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To Be Rich Toward God, Part 2

Faith And Finance / Rob West
The Truth Network Radio
April 19, 2024 5:30 pm

To Be Rich Toward God, Part 2

Faith And Finance / Rob West

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April 19, 2024 5:30 pm

“But God said to him, ‘Fool! This night your soul is required of you, and the things you have prepared, whose will they be?’” You may recall that verse from the Parable of the Rich Fool in Luke 12. But have you considered what it means? On today's Faith & Finance Live, host Rob West will talk with Carolyn Calupca about the meaning behind that verse and how we can become rich toward God. Then Rob will take some calls and answer various financial questions.

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But God said to him, Fool, this night your soul is required of you, and the things you have prepared, whose will they be? Hi, I'm Rob West. You may recall that verse from the parable of the rich fool in Luke 12.

And what does that mean? It's the focus of a New Faithful study, and we'll talk to Carolyn Kalupka about it today, and that it's on to your calls at 800-525-7000. That's 800-525-7000. This is Faith and Finance Live, biblical wisdom for your financial journey. Well, we're delighted to have Carolyn Kalupka back on the program. Carolyn is the author of our new four-week study, Rich Toward God, a study on the parable of the rich fool. Carolyn, nice to have you back with us. Thanks.

Glad to be back, Rob. So in this parable, Jesus challenges us to be rich toward God. Now, does that simply mean to give money and possessions away? Or what exactly is Jesus inviting us into? Well, short answer, no, it doesn't mean just giving money and possessions away.

Anyone can do that. And the spiritual ramifications are different, depending on your heart. But Jesus is inviting us to set our hearts on an imperishable inheritance.

So here's the context. A man from the crowd asks Jesus to settle an inheritance dispute. Jesus deflects that question, and he gets to the heart of the issue by telling a parable about man's greed and envy, not just the man who asked the question or had the issue, but ours as well. So this parable is about a rich man who poured his whole heart into accumulating and essentially worshiping his wealth.

And then he died before he could enjoy it. So obviously, perishable, worldly inheritance is a false solution. Yeah, no doubt about that. And it's fascinating to see that the parable is actually answering the question that was asked to him. The casual reader of Scripture might miss that, and I appreciate you drawing that connection.

But let's dig a little deeper. Where can we find more about this imperishable inheritance? Well, it's everywhere in God's Word. But let me just take a passage here that we touch on in the study. 1 Peter 1, 3 to 9 talks about the inheritance we have as believers and that calls it imperishable, undefiled, and unfading. And here are a few of the things that the passage goes on to say are our inheritance. It includes a living hope in Christ, which is an eternal hope. Because we have the mind and spirit of Christ, we can also have joy in the midst of trial.

That's another thing. And then we have our genuine faith, which it says is more precious than gold. And the end result of faith in Jesus Christ is what we long for. And that's the salvation of our souls and abundant life. That's our imperishable inheritance. Oh, that's powerful.

I love that. Now, the parable of the rich fool shows that there's, of course, both a physical and a spiritual side to wealth. So how would you counsel Christians, our listeners today, to view it? Well, the Bible isn't saying that money is evil. And it's not saying that wealth is evil. There's no condemnation for being rich. Money is just a tool.

This is a matter of the heart. And this is what you are saying all the time here. God's concern is with the use of money and the attitude towards money and not the amount of money.

Yeah. So clearly, wealth isn't evil. God's word is clear there.

But is it dangerous? Well, it definitely can be when it becomes the priority. In the study, we have a quote that I think is fantastic from author Paul David Tripp. And let me just read that for you. Money is one of God's good creations, but this good thing becomes a bad thing for you when it becomes a ruling thing. You simply cannot serve the king of kings and have acquisition of wealth as the organizing dream of your heart. Oh, wow.

That's powerful. All right. Unfortunately, we're getting short on time. So I'd love for you to just sum this up for us in the parable of the rich fool. Carolyn, what is Jesus inviting us to do? Rob, Jesus is inviting us or me to set our hearts on imperishable things.

So let me talk about myself here, because this is hitting me as well. So Jesus is calling me to make him the desire of my heart every moment of every day. He's asking me to surrender my life and my plans and my finances to him, to allow Jesus to be my treasure ultimately.

