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May 2, 2016

When I’m anxious about something, I tend to pay more attention to our finances – especially when the thing I’m really anxious about has nothing to do with money. I had some self-induced work related anxiety this week, and to heck if I didn’t spend a lot of time thinking about personal finances! Anyway, here are some links from around web.

A beautiful post about bread.

Obama, out.

Many  middle class families can’t absorb a $400 emergency.  “Many middle-class wage earners are victims of the economy, and, perhaps, of that great, glowing, irresistible American promise that has been drummed into our heads since birth: Just work hard and you can have it all.”  While the author acknowledges his own financial illiteracy and poor choices, he points out that many others make similar poor choices, and it is very easy to do so.  What struck me was his comment that he “assumed [he] would always overcome any adversity, should it arrive”.  I, like many other pf bloggers, like to prepare for the worst.  When I get worried, I often have to tell myself that I probably can overcome adversity if I’m well-prepared, because I’ve done it before.

I recently watched The Big Short, and subsequently read a lot about the movie and the financial crisis, leading to this article about a programmer who went to jail for stealing code. While not a programmer, I related to his frustration that the jury could easily be manipulated since they don’t have the training to understand why he might have taken certain steps.  I very much related to his interest in the technology over the business problems, and admired his complete acceptance of his fate.

After refinancing my student loan with Earnest, I did some researching about SoFi in general. Some of the mortgage products they offer include 10% down (no PMI), various ARM options, and interest only mortgages.  This all sounds a little scary to me. Their target market is “High Earners, Not Rich Yet” (HENRY).  Other lenders are in this game as well.  I can’t find any useful information about what kind of rates they are offering (compared to normal banks) on their site, but I’m curious. I’m a little concerned about what happens when the tech boom weakens. How does their business model hold up?

I was skimming GRS in a moment of nostalgia/boredom, and came across a generally poorly written article that included this: “PayScale found that, even after adjusting for factors like experience, education and training, responsibilities, and company size, women on average earn 2.7 percent less than men. One reason is that the study found women are 2 percent less likely than men to ask for a raise.”  That 2.7% seems way lower than any numbers I’ve seen. I went to the source article (which I had to google for since it wasn’t linked in the GRS post), and this was a PayScale analysis done on salary profiles in their system with “proprietary algorithms” to analyze.  OK. Other googling came up with about 5-8% when you “control” for the same work. Freakonimcs had a great podcast on this, discussing that the lower pay tends to be correlated with “temporal flexibility”, which tends to fall on mothers.

An already popular post on how to avoid striving to meeting feminine expectations and to be a bit more selfish at work was a good read. I appreciated the comment where Grumpy Rumblings suggests reading “What Works for Women at Work”.  I skimmed the available pages on Google, and plan to buy it and read it.



7 Comments leave one →
  1. yuppiemillennial permalink
    May 2, 2016 6:23 pm

    I’m really surprised the Goldman Sachs guy’s lawyer did not hire a technical expert witness and the judge didn’t require it for the FBI’s testimony. I mean, what he did was clearly illegal (he exfiltrated code that covered proprietary as well as open source materials). And just because some of your new commits don’t reference other GS servers does not mean that it is then open source! But I feel like a lot of engineers have a misconception that the intellectual property they create and for which they get paid is still theirs to do what they will. And the fact that FBI prosecutors are not always the most technologically-savvy folks really mucks up for the jury the magnitude of the infraction.

    • May 6, 2016 11:36 am

      yeah, clearly illegal, but not uncommon/nefarious as it was made out to be.

      I especially liked the real “jury of peers” that was assembled. Very interesting.

      It turns out he was released because the laws were outdated, and it wasn’t clear that he stole “tangible” things from the employer, and there wasn’t a law on the books about stealing IP in digital form. (I assume there is now.) At least that is how I interpreted it. He was later released because it was found the laws he was charged of didn’t apply in the case, but I didn’t quickly find the letter of the law of what he was charged with.

      • yuppiemillennial permalink
        May 6, 2016 6:37 pm

        Certainly not nearly as nefarious as they make it seem, love the “Subversion” back and forth.

        I assume he was charged under 18 U.S. Code §1832. There have definitely been people charged and convicted for stealing IP in digital form. Though it’s clearly less of a government priority to prosecute if it doesn’t harm national security, the culprit doesn’t abscond to international businesses with American company trade secrets, or isn’t used for fraud– as is the case here, clearly.

  2. Anonymous permalink
    May 4, 2016 7:50 am

    Highly educated-not rich yet-can be lots of people not just tech folks. I was speaking to a friend in Fin Tech and he said we were the perfect target audience (physicians in training) but still-taking out more money then you can “Bank on” scares me too. I was always a “count chickens only after they hatch” type.

    • May 4, 2016 8:19 am

      Sure, there are others. But in the bay area, the proportion of people in that group in tech is quite high.

  3. Jenny permalink
    May 5, 2016 1:38 pm

    A month ago, SoFi quoted me the following (assumes 80% LTV):

    3.5% IR on 15-yr fixed
    4.0% IR on 30-yr fixed
    3.25% IR on 30-yr 7/1 ARM

    • May 6, 2016 11:34 am

      Thanks! I was curious enough to check into it, and got similar rates, although slightly lower – maybe ~0.25% lower this month.

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