Tag Archives: income

Learn more about the Affordable Care Act – the individual mandate: penalty and subsidies

If you can afford insurance but do not get it, you will be charged a fee. This is the “mandate” that people are talking about. Basically, it’s a trade-off for the “pre-existing conditions” bit, saying that since insurers now have to cover you regardless of what you have, you can’t just wait to buy insurance until you get sick. Otherwise no one would buy insurance until they needed it. You can opt not to get insurance, but you’ll have to pay the fee instead, unless of course you’re not buying insurance because you just can’t afford it.

*Note: On 6/28/12, the Supreme Court ruled that this is Constitutional.

 

ViaReddit – What exactly is Obamacare?

 

 

More details from Kaiser Health News:

Q: I don’t have health insurance. Will I have to get it, and what happens if I don’t?

A: Under the legislation, most Americans will have to have insurance by 2014 or pay a penalty. The penalty would start at $95, or up to 1 percent of income, whichever is greater, and rise to $695, or 2.5 percent of income, by 2016. This is the individual limit; families have a limit of $2,085 or 2.5 percent of household income, whichever is greater. Some people can be exempted from the insurance requirement, called an individual mandate, because of financial hardship or religious beliefs or if they are American Indians, for example.

Q: I want health insurance, but I can’t afford it. What do I do?

A: Depending on your income, you might be eligible for Medicaid, the state-federal program for the poor and disabled, which will be expanded sharply beginning in 2014. Low-income adults, including those without children, will be eligible, as long as their incomes didn’t exceed 133 percent of the federal poverty level, or $14,404 for individuals and $29,326 for a family of four, according to current poverty guidelines.

Q: What if I make too much for Medicaid but still can’t afford coverage?

A: You might be eligible for government subsidies to help you pay for private insurance that would be sold in the new state-based insurance marketplaces, called exchanges, slated to begin operation in 2014.

Premium subsidies will be available for individuals and families with incomes between 133 percent and 400 percent of the poverty level, or $14,404 to $43,320 for individuals and $29,326 to $88,200 for a family of four.

The subsidies will be on a sliding scale. For example, a family of four earning 150 percent of the poverty level, or $33,075 a year, will have to pay 4 percent of its income, or $1,323, on premiums. A family with income of 400 percent of the poverty level will have to pay 9.5 percent, or $8,379.

In addition, if your income is below 400 percent of the poverty level, your out-of-pocket health expenses will be limited.

 

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Facebook’s first public earnings release, Q2 – July 26

Facebook will give investors and the world their first official look at its post-IPO earning for Q2 2012 at 2pm PST on July 26th, according to a brief note posted to its investor relations page just now. The company’s share price closed at $31.095 today, down $0.265 or 0.85%, but still closer to the $38 IPO price than its been for most of the time since its May 18th public debut.

The company pulled in $1.058 billion in Q1 2012 revenue with a net income of $205 million. Critics will want to see both of those increase and will likely focus on its mobile revenue. Facebook only began showing ads on mobile at the end of February, but monetizing the medium is believed to be the linchpin of Facebook’s future success.

ViaFacebook’s First Public Earnings, Q2 2012, Scheduled For July 26th

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California’s budget troubles – say hello to billions in tax revenue from Facebook’s IPO

California is hoping for another Google-effect like the one that happened in 2005, after the company’s IPO. From 2004 to 2005 the revenue from capital gains taxes in California shot up $14 billion.

Mark Zuckerberg, whose initial public stock offering in two weeks could value the company at $96 billion, will cut in the state for an estimated $189 million in cash, according to calculations from PrivCo, which researches private companies.

The federal government will be in the money too, collecting an estimated $714 million in federal income tax from Zuckerberg.

And that’s just the payout from Zuckerberg. The windfall for California from the rest of the IPO could net California hundreds of millions more.

…the IPO could pump nearly $2.5 billion into state coffers over the next five years.

via LA Times

 

// Photo - Håkan Dahlström

Microsoft invests half billion in the Nook, making it more valuable than Barnes and Noble

Microsoft and Barnes & Noble have teamed up to compete against Apple and Amazon in the eBooks business. The new partnership sees Microsoft investing $300 million in a new Barnes & Noble subsidiary.

The $300 million investment in the Nook subsidiary of Barnes & Noble gives Microsoft about 17.6 percent ownership of this business unit. That values this part of the business at about $1.7 billion. Before the markets opened this morning, the Nook business was valued about $900 million more than Barnes & Noble itself.

via GigaOm

 

In addition, Microsoft is paying another $305 million to get Nook on Windows 8 with some content:

Microsoft will be paying the Barnes & Noble subsidiary $180 million for revenue sharing on the Nook app that B&N will make for the Windows 8 platform. This is nonrefundable, the filing notes. Microsoft is also paying $125 million (equal to $25 million over five years) “for purposes of assisting NewCo in acquiring local digital reading content and technology development.” This, too, looks to be nonrefundable.

via Techcrunch

To put that in perspective, in the last quarter Barnes and Noble made $52 million in profit (on $2.4 billion in sales), and Amazon pulled in $130 million in profit (on $13 billion in sales). Clearly, Amazon has a big edge over B&N.

