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  • Originally posted by Pitbull9 View Post
    Economy is killing it, Trump is killing it!! Hate the guy or not he is doing all the right things and making all the hard decisions doing what needs to be done.
    He is doing good for the short term, terrible at the long term. He was elected to stop the Demographic shift and drain the Swamp, he has failed miserably so far and time is up.
    Diversity is a code word for White Genocide


    • it's great to see GFRules back.H

      Hope he's still around now in late March.


      • General Electric, once one of the mightiest, most well-respected American corporations, announced that it's freezing pensions, for about 20,000 U.S. employees and offering pension buyouts to 100,000 former employees, according to the Pension Rights Center.

        This signals a sad ending to the once commonly held practice of companies offering pension plans to their employees to afford them a comfortable and secure retirement.

        GE’s was the epitome of a success story in corporate America. In its 127-year history, the company was responsible for creating revolutionary technologies, earning amazing profits. However, now mired in problems, the company has been accused by Bernie Madoff whistleblower, Harry Markopolos, of alleged fraud.

        GE was an original member of the Dow Jones Industrial Average. Its scientists invented and perfected products such as light bulbs, X-rays, refrigerators, televisions, commercial jet engines and nuclear power plants. The company also became a leader in financial services and attracted the best and brightest scholars and bankers.

        The company rose to its zenith under the stewardship of legendary CEO Jack Welch.

        Welch became a household name—one of the first celebrity CEOs. For two decades, he was heralded as the pinnacle of success. Under his reign, GE was one of America’s most prominent companies with a $600 billion valuation in 2000. Over 300,000 employees worked at GE in 150 U.S. factories and at 176 manufacturing plants in over 30 other countries. GE’s pension plan made it possible for 485,000 employees to retire. Evolving from products into services, GE Capital, its financial division, led the company’s growth.

        After Welch retired, a succession of new CEOs and business challenges, GE's fortunes had faded and the company became a shadow of its former glory. With less revenue and profits, GE still has substantial pension liabilities for its 600,000 retirees, workers and beneficiaries. The pension is underfunded by $27 billion. A Barclay’s research analyst, Julian Mitchell wrote, "The impact on employee engagement/morale of some of these pension measures is unlikely to be positive, but in a situation of 'corporate battlefield surgery,' this tends to be a typical, if unfortunate casualty."

        The most recent body blow was from whistleblower Harry Markopolos, who alleged that GE was engaged in fraudulent business practices. In an extensive report, he accused GE of making fraudulent financial filings to cover up its huge obligations. Markopolos is collaborating with an unnamed hedge fund, which is using his information to sell short GE’s stock price. They hope to benefit as the share price declines. GE’s share price has plummeted from a high of $50 in January 2000 to under $9 today.

        Unfortunately, most American workers do not have corporate pension plans to rely upon. However, many do offer 401(k)s. With the withering away of pensions, it is another challenge for people to accumulate sufficient funds to retire with dignity and general comfort.



          If at first you don’t succeed, try again.

          Muscle Maker Grill, the healthy fast-food franchise, has filed registration documents with federal regulators to raise at least $7 million in an initial public offering.

          The Burleson, Texas-based company, which has struggled with operating losses for years, plans to use the funds “for general corporate purposes.”

          The potential IPO comes just two years after Muscle Maker failed to generate any interest in its Regulation A+ mini IPO. The company at the time hoped to raise $20 million with its offering, but instead raised less than $150,000.

          Mini IPOs are less restrictive than traditional IPOs. They’re traditionally reserved for companies that don’t have access to traditional IPO markets that depend on larger, institutional investors.

          That makes Muscle Maker’s IPO step unusual, to say the least.

          The financial challenges that likely doomed Muscle Maker’s initial effort are still there. The company is struggling with weak sales and increasing costs. It has been closing locations and can’t make money on its existing operations. Now it is banking on delivery, and the high fees that come with it, to generate more sales.

          Muscle Maker operates 39 locations in 14 states, plus two in Kuwait. Franchisees operate all but eight of them. But it operated 53 locations two years ago and has faced lawsuits over closed locations.

          The company focuses on “healthy-inspired, high-quality, made-to-order, lean, protein-based meals,” including chicken, seafood, pasta, burgers, wraps and flatbreads, along with salads, protein shakes and smoothies.

          Muscle Maker is planning aggressive franchise growth, particularly in nontraditional locations such as military bases.

