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Posts Tagged ‘gamble’

       Here is something to think about with all of the financial crisis making the daily news.  Have you signed anything legal agreeing to rip yourself off financially?  Many people probably haven’t realized this aspect of the times yet…but, a normally smart thing to do each summer is to sign up for a budget plan with your winter heating fuel supplier…agreeing to “lock in” a price when the prices are low during the summer…just in case the price of heating oil/gas goes up, like it normally does in the fall and winter months.

        This year…against any predictable reasoning…gas prices have fallen, sharply.  Still, once people sign on the dotted line to lock in a heating source price…they truly are locked in at that price.   I think as people discover this situation for themselves…there is going to be alot of anger of being caught in this situation.  Some say, that most years it makes sense to lock in and it works out to their advantage…but, this year has really challenged that theory.

          Locking in makes sense usually; the agreement is usually accomplished in mid summer.  Well….if you remember correctly, in July…gas prices were sky high.  In my neck of the woods…gasoline prices have dropped from an all time high of approximately $4.25 down to now a $2.88 cents a gallon.  If you apply that thought process to home heating oil/propane….you can just imagine how much money that people are loosing.

          With the rising cost of food, rent/mortgage payments, health insurance, and other necessities…people can ill afford to pay extra when they don’t have to.  I, for one, am glad that i didn’t lock in my propane prices; like i was advised to! 

          Did you get ripped off by signing an agreement to lock in your heating costs this year?  If you did…you are not alone…and personally i don’t think anyone expected such a situation…but, it really is a gamble trying to predict the future with heating costs.  I am pretty sure that, next year, companies will have a hard time getting people who were burned this year, to sign on the dotted line.  Just stop and think about how many people are living on fixed incomes…i almost hate to see winter arrive because…we will see more people suffering and living in dangerous conditions, in colder climates, because of this.

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        It depends on what time of the day you were able to catch up on the news today.  Microsoft wants to buy Yahoo; then it doesn’t.  In an ever winding path, Microsoft has been trying to purchase Yahoo.  Those on the board keep rejecting the bids. The bid has been raised and still…Yahoo board members have turned their backs on the idea. 

         There have been rumors that Microsoft will take the next step to try to force the purchase with a hostile takeover by trying to get the board members replaced by 10 friendlier members who would be more “open” to the takeover idea.

        This evening, word is that Microsoft has withdrawn it’s bid.  So,  does this mean that the world of, behind the scenes, business manuevering will take over to try to create a more effective environment for purchasing?  You have to wonder if that is even wise; the workers who are still on the job, if and, when a takeover happens will not necessarily be the most accomodating employees. 

           Fear takes over in those types of situations and employees get a little jumpy. They start to feel a sense of divided loyalties.   What if Yahoo’s crucial employees, who have the skills that Microsoft is looking for in their attempt to become more competitive with Google, decide to head for a more stable work environment?  It is a bit of a gamble to pick up a hostile company to add to your companies holdings.

       What about the customers…how will we benefit; or, suffer if they merge two mega internet superstars?  Each company is successful in it’s own right.   What will they have to offer us, the potential customers by joining together.    Will we start to see better services and more creativity?  Or will we be held hostage to a monopoly of providers?   The power that they would wield over the internet, as we know it, would be mindboggling.   What do you think about this?

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