But, when you look at Microsoft’s earnings for the last quarter, $5.1 billion in profit (on $17 billion in sales), it looks like the big dog just entered the game. But, don’t forget that Apple is on the scene as well.

Clearly, the e-reader battle is just heating up and everyone wants a piece.

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On a side note, Target just announced they are pulling all Kindle’s from their stores due to ‘showrooming.’ The practice of visiting Target to physically touch a product, so you can then buy it on Amazon.

Infograph – homeschoolers are growing rapidly with better scores and graduation rates

We’ve all heard about the troubles in our public schools and maybe even know a few parents brave enough to homeschool their kids. But what are the effects of doing so?

Is it only for the wealthy or those with teaching experience, and does it make your kids weird?

A new infograph from college@home answers these questions, starting with GPA:

 

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We all pay taxes – Barack & Michelle made $800k, donated $170k, & paid $160k in taxes

As we all get finished with our taxes so do the President and First Lady. It turns out that the Obama’s came in with a 20.5% tax rate on income of $789,674 (married filing jointly), including donations worth $172,130.

The bulk of that income came from presidential salaries, $394,821, and book sales, $441,369.

In 2010, their income was $1.7 million with the increase due to book sales, and in 2009, it was more than $5.5 million from book sales and Barack’s Nobel Peace Prize award money.

In comparison, Mitt Romney pulled in an estimated $20.9 million in 2011, and is paying a %15.3 tax rate on that. It seems that both our politicians are paying lower rates than average Americans.

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CPC is better than CPM

If you’ve ever wanted to know why CPC is better than CPM and CPA here is a great description why.

CPM – cost-per-thousand

CPA – cost-per-action

CPC – cost-per-click

Cost-per-thousand (CPM) was huge in the early days and very simple, get paid by the thousand viewers. But, it was it very limited in effectiveness. It placed all of the risk on the advertiser. They created the ad and made the payments, while all the website had to do was display the ad (often in the worst locations).

Then, cost-per-action (CPA) came into play where the website had to actually close a deal. The website didn’t get paid unless they got a viewer to buy something (or sign-up for something). This is the most common program used by the wide range of affiliate companies who offer high percentages (5%-15%) of the sale. But, this switches the game by placing all the risk on the website. The website places the ad and no matter how many views or clicks it receives they only get paid if the viewer commits the desired action. The advertiser receives all the free views and clicks with no impetus to create a compelling ad.

Finally, the balance came with cost-per-click (CPC). In this case the website gets paid for each click on the ad and it forces them to display it in the best possible spot. It also encourages the advertiser to create an interesting and relevant ad because they still need to convert the click into an action (purchase, sign-up).

For more information visit infolific: CPM vs CPA vs CPC.

Age in Relationships

I’m dating a woman a few years older than me. She is beautiful and perfect but in the world of male machismo this is a problem. I’m supposed to be older and wiser, instead I’m the puny non-breadwinner.

To fully understand this dilemma we have to explore sexism, in all it’s glory. Traditional relationships involve a male who is a few years older than the female. This leaves the lady to enjoy the benefits of a higher income and a mature man. The dude gets the younger lady and the ego boost of being wiser.

This totally leaves out gay couples, couples of the same age, and most likely a majority of the country. Which is kind of sad because this is our culture. So instead of gaining all this wisdom and help, it only serves to hamper and confuse us. Simply put, the U.S. culture is not made for me and I think we should amp it up and modernize it.

Particularly because I’m in the relationship of my life and I have no idea what to do. The lady has a few years on me and is at a different stage physically. For kids, her biology says it’s now or never, while I’ve got a few years to dilly-dally. Should I make her wait or pony-up early?

What about money, the ultimate relationship killer. I’m just coming out of my debt years thanks to college, a car, and haphazardly getting a mortgage. I’m doing fine now with all that paid off or turned into equity builders, but it still puts a strain on the relationship.

Studies say that even having debt in a relationship is a big deal. It creates an imbalance that hurts future money decisions.

Top it all off, I’m a few years behind in my career. I have less experience, less income earning years, and less opportunity. Not because of ineptitude but simply less time on target.

So there it is the crux of age in relationships: kids, debt, and income. I could also say maturity but often couples in relationships love each other for their personalities. It’s these other factors – life factors – that get in the way.  Add in a dose of ineffectual culture and nascent sexism and you have a confusing mixture that definitely puts a strain on the ego.