          It has big plans for delivery. Some franchise locations in urban areas get as much as 80% of their sales that way. But the costs are steep: up to 25%. “Our cost structure will need to be adjusted to reflect a different pricing model, portion sizes, menu offerings, and other considerations to potentially offset these rising costs of delivery,” the company said in its IPO filing.

          Muscle Maker’s financial losses have led to questions about its ability to continue operating. Auditors have given it a “going concern” warning, suggesting “substantial doubt” about its viability.

          Revenues are down 20%, to just $3.7 million, in the first nine months of 2019. It reported a net loss of $5.4 million, though that was an improvement over the $6.7 million loss in the same period a year ago.

          The company has less than $2 million in cash and has a working capital deficit of $5.5 million. Its accumulated deficit is nearly $30 million.

          Muscle Maker has made some improvements more recently. In the third quarter ended Sept. 30, the company generated $1.1 million in revenues, up more than 6% over the same period a year ago. Yet it still finished with a wider, $1.4 million operating loss in the period and a net loss of $2.3 million, more than double its net loss in the same period a year ago.

          Same-store sales were not available, but they are down so far in 2019 and were down in 2018. Muscle Maker is hoping that marketing, new menu initiatives and improved speed of service will improve that number.

          They’ll need to improve, too. Food and beverage costs at company locations were 41.3% of sales in the third quarter, up 430 basis points from the same period a year ago. Labor costs were 42.3%, up 530 basis point. Rent was 11.8% of sales. “Other restaurant operating expenses” were 13.8%, up 500 basis points.

          Much of the increase in costs was associated with the company’s acquisition of a pair of franchisee-owned locations. Still, add all these costs up and the restaurants are at a deficit of 9.2%.

          All of these losses are putting considerable pressure on the company to raise sales. But even if it can quickly increase revenues, it needs to raise cash. Thus, the IPO.

          Muscle Maker needs to raise $350,000 by the end of December to “satisfy the company’s monthly expenses and continue in operation.”

          To fund its plan for 2020, the company needs to raise “a minimum” of $5.75 million.

          “Our inability to raise capital could require us to significantly curtail or terminate our operations,” Muscle Maker said in its filing.



          • The hallmark claim of the Trump administration is that unemployment is at historic lows. However, a closer examination of the long-term unemployment data shows that Trump is more likely claiming the credit for actions taken and policies that were implemented during the Obama administration, according to essay writing service ny


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                • Both those Vice videos were good...thank you. Those Appalachian kids brought tears to my eyes. There are great kids out there ALL OVER America .

                  Thanks again for today's knowledge.


                  • Originally posted by EleonoraPucci View Post
                    The hallmark claim of the Trump administration is that unemployment is at historic lows. However, a closer examination of the long-term unemployment data shows that Trump is more likely claiming the credit for actions taken and policies that were implemented during the Obama administration, according to essay writing service ny
                    Does that mean that Obama should take credit for what GWB did and was his (GWB) economy due to what Clinton did and so on? Respectfully, I disagree with your post.


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                        • Jobless claims undo decade's worth of employment gains

                          Millions of Americans join unemployment line as coronavirus savages economy

                          A stunning 26.5 million Americans have sought unemployment benefits since mid-March, confirming that all the jobs gained during the longest employment boom in U.S. history have been wiped out as the novel coronavirus savages the economy.

                          The deepening economic slump amid nationwide lockdowns to control the spread of COVID-19, the potentially lethal respiratory illness caused by the virus, was underscored by other data on Thursday showing business activity sinking to an all-time low in April. In addition, new home sales decreased by the most in more than 6-1/2 years in March.

                          “At this point it would take a miracle to keep this recession from turning into the Great Depression II,” said Chris Rupkey, chief economist at MUFG in New York. “The risks to the outlook are that the economy is digging itself such a big deep hole that it will become harder and harder to climb back out of it.”

                          Initial claims for state unemployment benefits totaled a seasonally adjusted 4.427 million for the week ended April 18, the Labor Department said. That compared to 5.237 million in the prior week. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast 4.2 million claims in the latest week.

                          Since March 21, 26.453 million people have filed claims for unemployment benefits, representing 16.2% of the labor force. That has led to dire predictions of 30 million job losses during the COVID-19 pandemic and an unemployment rate at levels not seen since the Great Depression. The economy created 22 million jobs during the employment boom which started in September 2010 and abruptly ended in February this year.

