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Tuesday
Nov132012

Looking ahead to 2013

The end of the year is rapidly approaching and it’s time to look ahead to 2013. Being that the economy plays an important role in the continued success of our credit union, I thought I’d share with you our analysis.

Election: Many people are wondering how the past election will affect the direction our economy is headed. While the election was a real driver of revenues for advertising firms and multimedia, the election’s end result is little change. The little change part is important. Markets have never fared very well during times of uncertainty…In other words, the climate in which you’re currently doing business is what you can expect over the next 2-4 years. 

Fiscal Cliff: Even our elected officials understand the ramifications of large budget cuts along with large tax increases being allowed to automatically kick in. The economy is still trying to recover from the last recession and this would put the skids on any expansion for years to come. Look for compromise on both sides of the political spectrum to avert the Fiscal Cliff or (more likely) an extension.  Depending on the terms of the extension, the current growth could slow down as uncertainty starts to creep in.

 Bringing us into next year, there are some Economic Positives and Challenges:

 Economic Positives

1)      Employment -We’re just starting to see meaningful improvement.

2)      Housing – Has been expanding in most US markets for the past 9-months.

3)      Durable Goods – Continue to increase above expectations

 Economic Challenges

1)      Europe – The Euro Crisis could spread to other areas (namely China), causing a slowdown throughout the world.

2)      State and Local Governments – Having to deal with declining property tax revenues as well as cuts in aid. 

3)      Gross Domestic Product – Continues to run at a much slower pace than what is needed to expand the economy.

Next year offers both challenges and opportunities for Star Choice and our members. We are continually trying to find ways to serve you in the most efficient and effective way possible.

Let us know how we’re doing and I’ll do my best to keep you updated on where we see the economy heading.

-Scott Olson

Tuesday
Jul032012

The Early Bird Gets the Worm!

Studies have shown that 37% of the population consider themselves “Morning People”, while the rest prefer evenings and late night. I’m actually surprised by that number. When I talk about not being able to remember the last time I was woken up by an alarm clock or having walked before sunrise, I usually get a blank stare from the listener. Indeed morning people are in the minority, but mornings are awesome!

Most of us morning people have a routine we like to follow. I make coffee, check the weather and markets, and go on my morning walk. This morning’s walk was eventful and invigorating!

It’s been so hot lately, mornings have offered no respite. Having already checked the weather before this morning’s walk, I saw I was going to get wet if I ventured outdoors. I did it anyway and was treated to a very memorable time. The lightning show was amazing and the rain and breeze were cool (almost cold). It was amazing!

The only thing that didn’t make it through the weather was my shoes – pictured below. I think they’ll take a few days to dry out and I’ll have to wear my “Plan B” walking shoes for now.

Being a morning person has its advantages and there are some days that are memorable and amazing. This morning was definitely one of them!

-Scott

Friday
Jun082012

Scott's Famous Ribs

In preparation of the big fitness competition starting Monday at Star Choice Credit Union, Scott is going to indulge in his famous baby back ribs this weekend. He was kind enough to share the recipe with us!

Stay tuned...Pictures to follow on Monday!

 

Award Winning Ribs

Scott Olson

                                                                               

2 slabs of Baby Back Ribs

1-Bottle of Emeril’s Essence Spice

1-Bottle Liquid Smoke Flavoring

1-Bottle Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ Sauce

Aluminum Foil

 

24 hours in advance, cut the 2-slabs of Ribs into 6-equal pieces (about 5 ribs each). Rub on a teaspoon of smoke flavor on to each piece. Thoroughly rub on Essence Spice on to each piece and immediately wrap in Aluminum foil. Refrigerate overnight.

 

The next day, heat oven to 300 degrees, put wrapped ribs in a covered pan, and bake for 3 ½ hours. Take out of aluminum foil pouch and brush a light amount of BBQ Sauce. Grill at 400 degrees for 5 minutes until a light crust forms. Brush a small amount of BBQ sauce again and serve.

 

This recipe is easy and a sure crowd pleaser.

Serves 6.  

View photos here!

Tuesday
May152012

Meet Scott!

Hi! I’m Scott Olson and I’ve been with Star Choice since January, 2009 and I serve as the Vice-President. I’ve been in the credit union industry for 25 years spending most of those years in lending and finance. I absolutely love my job! The one thing that makes my position so fulfilling is being able to serve so many nice members and credit union employees. Star Choice is a special place.

When I’m not working, I spend time with my wife of 32 years; Geri. We have two children who are both married. We have twin granddaughters who are 18 months and bring a lot of joy to all of us.

Some things you might not know about me:

1)      I’m a Pirate at heart (See photo below)

2)      Geri and I have hiked over 30 State Parks in Minnesota. Our goal is to hike every one!

3)      I’m a rabid Minnesota Gopher Football fan.

4)      I love studying the economy and financial markets.

5)      Two things I’m not crazy about: Clowns and Politics (are these connected?)

 

Please stop by my office if you have a minute and introduce yourself. Meeting fellow Star Choice members and getting to know them is the best part of working here.