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No Till notes: 'Power of Legumes, part 3'

On our farm we sampled five fields for biological activity this fall. We waited to sample the fields until the middle of September. The reason we waited was to get some rain so we could get our probe in the ground. We also figured moisture may...

 

How will Social Security fit into your retirement income strategy?

Have you given much thought to collecting Social Security? The answer probably depends on how old you are — but whatever your age, you’ll want to consider the best way of incorporating Social Security benefits into your retirement income...

 

Time to check your progress toward your retirement goals

Now that another year is ending, it’s a good time to take stock of where you are on your journey toward financial security. Of course, you could find many different “measuring sticks” to assess your progress, but you can certainly gain...

 

Little discipline for foreclosure lawyers

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Since Florida’s mortgage crisis began about six years ago, banks have agreed to pay millions of dollars to settle allegations that they wrongfully foreclosed on thousands of homeowners. Prosecutors have charged loan servicers...

 

Investors can learn from swimmers' diets

Summer isn’t here yet, but it’s getting close. And for many people, the arrival of summer means it’s time for swimming at the local pool or lake. If you’re just a casual swimmer, you probably don’t have to adjust your diet before jumping in...

 

Britain dodges recession as economy grew in first quarter

LONDON (AP) — Britain has given the slip to the Triple Dip. The U.K. dodged a third recession after official figures showed the economy grew 0.3 percent in the first quarter compared with the previous three months — a better-than-expected result...

 

Nourish the 'roots' of your investment strategy

On Arbor Day, which we celebrate this week, people across the country plant trees. Of course, trees provide us with many benefits, including beauty, fruit and oxygen, as well as protection against land erosion. But the act of planting and nurturing t...

 

Unions: Walmart had role in N.Y. minimum wage deal

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Several labor unions say more than $400,000 in contributions by Walmart Stores Inc. since 2010 helped bring about the creation of an unusual taxpayer-paid subsidy last month to help employers offset a higher minimum wage in New...

 

Investors can learn from Earth Day's lessons

Next week, we observe Earth Day. First celebrated in 1970, Earth Day has grown into an international movement whose goal is to raise awareness of the need to take action to sustain a healthy, sustainable environment. You can do your part through recy...

 

Is your portfolio truly diversified?

Life is full of ups and downs — and the financial markets are no different. As an investor, you’re no doubt happy to see the “ups” — but the “downs” can seem like a real downer. Isn’t there any way to help smooth out the volatility in...

 

Help yourself reduce investment stress

You probably aren’t too worried about it, but April is Stress Awareness Month. Each year, the Health Resource Network sponsors this “month” to inform people about the dangers of stress and to share successful coping strategies. Obviously,...

 

Retirement, succession plans: 'Must haves' for business owners

If you own a business, you may well follow a “do it now” philosophy – which is, of course, necessary to keep things running smoothly. Still, you also need to think about tomorrow – which means you’ll want to take action on your own...

 

Average for US jobless claims at fresh 5-year low

WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of people seeking U.S. unemployment aid barely changed last week, while the average over the past month fell to a fresh five-year low. The decline in layoffs is helping strengthen the job market. Weekly unemployment...

 

Get ready for some (financial) spring cleaning

Spring is in the air — or, at the very least, it’s on the calendar this week. And if you’re like many people, you may be looking forward to doing some spring cleaning around your house and yard. But this year, why not go beyond your physical...

 

Census: Record 1 in 3 U.S. counties are now dying

WASHINGTON (AP) — A record number of U.S. counties — more than 1 in 3 — are now dying off, hit by an aging population and weakened local economies that are spurring young adults to seek jobs and build families elsewhere. New 2012 census estimat...

 

U.S. wholesale prices rise 0.7 pct. on gas spike

WASHINGTON (AP) — A measure of U.S. wholesale prices rose in February by the most in five months, pushed higher by more expensive gas and pharmaceuticals. But outside those increases, inflation was mild. The producer price index grew a seasonally a...

 

Time for Gen-Xers to put IRAs to work

If you’re a “Gen-Xer,” born between 1965 and 1980, you’ve still got many years to go until you retire. At this stage of your life, what can you do to help build resources for the retirement lifestyle you’ve envisioned? Besides having time...

 

Clashes at Goodyear protest of factory closure

RUEIL-MALMAISON, France (AP) — Burning the very fruit of their labor, workers from Goodyear clashed with police outside the tire-maker’s French headquarters Thursday in a last-ditch attempt to save their jobs. Goodyear has been trying to...

 

Bank of England opts against another stimulus

LONDON (AP) — The Bank of England has opted against injecting more money into the ailing British economy, which has one foot in recession but stubbornly-high inflation. The central bank said Thursday its main policymaking body, the Monetary Policy...

 

Be aware of risks of not investing

You’ve no doubt heard about the risks associated with investing. This investment carries this type of risk, while that investment carries another one. And it is certainly true that all investments do involve some form of risk. But what about not...

 

Lew set to start as Treasury secretary as budget cuts loom

WASHINGTON (AP) — Jacob Lew is scheduled to be sworn in Thursday as Treasury secretary and will have to hit the ground running. He is taking over the job just a day before huge automatic government spending cuts are set to take effect. He’s...

 

Take advantage of higher IRA contribution limits

For the first time since 2008, contribution limits have risen for one of the most popular retirement savings vehicles available: the IRA. This means you’ve got a greater opportunity to put more money away for your “golden years.” Effective...

 

Fed minutes show concerns about bond purchases

WASHINGTON (AP) — Several Federal Reserve policymakers suggested last month that the Fed might have to scale back its efforts to keep borrowing costs low for the foreseeable future. Minutes of the Fed’s Jan. 29-30 policy meeting released...

 

Treinen earns Certified Financial Planner designation

Michael Treinen, a financial advisor with UBS Financial Services, Inc. in Boise, Idaho, has distiguished himself among his peers by attending the designation of Certified Financial Planner (CFP)....

 

Can investors learn from Yoga followers?

It’s probably not on your calendar, but World Yoga Day takes place on Feb. 24. As more people have discovered its healthful benefits, yoga has grown in popularity. But whether or not you practice yoga, you can apply its lessons to other areas of...

 

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