And then Jesus is inviting me to say that God is my abundance now and I have an imperishable inheritance in heaven. That's good news to me and should be to everyone. It absolutely is. Well, we're certainly grateful for your work on this study, Carolyn. It's an incredible blessing. I know it will be to so many thousands of folks who will dive into it and we hope they'll use it either themselves or in a group. But I appreciate you stopping by the program today.

Thank you so much, Rob. Carolyn Kolupka has been our guest today. She's the author of the new faith by study rich toward God, a study on the parable of the rich fool. You can pick up a copy for personal study or several copies for everyone in your Bible study group. To experience it together, just go to faithfi.com.

That's faithfi.com and click shop at the top of the page. Back with your questions after this. Stick around. The opinions offered during this program represent the personal or professional opinions of the students given for informational purposes only.

Any information provided is not intended to replace advice from a financial, medical, legal or other professional who understands your specific situation. Helping you make God your ultimate treasure. This is Faith and Finance Live.

I'm Rob West. You know, if God is our treasure, our life will reflect God's character to the world. We were called to be the light to the world, Matthew 5 14 or a light to the world, I should say. And as such, our finances really can be a powerful testimony of our faith in Jesus. You see, the way we earn money, our lifestyle, our generosity, our financial priorities, even our perspective of money and possessions can become a reflection of who we are in Christ. And I love that we had the chance to start with Carolyn Kolubka today on the rich fool, because this parable of the rich fool reminds us that although we were created with a longing for abundance and life, we often locate our longings in places that can't ultimately satisfy our hearts.

They're misdirected. But when we instead find God is our ultimate treasure, when our abundance is found in the person of Jesus, we become open handed with our finances as we seek his kingdom and his righteousness. And that's our goal for you on this program each day. If you have questions today, we'd love to hear from you. Eight hundred five to five. Seven thousand. Laura is our call screener today.

Our team is standing by and ready to hear from you again. Eight hundred five to five. Seven thousand. By the way, we mentioned that you can pick up a copy of this study that we started with today. Rich Toward God. It's our brand new four week study that you can use for individual study or small group. You could purchase a copy at faith by dot com.

Just click shop. Another way to get it, if you'd like to support our work as a listener supported ministry, we certainly rely on that. And you've found some benefit in this program.

Maybe you enjoy listening or it's been an encouragement to you. A gift of twenty five dollars or more at faith by dot com would allow us to send you a copy of this is our way of saying thanks. So just head to faith f i dot com and click give.

It's faith fi dot com and click give and we'll send you a copy for a gift of twenty five dollars or more to the ministry and thanks in advance. All right. Let's head to the phones today. We've got several lines open. We're ready to dive into your questions, whatever they might be. Financially speaking, again, the number eight hundred five to five.

Seven thousand. Let's go to Akron, Ohio, to begin today. Hi, Deborah. Go right ahead.

Hi, Rob. I just need something clarified. I know I've listened to you pretty much every day and we talked about capital gains tax when you sell a home and you have to live there two of the last five years. Is five years that you have to own the home or is there any exclusions to that? No, you could own it less than five years. But as long as you live there as your primary residence for two out of the last five years. So even if it was you only owned it for two years, but you've been there the entire two years and it's been a full 24 months, then you would qualify for that exemption for it being your primary residence. And that exemption is that as a single filer, you'd be able to exclude up to two hundred and fifty thousand in capital gains.

And then if you're filing married filing jointly up to five hundred thousand. But the requirement is only two years. You don't have to be there or you don't have to have owned it a full five years. OK, so why do they say two of the last five years? Well, it could be that you live there. You haven't lived there recently, but you did live there for two out of the last five. So maybe you've owned it for three years and you live there for two years and then you've been living somewhere else.

As long as you only claim this once every two years and you've lived there for two out of the last five, even if the most recent months or years you were not there as your primary residence, you can still use this exemption. Oh, thank you so much for those just confused on all that. And that's very, very helpful. Thanks very much. You're very welcome, Deborah. Thanks for calling in for being a faithful listener. We appreciate that.

