Need Retirement Income? – (Life Underwriters Need Not Worry)

The total number of life insurance policies sold rose 8% in the first six months of the year and marked the highest such growth since 1983, LIMRA said. And there were other indicators in that same data that pointed to positive signs: Total U.S. life insurance premium increased 21% in the second quarter 2021, the largest year-over-year increase since third quarter 1987; in addition, it was up 18% for the first half of 2021 compared to the prior year.

Life Insurance Sales Are Up, But for How Long? — https://news.ambest.com/articlecontent.aspx?refnum=313837&altsrc=2

I know who you are and I know what you want. If you are looking for ransom, I can tell you I don’t have very much money. But what I do have are a very particular set of skills; skills I have acquired over a very long career. Skills that are currently in short supply. Skills that I can and will take to the highest bidder.

The Supreme Commander

I last posted about my upcoming retirement in More Retirement Income Ahead!

I need to start referring to my upcoming retirement as What Retirement?

The Great Resignation

In April, about 649,000 retail workers left their jobs—a record number of resignations for the industry. It was yet another inflection point in a broader trend sweeping workplaces, as employees reevaluate their relationship to work and act on the burnout induced by the pandemic.

Why I decided to quit my retail job and join the Great Resignationhttps://www.fastcompany.com/90658770/why-i-decided-to-quit-my-retail-job-and-join-the-great-resignation

Interesting perspective from an “essential” worker. And the trend is not limited to retail.

Hospitality jobs are unpopular, and raising the wage may not be enough to lure many former workers back. 38% of former hospitality workers report that they are not even considering a hospitality job for their next position. These workers are transitioning out of the industry in search of a different work setting (52%), higher pay (45%), better benefits (29%), and more schedule flexibility (19%). Over 50% of former hospitality workers who are looking for other work say that no pay increase or incentive would make them return to their old restaurant, bar, or hotel job.

Q2 2021 United States Job Market Report — https://www.joblist.com/jobs-reports/q2-2021-united-states-job-market-report
Not just no but hell no.

No wonder my up line supervisor got nervous when I told her I was thinking more about retirement.

More Retirement Income Ahead!

Total individual life insurance policy sales increased 11% in the first quarter, compared with first quarter 2020. This is the highest growth in the number of policies sold in a quarter since 1983. New annualized premium also experienced significant growth, up 15% from prior year, according to LIMRA’s First Quarter U.S. Individual Life Insurance Sales Survey.

LIMRA: First Quarter U.S. Life Insurance Policy Sales Highest Since 1983 — https://www.limra.com/en/newsroom/news-releases/2021/limra-first-quarter-u.s.-life-insurance-policy-sales-highest-since-1983/

I don’t know who you are. I don’t know what you want. If you are looking for ransom, I can tell you I don’t have money. But what I do have are a very particular set of skills; skills I have acquired over a very long career. Skills that make me a nightmare for people like you.

Bryan Mills, played by Liam Neeson in the film Taken

I had my annual wellness visit earlier this week.

5.10 168 130/84 BMI 24.14 O2 sat 98%

CHOLESTEROL 175 mg/dL
TRIGLYCERIDE 69 mg/dL
HDL 65 mg/dL
LDL CALCULATED 96 mg/dL
NON-HDL CHOLESTEROL 110 mg/dL

All of my other labs were normal too.

I have multiple relatives who have lived well into their 90’s. My maternal grandmother lived to 100. I’m going to need another source of retirement income. And for all of my friends and colleagues who never thought I would make it this far…

AST 23 U/L

ALT 7 U/L

GGT 36 U/L (12/2015)

PSA 0.7 (9/2020)

Third Places and Spaces

The term “third place” was first dubbed by Ray Oldenburg, a world-renowned sociologist who wrote The Great Good Place in 1989. In his book, which was a direct response to the privatization of home life that came with the increase in suburb growth, he claimed that if our homes were the “first” place, and our offices the “second” place, then the “third” place was most everything in between- or the more informal places where community gatherings would occur. These spaces are easily accessible by all and serve as anchors to modern society.

The Future Workspace That Isn’t the Workplace — https://www.archdaily.com/960896/the-future-workspace-that-isnt-the-workplace?utm_source=feedly&utm_medium=webfeeds&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+ArchDaily+%28ArchDaily%29

A nice look at the future of work from Kaley Overstreet. Kaley has a B.S. in Architecture and Master of Architecture from Ohio State Knowlton School and is a Senior Contributor at ArchDaily. Third spaces and places have been happening for some time. The pandemic merely accelerates the trend.

How will your workforce work?

Bank by Phone? You Better Check Your Account

Researchers from IBM Trusteer say they’ve uncovered a massive fraud operation that used a network of mobile device emulators to drain millions of dollars from online bank accounts in a matter of days.

The scale of the operation was unlike anything the researchers have seen before. In one case, crooks used about 20 emulators to mimic more than 16,000 phones belonging to customers whose mobile bank accounts had been compromised.

The thieves then entered usernames and passwords into banking apps running on the emulators and initiated fraudulent money orders that siphoned funds out of the compromised accounts. Emulators are used by legitimate developers and researchers to test how apps run on a variety of different mobile devices.

