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Banking and Finance

At Easter dinner, we were talking about how much things cost, namely healthcare. My good friend and mentor, Dean, had recently told me he purchased his first home for $12,000. Then my father-in-law chimed in and said their next door neighbor recently purchased a new sewing machine for $10,000. We all kind of chuckled and made comments like, “I wonder if you can drive that sewing machine to work?”

Isn’t it crazy to think how the purchasing power of the dollar has lost ground in the last 40 years? The Bureau of Labor and Statistics has an inflation calculator, and when I ran the calculator it said $10,000 in 1970 had the same purchasing power as $58,676 in 2012. read more »

Banking And Finance

In a typical week, Soks Martz spends as many as 20 hours on community service work, in addition to working full time and running a farm with her husband — a self-sustaining farm with about 130 animals from pigs to cows.

Her main activity outside of work is running the Christmas in the Country annual self-guided arts and crafts tour on Bainbridge Island, and she’s also involved with Relay for Life, Kitsap Arts and Crafts and other organizations.

“I allocate time (to volunteering) every day after work,” said Martz, who is a branch office administrator for Edward Jones Investments in Kingston. “I go home and my day is just starting. I also commit my weekends to community work.” read more »

Banking And Finance

Declan Krafsky is only 11 years old, but he already understands the ups and downs of the stock market. The sixth-grader, who is homeschooled, saved up $80 from birthdays and odd jobs and a year ago invested it into Intel stock. He has reinvested the money continuously, and figured he probably made a few dollars. Now, he’s considering whether to invest another $100 he has saved up.

“I don’t like spending money that much,” he said. “If I save enough, maybe I can get through college, start doing something and then retire early.”

Declan was partially inspired to invest money by his grandmother, who purchased $50 worth of stock when she was young and by the time she remembered about it, the stocks were worth $10,000, he said. read more »


Small business owners rely on many forms of financing to assist with opening their businesses and to fund ongoing growth. Typical financing requirements include: working capital, equipment and other short-term fixed asset needs, as well as major capital expenditures like buildings and tenant improvements.

While the majority of new businesses are self-financed, there are a variety of other funding methods. Primarily, these funding sources come either in the form of debt (loans) or equity (stock). Numerous financing sources exist including: relatives, friends, hard money lenders, capital finance intermediaries, angel investors, and banks. The most popular of these are relatives and friends. However, taking money from people you know can come with many strings attached. Therefore, quite often, other alternatives are sought. read more »

Banking And Finance

Craig and Wendy GurneyCraig and Wendy Gurney have been in business for five years, providing tile installation service. Their Poulsbo business, Gurney’s Tile Work, has done well despite being a startup in a downturn — so well, in fact, that the couple decided last year to expand by opening a showroom.

“The timing was good. We felt like if we didn’t do it, somebody else was going to capitalize on it,” Craig Gurney said. read more »


For a variety of reasons, many people, particularly those in the baby boom generation, are considering retiring later than they might have originally planned. If you’re in this group, you’ll want to take full advantage of those extra working years by contributing as much as you can to a retirement plan that can help you build resources, defer taxes and, ultimately, maximize income. And if you own a small business, you’ve got some attractive plans from which to choose.

Let’s look at two of these retirement plans — the “owner-only” 401(k) and the defined benefit plan. read more »


Kitsap Bank reported earnings of $1.46 million for the first quarter 2011 compared to $417,000 one year ago, up $250%, marking their best quarterly results in two years. The Bank distributed $800,000 in quarterly dividends to shareholders on March 31. Non-performing assets are down substantially; and are well-controlled at only 1% of assets, among the lowest in the State of Washington.

“We are very pleased with our results, and we continue to improve,” said Jim Carmichael, President and CEO. “Kitsap Bank enjoys the benefit of a conservative credit culture, which has resulted in rapid improvement in the bank’s asset quality and earnings. read more »


Wells Fargo & Company reported record net income of $3.8 billion, or $0.67 per diluted common share, for first quarter, up from $2.5 billion, or $0.45 per share, for first quarter 2010.

“Our strong first quarter results reflected positive trends in our business fundamentals as credit quality improved, capital ratios increased and cross-selling reached new highs,” said Chairman and CEO John Stumpf. “As the economy continued an uneven recovery, our business customers increased borrowing and utilization of credit lines read more »


If you are thinking about investing in Green energy stocks, don’t.

Not if you need the money for retirement, or college, or anything besides impressing your friends with good intentions.

Because green energy companies are creating a lot more press than profits. And that will get worse before — if ever — it gets better. read more »

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