors. What else can they do? Some people will come right out and tell you that they think that the government has done too much already; between the bank bailout (which, in the short term was okay), lending to the automotive sector and almost holding consumers hands when it comes to their mistakes.

 

Is Education the Answer?

Like many people, I am a huge advocate for education. Many people will tell you that it’s really important for us to be educated; knowledge really is power. It helps us to answer the hard questions of the world and gives us a way to figure out potential issues. Because of that, I think that education may be the key to us getting out of debt.

The debt problem can’t be solved through knowledge alone; people obviously have to apply what they know, or it’s useless. But, look, even our government officials don’t really get debt and how to balance a budget; they have to depend on raising the debt ceiling in order to be able to balance it, and honestly, that’s only going to work for so long before it hurts our economy even worse.

Interesting Watch:

Then Why Hasn’t It Happened?

We put so much energy into different types of education “markers” that we don’t always provide students with ways to get practical knowledge. Financial wellness classes are not required for high school students. Why not? Why can’t we have a half-year class on budgeting, how to balance a checkbook, and all the other things people should know before going out on their own? Many people don’t learn those sorts of things until they are well into their 20’s, and many times, they end up fumbling through it on their own.

Some people may claim that this whole thing is wishful thinking, but I truly think that educating our future leaders on how to properly use money and credit would be advantageous against our country’s fight against debt and weak economies. It may not solve the issue, but it may prevent some of the strain we’ve felt over the past decade for future generations. Healthy financial habits have to be cultivated in us, and if we do that early enough, we may be able to minimize the impact of debt.

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Why should I care about Gold?

Jan 2, 2015 by

So, almost daily we hear about gold prices going up, whether it’s on a commercial or whatever.  People are willing to buy your scrap gold and old gold for decent prices. Gold prices seem to be doing incredibly well, and they continue to close higher and higher every day. But why are people so dependent on gold, and why does it matter to those of us who are investing our money into the market?

 

The Gold Standard

goldinvestingMost economic systems used to have what was called a gold standard, that is, the money in the system was based off of gold, and each bill had a certain amount of gold backing. As time has gone on, this has changed. That hundred dollar bill does NOT have $100 worth of gold backing it. What gives the American dollar its value is the fact that it is the American dollar. It is completely psychological.

So, as the economy went into recession, the confidence that people once had in the American dollar (and actually, most world currencies are the same way with the global economy as a whole was going into a recession) went with it. Thus, the value of a dollar goes down, causing inflation. If there is nothing backing up a currency but your mind, then the inflation value is going to occur a lot more quickly than if there is physical backing to your money.

 

So Why Does Gold Matter?

 

Where does gold come into this? Well, the thing is, gold was the original currency. It will always have some sort of value, because it is a rare and precious metal. As stocks and such change in value every single day, gold maintains it. The stability that possessing gold provides far surpasses the stability of any other currency or metal (except perhaps silver, which has also gained popularity).

Gold value has increased significantly this year, as the economy continues to get better and unemployment continues to decrease significantly. People are still nervous about their investments, however, so they’re investing in something that doesn’t lose value as quickly as world currencies do.

Is it worth it to sell your scrap precious metal for it? I’m not sure. I assume that part of it is overreacting, but it is always good to make sure that your investments are safe and secure, especially when the economy is as unstable as it is at the moment. Talk to professionals, look at your options, and always do research before you invest your money in anything.

 

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