Larry Kotlikoff’s Commentaries
President Biden just canceled a mother-load of student debt. The income limit for the President's largess is $125,000 for individual borrowers and $250,000 for married and heads of households. Those below these limits received up to $10,000 in debt forgiveness. And...
Upside Investing represents a revolution in investment/spending strategy. It lets you set a living standard floor that only rises as a result of investing in stocks and other risky assets. The higher your floor, the lower your upside and vice versa.
A new study by Goodman Institute Senior Fellow Laurence Kotlikoff and his colleagues says that middle-aged families in the top fifth of the income distribution have almost 200 times the wealth of families in the bottom fifth. But after taxes and entitlement transfers, the difference in lifetime spending power is only 7.5 to 1. Our fiscal system is far more progressive than critics like to admit. See the New York Times description and the technical paper.
Americans don’t save enough, either individually or collectively. Yet by looking at the wrong data, many journalists and even top economists are claiming we’re experiencing a “savings glut.” This is hogwash. It’s time to talk turkey about U.S. saving and for journalists and professionals to either do their homework or hold their pens. More
The inflation rate is the highest it’s been in 40 years. Congress can’t change that. But there are six things it can do to help all of us weather inflation, beginning with full inflation indexing of the tax code.
Congress should take this opportunity to make the tax system fully inflation-neutral. But neither inflation nor the Fed’s minor rate hikes will kill the economy. Nor will Putin’s war, which is stimulating the defense industry. Nor will ongoing slowdowns in Chinese production, which is stimulating home production. What can kill the economy is enough people, who should know better, talking it down.
Buy now. Houses, like most physical assets, retain their real value during high inflation and have done far better than most such assets. Plus, if you buy a primary residence now and home prices fall, you won’t be affected unless you need to sell. As long as you have a stable job, can manage your mortgage, and don’t need to move anytime soon, a short-term drop in housing prices isn’t a concern.