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attention seniors, trump’s budget is coming for your medicare benefits

as he campaigned for the presidency, donald trump promised he wouldn’t cut medicare benefits. (ap photo/john locher)on the campaign trail, trump promised – repeatedly — he wouldn’t cut medicare benefits.that was then: trump promised over and over to ‘save’ medicare, medicaid and social security. will he?this is now: seniors will pay the price for trump’s medicare cutstrump released his 2019 budget last week, and it included $266 billion in cuts to medicare, which provides health insurance to 58 million americans 65 and older and people with certain disabilities.howard gleckman, a contributor for forbes, breaks down the proposed changes: what trump’s budget would mean for seniors— medicare drug benefit would be restructured to reduce costs for some beneficiaries but rais...





be sure you understand the tax implications of getting a home loan from a parent

by ilyce glink and samuel j. tamkinby ilyce glink and samuel j. tamkinfebruary 19 at 7:30 am(serhi brovko/getty images/istock)q: my mom is giving us money to buy a vacation home. we will pay her back monthly, but it’s more of a handshake agreement. will there be any tax implications for either of us? she will not be on the deed.a: your mom will be your lender and you will be the borrower in this situation. we recommend you document your arrangement, and there are a number of reasons to do it. but the best reason is so it’s clear this is a loan and not a gift. (we’ll explain that in a moment.)we don’t know if your mom will be charging you interest on the loan. if your mom doesn’t, the irs will treat the arrangement as a gift from your mom to you. the gift amount is based on the ...





zero-down home loans are back. be very leery.

(istock)the notion of buying a home with no money down is understandably alluring. but what looks sexy in a lender’s advertisement does not always translate into what is best for your financial well-being.what is a zero-down loan? also known as 100 percent financing, zero-down loans require no down payment to purchase a home. for those with little to no cash in savings, these loans are touted as a windfall for those who could only dream of owning a home.during the real estate boom from 2003 to 2006, zero-down mortgages were widely used to assist aspiring homeowners to join the growing homeownership club. buyers with no cash, bad credit and unstable employment were able to purchase a home — in addition, some obtained “no-doc” loans in which income and debt were not even disclosed ??...





an open letter to amazon: the d.c. region is where innovation lives

(getty images/istockphoto)our region has a vibrant innovation ecosystem that is one of the most important in the united states. advanced technologies that drive the country’s economy are nurtured here and further developed and deployed by our highly talented workforce and entrepreneurs. people often don’t see the scale and depth of our innovation and entrepreneurship activity because they focus on the wrong metric.many people use a region’s level of venture capital funding as a proxy for the level of innovation. this is a good criterion for evaluating a community centered on the venture-backed start-up business model: businesses are started by angel investors who work with founders to advance a technology to the point of commercial application; venture capital is used to fill out the...





the 21st-century russian sleeper agent is a troll with an american accent

not long after marat mindiyarov started working at the internet research agency, the russian troll factory indicted by the u.s. justice department on friday, he began hearing about the coveted “facebook department.” there, workers could earn more money and work alongside a younger, hipper crowd. but to gain entry, job candidates had to prove they could seamlessly insinuate themselves into the american political conversation.the english-language test, which mindiyarov said he took in december 2014, included a question about vegetarianism and another about hillary clinton and the prospect that the democratic front-runner would win the u.s. presidential election.mindiyarov, 43 and a teacher by training, wrote that clinton had a good chance of winning, and that it would be a remarkable fea...





‘black panther’ just broke box-office records. but some worry it’ll be the exception, not the rule.

“black panther” director ryan coogler (willy sanjuan/invision/ap)los angeles — “black panther,” marvel’s african-oriented comic book adaptation, is on track to become the most successful movie at the box office for a film with a primarily black cast, generating an estimated $192 million over its three-day opening weekend.and it’s raising hopes for a new wave of broad-interest commercial films featuring black actors and stories.“that a predominantly black-cast movie is getting this kind of traction finally shows what we all intuitively know: make great art and people will respond,” said the actor-musician common, who like many african americans in entertainment has criticized the industry for ignoring the potential of black-oriented films.but some in hollywood also wor...





as elon musk antagonized rival, the space industry battled over who will host a cocktail reception for the vice president

vice president pence delivers opening remarks during the national space council's first meeting, on oct. 5, 2017, at the smithsonian national air and space museum's steven f. udvar-hazy center in chantilly, va. photo credit: (nasa/joel kowsky)after he launched his giant new rocket into space last week, elon musk said he was spoiling for a good race in space. this week, he learned his rivals were up for the challenge, even when it involves such terrestrial trivialities as a cocktail party.ahead of the second meeting of the white house’s national space council in florida next week, a consortium of upstart entrepreneurial companies known as the commercial spaceflight federation, which includes spacex, decided to host a reception for members of the council, who just happen to be some of ...





