Social Security's declining payoff
Social Security is not the deal it once was. A married couple that earned average lifetime wages and retired in 2011 paid about $598,000 in Social Security taxes over their careers, but can expect to collect only about $556,000 in benefits. A worker who retired in 1960 could expect seven times more in benefits than he paid in.
The best wireless deal
Just 23 percent of U.S. wireless customers have prepaid phone plans, even though such plans are usually a better deal than contracts. An iPhone with an AT&T contract, for example, costs $200 for the phone and more than $90 a month for the plan, for a two-year total of $2,360. But if you buy the phone outright for $650 and get a prepaid plan on Virgin for $30 a month, the cost comes to just $1,370 over two years.
China loses its wealthy citizens
Sixteen percent of China’s wealthy citizens have emigrated, and 44 percent intend to do so soon. More than 85 percent plan to send their children overseas for their education.
Motorola Mobility to lay off workers
Motorola Mobility, which Google purchased for $12.4 billion in May, will lay off 4,000 workers—20 percent of its global workforce—and close a third of its 90 facilities. Google hopes to refocus the company on pricier, high-end smartphones and devices.
Rising costs for high-frequency trading
High-frequency trading helped lower the cost of getting into and out of a single share of stock by more than half between 2000 and 2010, to 3.5 cents. But in the last quarter, the cost ticked up slightly, to 3.8 cents, suggesting that the benefits of a superfast market are leveling off for ordinary investors.
The New York Times