I’m proud of myself. In the past year, I’ve wanted several expensive items for myself, but I’ve fought off the urge to buy them. The closest thing to a splurge for myself in the past twelve months was my investment in a new laptop when my desktop machine was literally dying. So, instead of spending thousands of dollars on … stuff … I decided to take a trip through these items that I didn’t buy and consider the financial shape …

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The Richest Man in Babylon first appeared on the scene in 1926 as a series of informational pamphlets on basic financial management. By 1927, several of these pamphlets had been compiled into a book and this collection has been in print ever since. In short, The Richest Man in Babylon is a series of financial parables. These stories are set in ancient Babylon and relate the story of a Babylonian regular guy who used some basic financial sense and built …

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In high school, I was friends with an individual who repeatedly acted as if he knew everything anyone was going to say. If you got him started on a subject, he would completely dominate the conversation with minutae and commentary on every aspect of the issue at hand, while everyone else sat around staring at him. What this individual didn’t realize is that effective interpersonal communication is a conversation, not a lecture. If I want to be lectured, I will …

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My head is full of quotes from various cultural figures and I often like to use them in conversation when appropriate. I like to collect good ones on various topics, and so here are five great quotes on the topic of finances. Feel free to pilfer these and use them wherever you feel appropriate. For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through …

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Recently, I received an email from Nate, a reader of The Simple Dollar. He was wondering whether it makes more sense to invest or to pay off his student loans: I’m a regular reader of your site. I’m also a senior getting ready to graduate. I’m in an interesting situation and I was wonder what your advice would be. I have quite a bit of extra money left over from my student loans, from living in a dump and living …

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To celebrate the week before Christmas (and give you a few great last minute gift ideas), The Simple Dollar is reviewing five board games that not only are a blast to play, but teach valuable financial lessons as well. All of these games should be easily found at a department store or a gaming specialty shop (check your local yellow pages). Other games in this series include The Game of Life, Monopoly, Modern Art, and Acquire. Puerto Rico Rio Grande …

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What can possibly be learned about modern finance from a book first published in 1926, you ask? What is so worthwhile about The Richest Man in Babylon that causes it to still be in print today? This week, we’ll look closer at this personal finance classic to see what hidden gems are within. As I’ve discussed this week, The Richest Man in Babylon is a collection of parables set in the ancient city of Babylon. The goal of these parables …

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Most bloggers are familiar with the “Digg effect,” a flood of traffic that comes from reaching the front page of Digg, a popular social bookmarking site (if you want to know more about it, you can see my observations on it). Similar traffic boosts occur whenever a site becomes “popular” in any well-travelled social bookmarking site, and the rewards are obvious: huge numbers of page views from real readers. Sounds great, doesn’t it? Who wouldn’t want their site to have …

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In some ways, most of us lie about money. We create an appearance to others of having more than we do in order to build up a level of respect. We drive more expensive cars than we can afford, buy more expensive clothes than we can afford, and more expensive accessories than we can afford just to appear affluent to others. Even worse, we often directly lie to friends and family about our financial situation, telling them that money’s no …

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Many people like to enjoy a bottle of wine with a meal, but have no idea how to select an appropriate and inexpensive wine for the occasion. I know I went through years of picking wines, even spending a lot on occasion, and regularly picking something completely inappropriate and often bad. Because of this, I prepared a very simple wine buying guide for those of us who like an occasional glass with a meal (or are even a first-time wine …

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