                          The rising tide of grim economic numbers has been met with protests, which have largely been viewed as political, for states and local governments to reopen non-essential businesses. President Donald Trump, who is seeking a second term in the White House in November’s general election, has also been growing anxious to restart the paralyzed economy.

                          A handful of Republican-led states are reopening their economies, despite warnings from health experts of a potential new surge in infections. Economists also warn that there is no guarantee that Americans will feel safe to visit shopping malls.

                          “Today’s report shows the labor market is almost certainly pushing into new territory, jolting the unemployment rate up above the Great Recession’s 10% peak and wiping out more jobs than we’ve gained in the recovery,” said Daniel Zhao, senior economist at Glassdoor, a website recruitment firm.

                          In a separate report on Thursday, data firm IHS Markit said its flash U.S. Composite Output Index, which tracks the manufacturing and services sectors, plunged to a reading of 27.4 this month, the lowest since the series began in late-2009, from 40.9 in March.

                          New home sales fell 15.4% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 627,000 units in March, the Commerce Department said in another report. The percentage decline was the largest since July 2013.

                          RAPID DETERIORATION
                          The deteriorating economic data reinforces economists’ contention that the economy entered recession in March.

                          The National Bureau of Economic Research, the private research institute regarded as the arbiter of U.S. recessions, does not define a recession as two consecutive quarters of decline in real GDP, as is the rule of thumb in many countries. Instead, it looks for a drop in activity, spread across the economy and lasting more than a few months.

                          Last week’s claims report covered the period during which the government surveyed business establishments for the nonfarm payrolls component of April’s employment report. Economists are forecasting as many as 25 million jobs were lost in April after the economy purged 701,000 positions in March, which was the largest decline in 11 years.

                          Though weekly jobless filings remain very high, last week’s 810,000 decrease in claims marked the third straight weekly decline in applications, raising hopes that the worst may be over. Weekly claims appeared to have peaked at a record 6.867 million in the week ended March 28.

                          Stocks on Wall Street were trading higher as investors focused on the weekly decline in claims. The dollar slipped against a basket of currencies. U.S. Treasury prices were trading mostly lower.

                          Florida, which together with Tennessee, South Carolina and Georgia is reopening businesses this weekend, continued to see a surge in claims last week. But New York and Michigan reported fewer applications. Georgia reported a drop in claims.

                          The overall decrease in claims has been attributed to difficulties by states in processing large volumes of applications and a historic $2.3 trillion fiscal package, which made provisions for small businesses to access loans that could be partially forgiven if they were used for employee salaries.

                          An additional $484 billion in a fresh relief package for small business loans is expected soon. The handful of states easing restrictions could serve as a barometer for the overall economy when it reopens.

                          “We would assume jobless claims will fall back sharply here, but if consumers remain reluctant to go shopping or visit a restaurant due to lingering COVID-19 fears, then employment is not going to rebound quickly,” said James Knightley, chief international economist at ING in New York.

                          “As such it would be another signal that a V-shaped recovery for the U.S. economy is highly unlikely.”

                          With weekly claims stabilizing, the focus is shifting to the number of people on unemployment benefits rolls. The so-called continuing claims data is reported with a one-week lag.

                          Continuing claims jumped 4.064 million to a record 15.976 million in the week ending April 11. Continuing claims have not increased at the same pace as initial jobless applications.

                          Economists believe some people thrown out of work because of state-mandated “stay-at-home” orders found employment at supermarkets, warehouses and delivery services companies. They expect the unemployment rate will shatter the post-World War Two record of 10.8% touched in November 1982.

                          The jobless rate shot up 0.9 percentage point, the largest single-month change since January 1975, to 4.4% in March.



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                            • Originally posted by EleonoraPucci View Post
                              The hallmark claim of the Trump administration is that unemployment is at historic lows. However, a closer examination of the long-term unemployment data shows that Trump is more likely claiming the credit for actions taken and policies that were implemented during the Obama administration, according to essay writing service ny
                              Unemployment has been talked a lot by incumbent politicians and the mainstream media. A low U3 unemployment rate is good for the obvious reasons.

                              But does this mean the economy can be defined as good? No, not alone.

                              Another trick used is the mix the US stock market with the US economy - they aren't the same.


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