Rookie Traders Are Calling It Quits, and Their Families Are Thrilled | Kanebridge News
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    HOUSE MEDIAN ASKING PRICES AND WEEKLY CHANGE     Sydney $1,480,538 (+0.01%)       Melbourne $960,899 (-0.26%)       Brisbane $805,943 (+0.49%)       Adelaide $760,890 (+0.51%)       Perth $651,708 (+0.03%)       Hobart $728,895 (+0.57%)       Darwin $613,579 (0%)       Canberra $946,216 (+2.14%)       National $956,035 (+0.37%)                UNIT MEDIAN ASKING PRICES AND WEEKLY CHANGE     Sydney $696,616 (-0.38%)       Melbourne $470,588 (+0.14%)       Brisbane $450,511 (+0.19%)       Adelaide $370,041 (+0.13%)       Perth $363,377 (-0.48%)       Hobart $568,887 (+1.25%)       Darwin $342,547 (-0.28%)       Canberra $488,335 (+0.42%)       National $491,956 (+0.17%)                HOUSES FOR SALE AND WEEKLY CHANGE     Sydney 7,426 (+91)       Melbourne 10,303 (-71)       Brisbane 8,928 (-39)       Adelaide 2,407 (+20)       Perth 7,995 (-258)       Hobart 874 (-2)       Darwin 238 (-2)       Canberra 758 (-3)       National 38,557 (-264)                UNITS FOR SALE AND WEEKLY CHANGE     Sydney 6,833 (-17)       Melbourne 6,618 (-36)       Brisbane 1,828 (-2)       Adelaide 460 (-11)       Perth 2,177 (-9)       Hobart 126 (-3)       Darwin 336 (+5)       Canberra 425 (+7)       National 18,641 (-66)                HOUSE MEDIAN ASKING RENTS AND WEEKLY CHANGE     Sydney $680 (+$15)       Melbourne $500 ($0)       Brisbane $560 (-$10)       Adelaide $520 (-$10)       Perth $550 ($0)       Hobart $560 (-$5)       Darwin $700 (+$5)       Canberra $700 (-$20)       National $606 (-$3)                    UNIT MEDIAN ASKING RENTS AND WEEKLY CHANGE     Sydney $600 ($0)       Melbourne $450 ($0)       Brisbane $498 ($0)       Adelaide $420 (-$8)       Perth $480 ($0)       Hobart $485 (+$13)       Darwin $550 ($0)       Canberra $550 (-$10)       National $514 (-$1)                HOUSES FOR RENT AND WEEKLY CHANGE     Sydney 6,843 (+487)       Melbourne 6,880 (+741)       Brisbane 4,325 (+498)       Adelaide 1,251 (+157)       Perth 1,748 (+277)       Hobart 262 (+34)       Darwin 133 (+14)       Canberra 709 (+61)       National 21,516 (+2,269)                UNITS FOR RENT AND WEEKLY CHANGE     Sydney 8,300 (+770)       Melbourne 5,973 (+745)       Brisbane 1,753 (+273)       Adelaide 410 (+74)       Perth 731 (+171)       Hobart 119 (+13)       Darwin 249 (+21)       Canberra 641 (+63)       National 17,293 (+2,130)                HOUSE ANNUAL GROSS YIELDS AND TREND       Sydney 2.34% (↑)      Melbourne 2.69% (↑)        Brisbane 3.58% (↓)       Adelaide 3.60% (↓)     Perth 4.40% (↑)        Hobart 4.04% (↓)     Darwin 5.81% (↑)        Canberra 3.76% (↓)       National 3.30% (↓)            UNIT ANNUAL GROSS YIELDS AND TREND       Sydney 4.47% (↑)        Melbourne 5.00% (↓)       Brisbane 5.88% (↓)       Adelaide 6.19% (↓)     Perth 7.21% (↑)      Hobart 4.59% (↑)      Darwin 8.41% (↑)        Canberra 5.89% (↓)       National 5.43% (↓)            HOUSE RENTAL VACANCY RATES AND TREND       Sydney 1.6% (↑)      Melbourne 1.8% (↑)      Brisbane 0.5% (↑)      Adelaide 0.5% (↑)      Perth 1.0% (↑)      Hobart 0.9% (↑)      Darwin 1.1% (↑)      Canberra 0.5% (↑)      National 1.2% (↑)             UNIT RENTAL VACANCY RATES AND TREND       Sydney 2.3% (↑)      Melbourne 2.8% (↑)      Brisbane 1.2% (↑)      Adelaide 0.7% (↑)      Perth 1.3% (↑)      Hobart 1.4% (↑)      Darwin 1.3% (↑)      Canberra 1.3% (↑)      National 2.1% (↑)             AVERAGE DAYS TO SELL HOUSES AND TREND       Sydney 35.4 (↑)      Melbourne 35.9 (↑)      Brisbane 42.8 (↑)      Adelaide 34.8 (↑)      Perth 43.1 (↑)      Hobart 37.2 (↑)      Darwin 49.3 (↑)      Canberra 38.3 (↑)      National 39.6 (↑)             AVERAGE DAYS TO SELL UNITS AND TREND       Sydney 39.7 (↑)      Melbourne 36.4 (↑)      Brisbane 43.7 (↑)      Adelaide 33.8 (↑)      Perth 46.2 (↑)      Hobart 48.9 (↑)        Darwin 45.9 (↓)     Canberra 33.7 (↑)      National 41.0 (↑)            
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Rookie Traders Are Calling It Quits, and Their Families Are Thrilled

