Taxing Decisions

More opinions on unemployment numbers:

“I believe U6 provides greater transparency to the reality of unemployment. Its figure should also be given whenever U3 is mentioned.”

And this sent in from “A Canadian shaking his head”:

“The unemployment statistics used don’t really mean anything since it only measures unemployed looking for work.  

“All the able bodied people not looking for work, simply living off of all the government assistance packages available makes it too easy.  

“The bigger issue is to scale down all the assistance packages available so that working for a living is infinitely more desirable. Only then would unemployment rates mean anything.”

As for the long-term effects of social welfare programs on unemployment, that’s complicated.

The U6 number does reflect people who’ve not looked for work in the past 12 months; it doesn’t break down how many years “discouraged” workers have not looked for work.

“You didn’t give a lot of data so maybe the tax argument has more merit as additional data points are revealed but the 3 cities you listed are crazy expensive places to live regardless of taxes. 

“Additionally, NY and LA are undesirable places to live, in my opinion. 

“I suspect many are leaving those cities to bank real estate gains and buy in cheaper locations and taxes are mostly irrelevant.

“Smart money is banking profits and moving to where their money goes further.”

A May, 2018 Redfin survey found the following:

  • 8% changed their home search to a state with lower taxes because of the new tax law
  • 9% changed their home search to nearby cities with lower taxes
  • 10% said they purchased a home with a lower price tag because of the decreased benefits on high-priced homes

There’s not been a mass exodus from high-tax states yet.

But from 2010-2017, low-tax Florida’s experienced a 5% net increase in population from domestic migration; on the other end of the spectrum, New York’s lost 5.5%.

There has to be a connection there.

How about you? If you’re moving or considering it, how much do taxes play into your decision?

Thanks for the feedback. We look forward to hearing from you.

Send your opinions to

Your Rundown for Tues. September 18, 2018…

Recession, Retail and the Art of the Deal

Lehman Brothers filed bankruptcy on Sept. 15, 2008 ahead of the holiday shopping season. The crash of a Big Bank caused U.S. consumers to put their wallets away and basically shelter in place.

Store shelves and racks were left with so much inventory retailers cut prices to 80% off just to lure buyers. And sales continued long past Black Friday.

That discount trend continues today.

The chart below shows retail sales haven’t rebounded to pre-Recession highs, regardless of low unemployment and tax cuts.


And the focus on bargains applies to high and low-end retailers.

“T.J. Maxx was a key beneficiary of this shift,” says an article at CNBC, “its stock has outperformed the industry average by 6 percent, on average, over the past five years, while Ross Stores shares outperformed by 17 percent.”

High-end retailer Nordstrom had to adjust to consumers looking for a deal, too. The Department store’s Nordstrom Rack accounted for 30% of second-quarter sales.

The advent of online retail — that’s really taken off since the Recession — has also contributed to American consumers’ preoccupation with finding a bargain. Shoppers can compare prices at the push of a button.

The Great Recession’s shaped shopping habits. Deloitte’s Rod Sides says: “We’ve conditioned consumers to wait for the deal.”

Market Rundown for Tues. September 18, 2018

S&P 500 futures are up about 13 points to 2,902.32.

Oil’s up by a dollar to $69.86.

Gold’s lost about $3 to $1,202.90.

Bitcoin’s gained $107.96 to $6,369.44.

Send your comments and questions to,

Have a great day. We’ll catch up tomorrow.

For the Rundown,

Aaron Gentzler

Aaron Gentzler

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Aaron Gentzler

Aaron Gentzler is the publisher of Seven Figure Publishing. He is also the editor of The Rundown and has been with Agora Financial / Seven Figure Publishing since 2005. He's been covering technology and markets for over a decade.

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