Lines are open today. Your questions on anything financial, living, giving, owing or growing. What is that? Well, it's really the four things we can do with money. We spend it on our lifestyle. We spend it on our giving. We give it away. We owe it for debt and taxes or we grow it short term or long term. So live, give, owe and grow.

God's word speaks to all of them. We'd love to help you tackle whatever questions you're considering today in your financial life. So call right now.

You'll get right through with lines open. Eight hundred five, two, five, seven thousand to Cleveland we go. Hi, Robert. Go ahead, sir. Hi, Rob. Thank you for taking my call. Yes, sir.

Hey, I just I had a question. We we recently lost my father and my mother is his pension has already stopped. But many years ago, he did set up a life insurance policy for my mother, knowing that he would lose this pension. And it's a sizable amount, probably about two hundred and forty thousand. So we were asking, you know, what what what would you recommend we do with the money? Mom is eighty two. She's probably not going to jump into the markets with the with a lot of force and try to, you know, rally at big stocks.

And so what what would you recommend we do to safeguard some of the money? Yeah. You mentioned that and I'm sorry to hear about your dad's passing. You mentioned that his pension stopped.

And I certainly understand that. So what is your mom living on right now? To to well, the dual Social Security, which she's going to lose his. But we're in the process of switching that so that she would get the higher amount. Right. That and she has cash. Her home is paid for, you know, and that's about it. OK. So without drawing from her savings, which, by the way, how much does she have set aside apart from this two hundred and forty thousand?

I'm going to say roughly about three hundred and twenty five thousand. OK. Yes. And that's just in savings accounts or CDs. What is that?

It's it's yeah, it's broken up now. There's some there's some with a financial planner. There is some in cash collecting like a money market at four and a half percent. Some is in CDs and then there's liquid, some liquid cash, maybe 40, 50 thousand.

OK. Yeah, very good. So when she switches to just the one, the higher of the two on Social Security, is that enough to cover her bills? And if not, what do you think that shortfall is going to be? Have you run those numbers? We have we have run them and it came out to about twenty six hundred twenty six hundred shortfall.

The only thing we don't know is when they when they do switch the Social Security, we don't know what her new amount will be. Obviously, hers was low, eight, nine hundred dollars. His was much higher, a couple thousand. So I don't know what that you know, if you know what the figure exactly would be. But we're seeing that shortfall, you know, of probably two thousand to twenty five hundred. OK, got it.

Yeah. I mean, the good news is, you know, you've got quite a bit of assets here when you put it all together. You know, you've got over five hundred thousand. And so I think the key would be to get that managed properly.

You don't need to take an unnecessary amount of risk. But even at five hundred sixty five thousand, if your goal was just four percent a year, she could pull out twenty two thousand, which pretty much gets her it's a little bit less than what she needs, but it gets her close. But I would still have that managed, you know, with maybe 70 percent of it plus in fixed income.

So we're thinking CDs and bonds and then just a small portion in stocks for a growth component. And I use an adviser to do that. Let's talk a bit more off the air. I've got to take a break. We'll be right back. Great to have you with us today on Faith and Finance Live, I'm Rob West. We're taking your calls and questions today. We've got some lines open. We're ready for you with your questions at eight hundred five to five seven thousand.

That's eight hundred five to five seven thousand. You can call right now. Let's head right back to the phones to Spring Hill, Tennessee. Hi, Mike.

Go ahead, sir. Hi there. Hi, Rob.

Hi. Hey, during our working careers, I'm married. I made about four times what my wife made on average. And our plan was to start her taking her Social Security at sixty two. And then at sixty seven, when I started taking mine, she would switch over to spousal Social Security. And we were in a seminar on the Web recently and the lady said, if you do that, even if you do that, she will still suffer the 25 percent penalty even when she switches over to mine at sixty seven.

Is that true? So you're saying, you know, when as long as she's full retirement age now, are you talking about her switching to yours or switching to her own down the road? Switching to mine, some switching to spousal benefits to the spousal benefit. All right.

