Very rarely do I get a chance to talk about governments making intelligent investments that are in the long-term interests of their constituents. But today, I want to bring to your attention one of the most beautiful financial arrangements that exist between a constituent and its government: The Alaska Permanent Dividend Fund.
Without bogging you down in the details, the state of Alaska had set up a permanent fund in 1982 to pay dividends to Alaskans every year in perpetuity. Although the initial contributions consisted solely of oil dividends, the original fund of less than $1 million in assets has ballooned into $40+ billion in total principal due to shrewd management. The net result of Alaska’s long-range thinking in the late 1970s and early 1980s is this: by 2013, the fund was able to pay every Alaskan $900 that is likely to continue to increase well into the future. To … Read the rest of this article!