Alaska By The Numbers – January 2020
Here is your monthly update on some of the things that impacted Alaska’s finances and economy. The Legislature Gaveled In on January 21st The primary responsibility of the legislature is to appropriate the money needed to run the state government. Unlike last year, the House Finance Committee got right to […]
Fixing Alaska’s Investment Earnings Paradox
I wrote a piece a few weeks back about how Alaska’s current investment earnings laws don’t work together. They create a paradox in which the budget deficit gets smaller if investment earnings get worse. In the extreme, we could balance the budget by losing $7 billion in the stock market. […]
Inflation Proofing the Permanent Fund
There was a little bit of a sparring match during the PFD working group meeting last week. Senators Hughes and Stedman seemed to have different impressions about the Percent of Market Value (POMV) approach to managing the Permanent Fund. But, the fireworks came in the form of a misunderstanding about […]
Projecting Alaska’s Budget
The Alaska State Legislature will gavel in tomorrow at 1pm. It should be a busy session, but the primary responsibility of the elected officials is to pass a budget. The governor submitted a starting place for them to consider – $4.5 billion of UGF spending. The finance committees will get […]
Why is Alaska’s Population Declining?
The Department of Labor published Alaska’s annual population numbers in January. It shows a reduction of 3,048 people in FY19. That is the third annual loss in population in a row. On a quarterly basis, the available U.S. Census data suggests we’ve been losing population for 12 consecutive quarters […]
What If Those Predictions Came True?
If you haven’t read Isaac Asimov’s “Foundation” trilogy, you should. He introduced the world to the idea that although the individuals within a system are unpredictable, the general direction a society is moving can be seen coming like dominos falling. Last post, I offered some of my own psychohistory projections […]
What Will the New Decade Bring for Alaska?
If you were on social media at all last week, you probably got your fill of reflections, resolutions, and predictions. Everyone wants to talk about what happened in 2019 and what 2020 will bring. But, we didn’t just turn the calendar this year – we changed decades. So, just for […]
Alaska By The Numbers – December 2019
Now that the holidays are over, it’s time to turn our attention back to Alaska’s financial problems. Here are some of the highlights of what happened in December 2019. The Governor Released His FY21 Budget Proposal The governor rolled out his proposed FY21 budget on December 11th. To the surprise […]
Alaska by the Numbers – November 2019
November was a month of little change. In general, the markets turned slightly optimistic. That’s good news for Alaska in both the oil and investment side of things. Here’s a recap of where things stand. The Stock Market Gained on Trade Deal Hopes Equity traders saw a break in the […]
Alaska by the Numbers – October 2019
Here is your free monthly update on what’s going on in Alaska’s economy. The Labor Market Keeps Improving According to the Department of Labor numbers released last week, Alaska extended its winning streak to 12 consecutive months of job growth. The jobs count in September 2019 was a total of […]