Archive for May, 2017

What The Sec Really Thinks About Mutual Funds!

By Dr. Scott Brown, Ph.D.

Lets go into the details of why non-indexed mutual funds are such a bad deal. When Arthur Levitt became the head of the Security Exchange Commission in 1993 he had to sell off all of his individual stocks so that people would not claim that he was doing any dirty inside dealing. He decided to put the cash from selling off his stock portfolio into mutual funds.

Mr. Levitt grew very angry when he tried to decipher how particular mutual funds divvied up their cash into specific stocks. He couldnt make heads or tells from the fancy brochures of the mutual funds called prospectuses. He had been a major player in the stock brokerages for over 25 years at that point and knew that if he couldnt understand the mutual funds prospectus then he knew public investors couldnt either; it had to be a big scam to suck money out of the public.

In 1980 the US public invested $100 billion into the 500 mutual funds that existed at that time. By 1993 the public put $1.6 trillion into the more than 3,800 mutual funds that existed in that year; talk about growth! By the end of February 2003, at the bottom of the bear market there were 8,200 mutual funds and the public had pumped in $6.3 trillion dollars. Wow! That is a lot of money. What is important to note is that at least 40% of mutual fund money comes in from 401(k) retirement accounts. Today these mutual funds own about 20% of all publicly traded shares of stock. Mutual funds act like a herd of cows buying and selling the same stocks at the same time. This increases the wild price volatility swings in the stock market.

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These funds are also sold and managed on pure hype, short term trading, and with key information withheld from the public. All of these factors I teach finance students and investors to avoid! The industry confuses investors by focusing on past performance, which should not be a factor to consider. Many mutual funds are able to cheat the public with excessive fees because investors dont understand how these big costs destroy their profit. Mutual funds have no interest in educating investors because it is easier to hoodwink the ignorant!

Dont put your trust in mutual funds unless they are fully indexed. Indexing means that the mutual fund simply uses a computer to buy and sell stocks in the mutual fund portfolio so as to mimic the composition of a major stock market index like the S&P 500. This means that there is no fund manager sucking out needless fees. A good example is the first fully indexed mutual fund called the Vanguard 500 (VFINX) which is also now the largest of its kind.

About the Author: Dr. Scott Brown, Ph.D., the Wallet Doctor, is a successful investor. Dr. Brown holds a Ph.D. in finance. The Wallet Doctor is sought after for investment advice and coaching. For more information visit Dr. Browns site at

BonanzaBase.com

or sign up for his investment tips at

WalletDoctor.com

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Hidden treasure worth billions of dollars discovered in Indian temple

Monday, July 4, 2011

Officials announced that a treasure containing sacks of diamonds and gold coins as well as golden idols, jewelry and other riches has been discovered in the secret subterranean vaults of Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple, in the southwestern state of Kerala, India. Estimates of its worth have been rising and it is now thought to be worth US$20 billion.

The Hindu temple was built in the 16th century by the kings of the then Kingdom of Travancore to serve as a royal chapel for the rulers of Travancore. The six vaults containing the treasure have been undisturbed for over a century. Assessment of the treasure began on June 27 after a lawyer concerned about the security of the treasure petitioned India’s Supreme Court, which then appointed a seven-member panel of experts to inventory the treasure. The panel does not have the power to determine to whom the treasure will belong. Estimates of the treasure’s worth are rising, provoking a heated debate as to how the treasure will be used in a country that has 450 million poverty-stricken people.

The chief minister of Kerala, Oommen Chandy, announced on Sunday the treasure would remain with the temple, and security matters would be decided in consultation with the Travancore Royal Family, the temple management, and the temple priest.

The gold was offered to the lord. It is the property of the temple.

“The gold was offered to the lord. It is the property of the temple. The government will protect the wealth at the temple,” Oommen Chandy said. Meanwhile, hundreds of armed police have been deployed around the temple to protect the treasure.

However, the view that the treasure should remain at the temple has been disputed. Among the dissenters is eminent jurist V R Krishna Iyer, who said the treasure should be put in a national trust for the peoples’ benefit. “God’s wealth belongs to the people, not to the king. It’s meaningless to say that it belongs to Hindus or any particular religious community,” said Iyer. “A mechanism should be devised to ensure that the benefits of it reach the poor and the needy and not the rich.”

Five of the six vaults of the Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple have been inventoried.

God’s wealth belongs to the people, not to the king. It’s meaningless to say that it belongs to Hindus or any particular religious community.

