woman looking at investments on ipad - investing to beat the market

Just about every investor at some point compares his or her investment returns to the market. Professional investment managers advertise their services by comparing their performance to the market. Look up any mutual fund or ETF, and you can easily find a chart showing its recent performance relative to the market. The message is everywhere: Beating the market is an important and valuable thing. But why? Why Do You Want to Beat the Market, Anyway? Seriously, why? What’s the reason? Why is it …

Continue Reading

An Ode to Old Furniture

November 21 2016

When I was about 10, my parents bought a brand new glass table for our living room. Even at 10, when my idea of cool was Chicago Bulls wallpaper, I could see that this was a cool table. Plus, my parents let it be known that by our standards, it was expensive. I was told to be very careful around this table, which is why I briefly considered fleeing Southern California and going to live with relatives in Oklahoma when …

Continue Reading

Ten Lessons, Ten Years

November 20 2016

It was roughly ten years ago that I launched The Simple Dollar. It wasn’t a smooth rollout, so pointing to a single day as “launch day” is tough, but late October to mid November 2006 is a pretty good timeframe for the launch of the site. Let’s roll back the clock a little to see where my life was at that time. In April 2006, Sarah and I had our big financial meltdown where we realized that we were going …

Continue Reading

Finding the best credit card for your wallet isn’t always easy. Not only should you consider what you want in a card, you also have to think about what your credit needs. Here’s what I mean: Certain credit cards are designed for people trying to build their credit history, while others are aimed at those with excellent credit already. Some cards offer travel or cash-back rewards, while others come with lower interest rates that can help people save money or get …

Continue Reading

For those readers outside of America, Black Friday refers to the day after Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is a national holiday, held on the fourth Thursday of November, and many people have the day off of work. A large portion of them also receive the day after Thanksgiving off — or they may take the day off, because school’s out — creating a four-day vacation. So, Black Friday involves retailers being open, many office workers having the day off, and a position on the calendar …

Continue Reading

Your kid isn’t the only one studying. If you’re searching for grants and scholarship money and researching federal subsidized and unsubsidized loans, you probably feel as if you’re boning up for the hardest, most complicated test you’ve ever come up against. And then somewhere, in the midst of all of this, you’ve probably found a beacon of light in the darkness. You learned about the Direct PLUS Loan Program. The Direct PLUS Loan Program is a type of federal loan …

Continue Reading

“31 Days to Financial Independence” is an ongoing series that appears every Thursday on The Simple Dollar. You might want to start this series from the beginning! Last time, we continued looking at the average American family budget, going through each category and examining how one could trim the cost of typical expenses in that category. Here’s the “average American family budget” that we’re looking at, along with links back to the earlier entries on those specific areas: Housing – …

Continue Reading

The job search process is mysterious, no matter which side of the conference table you’re sitting on. As a job seeker, the questions you ponder are along the lines of, “How can I figure out what the company culture is like, before I take the job?” and “Is there a way of tricking the hiring manager into telling me my real chances of ever getting a raise or promotion at this gig?” When you’re in charge of hiring, however, your questions …

Continue Reading

During Thanksgiving week, both my wife’s extended family and my extended family host a Thanksgiving dinner with untold numbers of side dishes, leaving everyone feeling absolutely stuffed afterwards from the huge delicious meal. As everyone cleans up and then retreats to the living room in a turkey coma, something I can’t help but observe is the expense of all of it. No matter how you slice it, a big turkey dinner with lots of sides is expensive. As anyone who …

Continue Reading

I’ve been moving around a lot in the past 18 months, and we’re not talking minor jaunts across town. I’ve gone from Los Angeles, to Madison, Wis., to New York City, to San Francisco, and back to New York. I’ve become quite good at shedding unnecessary possessions (shipping is expensive!) — and ducking out of apartment leases. Whether you’re excited to move and start a new chapter in your life — maybe you took a new job or bought your first …

Continue Reading

Our Featured Contributors

Simple Share Buttons
Simple Share Buttons