Many who picked up investing during the pandemic are cooling on the hobby

By RACHEL LOUISE ENSIGN
Tue, Jan 3, 2023 8:38amGrey Clock 4 min

Some novices who took up trading during the pandemic are abandoning the hobby. Their loved ones are breathing a sigh of relief.

Spouses, parents and other family members who were subjected to one too many play-by-plays of market movements say they are happy to have their loved ones back—and equally glad they no longer have to hear about buzzy stocks or cryptocurrencies.

The market swooned in 2022, taking the fun out of day trading for many newbies. The S&P 500, after surging during the pandemic, just wrapped up its worst year since 2008. Bitcoin lost about 65% of its value throughout the year.

Some amateur traders’ families now face the disappearance of the life-changing sums of money they held in their portfolios at the height of the run-up. The stakes are lower for those who put a modest amount into meme stocks or crypto for fun.

Alan Garcia started trading on Webull Financial LLC early in the pandemic, when his work as a musician dried up. Soon, Mr. Garcia was parked at his desk each day from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. to manage his portfolio of about $2,000. He bet heavily on companies like ElectraMeccanica Vehicles Corp., which makes an electric car seating a single person; ticker symbol, SOLO.

The obsession didn’t end when he sat down in the living room with his wife, Adriana Rodriguez, each evening. For about two years, he talked about investing. Mr. Garcia, a 34-year-old Houston resident, even started watching investing videos in bed at night.

“He was here,” Ms. Rodriguez said, “but he wasn’t here.”

In early 2022, Mr. Garcia lost everything in his portfolio on a bad options bet, leaving him in a foul mood. But the next morning, he felt relieved. After Ms. Rodriguez, a lawyer, left for the office, he worked on his music all day instead of checking the market. He hasn’t traded on the app since.

Ms. Rodriguez is thrilled. Mr. Garcia agrees it is for the best—mostly, anyway. “We’ve never been this good in our lives,” he said. “One day I’ll get that $2,000 back though.”

Trading exploded into the mainstream during the pandemic, when many Americans were stuck at home, flush with stimulus checks and eager to pass the time. New apps made it cheap and easy for newbies to trade from the comfort of their cellphone, and many found a sense of community on investing forums online. In 2021, rookie traders fuelled a run-up in meme stocks that put hedge funds on their heels.

Individual investors are broadly staying invested in stocks, unlike previous downturns when many dumped their holdings. But lots of one-time day traders are finding they are now content to buy and hold rather than try to time their investments. Average daily trading volume is down markedly at major brokerage firms that cater to retail customers.

Vince Major took a job in 2021 as head of marketing at a cryptocurrency wallet company, and soon he was subjecting his mother, Vikki Major, to his thoughts on various cryptocurrency projects and how the sector could revolutionise the financial system.

His mother found it unbearable. Mrs. Major, who is 66 and a juvenile probation officer in Phoenix, told her son to knock it off. That inspired him to give a presentation at an October industry conference titled “My Mother Hates Your Project (and Mine!).”

A duly chastened Mr. Major has cut back the crypto talk on morning FaceTime calls with his mother. After trying to speak about crypto in a more understandable way, he even convinced his mom to buy ether and leave it in a virtual wallet using his company’s app.

Mrs. Major’s ether is down about 40% since she bought it in summer 2021, and it is now worth about $14,000 total. Mr. Major, who is 36 and lives in Los Angeles, said the value of his crypto holdings is up overall because he started buying in 2015 when prices were much lower.

Mrs. Major figures her son knows what he is talking about—even if it was in an annoying way at first. “He’s very intelligent,” she said.

Marvin Lahoud went all in on investing when the pandemic hit, spending up to 10 hours a day trading. Mr. Lahoud, who works at a Boston construction-management company and moved to the U.S. from Lebanon in 2017, started wearing an earpiece to listen to CNBC while doing chores.

His wife, Suzie Lahoud, tried to embrace the investing subculture, too, though she thought his interest might peter out as it had for previous obsessions like photography and videogames. The couple sang their daughter a song about investing as a lullaby.

“It’s always nice to see him get excited about something,” said Ms. Lahoud, a doctoral student. “But there were times I would get a little frustrated just because it was taking up so much of his time and mental space.”

In February 2021, Ms. Lahoud told her husband she was pregnant with their second child. His Robinhood Markets Inc. portfolio had just reached nearly $1 million. He posted to Reddit a screenshot of his account and his family’s news. “I’m on track to retire early and spend time with my kids,” he said, earning 2,000 comments. He was rich—on paper at least.

