What to do if duty calls

The Ticker

January 28, 1991|By Julius Westheimer

What happens to family finances when "you're in the Army (or other services) now?" Changing Times, February ($2.50), has a good story, "Mobilizing Your Finances When Duty Calls." Brief excerpts: "A private may make only about $600 a month, but if called to the Middle East he gets an extra $110 a month in hazardous-duty pay. . . Call-up of tens of thousands of reserves put many in a financial pickle. . . Some reservists called to active duty get a break on debts in the form of a reduced interest rate on their loans via the Soldiers' and Sailors' Relief Act of 1940. . . One rude surprise some reservists faced is canceled credit cards [but] some card issuers give reservists a break. . . Making ends meet is often easier in two-earner families. . . Many reservists will lose job-related group life insurance coverage, but may call 800-776-2322 or 800-531-8000 for help." The magazine is on newsstands this week.

JANUARY JOURNAL: "Small business owners make charitable contributions for these reasons, in order: to get involved in community, public relations, request from friend or colleague, know the organization, made previous donation, tax benefits." (University of San Francisco study). Ticker query: Doesn't anybody give to help the underprivileged?. . . "Making a huge sale is great, buy joy turns to regret if your customer gets stuck with merchandise and never orders again. "We don't believe in one-time deals," says Emery Klein, CEO, Alaron, Troy, Mich., electronics dealer, "so we encourage customers to order less so their cash isn't locked up in our inventory." (Inc., February). . . "Technology is creating customer choice, and choice is altering the market. Gone are the days of the marketer as salesperson. Gone is marketing that tricks the customer into buying whatever the firm makes. The new marketing depends on the marketer's experience, knowledge and ability to integrate the customer and the company." ("Marketing is Everything," Harvard Business Review, Jan.-Feb.)

WHERE TO LOOK: Does the recession threaten your job? Are you looking for work? Want to change jobs? Here are occupations where, according to a recent University of Michigan study, summarized in The Wall Street Journal (January 22), "there aren't enough people" to fill these positions: physical therapists, registered nurses, veterinarians, electrical engineers, computer systems analysts, computer scientists, physicians, dieticians, pharmacists, chemical engineers, biological scientists, dentists, vocational counselors, legal assistants, college professors.

But, here's where there are "too many" people already, areas where it isn't wise to spend much time looking: telephone operators, butchers and meat cutters, rail transport workers, telephone installers, machine operators, typists, water transport workers, statistical clerks, barbers (mine doesn't make much money on me; see photo above), data processors, photographers, stenographers, metal workers, firefighters, plumbers. (Ticker addition: economists).

WAR & MORE: "Every war is going to astonish you." (Dwight D. Eisenhower, quoted in The New Yorker, dated today. . . Regarding the above, my father once warned me, "Son, never underestimate your adversary.". . . At the weekend the Persian Gulf oil slick was as wide as the distance from Pikesville to the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall and as long as from Baltimore's City Hall to the Washington, D.C. suburbs. (8 miles by 35 miles). . . Tel Aviv is Hebrew for "Hill of Springtime."

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