- People who feel faint, dizzy or lightheaded when standing up, caused by a sudden drop in blood pressure, may be at greater risk of developing dementia or stroke decades later, according to a study done by Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in the US.
- The study, published in journal of the American Academy of Neurology, involved 11,709 people with an average age of 54, who were followed for 25 years. None had a history of heart disease or stroke at the beginning of the study.
- “Orthostatic hypotension has been linked to heart disease, fainting and falls, so we wanted to conduct a large study to determine if this form of low blood pressure was also linked to problems in the brain, specifically dementia,” said Andreea Rawlings, from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.
- For the study, low blood pressure upon standing was defined as a drop of at least 20 millimetres of mercury (mmHg) in systolic blood pressure, which is the pressure in the blood vessels when the heart beats, or at least 10 mmHg in diastolic blood pressure, the pressure when the heart is at rest. Normal blood pressure is less than 120/80 mmHg. During the initial exam, participants were screened for orthostatic hypotension. They were instructed to lie down for 20 minutes and then stand up in a smooth, swift motion.
- Researchers found those who had orthostatic hypotension at the beginning of the study had a 54% higher risk of developing dementia than those who did not have orthostatic hypotension at the beginning of the study.
- “Measuring orthostatic hypotension in middle-age may be a new way to identify people who need to be carefully monitored for dementia or stroke,” said Rawlings. “More studies are needed to clarify what may be causing these links as well as to investigate possible prevention strategies,” she said.
For many, an MBA seems like a surefire route to a high-powered career with a hefty pay packet to match.
According to the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC), 89 percent of recent business school graduates secured full-time employment this year. The majority of them were in traditional industries such as services (24 percent), finance and accounting (14 percent) and consulting (13 percent), according to the survey. Almost half of those jobs offered salaries of $125,000 or more, according to a separate study.
But that could be where many grads are going wrong, according to Steven Lam, co-founder and CEO of billion-dollar start-up GoGoVan, an on-demand van-hailing app which aims to solve logistical problems in big Asian cities.
The 32-year-old, who graduated from the University of California-Berkeley’s Haas School of Business, said too many students fall into tried and tested MBA careers — namely finance, accounting and consulting — when they could instead use their skills to shake up the business world.
“There are a lot of things out there,” Lam told CNBC Make It. “You don’t need to be fixated on accounting or finance.”
“Around the world there’s thousands and thousands of companies … The greatest ones are not accounting firms, financial firms or consulting firms.”
It’s a realization he reached on his first day at the prestigious business school. Having worked hard to earn his place after dropping out of high school in his native Hong Kong, Lam might have followed a similar route if it weren’t for a business ethics class from Professor Alan Ross.
“He said: ‘We are here to give you guys education. But education means building society, the world, in a lot of different angles,'” Lam recalled the professor saying.
By that, Lam said, Ross wanted to open students’ eyes to the idea that an MBA can be put toward other avenues that address some of society’s biggest issues. According to GMAC’s research, in 2018, just 11 percent of MBA grads went into governmental or nonprofit roles, while 6 percent went into healthcare.
“That was the first class and I remember it so well,” said Lam. “So when I graduated I just wanted to do something meaningful.”
For his part, Lam went on to build a multinational on-demand logistics platform, which provides delivery services across six countries in Asia. The company directly employs 2,000 people and supports a network of 8 million drivers.
But, he said, working for a major company can also provide a real opportunity to drive forward industry practices and society more generally.
“Around the world, there’s thousands and thousands of companies out there. The greatest ones are not accounting firms, financial firms or consulting firms. The greatest firms are called Fortune 500. Each of them sell different kinds of stuff, have different types of business,” said Lam, citing the likes of Caterpillar, Walmart, Apple and Google.
Market participants are finding it extremely difficult to fully appreciate the risk of the world’s fifth-largest economy being thrust into the unknown post-Brexit, one strategist told CNBC on Monday.
His comments come at a time when British Prime Minister Theresa May is fighting for her political survival, after a draft divorce deal with the EU prompted a flurry of government ministers to resign.