Yeah. So there is a reduction on that spousal benefit. And so if you start receiving benefits at sixty two and then you reach your full retirement age later on, you can't switch to your full benefit amount without facing a penalty. So once you start receiving those Social Security benefits, your monthly benefit amount is generally fixed for the rest of your life with just adjustments for the cost of living. Now, you can go the other way where you'd start taking a spousal benefit and let yours grow. So that's where I think perhaps that's what she's getting to. And so what I might do is is visit with the Social Security administration just to get some more details on your specific situation and kind of walk through what each of those numbers are to make sure you understand kind of the implications of whatever you're looking to do there. But you do have to factor in those reductions before you make that final decision and make sure that it, in fact, makes sense depending on which she's going to take at which age.

So I know this can get complicated, but it's worth diving into, Mike, just because you don't want to inadvertently kind of lock her out of some of those increases down the road. Hopefully that's helpful. We appreciate your call today, sir. God bless you.

Eight hundred, five, two, five, seven thousand's the number to call to Lakeland, Florida. Hi, Robert. Go ahead, sir.

Yes, sir. I'm sixty three years old. My wife is she's sixty and she's still working.

I'm still working. We pay ties, we give offerings and we got about, I'd say, two hundred thousand in savings and she gets 401K from her job. I was offered 401K, but I refused it because they didn't match it. And I felt that means my age is there wouldn't really benefit anything, especially if the type of work I'm in, they could sell the property and get rid of it.

So the money that we have in savings, you know, it's only making maybe one and a half percent, not very much because in savings, is it best to invest that into something or leave it in savings? I'm not planning on retiring. I want to work as long as God gives me my help. I'm in great shape.

I don't take medication. So I just like to work and that's my goal. Yeah, very good money that we are not doing anything.

Yes. Now that makes sense. I can certainly appreciate that. Well, at the very least, I mean, right now you can get quite a bit more than that in high yield savings. So if you go to Bankrate.com and look for the institutions with FDIC insurance, as long as you'd be willing to use an online bank, I mean, you can get as high as five percent right now on high yield savings on a five star rated bank with FDIC insurance.

So there's no reason for you to be settling for one and a half. I think the question is longer term, what's the best thing for you so that you have the ability, you know, to continue to let this money outpace inflation. So I understand you're going to work as long as you can. Do you have any other investable assets other than the did you say it was 200,000 in savings?

We have 200 in savings and my wife, I think her 401k is over 200,000 and that's pretty much it. Okay. Yeah, no problem. And so obviously you'll work as long as you can. I would imagine you all will delay Social Security.

Is that what you're thinking? Yes, I think and what my goal is, is when I'm 65, I wanted to draw and so I until I get to a point where I can draw full benefits and still work is what I want to do. Okay. Yeah. My wife wants to retire. She'll retire in five years. Okay.

Yeah. I mean, if you take Social Security at any point prior to full retirement age, which is 67 probably for you or close to it, you're going to take a reduction of about eight percent a year for every year you take it early. Conversely, if you wait beyond full retirement age up to age 70, you'll add eight percent a year to that check. So given your desire to continue to work as long as you can, there is a benefit here of you delaying taking that check, especially because you don't have quite as much in the way of assets as you might want to be able to offset other expenses beyond what Social Security will cover. And so if you have the ability because you don't need the money right now because you're working to let that check continue to grow, then there's an opportunity for you to earn more that would be locked in for the rest of your life, plus the cost of living increases in terms of the 200,000 I imagine is invested in the 401k.

That's great. With the 200,000 in savings, I'd probably set aside at least six months worth of expenses and keep it in high yield savings, but I'd move it to something paying at least four and a half, if not five percent. And then the other, let's say it's 150,000, you might want to look at investing that. Now, if you're just, you don't want to take any risk on that, you're not comfortable with that, especially because you've got the 401k money invested, you could look at laddering some CDs. So maybe you have half of it in a one year CD, half of it in a two year, maybe even lock it in a little further out, maybe three and five years, just because you know rates are going to be coming down over the next 12 months, that would be another option.

But if you were open to it, I'd probably put that to work for you so you have more growing for the future. So hopefully that gives you some things to think about, but at the very least, Robert, I'd get that high yield savings moved to something that's paying at least four and a half percent. Check out bankrate.com and you'll see what I'm talking about. Thanks for your call, sir. A quick break and back with more questions after this. Great to have you with us today on faith and finance live.

