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What’s Your Money Personality?

How sharp are your financial instincts? Do you boast a banker’s savvy sense for cents, or is your freewheeling financial style more care-free than careful? Take our quiz to discover your money personality: Powered by Interact How to Make Saving a Habit Developing good money habits can help make successful finance choices become second-nature. And ditching bad habits …

Some Thoughts on the ‘American Dream’

One of the ideals that was taught to me as a child is best expressed today as the “American dream,” that every American should have an equal opportunity to achieve success and prosperity through hard work, determination, and initiative. It’s a great, flowery idea, but what does it actually mean? Let’s start with prosperity. It’s …

Categories: Getting Started

Do You Need Rental Car Insurance?

It’s a familiar scenario for anyone who has rented a car lately: You’re tired after a long flight, and it’s finally your turn at the rental car counter. The agent is pleasant until it’s time to talk insurance, when he rattles off all the dire potential consequences of declining the company’s coverage. You’re tempted to …

Why You Can’t Time the Market: Thoughts on Investing in Stocks

Marcus wrote in with a great reader mailbag question that really couldn’t be answered in brief, so I expanded my answer into a post. Here’s what Marcus had to say: There seems to be a consensus right now that the stock market is near a high point and is going to drop in the future …

Running on the Hedonic Treadmill

One of the weirdest phenomena I have ever experienced is when I realized that I get more pleasure out of going to, say, a bookstore once a month than I get out of going to that same bookstore every day. It sounds really weird and counterintuitive, but it’s true. Whenever I go into a bookstore, …

Categories: Getting Started

And the Stock Market Outlook Is… Who Cares?!

As I write this article on the morning of Aug. 24th, the Dow just opened down over 1,000 points and CNBC is going crazy with prognosticators predicting what the market is going to do next. This is great entertainment, but it shouldn’t guide you as an investor. No one can consistently and continuously predict fluctuations …

40 Free (or Extremely Low-Cost) Things I Genuinely Enjoy Doing – and You Might, Too

A reader recently “called me out” via Facebook: I don’t really buy your claim that there are more “free” things to do than you have time to do for the rest of your life. It’s a claim that I make pretty regularly, and I’ll say it again here. There are more free (or extremely inexpensive) …

Best Personal Checking Account Promotions in 2015

If you need a new checking account, banks from coast to coast are offering attractive promotional bonuses to lure your business. A bank checking account bonus usually consists of cash deposited into your account after you open a new account and meet certain criteria within a specified timeframe, including making a minimum deposit, setting up …

Categories: Banking

Questions About Entitled Kids, Trash Bags, Money Belts, Life Insurance and More!

What’s inside? Here are the questions answered in today’s reader mailbag, boiled down to five-word summaries. Click on the number to jump straight down to the question. 1. Ride the investment waves? 2. Trash bags and frugal advice 3. Raising entitled kids 4. Wedding registry mention on invitation 5. Carrying stuff on a bike 6. …

Categories: Reader Mailbag

College Un-Checklist: 10 Things Not to Bring to Campus

As the first days of school approach, many new college students are trying to figure out what to bring – and what not to bring – to college. Unfortunately, the list of supplies can grow long for students who have never stepped foot in a tiny dorm room, and sometimes with disastrous consequences. Here’s an example: Michelle …

Categories: Education, Family

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