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September 2, 2014 / 7 Elul, 5774
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Money’

Overspending

Thursday, August 1st, 2013

Often one spouse accuses the other of being an over-spender. But what exactly is “overspending”? This definition changes from family to family; for one, going out to eat on a weekly basis may be within their means, while even a periodic coffee may be stretching the resources of another couple. So how does a family determine whether they can afford to eat out?

One cannot “overspend” if there isn’t a budget that defines spending limits. A budget can help reduce friction between spouses who have different spending patterns. If both partners agree to create and abide by a budget, then the one spouse is no longer the “bad cop” that regulates his or her partner’s spending habits.

Spending as an emotional issue

People spend money for a variety of reasons. Some expenses, like groceries and utilities, are a necessity, while others are discretionary. However, even within fixed expenses there is usually room to cut back. Does Shabbat dinner need to be an expensive cut of meat accompanied by costly wine, or will chicken and grape juice suffice?

Examine your fiscal habits. Do you have an idea of how much your monthly expenses are? Where do you spend money? Do you charge or pay in cash? Do you have financial goals that are important to you, and if so, are you actively working to achieve them? How would you feel if your spending habits changed? How would that change affect your spouse/family?

Consider the doctor who tells an overweight patient that unless he lost a considerable amount of weight, he would face serious illness. Chances are, the patient would diet and exercise. So why is there a discrepancy when a financial adviser recommends a fiscal diet and an exercise program of spending within a budget?

Very often, financial issues mask other problems within a relationship. Therefore, creating a budget is not only a good tool to monitor spending, but it can also help improve family harmony.

Israelis Love of the Lottery Pushes Revenues Up by 14 Percent

Monday, July 15th, 2013

The safest bet in Israel is that the national lottery Mifal HaPayis will make money. It announced Sunday that it raked in $810 million in the first six months of 2013, 14 percent more than in the same period last year.

The most popular game is the lotto, which brought in $214 million, one-third more than in the first six months of 2012.

Mifal HaPayis plows its profits back into communities, doling out $130 million to local authorities in the period from January through June, the highest semi-annual amount in history.

US Customers Withdraw $4 Billion from Israeli Banks

Tuesday, July 2nd, 2013

Tighter American tax laws have encouraged U.S. citizens to withdraw approximately $2 billion from Israeli banks in less than two years.

“The blow is not just in the drop in assets, but also in the drop in investments. Some of these customers, especially the wealthy ones, use the money to make investments and acquisitions in Israel. There is now little chance that they will make these investments, after they moved the money back to the US,” a banking source told Globes business newspaper.

In some cases, Americans used the money to buy property in Israel, but most of the money was sent overseas.

The Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) at the end of this year will require financial institutions in foreign countries to report bank accounts and assets held for American citizens, who must pay taxes regardless of where they are living. Approximately 100,000  first-generation American citizens live in Israel.

With the absence of a tax advantage by leaving assets in Israel, many Americans began withdrawing their money from local banks

Managed accounts of Americans in Israel are estimated to be valued at billions of shekels.

Aliyah and Money: Don’t Go it Alone

Thursday, May 9th, 2013

Are you, or someone close to you, thinking of making aliyah? If so, you’ll probably use the services of Nefesh B’Nefesh, because it’s much easier to settle in a new country with their help. The same principle applies to your finances. It’s much easier to manage your money with the help of a financial advisor.

Here’s why

As most olim will tell you, there’s a lot to do when first settling in. You need to get used to a new language and climate and at the same time, you must find work and a home. The various aliyah organizations, from Nefesh b’Nefesh to the AACI, ESRA, and many more, are all on hand to provide advice, information, and moral support, making your transition into Israeli society much smoother. Through them, you will find out the best job opportunities – or how to retrain in your profession if that’s what is necessary. You will also get a clearer picture of your rights and what kinds of assistance exist for new immigrants. And some of these organizations also provide cultural and social activities, helping you to build up new friendships in your new country.

In the same way, when you want to begin investing, going it alone is not such a good idea. Do you have the time to do all of the necessary research into investments and markets? Are you familiar with the investment and tax problems that U.S. expatriates have? And do you have the financial background to understand the all the available information? Remember that time is also money, and you can lose a lot of money through inefficient investing.

So if you want to manage your finances more effectively, don’t go it alone. Get some help and make a plan. Call your financial planner today.

What Everyone Should Know About Banking and Finance

Monday, May 6th, 2013

This week, meet Michael K. Salemi, professor emeritus at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. His many writings include Money, Banking, and Financial Markets: What Everyone Should Know.” What do you need to know about your finances and the world of banking? Find out by listening to this week’s show.

Warren Buffet Buys Out Israeli Firm for $2 Billion

Wednesday, May 1st, 2013

Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway is paying $2.05 billion for the remaining 20 percent of IMC International Metalworking Co, otherwise known as Isracar, completing the buyout that began with the giant $4 billion purchase of 80 percent of the company in 2006.

“We are delighted to acquire the portion of the company that was retained by the Wertheimer family when IMC first became a member of the Berkshire group of companies,” Buffett said Wednesday in a statement.

“As you can surmise from the price we’re paying for the remaining interest, IMC has enjoyed very significant growth over the last seven years,” Buffett, 82, said.

Isracar employs more than 2,000 people in Israel and 7,500 others around the world.

Buffett has literally fallen in love with Israel. The 2006 purchase of most of Isracar was Buffett’s largest-ever investment outside of the United States.

When he visited Israel prior to the spectacular purchase of the precision carbide cutting tools company, he said, “If you’re going to the Middle East to look for oil, you can skip Israel. If you’re looking for brains, look no further. Israel has shown that it has a disproportionate amount of brains and energy.”

Since then, an American-Israeli consortium drilling off the Haifa coast has made the world’s largest discovery of natural gas in the past 20 years, with a strong possibility of commercial quantities of oil.

Buffet’s purchase of the rest of Isracar on Wednesday helped strengthen the shekel against the dollar, with the going rate for a greenback now less than 3.58 shekels.

Capitalism and the Jews

Wednesday, May 1st, 2013

Is there a connection between capitalism and the Jews, or is this just an anti-Semitic canard? In the second part of this week’s Goldstein on Gelt show, Douglas Goldstein meets Professor Jerry Z. Muller of the Catholic University of America, who answers this question and more when he discusses his new book “Capitalism and the Jews.”

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/goldstein-on-gelt/capitalism-and-the-jews/2013/05/01/

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