I'm Rob West. We've got some lines open today, ready to take your calls and questions. Call right now at 800-525-7000.

That's 800-525-7000. Coming up in the next segment, Jerry Boyer will stop by. We'll get Jerry's thoughts on some recent comments from the Federal Reserve Chairman Powell, which have been moving the markets as of late, and an update as we head into the most current earnings season.

Jerry's actively involved in a lot of corporate engagement work with a number of corporations that you will recognize. Jerry will give us an update from his work in just a bit. But in the meantime, let's head back to the phones.

To Florida we go. Hi Dan. Go ahead, sir. Can you hear me? Yes, sir.

I just had to take off my speaker. No problem. Thanks for taking my call. Sure. Happy to do it.

I've been listening to you for months and I just thought I'd ask you a couple of questions if you could help me out. Okay, I'll try. It has to do with where I have my money invested. I'm still working. I'm 66 years old and in my 401k I have about $630,000. I took it out of the market just before the pandemic and it's been in the safe fund, still with Schwab.

I'm deciding or undeciding on should I get back into the market now or should I just leave it there? It's yielding about 1.3%. Okay. Yeah. So this was a 401k or is it still?

It's on a 401k and I'm still working. Okay, got it. Yeah. And so this is with your current employer? Yes, it is.

Okay. So you don't have the option to roll it out. You really are just limited to those investments inside the 401k that is available through the Schwab account. Is that right? Yeah, that's correct. And I had it in the market as a suggestion. It was making good money, but I got scared during the pandemic and I said I put it in the safe fund.

Yeah, I got it. I don't want the market to drop. I don't lose it. Yeah, very good. And how long are you?

Should I go back into the market or what? Sure. How long are you planning to work, Dan, just based on everything you know today?

Maybe two more years. Okay. And then what does that look like for you at that point? Well, I retire and I'll probably start putting my Social Security and I have a little side business on the side.

Okay, great. And what will your age be then? 70. I'm 68 now. Well, I'm 67.

Okay. So that's great. So you'll be 70 at that point, which means you're going to get that max Social Security benefit.

So I like that a lot. And then, you know, you'll have that Social Security plus whatever this 630,000 grows to. Have you run your budget? I mean, if you consider what your budget might look like in retirement, let's set your small business aside for a second. Do you think that Social Security and you're going to get that check, you know, maybe 25% higher, a little bit more than that than you would have if you had taken it at a full retirement age. With that higher check every month, is it going to be enough to cover your bills? Or do you think you're going to need additional? I haven't really sat down and wrote down that plan yet. I know that my lifestyle will have to change. But I was just wondering if I should invest either partial of my 600-300 back into the market or leave it there in a safe zone because I've only got two more years to go.

That's where I'm deciding. Yeah, and I get that. And the reason for the questions is just trying to understand where you're at.

Because obviously, you don't need to do anything. You're the steward of this money. And I realize you want to make the wise decision at the same time. You know, I just want to understand how dependent you are on this growing in terms of supporting your lifestyle based on a withdrawal rate.

Because here's the reality. I mean, even though you're going to be 70, if the Lord tarries and you're in good health, we need to start thinking in terms of this not being a two year investment strategy, but a 25 year investment strategy. Because let's plan on you living to age 95.

Okay. So if we take a that you have two and a half decades for this money to be invested. For that reason, I would have told you if you called me, you know, the day after the pandemic started, I would have told you don't pull out of the market. Because, you know, we're reacting emotionally, we need to take a long term perspective. I realize, you know, we've got a, you know, a once in 100 year event going on, but every decade kind of has its own event, if you will, that moves the market, whether it's a recession, or a depression, or, you know, a bubble bursting in the dot coms, or a systemic financial problem in oh eight or nine, you know, and yet, we've always recovered and moved to higher ground.

Now you could say, Well, this time is different. And, you know, we've got runaway debt here in this country. And what about the US dollar, and I get all that. But at the same time, given inflation, the way you know, you properly stewards God's money is slow and steady, steady plotting is what the Bible talks about.