On Saturday, reports leaked to the press revealed that the treasure, including a golden idol of Mahavishnu and a golden ‘anki’, were found in one of the vaults, estimated to weigh 30 kilograms, along with precious stones, silver, two coconut shells of pure gold and another golden idol as well as other jewels and valuable coins. The panel hopes to find more treasure when the sixth and final vault is opened, but the attempt was suspended on Monday because the iron door inside presented “technical problems” requiring further consultation before opening. This vault is thought to contain the bulk of the wealth.

Keralan officials in a preliminary estimate said that the treasure was worth over US$11.2 billion; those estimates have now risen to US$20 billion. Historians say that the temple’s location on a site through which passed lucrative trade routes support the higher evaluations.

“Traders, who used to come from other parts of the country and abroad for buying spices and other commodities, used to make handsome offerings to the deity for not only his blessings but also to please the then rulers,” said P.J. Cherian, the director of Kerala Council for Historic Research

Some suggest that the profit from the sale of the treasure would be enough to wipe out the entire public debt of Kerala and fund future Kerala projects such as seaports, airports and highways.

Gas explosion flattens Mexico City maternity hospital

Saturday, January 31, 2015

An explosion on Thursday morning destroyed a state maternity hospital in Mexico City, Mexico. A nurse and two babies are dead.

I feel grateful to have another chance to keep living, to keep working as a nurse

Initially reports placed the fatalities at seven. Local officials including Mexico City Health Secretary Armando Ahued and Mayor Miguel Angel Mancera have since revised the figure downwards. Over 70 people including 20 infants are wounded. Around 100 people were in the building at the time.

The explosion occurred as a truck was resupplying the hospital’s gas tanks, and a leak developed in the supply hose. Driver Julio César Martínez and assistants Carlos Chavez and Salvador Alatorre have been arrested. Chavez and Alatorre spent around fifteen minutes attempting to stem the leak, to no avail. All three are amongst the injured.

Firefighters and federal police entered the ruins to recover trapped survivors. Victims’ relatives, and other bystanders, gathered at police cordons around the scene. “I am still a little bit in shock. It was a nightmare,” said nurse Ivonne Lugo Durantes.

Durantes was rescued after ten minutes trapped beneath debris. She has first degree burns but is “grateful to have another chance to keep living, to keep working as a nurse.” She witnessed other staff rescuing babies amid a conflagration.

New father Jose Eduardo told reporters his wife ran barefoot with their baby to escape. Eduardo said some escaped nude. Witnesses around the hospital reported a strong smell of gas, a large explosion, and flying debris. Ambulances and helicopters were used to evacuate casualties.

President Enrique Pena Nieto and Pope Francis both took to Twitter to express support for the victims.

Birth Control Needs, Methods And Information Available For Todays Women

By Linda Crowford

Need for birth control in todays world

With the rapid growth of the population in the world as well as the increased sense in general awareness for HIV/AIDS, has forced to think on birth control methods. The current worlds population is estimated to be around 6.4 billion with annual growth of 76 million and hence, it is estimated to reach 9 billion by year 2050. In next two decades, worlds two highly populous countries, China & India are expected to reach the population of 1.5 billion each i.e more than one third of the total world population of that time. It is alarming situation for the world to control this population explosion. Therefore, United Nations are urging countries specially highly populated countries to control their population.

As per the survey report for birth control methods if applied in 169 countries, 137 million women willing to delay their contraceptives, 64 million women are using less effective birth control measures. If these women are helped with adequate birth control treatment (like pills, condoms), 23 million of unplanned births, 22 million induced abortions and 1.4 million infants could be avoided as estimated by United Nations Population Fund.

Besides population, HIV/AIDS is also very important factor forcing the need for birth control. An estimated, world has 38 million people have either AIDS or infected with HIV (human immunodeficiency virus). In seven African countries, one out of 5 adults is infected with HIV. Birth control methods are, therefore, become imperative to control further spread of HIV/AIDS, particularly in these countries. The population in these countries is projected at 35% lower by 2025 free from HIV/AIDS. It will further reduce the total life expectancy by an average of 29 years in these countries.

History of Birth Control

200 AD, Greek gynecologist Soranus said that women become fertile during ovulation. He suggested some birth control tips for women to avoid unwanted pregnancy like smearing olive oil, pomegranate pulp, ginger, or tobacco juice around vagina to kill sperm, drinking water used by blacksmith to cool hot metals and jumping 7 times backward after the sexual intercourse. Many birth control methods like ayurvedic treatments used centuries ago (aside from sexual abstinence). However, there are some historical records of Egyptian women are found who were using some herbal or acid substances like crocodile dung or lubricants like honey or household olive oil as vaginal suppository, which they may have found effective at killing sperm.