Moritz Kraemer, former chief sovereign analyst at S&P ratings agency, told CNBC’s “Squawk Box Europe” on Monday that, at current levels, it is clear markets remain underprepared for the prospect a no-deal Brexit.
When asked whether sterling and Britain’s FTSE 100 index accurately reflected the risk of a no-deal scenario, Kraemer replied: “No, I don’t think so.”
“This is not fully incorporated, partly because markets understandably have a very hard time (trying) to assess what this would actually mean … We have never been through anything remotely similar,” Kraemer said.
A no-deal scenario is generally considered to be where the U.K. crashes out of the EU without any formal relationship and has to rely on WTO trading rules.
The U.K. currency has largely been viewed as a barometer of fear during Brexit negotiations, with sterling suffering steep losses against the dollar last week amid heightened political turmoil.
On Monday afternoon, sterling was down around 0.1 percent against the dollar, trading at around $1.2831. The British currency was as high as $1.3176 earlier this month, before a draft deal struck with the EU prompted a wave of government resignations.
The British government unveiled its long-awaited draft withdrawal agreement on Wednesday, which details the terms of the U.K.’s departure from the EU on March 29, 2019.
May is facing opposition from across the political spectrum to the proposed draft deal, which must be approved by Parliament, with critics saying it could leave Britain indefinitely tied to the EU post-Brexit.
In addition to protests from opposition lawmakers, May’s draft Brexit proposal has come under intense scrutiny from many within her own Conservative Party and, crucially, from members of the Northern Irish party which props up her minority government.
In response to May’s proposal, Britain’s Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab resigned from his post on Thursday, prompting sterling to suffer its worst one-day fall against the euro since 2016.
A junior minister for Northern Ireland, Shailesh Vara, the Work and Pensions Secretary Esther McVey and Suella Braverman, a junior minister in Britain’s Brexit Department, also submitted their resignations on Thursday morning.
Despite mutiny from some members of May’s own party, leading Brexiteers in the cabinet have rallied behind the prime minister.
“We think the risk-reward for U.K. stocks is looking positive here, given the negativity expressed in the market,” Emmanuel Cau, head of European equity strategy at Barclays, told CNBC’s Julianna Tatelbaum on Monday.
“So, if we were to see a soft or no-deal Brexit — which is still our base case as a house — we do think that domestic stocks and FTSE 250 in particular will see a significant relief rally,” he added.
When asked whether sharp declines in domestic homebuilders and some U.K.-focused banks last week should be viewed as an opportunity for market participants, Cau replied: “Yes, absolutely.”
“Our advice for investors is not to overreact … It is going to be a very busy week for the U.K. and Europe in negotiating Brexit.”
The pan-European Stoxx 600 ended down around 1.09 percent by the close, with most sectors and major bourses in negative territory.
Tech stocks were among the worst performers during early afternoon deals. The sector slipped more than 1.9 percent after sharp losses on Wall Street compounded souring market sentiment in Europe.
Europe’s banking index also dipped 2.2 percent by Tuesday’s close amid heightened worries over slowing economic growth. British lender CYBG slumped to the bottom of the benchmark after the firm announced it was planning for a “period of uncertainty” in regards to Brexit negotiations. Shares tumbled nearly 16 percent on the news.
Looking at other individual stocks, France’s Renault lost a further 1.3 percent by Tuesday’s close. That was the second day of trade after it emerged Nissan’s Chairman Carlos Ghosn had been arrested concerning allegations of financial misconduct. Ghosn is also CEO and chair of Renault.
On Monday, Nissan released a statement, saying that “over many years” Ghosn and board director, Greg Kelly, had been under-reporting compensation amounts to the Tokyo Stock Exchange securities report. Most European automakers were negative on Tuesday, as the news showed no signs of respite.