Ecclesiastes talks about diversification. So the idea for a typical 70 year old would be okay, let's take and let's set aside what we need for the short term, which I would say, if you want to be on the most conservative end, let's put 12 months worth of expenses aside in high yield savings, but you should be getting four or 5%, not one. And then with the rest, and maybe that's, you know, half a million dollars, let's get that invested. And as a 70 year old, I'd probably still have 30% in stocks, even when you're fully retired, because that would give you a growth component. And if we got into a recession, I wouldn't sell it, I'd hold it, because it would recover and you don't want to sell it and you know, try to time the entry and exit points because that's just a losing battle. And then I might have 5 or 10% in precious metals, and I might have the balance, you know, 60 or 70% in fixed income, CDs and bonds and US Treasuries, bills, bonds and notes.

And I'd let that ride. And you know, not let the noise of this world cause me to deviate from my strategy, but stay with it over the long haul, because the last 150 years tells us that if we do that, you know, over time, if with the properly diversified portfolio, you're going to come out ahead. And that's going to give you the ability if you need this money for long term care, which could run you 10,000 a month, you know that you'd have something substantial there that you could pull out of. Now, if you were to tell me Listen, Rob, I can live on Social Security alone. And I'm going to dial back my lifestyle and I just don't want to take any risk.

I'd say that's fine. Let's put it in CDs, let's put it in high yield savings, we could buy an annuity and transfer that risk to an insurance company and get a guaranteed return. Those are the ways that we you minimize the risk, nothing's risk free, but we get it down as low as absolutely possible. But for the typical person, I'd say let's just invest it. And let's get more conservative over time. But given the fact that we're not planning for a year or two or five, we're planning for 20 or 30. We still have a portion where we're trying to grow it, because inflation and it's been more prominent as of late and it will continue to be is eroding your purchasing power. Does that all make sense though?

Yeah, it helped me help me listen into it. I think with I think the maximum I get at 70 is showing here 4600. And my wife gets 1000 already.

So I think between that and my private business, which is another 2000 a month. Yeah, I probably can live on that. Okay.

Yeah. And so then you might say, Listen, I don't need this money. I don't want to take any risk. You know, I'm going to take advantage of the prevailing rates in bank products with CDs and high yield savings.

They're not going to be as attractive two years from now as they are today, but they'll pay something. And if that's what makes you most comfortable, then yeah, go for that. I mean, I'm not saying that's a bad decision. At the end of the day, again, you're the steward. So you've got to pray about it, make this decision and and have a conviction. I think just my perspective is, you know, trying to time the market, oh, we got a pandemic, let's jump out and we're going to find our entry point.

That just never works. I'd rather you take the long view, be be as properly diversified as you need to be. But look at this over a long time period not trying to go in and out of the market, just because that generally works against you at the end of the day. Thanks for your call today, sir. We appreciate you listening and calling. We'll be right back. Hey, thanks for joining us today on faith and finance live.

I'm Rob West. Hey, it's a Friday, which means Jerry Boyer stops by and there's been a lot going on as of late, economically speaking. It's been a tough week or two in the markets, largely because of some comments from Fed Chairman Powell. Jerry, what do you make of all of it? Well, I make that it's been a tough couple of weeks in the market, mainly because of some comments from Chairman Powell.

At least that sounds familiar. And it makes sense to me. All right. So who's going to explain all of that? All right.

I'll try. I'm the economist, so I guess I'm supposed to do that. Yeah. So, you know, we live in a world where the largest investor in America is our own central bank. It's the largest.

It basically is like a giant hedge fund, about nine trillion dollars. That's not normal. It's never been that way before. I mean, it sort of happened gradually after the Great Recession, then after the COVID shutdown. And what that means is that what the Fed does affects the valuation of the stock market probably more than anything else.

Again, that's not a normal thing. It used to be that when companies had better earnings, then the price went up to reflect that. Or when companies had worse earnings, then the price went down, or like better than expected, etc.

When the economy is doing well, generally the market would do well. But now we have this giant set of interventions where a nine trillion dollar fund from day to day hints that maybe I'll be buying. No, maybe I'll be selling.