By early 2022, Mr. Lahoud’s investments started dropping and he faced a massive tax bill from gains he had taken in 2021. Mr. Lahoud gave up trading.

Without investing to keep him occupied, Mr. Lahoud said he felt depressed for the first time in his life. He threw himself into a new endeavour: researching the year 536 AD, which a Harvard professor dubbed the worst in history. That year, a volcanic eruption plunged swaths of the world into darkness, causing widespread famine. Reading about it made him feel better.

“My troubles are so small,” Mr. Lahoud said, “and life is too short.”

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High-Earning Men Are Cutting Back on Their Working Hours

While most U.S. workers are putting in fewer hours, men in the top 10% of earners cut back their time on the job the most, according to a new study

By Courtney Vinopal
Fri, Jan 27, 2023 4 min

American workers have cut the number of hours they spend in their jobs since 2019, but no group has dialled back its time on the clock more than young, high-earning men whose jobs typically demand long hours.

The top-earning 10% of men in the U.S. labor market logged 77 fewer work hours in 2022, on average, than those in the same earnings group in 2019, according to a new study of federal data by the economics department at Washington University in St. Louis. That translates to 1.5 hours less time on the job each workweek, or a 3% reduction in hours. Over the same three-year period, the top-earning 10% of women cut back time at work by 29 hours, which translates to about half an hour less work each week, or a 1% reduction.

High-earning men in the 25-to-39 age range who could be described as “workaholics” were pulling back, often by choice, says Yongseok Shin, a professor of economics, who co-wrote the paper. Since this group already put in longer hours than the typical U.S. worker—and women at the highest income levels—these high earners had longer work days to trim, Dr. Shin says, and still worked more hours than the average.

The drop in working hours among high-earning men and women helps explain why the U.S. job market is even tighter than what would be expected given the current levels of unemployment and labour force participation, Dr. Shin says.

“These are the people who have that bargaining power,” Dr. Shin says of the leverage many workers have had over their employers in a tight job market. “They have the privilege to decide how many hours they want to work without worrying too much about their economic livelihood.”

The paper published by the National Bureau of Economic Research, which isn’t yet peer reviewed, suggests high earners were more likely to benefit from flexible working arrangements, which could be a factor in reduced work hours.

Before the pandemic, Eli Albrecht, a lawyer in the Washington, D.C., area, says he worked between 80 to 90 hours a week. Now, he says he puts in 60 to 70 hours each week. That’s still more than most men in America, who averaged 40.5 hours a week in 2021, according to federal data.

Mr. Albrecht’s schedule changed when he shared Zoom school duties for two of his young children with his wife. He’s maintained the reduced hours because it’s making his relationship more equitable, he says, and gives him family time.

“I used to feel—and a lot of dads used to feel—that just by providing for the family financially, that was sufficient. And it’s just not,” Mr. Albrecht says.

The downshift documented by Dr. Shin and his colleagues occurred as many professionals have been reassessing their ambitions and the value of working long hours. Emboldened by a strong job market, millions of Americans quit their jobs in search of better hours and more flexibility.

Overall, U.S. employees worked 18 fewer hours a year, on average, in 2022 compared with 2019, with employed men putting in 28 fewer hours last year and employed women cutting their time by nine hours, data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s Current Population Survey show. The average male worker put in 2,006 hours last year, while the average female worker logged 1,758 hours.

Separate data from the Census Bureau suggests that men with families, in particular, are working less. Between 2019 and 2021, married men devoted roughly 13 fewer minutes, on average, to work each day, according to the American Time Use Survey, which hasn’t yet published 2022 figures. They spent more time on socialising and relaxing, as well as household activities, according to men surveyed by the Census Bureau. The amount of time unmarried men spent on work changed little during that same period.

As high-earning workers in the U.S. cut back, low-wage workers increased their hours, according to Dr. Shin’s research. The bottom-earning 10% of working men logged 41 hours more in 2022, on average, than in 2019. Women in the lowest earning group boosted their hours worked by 52 last year compared with 2019.

While women work fewer hours than men, the unpaid labor they perform outside of their jobs has been well documented. Many working mothers take what’s termed a “second shift,” devoting more time outside work hours to child care and housework.

Maryann B. Zaki, a mother of three who has worked at several firms, including in big law, recently launched her own practice in Houston, giving her more control over her hours. She says she’s noticed more men in her field opting for reduced schedules, sometimes working 80% of the hours normally expected—which can range from 40 to more than 80 a week—in exchange for a 20% pay cut. For the average lawyer, that would amount to a salary reduction of tens of thousands of dollars each year; such arrangements were initially offered to aid working mothers.

Responding to new expectations of work-life balance may be particularly vexing for industries already facing staffing shortages, such as those in medicine. Dr. Lotte Dyrbye, the chief well-being officer for the University of Colorado School of Medicine, said she often hears from early-career physicians and other medical professionals who want to work fewer hours to avoid burnout.

These medical workers are deciding that to be in it for the long haul requires a day every week or two to decompress, Dr. Dyrbye says. But as staff cut back their hours, it costs medical organisations money and may compromise access to care.

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