Elsewhere, BTG soared to the top of the STOXX 600 on Tuesday. It comes after Boston Scientific announced it had agreed a cash deal to acquire the health care company, with the U.S. manufacturer offering 840 pence per share. Shares of BTG surged more than 34 percent higher on the news.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished almost 400 points down by Monday’s closing bell, with several leading tech stocks taking a beating — including Apple and Facebook.
That sentiment continued on Tuesday, with the Dow off by around 500 points, or 2 percent, after two hours of U.S. trade.
The British government unveiled its long-awaited draft withdrawal agreement last week, which details the terms of the U.K.’s departure from the EU on March 29, 2019.
U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May is facing opposition from across the political spectrum to the proposal, which must be approved by Parliament, with critics saying it could leave Britain indefinitely tied to the EU post-Brexit.
The European Union is expected to hold a summit to discuss Britain’s draft withdrawal agreement on Sunday.
If the 27 remaining member states agree to sign off on the draft agreement later this month, the British government would then need to win over a majority of lawmakers at a crucial vote in early December.
Sterling partially rebounded from lows hit versus the dollar on Tuesday morning after Bank of England Governor Mark Carney said the central bank may not cut interest rates in the event of a no-deal withdrawal from Europe.
Prudential Financial’s Quincy Krosby has advice for investors: Let the stock market volatility work for you.
She’s confident the market’s wild swings will ultimately subside and generate strong upside.
“If the sell-off continues and it deepens, it’s going to provide tremendous opportunities as the market settles down,” the firm’s chief market strategist said Monday on CNBC’s “Trading Nation.”
Stocks fell sharply Tuesday morning and the major indexes turned negative for the year.
Krosby isn’t ruling out a retest of October’s lows because of the uncertainty surrounding the market when it comes to Federal Reserve policy, the U.S.-China trade war and global growth jitters.
“If you have to go into the market now, we suggest you go into the defensive names,” she said, highlighting health care, consumer staples and utilities.
Her thoughts came as the major indexes kicked off another the week in sell-off mode. The tech-heavy Nasdaq slipped deeper into correction territory. It was off 10 percent over the past three months as of Monday’s closing. However, Krosby sees the wreckage in tech as an option for investors who have a strong risk tolerance.
“You may want to take a look at the ones that have been really beaten down,” said Krosby. “Cloud is not going away. Cybersecurity is not going away. But nonetheless, they’re going to have to probably sell off more as we see the tech names just basically being a source of funding perhaps for hedge funds right now. But this, too, shall pass.”
For investors with a weak stomach for volatility, she notes that sitting on the sidelines isn’t such a bad strategy either.
“If you can sit out and wait in cash, I think the opportunities are going to come to you,” she added.
And, she suggests that could happen before the end of the year.
Not too late for Santa Claus rally?
According to Krosby, it’s not too late for the markets to stage a Santa Claus rally. If the markets can muster the momentum, it’s possible stocks could end the year higher than current levels — especially if the Federal Reserve indicates it will hike fewer than four times between now and 2020 and the U.S.-China trade tensions ease.
“Any headline that comes in and changes our perception of those two major, major issues for the market could actually underpin a stronger turnaround before the end of this month,” Krosby said.
Deutsche Bank is not at risk of a takeover, its chief executive told a German weekly paper after its shares fell to a record low on Friday in the wake of a two-day raid related to money laundering allegations.
Speculation about a possible merger has continued despite the bank’s dismissal in September of reports that it could consider tie-ups with Switzerland’s UBS or German peer Commerzbank.
“I don’t have any indication of that,” Christian Sewing told Bild am Sonntag. “We are on track to make our first profit for three years. It is only a matter of time before this progress is reflected in the share price.”
Sewing’s remarks followed the two-day raid as part of an investigation linked to the so-called Panama Papers leak of documents about offshore finance
Police searched the offices of all the bank’s board members, Sewing said. “But that is okay, I don’t have a problem with that. I want this matter to be cleared up as soon as possible,” he told the newspaper.
Investigators are looking at the activities of unidentified Deutsche Bank employees alleged to have helped clients to set up offshore firms to launder money, the Frankfurt prosecutor’s office said.