No, no, no. Buying this week. I don't know. The new CPI, you know, it's a little high. I think we might be selling. And so that kind of back and forthness creates a lot of volatility in markets.

Now, we can talk about whether they're right or wrong. I mean, this, you know, what they've been signaling is, oh, we're going to stay tight. We're not going to cut market. We're not going to cut interest rates. We're not going to buy.

Right. We're not going to be a buyer. We're going to be more of a seller. Markets were counting on the Fed being a buyer. And now it's saying it probably won't be. And so they went down. If the biggest investor isn't going to be buying, well, then they're not going to be driving up the price of stocks.

And so you want to move away from them. So we can talk about whether that's a good decision or a bad decision. But I just want to stop and just kind of take in the fact that Jerome Powell was not elected by anybody. He's never been on a ballot. No voter. I don't know. Maybe he ran for his borough council.

I haven't studied as much as I know. No voter has ever had an opportunity to go down to the fire station and say, I'm putting the X next to Jerome Powell. And yet he is the most powerful market maker in the world. And that talks about some kind of shows what's happened in American culture where the expert class and the administrative state, people who we can't elect, therefore we can't unelect, have enormous power over our lives.

Why? Because they're allegedly the smartest people. They went to Ivy League universities. So they're smarter than us. And the fact that we can't elect them is supposed to insulate them.

The point is they don't want us electing them because they're the experts. We shouldn't be interfering with what they're doing. They know what they're doing.

We go to the grocery store and we think prices are going up too much. Just shut up. You know, let the experts leave them in charge of it. They know what they're doing. And so they are intentionally insulated from political forces.

And the idea of creating institutions like that was that an expert class could govern us better than we can govern ourselves. Now, go shopping sometime in the next week and think about what things were like three years ago. And tell me whether that's worked out very well. Yeah.

And what you won't find won't be pretty, that's for sure. So, Cherry, where do we go from here then? Because if you were advising the Fed, you'd do something entirely different, wouldn't you? Well, yeah, I would say don't set interest rates. People think that it's the Fed's job to set interest rates. That wasn't part of, you know, any of the legislation that established the Fed. That was never their job.

They just kind of gradually took that power to themselves as administrative agencies can tend to do. There's absolutely no reason they ought to be deciding what the interest rates should be. You know who should decide?

We should decide. And that's what's normally happened in a free market. Borrowers and lenders together work out the interest rate. If interest rates are too high, we stop borrowing. And the bank says, OK, all right, I guess we have to drop interest rates to get people to borrow again.

There's a bargaining process always going on. And that's the way interest rates should be set. And the interest rate is like a thermostat. You know, it kind of sets certain aspects of the economy.

And now someone's just coming along and overriding, you know, all that. There's eight billion people in the world. Altogether, we set interest rates by being borrowers or lenders because it's a global market, except that's not the way it works right now. An agency, not just ours. I mean, there's a European central bank, there's Japanese central bank, there's a Chinese central bank, the U.S. central bank between them. They set the interest rates for the world and they override the decisions of eight billion of us. So first thing I would say to Jerome Powell is don't ever have another announcement of an interest rate target. Just stabilize prices. So stabilize the dollar compared to maybe gold or silver or commodities. I'm not arguing for some particular standard. I'm arguing against the the PhD standard, which is just get the experts in a room and somehow they'll know what the right interest rate should be. I mean, how many boom and bust cycles do we have to have? How many 2008s and 2009s we've had for the past few years do we have to have before we figure out that this is not an intelligence problem. This is a principal problem. Money should be sound and stable and no amount of IQ can substitute for simply having a stable money supply and stable prices. Hmm.

Yeah, that's really helpful, Jerry. And something, obviously, that's not going to go away anytime soon. And yet we're deal we deal every day with the effects of it, which is just the way our economy works, I guess these days doesn't mean we have to accept it.

And yet that's what we have today. Jerry, what do you think all this means for the markets moving forward? Obviously, the market has shrugged this off today, but it's been under some pressure as of late. Right. And I think the reason the market has shrugged it off today is that they don't know that the Fed chairman might not change his mind next week.