the 21st-century russian sleeper agent is a troll with an american accent

not long after marat mindiyarov started working at the internet research agency, the russian troll factory indicted by the u.s. justice department on friday, he began hearing about the coveted “facebook department.” there, workers could earn more money and work alongside a younger, hipper crowd. but to gain entry, job candidates had to prove they could seamlessly insinuate themselves into the american political conversation.the english-language test, which mindiyarov said he took in december 2014, included a question about vegetarianism and another about hillary clinton and the prospect that the democratic front-runner would win the u.s. presidential election.mindiyarov, 43 and a teacher by training, wrote that clinton had a good chance of winning, and that it would be a remarkable fea...





dealmaking accelerates as federal contractors jockey for spending

for the first time in a while, investors are betting big on “big government.”the federal services market has experienced a jolt of dealmaking activity in recent months as companies position themselves to capture new government spending, breathing life into a sector that has been sluggish for years.in late january, fast-growing technology contractor ecs federal was bought for $775 million by on assignment, a california-based recruiting firm with little experience in the federal market. in the same week, lockheed martin spinoff pae bought the firm macfadden & associates in a move that was largely viewed as an effort to consolidate amid shifting budgets.meanwhile, falls church, va.-based defense giant general dynamics upped the ante last week when it announced a $6.8 billion agreement t...





elon musk's space tesla just might crash into earth in the next million years

remember the tesla roadster that elon musk launched into space last week?yeah, that one.well, three scientists just took a close look at the vehicle's orbit over the next million years, and they found there is a slight chance the car might crash into earth or venus.don't panic. the chance is pretty small — somewhere around 6 percent for earth and 2.5 percent for venus. and a million years is a very long time — our species has been around for only about a fifth of that span. there's plenty of room for civilization-ending catastrophes to occur long before the tesla reenters earth's atmosphere.besides, the car would likely burn up before reaching the surface.the results, due to be published in the monthly notices of the royal astronomical society, were posted this week on the e-print ...





a west virginia newspaper is in bankruptcy. the powerful coal industry celebrates.

the charleston newspapers building on virginia street, in charleston. (kenny kemp/kenny kemp gazette mail)one day after the charleston gazette-mail declared bankruptcy, coal industry attorney robert mclusky made light of the newspaper’s plight. speaking at a west virginia mining symposium jan. 31, mclusky told the hundreds of executives there that he was sorry that the gazette-mail’s hard-hitting coal correspondent ken ward wasn’t there. playing off the possibility that reporters would get “pink slips,” mclusky held up a pink sheet of paper on which he had printed ward’s name and a notice of potential layoffs at the newspaper.the crowd laughed. mclusky later called ward to apologize. “i took a shot in front of a pro-coal audience that i regret, that i shouldn’t have taken,?...





at&t demands trump administration logs in court battle over time warner deal

(andrew harrer/bloomberg)at&t is demanding that the justice department hand over additional evidence to prove that president trump did not wield political influence over the agency as its antitrust enforcers reviewed the company's bid to acquire time warner.doj should produce a log of any conversations that may have transpired between the white house and attorney general jeff sessions pertaining to at&t's $85 billion merger, the telecom giant argued friday before a federal judge.separately, doj should also be required, at&t said, to disclose any conversations between sessions and the agency's antitrust division, which has sued at&t to block its megadeal. doj has argued that the transaction could harm competition by leading to higher prices for consumers and limiting innovation. the ...





chloe kim's olympic-size appetite is a social-media moment -- seized on by brands that smell opporunity

chloe kim was hangry. the snowboarder hadn’t finished her breakfast and halfway through the olympic halfpipe competition, she was regretting it.so she did what many 17-year-olds might do: she tweeted. “wish i finished my breakfast sandwich but my stubborn self decided not to and now i’m getting hangry,” she wrote from pyeongchang, south korea.on the other side of the world in richmond, mary beth brault woke at 6 a.m., rolled over and checked her phone. someone had sent her a screen shot of kim’s tweet. “we’ve got to jump on this,” brault told the public relations team at hamilton beach.the company quickly tweeted: “congrats on the gold! we’ll send you a @hamiltonbeach #breakfast sandwich maker so you never go #hangry again!”a slew of companies — roy rogers restaur...