“It’s about two employees who, at the time, helped to work through everything surrounding the issue of the Panama Papers. In my view the presumption of innocence clearly applies until proven otherwise,” Sewing told the paper.
“Since the publication of the Panama Papers in 2016 we have reviewed the whole issue and, in doing so, cooperated closely with the regulatory authorities. For us the case was concluded.”
Asked whether he had made any mistakes, Sewing said: “I am at peace with myself and I am doing my job as well as I can.
“Of course, I would never say that I’m not making mistakes. But if I do, I correct them as quickly as possible.”
Most people start the New Year off by resolving to do better when it comes to diet, exercise and paying down debt. Alternatively, you can take a proactive approach and reel in your finances before this year ends. (Resisting holiday treats is another story).
Even with most Americans feeling more financially secure than they did five years ago, many are still concerned about their cash flow and struggle to set aside any type of savings.
About 40 percent of adults said that if faced with a $400 unexpected expense, they would either not be able to pay it or would do so by selling something or borrowing money, according to the Federal Reserve’s Report on the Economic Well-Being of U.S. Households.
Rather than starting 2019 with another financial resolution, there’s still time to make 2018 a little more lucrative. Here’s how:
1. Look for a better rate on your savings
When it comes to money matters, most Americans worry about unexpected expenses, making ends meet and health-care costs, according to a study by LendingTree, which had polled more than 1,000 adults about their resolutions for 2018.
One of the best ways to deal with unexpected expenses is to make sure you have enough money set aside. That’s where rising interest rates can help.
As the Federal Reserve raised its benchmark rate, yields on savings accounts have increased, as well. While the average interest rate on a savings account is still only 0.2 percent, some top-yielding savings accounts are now as high as 2.25 percent and you can earn even more with CDs, or certificates of deposit.
With a savings rate, or annual percentage yield, of 0.2 percent, a $10,000 deposit earns just $20 after one year. At 2.25 percent, that same deposit would earn $225.
2. Download a budgeting app
There is no magic formula for being able to make ends meet. You have to live within your means and to do that you need to budget. Having a budgeting app on your phone makes it easier to accomplish that.
Apps such as Mint or Albert keep tabs on your spending and help find places where some expenses can be cut. You can even set budgets that alert you when they start to top out.
Pocketguard is a simpler alternative. It just tells you how much you have for spending after accounting for bills and savings goal contributions. Then you can see how much money is left “in your pocket” for the day, week or month.
3. Check your credit report
Run a credit checkup to know where you stand. You can get a free report from each credit reporting company annually at annualcreditreport.com.
Studies show that checking scores more often helps you manage and maintain good credit.
4. Check in with an advisor
To make sure that you’re able to finish the year on solid financial footing and set yourself up for a strong start to 2019, this is a good time to check in with a financial pro or even a robo-advisor.
Robo-advisors, which have come a long way, can give you access to automated investment strategies and create portfolios for less than it would cost to work with a human. However, they do come up short when it comes to financial planning and addressing any specific financial concerns you may have, such as a job change, move, illness, change in marital status, buying or selling a home, or paying for a child’s education.
Still, working with a robo-advisor provides a low-cost solution to investors who are just getting started. And lower costs mean more money to invest.
5. Get ahead of health-care costs
When it comes to medical expenses, this is the time to pay extra attention to what lies ahead.
If you’ve already met your health insurance deductible for 2018, you can save money by scheduling appointments and procedures before the end of the year — rather than waiting until 2019 when you begin a new year and your deductible kicks in again.
Keep in mind, though, your plan may have a maximum number of visits for certain things like dental cleanings or physical therapy visits.
6. Milk your FSA
It’s use it or lose it time for many with flexible spending accounts. Unless your employer offers a grace period or rollover option, the pretax money you have in a FSA must be used by Dec. 31.
You can spend what’s left on contact lens solution, cough medicine, first aid kits, high-SPF sunscreen or even lip balm. Look to see what qualifies as accepted expenses.