Right. He made some hints on Tuesday. But, you know, two months ago, three months ago, almost everyone believed there were going to be three interest rate cuts this year. So if he went from three interest rate cuts this year to maybe one, well, then maybe next week he'll be back to two or three interest rate cuts this year. So the reason that markets are kind of doing a little better today compared to the last rest of the week is we don't believe him. And it's not that we believe that he's lying.

We just don't believe he'll stick with it because they haven't. Because the central bank, the Fed has a dual mandate. One mandate says what you need to do is we have too much inflation. You need to slow the economy down to fight the inflation. The other mandate says, hey, if the economy slowed down, you need to put some inflation in there to stimulate it.

How can you possibly do both at the same time? They are conflicting mandates so they have to decide which one they're following at any given time. And so markets basically, you know, they're trying to guess what the Fed's doing. And when the Fed hints that they're going to do something, the market says, okay, I guess because you said it, you're a little more likely to do it.

But, you know, you may well change your mind next week. So, you know, we don't take that for granted. So there's an instability to that. So markets are moving around. People look at markets and say they're irrational. We need government.

And I'd look at markets and say government is irrational and markets are responding to the irrationality of governments in rational ways. So if anyone who's been in a dysfunctional relationship knows that, you know, you kind of have to adjust. What's he going to do? What's he going to do?

How's she going to react? You kind of kind of work around people like that. Well, the markets are in a dysfunctional relationship with our central bank. And we're all sort of trying to manage around that dysfunctional relationship. But the problem isn't us.

The problem is the government. Yeah. All right, Jerry. No, that's helpful. And, and well said, all right, before we let you go in therapy in there, too.

See, yes, there is two for one. I like it. No extra charge today. All right, Jerry, let's finish with a quick update. I know we're headed quickly into earning season here. It's actually upon us. I know you're working a lot on corporate engagement.

What would you share by way of update? Yeah, I would say that the really big topic this year is going to be de banking. There are many Christians who are making presentations to the largest banks in the world saying, you can no longer have standards which say we can cancel your bank account if we think what you're doing is, quote, hateful, because we all know that our politically polarized world, any position that anyone takes on an issue can be called hateful, whether it's pro LGBTQ or anti LGBTQ or pro life or whatever. Everybody is calling everybody else's position hateful. So we cannot give banks the power to say, if you if you promote hate, and we're not going to define what hate is, like if it was rigorously defined, if you promote the idea of racial inferiority, will cut your bank account, but they're not doing that. Hate is a much vaguer word or intolerance is a much vaguer word. And almost all the big banks have policies like that. And we're challenging that to say no, no, no, you need very clear rules, you shouldn't be able to deny someone's banking, because you don't like the religious view, for example.

And you have vague standards of what's hateful or intolerant. So you can pretty much do whatever you want and disrupt somebody's life. So that's kind of the big topic that's on the ballots. You know, we have an election year, right. But we also have hundreds of elections with these annual meetings.

And I would argue that they probably on balance are more important than a presidential election, because corporations really shape our day to day lives in a way that presidents don't. And the good news is believers are showing up and expressing those values in those meetings, in some cases, directly to the CEO. And Jerry, I know your work is bringing a lot more exposure to that a lot more intelligence in the writing of those shareholder proposals. And we're grateful for the work you're doing. And I'm grateful for you sharing this with your listeners, because I hear them showing up at these meetings. I know the people listening who own these companies.

I know they're logging on and asking questions because I hear them. That's great. Well, Jerry, I hope you have a great weekend, my friend. Look forward to talking to you next week. God bless.

All right. That's Jerry Boyer. He's president of Boyer Research. He joins us each Friday with his market commentary. Bill in Cleveland, let's see if we can get you scheduled for next week.

I'd love to talk to you about choosing a financial adviser. I apologize. We didn't get you on today, folks. That's going to do it for us. We have a great weekend. Faith and Finance Lives, a partnership between Moody Radio and Faith by I'm Rob West. And on behalf of my team today, Laura Tahira, Amy and Jim, plus everybody else here at Faith by. Have a wonderful weekend and we'll see you next time. Bye bye.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-04-19 18:10:37 / 2024-04-19 18:27:56 / 17

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