By COMMONWEALTH AS SUBMITTED BY CHORNYAK & ASSOCIATES
For many people, one of the joys of the holiday season is shopping. For others it's a chore that brings on stress. In either case, our post this month provides lots of information that will make you a more informed consumer.
Originally published on Mon December 9, 2013 10:55 am
New York's health insurance marketplace has been running relatively smoothly, compared with healthcare.gov, the site the federal government is running for 36 states.
But that's a low bar, and even though about 50,000 New Yorkers had signed up in the first two months, almost every day still brings complaints and glitches. Donna Frescatore, the head of the New York State Of Health, says there are no serious patterns of trouble, just individual issues that the state and its contractors address one by one.
Originally published on Sun December 8, 2013 6:27 pm
A U.S. company is taking what it hopes to be a small step toward eventually mining the moon.
Moon Express, based in Mountain View, Calif., just unveiled the design for a small robot spacecraft about the size of a coffee table that it says could move about the moon's surface powered only by solar panels and hydrogen peroxide.
Originally published on Fri December 6, 2013 1:40 pm
In recent years, Domino's Pizza has rapidly expanded overseas — helping it open stores at a faster clip than Starbucks or Dunkin' Donuts, according to Forbes. Part of that growth is in India, which company CEO J. Patrick Doyle says is poised to supplant Britain as the chain's largest market outside the U.S.
Originally published on Mon December 2, 2013 12:21 pm
Amazon is looking at drastically reducing its delivery times — to 30 minutes or less — as it plans a new service called Prime Air that it says could debut in a few years. In an interview on CBS' 60 Minutes, CEO Jeff Bezos said the giant online retailer plans to use semi-autonomous drones to carry purchases to customers.
That's got tech experts buzzing about whether the idea will fly.
Originally published on Fri November 29, 2013 2:06 am
You are not imagining it, the unofficial start of the holiday shopping season starts earlier and earlier. Black Friday has been around for decades — that's the point where retailers hope to begin to make a profit.
Shoppers looking to get a jump on deals can shop on Gray Thursday – think Black Friday intruding into Thanksgiving Day.
This Turkey Day, many national chains will open their doors early in an effort to boost sales. K-Mart opened at 6 a.m.
Originally published on Tue November 26, 2013 10:07 am
While home prices rose in major cities across the nation during the third quarter, data suggest that the housing market is beginning to shift to a slower rate of growth, according to the economists who put together the latest S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices report.
Their statistics show prices rose 3.2 percent in the quarter and were up 11.2 percent from a year earlier.
It's time to start thinking about taxes again! Here at Chornyak & Associates we have a highly qualified tax-planning department, headed by Adam Smetzer, CPA, prepared to serve you. In the video for this month, Adam tells you about himself and his interests.
Originally published on Mon November 11, 2013 4:00 pm
The federal government is sitting on $18 billion in unclaimed money — money that's owed to ordinary people and businesses who never swung by to pick it up. This is a tiny fraction of the federal budget. But it's still, you know, a lot of money.
Originally published on Wed October 30, 2013 2:17 pm
Two wily veterans of Congress' fiscal wars will lead the budget talks scheduled to start Wednesday: Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., and Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., the heads of the House and Senate budget committees.
As the 29 lawmakers on the budget conference committee — 22 from the Senate and seven from the House — sit down to begin negotiations, they'll have in Ryan and Murray two lawmakers who from most accounts get along well despite their many differences.
When we delved a little deeper into the numbers, we found that while bicycle sales remained steady in a six-year period that began in 2006 (the top chart), sales of electric bikes exploded (the second chart).
Originally published on Tue March 18, 2014 3:41 pm
You're on Amazon.com. You're buying, say, a toaster, and you're checking out the customer reviews. You assume the people writing these reviews are people like you — people who wanted a toaster, went online and bought one. As it turns out, a lot of reviews on Amazon are written by people who are nothing like you. They're written by elite reviewers who are sent free merchandise to review products. In other words, it's possible that the guy reviewing that toaster you're looking at wasn't in the market for a toaster to begin with and didn't pay a cent for it.