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avatar You are viewing an archive of articles by Luke Landes. Luke Landes is the founder of Consumerism Commentary. He has been blogging and writing for the internet since 1995 and has been building online communities since 1991. Find out more about Luke Landes and follow him on Twitter. View 's Google Profile.

Luke Landes

Wall Street Reform Bill Passes Senate

by Luke Landes

In December of last year, the House of Representatives passed a bill designed to reform the financial industry, introducing more consumer protection and more regulation of Wall Street firms and other financial businesses. The Senate also tackled the controversial topic of financial reform, passing its own version of the bill yesterday. Though not an attractive ... Continue reading this article…

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Contact a Taxpayer Advocate to Help Resolve Tax Issues

by Luke Landes

A year ago, the first-time home buyer credit was still rather new, and the IRS began allowing taxpayers to amend their 2008 tax returns to receive the credit early. At that time, if documentation was in order, it took about six weeks to receive a check for the $8,000 credit. That didn’t last long. Within ... Continue reading this article…

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SmartyPig Raises Interest Rate Today

by Luke Landes

In March, I opened a savings goal with SmartyPig, and I’ve been sending $172.20 from my ING Direct account every two weeks since then. My savings goal is to expand my collection of photography equipment to include a full-frame digital camera. I originally identified the Canon EOS 5D Mark II as my planned purchase, but ... Continue reading this article…

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18 Year Old Buys Investment Property With Hog Money

by Luke Landes

Lindsay Binegar, now nineteen years old, has been raising hogs on her family farm in Highland County, Ohio, since she was at least four years old. That was the age at which she showed her first hog and earned $100. Since that time, Lindsey entered hogs in competitions, saving every penny she earned from these ... Continue reading this article…

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Suggestions For Women Seeking a Raise

by Luke Landes

The New York Times is running a feature designed to help women negotiate for and receive a raise from their employer. Even in today’s progressive society in the workplace, women earn less than men for the same job, even after controlling for factors like time away from the workforce for childcare. According to the article, ... Continue reading this article…

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Podcast 56: Bank Overdraft Fees and moneyStrands

by Luke Landes

Today’s episode of the Consumerism Commentary Podcast features two guests. First, Tom Dziubek talks to Preeti Vissa of the Greenlining Institute about the organization’s recent study on bank overdraft fees. Tom’s second guest is Atakan Cetinsoy, Vice President of Corporate Development and Personal Finance Products at the personal financial management website, moneyStrands. Atakan explains moneyStrands ... Continue reading this article…

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Premium Gasoline Possibly Switched With Ethanol E-85

by Luke Landes

When I drive up to a gas station, I have a number of expectations. First, if I see a price advertised for regular-grade gasoline, that’s the price I expect to pay for regular-grade gasoline. That wasn’t the case a few years ago when my local gas station decided to implement price discrimination for customers who ... Continue reading this article…

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FCC Considering Regulation to Stop Surprise Phone Bills

by Luke Landes

As the story goes, I was about fifteen when I started getting involved with online communities. At that time, however, being online meant using a slow modem to dial various bulletin boards over a regular telephone line. My problem was that I didn’t realize that I was dialing long distance phone numbers. My parents weren’t ... Continue reading this article…

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How to Pay More Than You Should: Stop Paying Attention

by Luke Landes

In March, I wrote about reducing the amount of automation in handling personal finances. Leaving your payments on auto-pilot is asking for trouble. Leaving your brain out of the decision-making process is a sure way to rack up overdraft fees when you don’t have enough funding to pay an automatic bill. Also in March, I ... Continue reading this article…

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Sallie Mae Increases Interest Rate and 10% Upromise Bonus

by Luke Landes

Earlier today, Sallie Mae Bank increased the interest rate offered on its savings account 50 basis points to 1.4 percent APY. This is one of the highest interest rates available. I’ve shared my thoughts about opening a Sallie Mae Bank savings account in this review. Sallie Mae ties directly into the Upromise savings plan, a program ... Continue reading this article…

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