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As featured in The Wall Street Journal, Money Magazine, and more!

2005

Staying Away From Fund Fees

by Luke Landes

MSN Money is carrying an article suggesting ways to get around mutual fund fees. As mutual funds have become more complex, fund companies need to spend more on marketing to explain their products. The expenses are then, as one would think, passed along to the customer. Timothy Middleton suggests “marching straight into the new reality” ... Continue reading this article…

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Negotiating for Salary – Men vs. Women

by Luke Landes

I’m a fan of social experiments, and here’s an interesting study. Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University wanted to determine if sex had a role to play in hiring decisions. Male and female observers, playing the role of decision-makers, watch an interview with male and female participants (job candidates). When the candidate was asked what he ... Continue reading this article…

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Savings Account Interest Rates Updated

by Luke Landes

The table of savings and checking account interest rates has been updated to include some moves by Presidential, UFB Direct, and Virtual Bank.

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Save Some Money On Gas

by Luke Landes

Last week people were sounding the warning alarm for $5 gas at the pump. I didn’t echo the thought here because at the time on the surface it seemed somewhat reactionary. But some people are still claiaming we could shortly reach that… maybe. Compare these two CNN articles. First, Rita could equal $5 gas, written ... Continue reading this article…

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It’s Not What You Make, It’s What You Spend. Whaa?

by Luke Landes

A little tidbit gurus like to throw around is the first part of the phrase in the title of this entry. The second part is the sound Seth Green uttered as the voice of the character Chris Griffin in the new episode of Family Guy that was on earlier tonight. “It’s not what you make, ... Continue reading this article…

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Raise Your FICO Credit Score

by Luke Landes

You may have been offered a credit score when you took advantage of the free credit report offer. CNN is offering tips for boosting that score. But first a note. Often, credit scores offered by the credit reporting agency are not true FICO scores — the ones mortgage companies use when contemplating your credit risk, ... Continue reading this article…

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New York City Salaries

by Luke Landes

I heard this on the radio yesterday, but I couldn’t find it online as I was looking at the wrong magazine. (It appeared in New York Magazine, not The New Yorker.) If you’ve ever wanted a good idea of how much money various people in New York City make, New York Magazine has conducted an ... Continue reading this article…

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What Are You Afraid Of? Part 2

by Luke Landes

Earlier, I posted a summary of the first half of Money Magazine’s newest feature, Your Six Biggest Money Fears. In the feature, six general fears regarding personal finance are discussed and debunked, and for each an alternate concern is posited. Outsourcing makes many white-collar Americans concerned about their job. Still, it’s mostly blue-collar jobs that ... Continue reading this article…

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What Are You Afraid Of?

by Luke Landes

CNN Money has an extensive feature on how general consensus is wrong again. The articles look at the biggest money fears, how they may be unreasonable, and what should worry the public instead. Here are the first three from the series. The remaining three appear in a follow-up post here at Consuermsim Commentary. While Americans ... Continue reading this article…

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Deciding to Go Back to School

by Luke Landes

Once in a while, we talk about the Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree here (see Is the MBA Worthwhile? and Good Time to Be an MBA). Free Money Finance had a discussion this week about going back to school as well. How do you know if going back to school is the right thing ... Continue reading this article…

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HOWTO Let Google Blog Search Access Your Full RSS Feed

by Luke Landes

If you have a popular blog that generates income through advertising, chances are you offer an RSS feed that contains only an exceprt of each entry. This is a good way to encourage readers to visit the blog to continue reading. In the similar interest of drawing traffic to the site, you should also want ... Continue reading this article…

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Emergency Funds, Doing Okay?

by Luke Landes

We hear all the time how Americans are not saving enough for emergencies. The “Emergency Fund” is heralded as the first step in getting a sound financial footing, before thoughts about investing in stocks or making large purchases enter the brain. The idea of putting aside cash for a (very) rainy day has been a ... Continue reading this article…

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ING Direct Offers New Feature

by Luke Landes

ING Direct is now requiring a new method to entering your secure PIN when logging in to view your account, involving a series of keystrokes that will be different each time you log in. This seems to be a method to thwart keylogging software. Here’s the notice: ING DIRECT is always working to provide you ... Continue reading this article…

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ING Direct Adds Account Linking Feature

by Luke Landes

This may be old news, as I don’t know when this feature was added, but it is definitely appreciated. I was reading the seven simple solutions for managing your money from Kiplinger, and it inspired me to automatically deposit my paycheck (through Direct Deposit) into an savings account rather than my checking account. I found ... Continue reading this article…

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Credit Card Grace Period

by Luke Landes

After I learned to stop using my credit card for buying things and paying for expenses, I learned how to use my credit card deals for buying things and paying for expenses. By this, I mean I realized that I can use the credit card as a tool, especially if it offers a rebate like ... Continue reading this article…

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Income Statement, August 2005

by Luke Landes

In conjunction with my August balance sheet, here is my August income statement, followed by some notes.

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Sweep Account Interest Rates

by Luke Landes

Any investment account at a brokerage usually has an associated cash account in which proceeds from sales and dividends are deposited, usually in the form of a money market fund. According to this free Wall Street Journal article, investment banks are purposely moving investors’ cash funds into accounts that earn less than typical money market ... Continue reading this article…

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Free Credit Reports Now Available!

by Luke Landes

The rest of the country was given this benefit at varying times earlier this year, but it finally has come to the east coast. I was going to wait until September 1, the official “release date,” but as MyMoneyBlog noted, the floodgates have opened a few days early. I’m talking of course about free credit ... Continue reading this article…

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How Much Will I Spend On Gas This Year?

by Luke Landes

I’m in the mood for some calculations. I paid $2.47 per gallon for gasoline last night. What will it cost me to drive to work this year, assuming $2.50 is the average I’ll pay? I drive 80 miles to and from work (combined) each day. To make the calculation easy, let’s say each year I ... Continue reading this article…

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Selling Used Books (and Other Items) on Amazon.com

by Luke Landes

I’ve decided to clean out my apartment a small amount by selling some used books on Amazon.com. Most are college textbooks that have been sitting around for quite a while. I’m writing about this here for two reasons. First of all, I’ll track my experience selling on Amazon.com. Secondly, maybe there are readers of this ... Continue reading this article…

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