Presidentail $1 Coin
The US has had a poor relationship with the dollar coin. A few years ago George W signed a bill that required the production of the presidential dollar coins, greatly increasing the supply. The problem is that we continued to produce the paper dollar and few Americans wanted to make the switch to the coin.
The treasury needed to spend about $650,000 to build a storage facility to house the excess coins and about $3 million to transport the coins. So, Obama/Biden are going to greatly cut back on coin production.
Keep in mind, if the US made a 100% switch from the paper bill to the $1 coin, we’d save about $5.5 billion over the next 30 years. Sticking with the dollar bill is a huge waste of taxpayer money.
I had been happily getting dollar coins through the US Mint direct ship program. That program allowed you to get a $250 box of dollar coins without any shipping or extra costs. They are now charging $12.50 shipping and handling, further discouraging us from making the switch to the most cost-effective currency.
Money Under 30 posted an interesting article titled How Not to Suck at Applying for a Job. That got me thinking about some of the applicants I’ve seen in the most recent two years.
Why do you want this job?
I don’t want to hear that this new job is part of the natural progression on your career path. I DON’T want to hear that this job is the next step, and just seems like what you should do. I want to hear that you believe you’ll be great at this job and can help the organization by being hired. I want to hear that your skills and experience will benefit the organization more with the new job than with the current job. When you tell the interviewer that “this seems like the next logical step” you’re stating that the organization will help you without you helping the organization. If that’s the case, perhaps the job applicant should be paying the company.
What are one of your weaknesses?
This is such an old and classic interview question that anyone who seems dumbfounded by this question has labeled themselves as LAME. The most common dumb responses I hear are “I work too hard” or “I put in too many hours”. Of course, the applicant is trying to sell himself/herself. What they’ve really shown is that they didn’t plan for this most common interview question AND they haven’t done a self-assessment of their abilities. Working too hard is not a weakness so you didn’t answer the friggin’ question. If you know about yourself and the job in question, identify an area of knowledge or a skill that is tangential to the job you’re interviewing for. Explain that you don’t have it yet and explain what you’re doing right now to acquire the missing knowledge/skill. Then, follow up with a great thing you’ll be able to do for the organization once you add this new skill to your existing knowledge and experience.
Financing a Used Car at 18%
There was an article in the paper the other day about people getting screwed over by dealers when financing cars. They would get some financing at the time of purchase and then within several weeks to a couple of months later, they would get their finance terms changed. The customer would have to agree to the new terms or return the car.
The article profiles one person in Maryland who purchased a 2004 (7-years-old) Mercury Sable for $10,175. He’d pay 278 per month over 54 months. WTF!
I did some crunching in Excel and their original loan terms was an 18.3% loan. That’s insane. The customer would end up paying over $15K for a $10K car. The dealer then changed the terms to $375 per month for 36 months. That rate was about 19.4%. However, the cost of financing was only $3,500 because of the shorter time period.