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The Economist: Atlanta among least expensive cities to live

A new report by The Economist that ranks the world’s most expensive cities in the world finds that Atlanta is among the least expensive.

The Worldwide Cost of Living survey is conducted twice each year by the publication’s “Economist Intelligence Unit.” The survey compares more than 400 prices on 160 products and services that include: food, clothing, household supplies, personal care items, home rents, transport, utility bills, private schools, domestic help and recreational cost.

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Obamacare projected to kill at least 146K jobs, raise rates

Quoted from the Atlanta Business Chronicle:
Apr 3, 2014, 6:51am EDT Updated: Apr 3, 2014, 9:37am EDT

Home Depot’s Marcus: Obamacare projected to kill at least 146K jobs, raise rates

Bernie Marcus BS1

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Bernie Marcus

Carla Caldwell, Morning Edition Editor

The Home Depot co-founder Bernie Marcus says many of the Affordable Care Act’s most damaging aspects are still to come and are projected to kill at least 146,000 jobs and force millions of Americans who kept their health insurance to pay much higher premiums.

In an editorial published this week in The Wall Street Journal, Marcus says, “President Obama’s promise that Americans could keep their health insurance if they liked it was the most infamous of the Affordable Care Act’s sketchy sales pitches. But many of the law’s most damaging aspects are less known, buried in thousands of pages of regulations.”

Says Marcus, “Consider the ‘fee’ – really a hidden sales tax – that all health-insurance companies have been forced to pay since the first of this year on premiums for policies sold to individuals and small and medium-size businesses.”

Marcus adds that the “health-insurance tax – known as HIT in business circles” is expected to generate revenues of about $8 billion this year and as much as $14.3 billion by 2018, according to the legislation.

He said the Congressional Budget Office and the Joint Committee on Taxation predict that insurance companies will pass the cost on to customers. “In other words,” says Marcus, “millions of Americans lucky enough to keep their current health insurance under ObamaCare will be paying much higher premiums because of this tax, with the added cost rippling through the economy and stifling job creation.”

Marcus writes, “The National Federation of Independent Businesses projects the health-insurance tax will add an additional $475 per year for the average individually purchased family policy – nearly $5,000 over the course of a decade. Small businesses will take an even bigger hit, with the cost of an employer-provided family policy rising a projected $6,800 in the next decade.”

Home Depot’s Bernie Marcus: America to get very hurt by Obamacare

Home Depot’s Bernie Marcus: America to get very hurt by Obamacare

Bernie Marcus

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Bernie Marcus

 Jan 9, 2014, 6:38am EST UPDATED: Jan 9, 2014, 10:55am EST

Home Depot’s Bernie Marcus: America to get very hurt by Obamacare

Carla Caldwell, Morning Edition Editor

The Home Depot co-founder Bernie Marcussays America hasn’t seen anything yet when it comes to the problems and additional costs Obamacare is going to deliver to middle-class America.

In an interview Wednesday with Fox News’Neil Cavuto that included questions about the Affordable Care Act, Marcus said, “Well, Neil, it’s just the beginning. Now you have to remember that the mandate, they put off the big companies until 2015, supposed to come in 2014 with everybody else. So you haven’t really seen it hit. And I speak to a lot of business owners and small businesses especially, people who have 100, 200, 300, 400 people working for them.”

Marcus said business people tell him they are studying Obamacare and can’t say if they are going to stop carrying insurance on employees, or if they are going to put more people into part-time jobs.

Marcus added, “Neil, you haven’t seen anything yet. And what you are going to see in January of 2015, right after the elections are over, boy, the Democrats look beautiful on this one. It is politics as usual. They have put off this thing because America is going to be hit so hard.

“All of middle-class America is going to get very, very hurt, very, very hurt by this. Because that is where it is going to come out. So if you are somebody working for a living, and you have been doing this for a number of years and your employer has been covering you and paying the premium for you, you are going to end up in two ways – No. 1 you are going to end up with very little insurance and you are going to end up with very, very high co-pays, and you are going to end up with just a mess on your hands.”