Alaska residents may have to deal with excess snow, frigid temperatures, and frequent earthquakes, but there is one reward that makes life in the Last Frontier a little more bearable, according to an article published by Fox News on September 19, 2013.
The Alaska Permanent Fund, established in 1976, sets aside a portion of the state’s oil wealth and pays it to Alaska’s residents each year. For 2013, the payout will be $900 for each person living in the state since January 1, 2013. The payout is not limited to adults. Children also receive a check provided they were born before the clock struck 12 a.m. on New Year’s Day, 2013.
About $576 million will be distributed, but the $900 check is rather small in relative terms. The fund paid its greatest dividend in 2008 when it distributed $2,069 to every eligible man, woman, and child in the state. It fell to $1,305 in 2009; $1,281 in 2010; $1,174 in 2011; and $878 in 2012. This year’s payout was only a small improvement compared to last year, but it wasn’t expected to be much higher, given the still fragile state of the economy.
The Alaska Permanent Fund calculates the annual payout based on a five year average of the Fund’s investment earnings. So, for calculating the 2013 dividend payout, the figures included the years from 2009 through 2013. The year 2009 was an exceptionally bad year for the fund. It posted a $2.5 billion net loss that year, but the years following 2009 have improved and the mathematics could result in a very good payout in 2014.
The Permanent Fund Dividend will be distributed to Alaska’s approximately 600,000 residents on October 3, 2013.
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