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Imagine having three children — two who are drama queens, and one who is calm and mature, as if there were another grownup in the family.

The first two might represent recent United Kingdom and French elections that sparked outsize moves in markets. Meanwhile, Germany’s upcoming ballot plays the part of the “strong and stable” child — to borrow a Tory campaign slogan that failed to resonate with U.K. voters.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel looks set to cruise to her fourth term, and the main question has involved which parties will team up with her Christian Democrats to form a governing coalition. Yet investors are still keeping an eye on the Sept. 24 federal election in Europe’s largest economy, says Seema Shah, a Continue reading

As the Federal Reserve prepares to shut down the nearly decadelong quantitative-easing program and President Trump ramps up pressure on North Korea, some analysts are heralding the dawn of a new era where investors will have to grapple with unknown risks and uncertain rewards.

“Even though the Federal Reserve already started raising interest rates slowly, the unwind of the balance sheet marks the start of a new postcrisis era,” said Bill Stone, global chief investment strategist at PNC Asset Management Group.

In the months following the U.S. financial crisis that saw the demise of storied Wall Street banks, the Fed pumped trillions of dollars in financial support into the economy that was instrumental in stabilizing the Continue reading

Scores of NFL players made public displays of unity Sunday in defiance of President Donald Trump’s criticism of those who protest during the playing of the national anthem, as Trump denied he was inflaming racial tensions.

Forms of protest were seen at every NFL game Sunday. Some players took a knee while “The Star-Spangled Banner” was played, others locked arms or stayed off the field entirely. While about 70% of NFL players are African American, white players took part too, including New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady. Continue reading

When it comes to their kids’ college costs, parents are playing favorites.

Parents of all boys are more likely to have money saved for college than parents of all girls, according to a new survey from T. Rowe Price, an asset-management company. Some 50% of parents who have only boys have money saved for their kids’ college, compared with just 39% of parents who have only girls, it found. The company surveyed more than 1,000 parents on questions about college savings. Within that group, 238 parents had only boys and 155 parents had only girls.

Parents of all boys were also more likely to say they will cover the entire cost of college: 17% of parents of boys said this, compared with just 8% of parents with only daughters. But Continue reading

“Just one more.” Those words could cost you more than the price of a beer.

Heavy drinking just six times a month reduces the probability that a new college graduate will land a job by 10%, according to researchers at Tel Aviv University and Cornell University published in the peer-reviewed academic journal “Journal of Applied Psychology.” Previous studies were unable to determine the precise effect of alcohol consumption on first-time employment, the authors said, but they suggest that each individual episode of student binge-drinking during a month-long period lowers the odds of attaining full-time employment upon graduation by 1.4%.

“The manner in which students drink appears to be more influential than how much they Continue reading

Dear Moneyologist,

A few years ago, my husband lost a family member abroad whose money was divided equally among my husband’s family. At that time, my husband’s brother was going through a difficult patch in his marriage and wanted to hide the money in my husband’s name in the case of divorce. I disagreed on both ethical and practical grounds (how would we ever transfer it back without incurring a gift tax, etc.). Over my strenuous objections, the money was transferred from abroad all under my husband’s name and his brother’s five-figure portion was placed in a trading account and the brother began trading it. As the account declined in value, it was not much of an issue. Continue reading

Don’t underestimate the value of social connections in a frat house.

Being a member of a fraternity in college lowers a student GPA by approximately 0.25 points on the traditional four-point scale, but raises future income by around 36%, according to a paper, “Social Animal House: The Economic and Academic Consequences of Fraternity Membership,” published by two economists from Union College in Schenectady, New York. “For this reason, joining a fraternity may be a rational decision that improves the long-term prospects of an individual student despite its damaging effects on a student’s grades,” the paper concluded.

“These results suggest that fraternity membership causally produces large gains in social capital, Continue reading