did the fbi and gsa just do donald trump a big favor?

the trump international hotel, between the white house and u.s. capitol on pennsylvania avenue. (pablo martinez monsivais/ap photo)for more than a decade now, the general services administration — the federal government’s real estate agency — has been looking to move the fbi from its current, outmoded headquarters location on pennsylvania avenue to a location that is bigger and easier to protect from a terrorist attack. and the thinking was that the current site was so valuable in terms of its potential for commercial development that by selling or swapping it, the government could generate enough money to pay most of the cost of a new building somewhere else. the spectacular revival of the east end of downtown washington as a nightspot and a residential neighborhood in the last few...





spacex wants to beam internet down to earth. here’s how it will start.

a spacex falcon 9 rocket launched in june at nasa’s kennedy space center. (bill ingalls/nasa)spacex is preparing to hit another orbital milestone with the launch of a pair of experimental satellites on sunday that are designed to beam an ultrafast, lag-free internet connection down to earth.the test satellites, dubbed microsat-2a and microsat-2b, are a part of a years-long plan by chief executive elon musk to create a fleet of orbiting devices to blanket the globe in wireless broadband connectivity. spacex ultimately intends to put about 12,000 broadband satellites in low earth orbit, and sunday’s payload will mark the company’s first attempt at realizing the dream. the initial satellites in the network are expected to come online next year.satellite broadband is already ava...





bill and melinda gates hear you

bill and melinda gates used their gates foundation annual letter to address tough questions they regularly hear about their work. (daniel berman/for the washington post)seattle — bill and melinda gates, by many measures, are popular public figures.according to a poll taken during the 2016 election, 58 percent of registered voters see the bill & melinda gates foundation favorably, more than the 45 percent who feel the same about the rockefeller foundation or the 33 percent who have a positive view of the clinton foundation. the gateses have received honors and awards for their work giving away the foundation’s billions. the microsoft founder would even do well if he ran for president, according to research by fidelum partners, which also found that bill gates ranked higher than many cel...





inspirational tales in ‘black fortunes’ shatter myths about blacks and money

blacks know how to make money. in fact, even during times when black folks were just a parent or grandparent removed from slavery, there were black millionaires. right here, i want to make a qualifier: the average net worth of black households is concerning — and indicative of the disturbing wealth gap in america. as a pew research center report stated last fall, “the great recession of 2007-2009 triggered a sharp, prolonged decline in the wealth of american families, and an already large wealth gap between white households and black and hispanic households widened further in its immediate aftermath.”in 2016, the median net worth of white households was $171,000, according to the pew report. this is compared with black household wealth of $17,100 and $20,600 for hispanic households. ...





did the fbi and gsa just do donald trump a big favor?

the trump international hotel, between the white house and u.s. capitol on pennsylvania avenue. (pablo martinez monsivais/ap photo)for more than a decade now, the general services administration — the federal government’s real estate agency — has been looking to move the fbi from its current, outmoded headquarters location on pennsylvania avenue to a location that is bigger and easier to protect from a terrorist attack. and the thinking was that the current site was so valuable in terms of its potential for commercial development that by selling or swapping it, the government could generate enough money to pay most of the cost of a new building somewhere else. the spectacular revival of the east end of downtown washington as a nightspot and a residential neighborhood in the last few...





chinese investors blocked from buying a u.s. stock exchange

the securities and exchange commission on thursday said lack of transparency was the reason it thwarted a controversial bid by a group of chinese investors to purchase the 135-year-old chicago stock exchange.the decision comes during a period of heightened concern over china’s rise as a commercial power in the east and worries over its access to american intellectual property and u.s. citizens’ personal data.fbi director christopher a. wray gave voice to the fears during a senate intelligence committee meeting on feb. 13 when he said china was bent on surpassing the united states in superpower status and said chinese spies were embedded in american academia.the proposed chicago stock exchange deal drew opposition from both sides of the political aisle, with foes saying it compromised u...





commerce recommends trump restrict imports of steel and aluminum, escalating trade conflict

the commerce department recommended friday that president trump restrict soaring imports of steel and aluminum, saying that relying upon foreign sources for such critical materials poses a threat to national security.commerce secretary wilbur ross said that excess production of both metals by producers around the world is depressing prices and resulting in the closure of scores of u.s. factories.the proposals cheered metals producers that have long sought government protection but alarmed companies that rely on steel and aluminum to make their products as well as farmers worried that they will be caught in the crossfire.reaction to the announcement also reflected the way that trump has scrambled trade politics, with leading democrats welcoming the prospect of tough action and republicans w...