However, commercial use of birth control method started in 1960 in the form of birth control pill. It was in 1950, when Planned Parenthood Federation of America invited biologist Dr. Gregory Pincus to develop oral contraceptive pill that would be harmless, universally acceptable and safe for husband and wife. After under going many tests with more than 6,000 women in Puerto Rico and Haiti , it was 1960 when the first commercially produced birth control pill called Enovid-10 was introduced to women in USA . This first oral contraceptive was made with two hormones Estrogen (100 to 175 microgram) and Progestin (10 mg). They were proved to be 99% effective if taken as directed. With estimation, more than 18 million women in US are relying on birth control pills

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Types of birth control pills

Unlike the decades old oral contraceptive pills (which had higher number of hormones), todays birth control pills are in low-dose forms with health benefits. So, women can take birth control pills with much fewer health risks.

Generally there are three types of birth control pills available

1. Progestin only pills (POP)

It is also known as mini-pill containing no estrogen. It is recommended for breastfeeding women because estrogen reduced milk production. This POP pill works by thickening the cervical mucus and thus preventing sperm to enter uterus

2. Combination birth control pills

The widely known birth control pills are having combination of two hormones progestin and estrogen. These types of oral contraceptive pills come with the pack of 21 active pills and 7 placebos , which do not contain any hormones. These are, in fact, known as reminder pills

These combination pills are further sub-divided into three types of pills due to the level of two hormones progestin and estrogen.

i) Monophasic birth control pills

Here, every active pill contains the equal number of progestin and estrogen. The other seven pills are placebo having no hormones. Menstruation starts when these placebo pills are taken

ii) Multiphasic birth control pills

They are also known as biphasic or trphasic oral contraceptive pills due to different levels of hormones in active pills. These pills are required to be taken at specific time in its entire pills schedule. Multiphasic birth control pills help offsetting the risks of oral contraceptives.

iii) Continuous birth control pills

it is also known as 365 days pills to be taken continuously throughout the year without the year. This is the new entry of oral contraceptive pills in the birth control market. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Lybrel, which is the only continuous birth control pill approved so far and available for general women use. Women do not get menstrual period while they are under the treatment of Lybrel, however, they might find some breakthrough bleeding or spotting, particularly at the initial stage.

3) Emergency birth control pills

Also known as morning after pills, these are designed for immediate pregnancy protection after the unprotected sex. It is highly recommended to take emergency pills within 48 hours and maximum 72 hours to be effective in avoiding pregnancy. These are different than usual oral contraceptive pills where you plan your birth control much in advance. Emergency pills are also taken when the women are sexually assaulted. FDA has approved Plan B as the safest emergency pills. Due to OTC (over the counter) approval by FDA for women above 18 years, Plan B can now be ordered behind pharmacy counter.

About the Author: Linda Crowford is an author for many successful articles and ebooks written on women’s health, birth control, pregnancy issues. She is also associated with

mybirthcontrolstore.com

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New Jersey backpedals on proposed bikini waxing ban

Saturday, March 21, 2009

New Jersey has reversed its plans for a state-wide ban on bikini waxing after salon owners from across the state spoke out against the proposal.

The New Jersey Board of Cosmetology and Hairstyling planned to consider a ban on so-called “Brazilian waxes” in response to two women who reported being injured during a wax.

But state Consumer Affairs Director David Szuchman, who oversees the board, asked them to abandon the ban in favor of reviewing and establishing safeguards for those who provide the service.

“Many commentators have noted that the procedure could be safely performed,” Szuchman wrote in a letter to state board President Ronald Jerome Brown, according to the Asbury Park Press. “I, therefore, believe that there are alternative means to address any public health issues identified by the board.

Salon owners from across the state expressed relief with Szuchman’s decision.

“It was an unnecessary issue,” spa owner Linda Orsuto told the Associated Press. “In New Jersey especially, where the government has been picking our pockets for so long, it was like, ‘Just stay out of our pants, will you?'”

Although millions of Americans get bikini waxes, which generally cost between $50 and $60 per session, the practice comes with risks. Skin care experts say the hot wax can irritate delicate skin in the bikini area, and result in infections, ingrown hairs and rashes.

Waxing on the face, neck, abdomen, legs and arms are permitted in New Jersey. Although state statutes have always banned bikini waxing, the laws are seldom enforced because the wording is unclear.

If the measure had passed, New Jersey might have become the only US state to ban the practice outright.

Although Szuchman’s letter was crafted more as a recommendation than an order, media reports said the ban would likely never be approved without his support because his office oversees the board.

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