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

2011

Payroll Tax Cut Extended for Two Months

by Luke Landes

After political bickering, the House of Representatives agreed to make a deal with the Senate to extend the payroll tax holiday. This tax cut reduced the payroll tax — a tax separate from but often associated with federal income tax — from 6.2 percent to 4.2 percent of the first $110,100 of wages. The tax benefits Social […]

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My Future Investing Strategy

by Luke Landes

Last week I met with a Certified Financial Planner for the first time. This was a free service provided by Vanguard, so it was a good opportunity to speak to a professional about my specific situation. For many years, I’ve been relying on mostly generalized advice, whether from books, large communities like the Motley Fool […]

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A Financial Festivus for the Rest of Us

by Luke Landes

To all those who celebrate, have a successful Festivus. I’ve come to be a fan of this secular “holiday,” celebrated every year on December 23 following its mass introduction to the public through an episode of Seinfeld. At its core is a non-commercial, non-religious approach to the season. While I do enjoy gift exchanges with […]

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Frugality Plays Role in Bringing Tech to New York City

by Luke Landes
Roosevelt Island

Michael Bloomberg, the king-slash-mayor of New York City (will he increase term limits again to stay in his position?), has announced that Cornell University and Technion-Israel Institute of Technology will be transforming 11 acres on the southern tip of Roosevelt Island into a graduate school for technology. Classes will begin as early as next year […]

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Discover® More Card $150 Limited Time Cash Back Bonus

by Luke Landes

The offer you are interested in has expired. Read our review of the Discover® More Card.

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Paying Off Layaway Accounts at Kmart

by Luke Landes
Kmart

When I first read the news about alleged Good Samaritans and Secret Santas paying off Kmart customers’ layaway accounts, the cynical side of my mind took over. What a great marketing maneuver for K-Mart. With mystery lay-off angels, they are saying, “Buy your gifts on layaway here, an action that could very well be profitable […]

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More Homeowners Can Refinance

by Luke Landes

Thanks to some changes to the federal Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP), more homeowners can qualify for government-endorsed refinancing. Previously, the program only offered refinancing options for households where the mortgage value was up to 97 percent through 125 percent of the home’s market value. This did help families who have become underwater, having more left to […]

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Podcast 139: Buying and Owning a Mac: Secrets Apple Doesn’t Want You to Know

by Luke Landes

Today on the Consumerism Commentary Podcast, Bryan J Busch talks to Jonathan Zschau, author of the book Buying and Owning a Mac: Secrets Apple Doesn’t Want You to Know. They discuss the staggering frequency of commercials in daily life, how it’s easier to avoid than resist the temptation to shop, and the convincing argument that […]

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Meeting With a Financial Planner From Vanguard Flagship Services

by Luke Landes

On Tuesday, I had a phone consultation with a Certified Financial Planner from Vanguard. It was an initial meeting, wherein we talked about each other, focusing on my goals. I tried to take into account many of my own suggestions for working with a financial adviser, but in preparing for the meeting, I realized — […]

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Free Shipping Day

by Luke Landes
Package Delivery

Today is Free Shipping Day, and thousands of online merchants are participating in this movement, offering free or reduced price shipping so customers have an opportunity to receive last-minute orders in time for the holidays. Free Shipping Day was founded by an entrepreneur-couple in December 2007 as a location for finding shipping discounts offered by […]

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