BankNotes – August 2019

Back in the September 2012 issue of the Lara-Murphy Report, I tackled an older blog post by financial guru Dave Ramsey where he strongly attacked the idea of using permanent life insurance as a savings vehicle.1 Predictably, Ramsey urged his readers to “buy term and invest the difference,” and sought to show how much wiser that course of action would be. If you trusted that Ramsey was indeed doing an apples-to-apples comparison, it sure looked like only an idiot would buy a permanent life insurance policy.

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BankNotes – July 2019

Last month, I began this series, which tackles the question: Does IBC “work” for people who are older and/or in poor health? Many people are concerned that the “pure cost of insurance” will be so high in such cases, that practicing IBC will be too expensive, or will have “too much drag,” to be sensible.

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BankNotes – June 2019

One Of the most common questions we get from the public is whether IBC “works” or “makes sense” for someone who is older and/or in relatively poor wealth. People naturally worry whether the “pure cost of life insurance”— which is more expensive for older and/or sicker individuals, of course— at some point could make IBC impractical. If so, would it be better for people in this situation to take out IBC
policies on others who are
younger and/or in better health?

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BankNotes – May 2019

A Business Credit survey conducted and published in March 2016 by the Federal Reserve Banks of New York, Atlanta, Boston, Cleveland,
Philadelphia, Richmond, and St. Louis reports that “cash flow” is the number one problem facing small businesses with fewer than 500 employees. At the same time a Financial Stability Report dated November 2018 by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve cites that business-sector debt relative to GDP is historically high and “debt has been growing fastest at firms with weaker earnings and higher leverage.” In essence this report insinuates that the very same cash flow difficulty also exists among the larger companies, that is, those businesses with more than 500 employees.

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BankNotes – March 2019

According To The Kauffman Index of Startup Activity1 the share of new entrepreneurs who started businesses to pursue opportunity rather than from necessity is now up more than 12 percentage points higher than in 2009 at the height of the Great Recession. This of course is a very encouraging nationwide trend and I extend my admiration to all those individuals who have ventured out into an endeavor where only about half survives the first five years in operation. Obviously, by any measure, these are certainly not great odds so I also applaud their courage and their desire to start their very own enterprise.

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BankNotes – February 2019

I argue in my talk that Nelson Nash should be considered an intellectual heir to the founder of the Austrian School of Economics, Carl Menger. The specific thread that ties these two men together is the subject of capital. Unfortunately, the idea of capital is fuzzy. Ask 100 people what it is, you’ll get 150 answers.

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BankNotes – January 2019

The many contradictions among different philosophical theories have caused much confusion over the years. Unfortunately, too few teachers and textbooks explain the basic principles that could help students discriminate
intelligently among them and understand the ethical code which fosters freedom, morality and social cooperation. Thus, Henry Hazlitt deserves special credit for bringing logic and clarity to the subject. His book, The Foundations of Morality, was first published in 1964. After having been out of print for several years, it is again available thanks to Nash and the Institute for Humane Studies.

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BankNotes – December 2018

When I wrote Building Your Warehouse of Wealth, a short chapter was devoted to my personal experience with U.S. Silver Eagle coins. A short review of the decision to purchase these coins is necessary. In 1977 two partners and I bought some timberland on Interstate 20 in Talladega County, AL. On the North side of the highway we had the highest point in that broad valley — an ideal spot that attracted owners of cellphone towers. Several years later we got a lease from one of them at a modest annual income for five years — and with a provision that the income would increase 20% each five years as long as they wished to do so.

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