More from Personal Finance:
Baby boomers face more risks to their retirement than previous generations
How long $1 million lasts in retirement
Kids, this retirement account is for you
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(Health Savings Accounts, or HSAs, work differently than FSAs in that you have an unlimited amount of time to reimburse yourself for eligible medical expenses. Yes, you can still use the money now to cover health-care expenses without depleting your cash on hand, but leaving money in an HSA long-term will enable you to use those funds to cover health-care expenses decades down the road.)
7. Go over financial goals with family
With everyone together over the holidays, this is a good time to talk about your estate plan or come up with one if you haven’t already done so.
An estate refers to what you own: financial accounts, real estate and possessions. Hashing out how those things will be distributed can head off any fighting among your kids and limit the amount of taxes your heirs may have to pay.
It’s also important to name people to several key roles, including an executor of your will, and powers of attorney for both health care and your financial affairs if you become incapacitated while still living.
8. Check account beneficiaries
Meanwhile, double check the beneficiaries on your retirement and insurance accounts. People often mistakenly think that in their will, they can name who gets the money in retirement accounts, life insurance policies and the like.
That’s wrong. The person listed as the beneficiary on each of those accounts will get the money, even if your will says otherwise.
Also, when changes happen in your life such as a break up or remarriage, remember to update the beneficiaries on those accounts.
The War of the Roses could continue indefinitely.
And one key deadline could force couples to come to an agreement before the end of the year.
Dec. 31, 2018 is the date by which couples need to get the terms of their divorce settled before the tax rules on alimony change, a result of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act that was passed last year.
Under current rules, alimony payments are tax-deductible for the payor and taxable income for the payee. Once the clock strikes 2019, however, those rules no longer apply.
This change upends alimony procedures that have been in place for more than 70 years. And it is projected to raise $6.9 billion for the IRS in the next 10 years.
Divorce professionals are feeling the heat as couples scramble to get written agreements in under the wire.
“You’ve got to have a signed agreement before the end of the year if you want your permanent support to be tax-deductible and -includable,” said Peter M. Walzer, president of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers.
Once the page of the calendar turns to 2019, it will be a new playing field for couples who are divorcing.
And financial professionals are already concerned that deals made under the new tax law will put the person who receives alimony at a disadvantage. That means women, who are already more financially vulnerable in a divorce, might have less money to work with post-split.
Research has found that women generally fare worse financially after a divorce. Their income typically falls by more than a fifth, while men who have children often see their earnings rise by a third, according to research by professor Stephen Jenkins of the London School of Economics.
And the stakes for women may, in the end, be even higher with the changing alimony tax rules.
Financial advisor Stacy Francis, president and CEO of Francis Financial, said she has received many calls and emails from women celebrating the change. After all, if you’re receiving $3,000 a month in alimony and that’s no longer taxable, that could be a great thing.
However, “even though that dollar amount you receive in alimony might not be taxable to you any longer, most likely the amount that’s going to be paid to you is a whole lot less,” Francis said. “There is going to be fewer dollars available for that alimony and also child support.”
While more women today are serving as household breadwinners, and possibly paying spousal support, alimony recipients are still mostly women. Data from the 2010 Census show that of about 400,000 alimony recipients, 3 percent were men.
Once the new tax rules take effect, “women are expected to suffer most,” Francis said.
One divorce calculator shows that there could be less money to go around after the new tax rules go into effect — resulting in smaller alimony payments.
That is according to Analyze My Divorce Settlement, the latest tool from Boston University economics professor Laurence Kotlikoff’s company, Economic Security Planning.
“They do have to adjust the alimony amount in light of the change in the law,” Kotlikoff said. “It can be a dramatic adjustment.”
A hypothetical scenario run through the tool takes one couple who are both 50 and living in Colorado with no children. After splitting $1.5 million in savings and selling their house for $1 million, they both rent for $2,500 a month.
The goal of their divorce is to keep their living standard equal, according to Analyze My Divorce Settlement’s assumptions. So the husband making $500,000 will pay alimony payments to the wife, who makes $50,000 a year.