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

November 2008

Goldman Sachs and UBS Executives Will Forgo Bonuses

by Luke Landes

One of my concerns about the original bailout bill was that the money paid to financial institutions would be used to pay for outsized executive bonuses. While companies must offer outrageous compensation to attract and keep the best executive talent, the market place has forced the price upwards. That worked well when the financial industry ... Continue reading this article…

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FNBO Direct Rated Best Online Savings Account By Kiplinger

by Luke Landes

See the review of the best online savings accounts. Kiplinger Magazine picked several banks when naming the best savings and checking accounts for 2008. Here is what they’ve chosen. Best online savings account: FNBO Direct. I am a fan of FNBO Direct, and I’ve started moving more money into this account thanks to its high ... Continue reading this article…

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Take Control of Your Finances Part 3: Spend Less Than You Earn

by Luke Landes

This should come as no surprise to Consumerism Commentary readers or anyone who has spent time reading anything relating to basic money management advice. Once you’ve decided to improve your financial condition and spent some time tracking your spending, you may have come to the conclusion that your situation declines each month because you’re allowing ... Continue reading this article…

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News and Blogs: Friday, November 14, 2008

by Luke Landes

America’s 20 Best Health Plans. Unsurprisingly, my plan is not on this list from MSN and US News & World Report. The top award goes to Harvard Pilgrim Health Care of New England in Maine and Massachusetts. I should take advantage of my Aetna plan more by visiting a doctor for a check-up once in ... Continue reading this article…

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Banks You May Not Know About Offer High-Yield Savings Accounts

by Luke Landes

As some of the more popular banks like ING Direct, HSBC Direct and FNBO Direct lower their interest rates, other less-known banks are appearing in their place with higher rates. Some of these banks do not have reputations yet and haven’t been in the public eye for long. Here are a few that you may ... Continue reading this article…

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Take Control of Your Finances Part 2: Track Your Money

by Luke Landes

After deciding that it’s time to get a handle on your finances, find a way to accurately track the way you handle everything involving money. Before deciding to take action, you may have estimated your income and expenses, but now the details matter. Here is how to get to the details. Every cent is important ... Continue reading this article…

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Repost: Misconceptions About the Transition to Digital Television

by Luke Landes

I originally posted this article in January 2008. As February 17, 2009 draws closer, I am still dismayed by the misinformation being spread by television manufacturers, cable operators, retail salespeople, and coworkers. Please pass this information to anyone who has the wrong idea about the switch to digital-only over-the-air broadcasts. Whenever the subject turns to ... Continue reading this article…

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News and Blogs: Thursday, November 13, 2008

by Luke Landes

I have written an article for PC World Magazine called The Insider’s Guide to Black Friday Bargains. Please read it, and if you are so inclined, give it a “thumbs-up” on the website. A Hypnotic Answer to Financial Angst. It’s becoming increasingly popular for those who worry about money to treat their anxiety through hypnotherapy. ... Continue reading this article…

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Take Control of Your Finances Part 1-D: Decide to Take Action

by Luke Landes

After viewing yesterday’s income and expense report for an imaginary person, Dan observed astutely: … The one area that I don’t see is for a persons IRA, 401K, or ESPP. When is that money taken out or where/how is it assigned? It isn’t like you can say that you had a net income so you ... Continue reading this article…

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Changed My Verizon Wireless Plan: Same Features for $30 Less

by Luke Landes

Earlier this year, I upgraded my only phone — I have no need for a land line — to a BlackBerry 8830 on Verizon Wireless. Now I receive my important email (in addition to some junk mail) where ever I happen to be. I accepted the fact that I would be paying for this service. ... Continue reading this article…

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News and Blogs: Wednesday, November 12, 2008

by Luke Landes

Seeking Guest Authors for the Week of November 23. I’m looking for a few writers to provide a small number of articles later this month while I am in California. While I’ll be blogging somewhat regularly during this time, I like to use this week every year to feature writing by other authors. If you ... Continue reading this article…

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Take Control of Your Finances Part 1-C: Make Accurate Predictions

by Luke Landes

Now that you’ve taken an inventory of your finances and determined your net worth, I can tell you that the number is meaningless. Well, there is a point to your net worth, but it’s not the most important number to your finances. Your net worth tells a very small part of the story that defines ... Continue reading this article…

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$50 Cash Back Bonus With Discover More Card

by Luke Landes

The offer you are interested in has expired. For current offers read our review of Discover Cards.

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News and Blogs: Tuesday, November 11, 2008

by Luke Landes

Profit From the Obama Economy. Invest in biotech, green energy, infrastructure, advanced manufacturing, and information technology. These sectors of the economy are expected to grow during Obama’s presidency. A New Way to Transfer Cash. New technology lets customers use ATMs to transfer cash from one person to another. You will be able to register your ... Continue reading this article…

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Take Control of Your Finances Part 1-B: Take an Inventory

by Luke Landes

An acquaintance of mine formerly owned a store that sells “country” products like hand-crafted wood furniture, candles, and decor inspired by rural living. Twice a year, she recruited family members and friends to help take an inventory of the entire store. This process involved many hours of walking throughout the building and counting items on ... Continue reading this article…

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“Wife Swap” Looking for Investment Club Members

by Luke Landes

If you’re a member of an investment club and are in a typical family unit, ABC wants you to apply to be on the reality series, “Wife Swap.” If you’re selected, your family will receive a “financial honorarium” for appearing on the show, and if you know of someone else who would be a good ... Continue reading this article…

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News and Blogs: Monday, November 10, 2008

by Luke Landes

Circuit City files for bankruptcy. This store is the latest victim of the current economy. You can look through the remaining stores, but I don’t think this bankrupcty will lead to fire-sale prices on electronics as we head into the holiday shopping season. Is It Time to Have a Money Talk, Child to Parent? Will ... Continue reading this article…

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Take Control of Your Finances Part 1-A: Become Aware

by Luke Landes

Who are you? For any one human being, the number of answers to this question approaches infinity. There are many aspects that are included in the definition of self. The most common response is to answer with the collection of sounds used to nominally identify yourself: “I am Joe.” Our names, generally given to us ... Continue reading this article…

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November Cash Experiment

by Luke Landes

After reviewing October’s expenses last week, I decided that November would be a good month to experiment with a cash-only philosophy. Some studies have shown that in general, people spend less money when their only option is cash or that the use of credit cards inspires additional spending. Most of the time, these studies simply ... Continue reading this article…

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Twitter Poll: Will You Be Spending More or Less Than Last Year on Gifts?

by Luke Landes

Every so often, I present a question to Twitter to get a feel for opinions and ideas of Consumerism Commentary fans, readers, and friends. Yesterday, I asked whether you plan on spending more or less this holiday season than you did last year on gifts and other holiday expenses. With a troubling economy that doesn’t ... Continue reading this article…

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