When all you read is gloom, turn here for a much different perspective.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Three 2008 Christmas Presents from the US Economy

As Christmas 2008 approaches, let's pause and see what the US Economy has given you this December:

1) Do you have a Home Equity Line of Credit? If so, according to Standard and Poor's Research, your balance is likely to be somewhere between $50,000 and $60,000. This means that in December 2007 your payment was about $400. This December? You know. It is closer to $200. That means two crisp $100 bills in your stocking.

2) Now you and I know that you don't pay off your credit card balances every month. That's because the average US household balance is now at about $10,000. But if you have negotiated well, your card balance is indexed to the prime rate. Even if your rate is not prime, it is probably indexed to prime and your interest rate is now almost 5% lower this year than at Christmas time last year. Guess what? Your credit card interest payments on that $10K are going to be at least $500 less next year.

3) And what about wages?  What does Santa have in store? Here is the latest Federal reserve chart on wages:

And the US Department of Labor
indicates that hourly wages will be up by $.07 an hour.  If you work 160 hours next month, that means another $11 in your pocket.  (Excluding those double-time hours)

But wait, I want to leave you with just one more present.  I know I said you were only going to get three, but you know -- it's the holiday season...

The average price of gasoline is now down $2.50 per gallon since its peak at $4 in July.

As you fill up that 20 gallon tank on Boxing Day this Friday, put another $50 in your pocket.

Happy Holidays

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