Did You Know?
Mortgage rates have fallen to around their lowest levels in 8 months. The average rate for a 30-year fixed mortgage fell to 4.51%, matching the lowest level since last spring, according to Freddie Mac. That rate is still higher than its level of 3.95% from a year ago but has fallen from a more-than-7-year high of nearly 5% in October.
$ 1 trillion of China's $24 trillion wealth is held abroad. New tax policies may impact rich Chinese citizens including a new GIFT TAX of as much as 20%. In the past, the rich could avoid paying taxes on overseas earnings by acquiring a foreign passport/green card, while keeping their Chinese citizenship. This won’t work starting in January as the government will tax global income from all holders of "hukou" household registrations regardless of whether they have any additional nationalities. New property tax laws are in the works too. (Bloomberg)
U. S. employers added jobs at a robust pace in December, and wages posted their biggest full-year gain in a decade, providing a strong counterpoint to Wall Street worries that tariffs and rising interest rates are holding back the economy. (WSJ)