To bypass protections banks use to block such attacks, the crooks used device identifiers corresponding to each compromised account holder and spoofed GPS locations the device was known to use. The device IDs were likely obtained from the holders’ hacked devices, although in some cases, the fraudsters gave the appearance that they were customers who were accessing their accounts from new phones. The attackers were also able to bypass multi-factor authentication by accessing SMS messages.

“Evil mobile emulator farms” used to steal millions from US and EU banks — https://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2020/12/evil-mobile-emulator-farms-used-to-steal-millions-from-us-and-eu-banks/

I bank online but never use my phone. I check my accounts on a regular basis to see if anything looks odd (besides some of the websites you know who shops at).

Check your accounts. Now.

Taxpayers Face $435 Billion in Student-Loan Losses

Taxpayers face a loss of $435 billion on the $1.37 trillion in student loans on the government’s financial statement at the beginning of this year, even if no additional loans are issued going forward, according to an internal study by the Department of Education, reported by the Wall Street Journal which reviewed the documents. Most of the losses would come from the already established income-based repayment programs and the debt forgiveness at the end of their term.

But who ultimately got this money, since students were just the conduit? The educational-financial-industrial complex, of course, the entities that have lined up to clean out the taxpayer via these student loans. Billionaires have been printed in the process, enabled and encouraged by the government since 2009. Any solution to the student-loan crisis needs to include measures that shut down that money-transfer and return the government’s role in student loans to where it had been before 2009.

Taxpayers Face $435 Billion in Student-Loan Losses, Already Baked in: Leaked Education-Department Study — https://wolfstreet.com/2020/11/22/taxpayers-face-435-billion-in-student-loan-losses-already-baked-in-department-of-education-study/

And let’s not forget who The Great Enabler was behind the college leaders’ lack of caring for their students College Presidents Fail to Protect Students from Covid-19 – College Clusterfuck Update 11.22.20. Politicians, of course.

We. Are. Doomed.

College Presidents Fail to Protect Students from Covid-19 – College Clusterfuck Update 11.22.20

In fact, university Presidents — leaders, let us remember — did not mobilize to protect students from Covid. Frankly, I never thought they did, because I do try to pay attention to these things, but to prove it to myself, I went through 33 pages of headlines for the Coronavirus tag in the Chronicle of Higher Education, all the way back to the first entry on February 24 (“Coronavirus-Themed Party at Albany Draws Criticism“)…

As it turns out, protecting students from Covid was never a top priority for University Presidents. The American Council on Education (“a membership organization that mobilizes [ha] the higher education community to shape effective public policy and foster innovative, high-quality practice”) has published periodic surveys on what University Presidents consider pressing issues.

College Presidents Fail to Mobilize to Protect Students from Covid-19https://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2020/11/university-administrators-fail-to-mobilize-protect-students-covid-19.html

The author of this article doesn’t attempt to hide his bias or contempt for the so-called leaders of our colleges and universities. I’ve made no attempt to hide my disdain either (sharp eyed readers will note my title above deletes two words from the original article title). The college clusterfuck has been one of my recurring themes:

Colleges’ Opening Fueled 3,000 COVID Cases a Day (College Clusterfuck Update)

“I slept on the floor, and woke up to ants crawling on my bed.”

College Clusterfuck 2.0 – “It’s a Dystopian Hell” – Updated

College Town Clusterfuck

The full article contains some pretty sorrid stuff. Enjoy!

Online education will become the standard operating model for higher education. Thousands of colleges and universities will go belly up. Professor Galloway at NYU says it’s simple math. See Galloway’s comments here: Post Pandemic Changes in Consumer Behavior

There’s Nothing “Radical” About This WFH Plan

This is the latest in a series of major companies having made similar announcements, including Microsoft. But Synchrony’s proposal appears to be more radical in that it:

Allows all its US employees to work from home permanently.

Requires some employees to work from home all the time with no access to an office.

Requires all employees to work from home at least some of the time.

Requires even management with “assigned seats” to work from home at least 1-2 days a week.

In a memo to employees, reported by Bloomberg today, CEO Keane and Synchrony President Brian Doubles explained that Synchrony will have three types of offices:

Virtual offices: employees will work from home permanently, and there is no office they can go to.

Hoteling offices: employees work at home permanently, but if they need to, can book a desk at a nearby office location.

Hybrid offices: employees can work from home but they have an assigned seat at a nearby office where they can work at least three days a week.

Synchrony Financial Disclosed Radical Work-from-Home Plan, Layoffs, and “Office Footprint” Reduction — https://wolfstreet.com/2020/10/20/consumer-finance-giant-synchrony-disclosed-radical-permanent-work-from-home-plan/

I have been a WFH (work from home) warrior since 2006. There is absolutely nothing radical about the plan outlined above. I’ve been patiently waiting all these years for the business world to come around to my way of thinking. To be be clear, a lot of businesses would not adopt WFH without a nasty virus driving the agenda.

Too bad I’m currently a W2 worker. If I was still consulting I would make a MINT advising companies how to do the WFH thing effectively.

And what not to do when you’re on a Zoom call.