阅后即焚(十八)

Arthur Brooks: Republicans and their faulty moral arithmetic

  • Arthur Brooks, president of the American Enterprise Institute and author of “The Road to Freedom”
  • (YouGov.com polls) only 33% of Americans said that Mitt Romney “cares about people like me.”
  • (NYU)  Jonathan Haidt: “The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided by Politics and Religion” — citizens across the political spectrum place a great importance on taking care of those in need and avoiding harm to the weak;
  • (the anti-poverty) achievement is not the result of philanthropy or foreign aid. It occurred because billions of souls have been able to pull themselves out of poverty thanks to global free trade, property rights, the rule of law and entrepreneurship.
  • “Some say the solution for conservatives is either to redouble the attacks on big government per se, or give up and try to build a better welfare state. Neither path is correct.”
  • “Instead, the answer is to make improving the lives of vulnerable people the primary focus of authentically conservative policies.”

Advisers benefit from listening on social media

  • Only 19 percent of the 463 financial advisers surveyed by Aite Group said they found social media to be useful to their businesses. LinkedIn was up 10% since 2009 but Facebook and Twitter dropped 10% and 8%;
  • LinkedIn: 9 out of 10 financial advisors who use social media use LinkedIn;
  • Twitter: listening might be useful; follow the major journalists;
  • LinkedIn found that 87 percent of investors use social media, but only 4 percent of them were interacting with advisers through a social media platform. Of the small percentage that did interact, 54 percent said they found value in doing so;
  • “Twitter is where the news is made.”

Uncertainty pushes China’s property stocks down

  • they will strictly enforce a capital-gains tax of 20% on profits from home sales.
  • China Vanke, China’s largest developer by volume, was one of several property stocks to plunge the daily 10% trading limit Monday;
  • a weaker property market will hit demand for everything from steel to furniture and a car to park in the garage. Commodity exporters like Australia and Brazil, which feed China’s steel mills, could also suffer.

Janet Yellen: Benefits of Fed policy outweigh risks

  • Janet Yellen, vice chairwoman of the Fed board of governors
  • Ms. Yellen emphasized that ending the Fed’s bond-buying programs prematurely carries its own risks and made clear that she supports keeping policy easy for the foreseeable future;
  • (repeated the point Ben Bernanke made last week) Fed favors continuing its bond-buying programs “to keep monetary policy highly accommodative until well into the recovery;” (in pushing down long-term interest rate);
  • other factors: household belt-tightening following the trauma of the 2008 financial crisis; slowdown in the global economy, particularly in Europe, has hurt global sales;

No more easy ways to cut U.S. debt

  • Douglas Elmendorf, director of Cogressional Budget Office
  • “Putting the debt on a sustainable path will ultimately require increases in taxes or cuts in government benefits or services for people who consider themselves to be in the middle class.”
  • (the tax increases and the sequester) will reduce U.S. gross domestic product growth by 1.5 percentage point in 2013, the CBO estimates. The sequester alone will be about a 0.6-point drag;

The evolving economics of the App

  • at the end of 2012, average priced app in Apple store is $3.18 for iPhone and $4.44 on iPad; $3.06 in Google play store, and $2.84 in Amazon app store;
  • Apple app store and Google Play store represent 87% of the market;
  • In general, Android device owners are less likely than iOS users to spend money on apps, including for downloads as well as in-app purchases — due in part to the greater availability of low-end Android smartphones and tablets, which tend to attract lower-income people compared with iPhone and iPad users.

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