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2008

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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Buying the Stock Market on the Dips

by Luke Landes

It’s now more than a month since I considered taking advantage of a downward market by dollar-cost averaging at specific times. Yes, I’m “timing the market.” After making a few newbie mistakes when buying on the dips, I’ve refined my strategy. At Vanguard, I have cash in a tax-exempt money market fund, which I will ... Continue reading this article…

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Quicken Premier 2009 Giveaway Extended

by Luke Landes

Last Monday, I offered a copy of Quicken Premier 2009 to two Consumerism Commentary readers who have suggestions for avoiding overdraft fees. I’ve extended the giveaway for an additional few days, and the winners will be announced at the end of the week. There is not a large number of participants, so your chances of ... Continue reading this article…

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President-Elect Obama’s Approach to the Economy

by Luke Landes

CNN Money is presenting an in-depth feature explaining where President-elect Obama stands on a variety of economic issues. Here are some highlights: Temporarily eliminate taxes on unemployment benefits. Tax oil profits and use the money to help fund $1,000 rebate checks for consumers hit by high energy costs. Tax carried interest as ordinary income rather ... Continue reading this article…

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There is Almost No Excuse: Vote Today

by Luke Landes

If you do anything else today (and you live in the United States), make sure you find your polling location and vote. While the outcome of today’s presidential election may seem like a foregone conclusion, keep in mind that there are many other important issues and races that are in need of your vote. I ... Continue reading this article…

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