Holidays are about two things: family and food. Halloween is no different. Although families celebrate some holidays with a large meal, with ingredients like turkey, ham, fish, potatoes, and pies, the central food theme of Halloween is candy.
Once a year, everyone is provided an excuse to eat the stuff that parents always told them would rot their teeth, and not feel guilty (or as guilty) about it. The costumes can be entertaining, and I try to reward the better costumes I see with the better candy. For this Halloween edition of the Carnival of Personal Finance, I’m looking at some of the better and more popular candy for the holiday.
The Carnival of Personal Finance is a weekly celebration of the best articles covering a variety of money-related topics from the blogosphere. Consumerism Commentary initiated the Carnival in June 2005 and the event has continued on a weekly basis since then.
Twix is the only candy with the cookie crunch — at least it was when George Costanza said it. Twix was first produced in the United Kingdom in 1967 but didn’t find its way to the United States until 1979. The Twix bar was known internationally as “Raider” until 1991 when the brand was changed worldwide.
Here are our favorites for personal finance articles this week:
FT from Million Dollar Journey presents Wealth Tips for New College Grads. Here are strategies for going from a net worth of a negative $160,000 to a positive $500,000 in seven years.
Jenn from Paying Myself presents I thought I was supposed to be rich.. We tend to think lawyers are rich — or at least financially secure — but there may not be much truth to that stereotype.
Ryan from Cash Money Life presents Guaranteed Ways to Get Fired, and says, “It’s easy to get fired. Just follow these tips. Or, if you like your job, do the opposite and make yourself indispensable.”
Neal Frankle from Wealth Pilgrim presents Private Career Colleges – Calculate the Value. Are private career colleges worth the cost of tuition?
Bob from ChristianPF presents 7 Reasons To Rent Instead Of Buying A Home. If you are considering purchasing a home, think through these advantages of renting before you buy.
Nicole and Maggie: Grumpy Rumblings presents Another comment on doing what you love. Should do what you love or go where the money is? This article tackles to age-old question and helps explain the main purpose of a college education.
Betty Kincaid from Control Your Cash presents Debunkery yet again. Brett Favre’s riches are derived from one thing: how much revenue he can generate for his organization.
Continue reading for more of the best personal finance articles from the past week.
Candy corn: frugality and family finances
Candy corn is one of the most polarizing Halloween candies. People either love them or hate them, like the concept of frugality. I’m not a fan of candy corn, but I can handle it in small doses. Frugality can also be best when it is in moderation. A frugal shopper should wait until a few days after Halloween and raid the local drug stores, who have marked all of their Halloween candy down 90% or more.
Here are our frugal and family finances articles this week:
Donna Freedman from Surviving and Thriving presents Yet another frugal travel hack. This one mentions indoor skydiving., and says, “What could be more fun than a Segway tour? A deeply discounted Segway tour, that’s what.”
Revanche from A Gai Shan Life presents Scammy scam scam?. Not losing your money to a scam is an important facet of money management.
Sandy from Yes, I Am Cheap presents One Disaster Away, and says, “We often pass judgment on others for their financial situation, but all it takes is one disaster for us to end up in the same situation.”
Kay Lynn Akers from Bucksome Boomer presents They’re Not Called Food Stamps Anymore. California is trying to increase utilization of food stamps by qualified residents and by taking away the stigma.
Lindy from Minting Nickels presents Smoking in Church, and says, “This article is the second of a two-part series exploring why I feel rebellious towards the concept of being frugal.”
The Penny Frugalista presents Choosing a Halloween Costume, the Hard Way, and says, “This is a demonstration of how my husband is not very frugal, particularly when it comes to finding a Halloween costume.”
Roshawn Watson from Watson Inc presents Toyota Millionaires vs. Mercedes Millionaires. Dr. Tom Stanley revisits the car buying habits of millionaires and comes up with two new distinct profiles: the Toyota Millionaire and the Mercedes Millionaire. Which one do you want to be?
Kristina from DINKS Finance presents Marrying Into Dinks, and says, “My father is getting re-married next year. Although I am less than thrilled about his decision, at the end of the day it is his choice.”
ElizabethG from Modern Gal presents Coping with Unemployed Friends.
Len Penzo presents How to Find a Low-Priced Plumber That Won’t Rip You Off.
Christian Treitler from Money Obedience presents Is Shopping Behavior Changing?. In the article, Christian looks at name brands versus store brands.
Musings of an Abstract Aucklander presents The cost of hobbies.
Jason from Live Real, Now presents The Spending Styles of the Rocky Horror Picture Show, and says, “The folks in the Rocky Horror Picture Show have horrible habits.”
Bret from Hope to Prosper presents Raising a Family on a Single Income, and says, “Living on a single income is a choice that dramatically affects a family’s finances. Here is our choice and consequences that came with that decision.”
Kaye from Mrs. Nespy’s Frugal World presents 8 Financial Discussions to Have with Your Spouse/Fiance. You and your betrothed should discuss these topics before the big day.
FruGal presents Five days to better finances : Day one: Budgeting.
Mike from Green Panda Treehouse presents Is Renting Throwing Money Away?. These are practical tips to help you decide if renting is the right option for your unique situation.
Jeff from Sustainable Life Blog presents Where Would I be without 2 jobs?, looking back at the past year and determining where his finances might be if he didn’t have two jobs.
Daniel from Sweating The Big Stuff presents Do You Exchange Gifts with Your Significant Other?.
Nicole from Rainy-Day Saver presents Frugality on a First Date: Are Coupons Off-Limits?, and says, “I wonder how much of a hot topic the use of coupons on first dates are now that the economy is still in a downturn — it certainly brought out a lot of strong opinions on the morning radio.”
Clint from Accumulating Money presents Why and How to Establish an Emergency Fund.
Lauren from Richly Reasonable presents How to Get Rid of Stuff That Haunts You. These are some tips for getting rid of stuff you no longer need.
Full size candy bars: investing and retirement
There are a select few houses each and every year that know how to make kids happy. Generally speaking, these are the houses that are fully decked out with ghosts, black spiders, and other scary props. When you ring the doorbell, you are provided quite the delectable treat. A choice of full size Snickers, Three Musketeers, and Milky Ways brings nothing but smiles to a child’s face. The one downside to the large candy bars is the weight it adds to your basket.
Here are the top investing and retirement articles from this past:
Jim from Bargaineering wonders How Often Should I Rebalance My Portfolio?. While there’s no hard rule, Jim’s article offers some thoughts to consider.
Rachel from MomVesting presents Ready to Invest? Consider This First., offering some thoughts to keep in your mind before entering the markets.
Mike Piper from Oblivious Investor presents Investing Requires Guessing, and says, “Even if you use online calculators or sophisticated financial planning software, investment plans are still just a series of guesses.”
Do Not Wait presents Where Will Your Retirement Income Come From?.
Beating Broke wonders Are We Too Confident in the Stock Market?.
Darwin’s Money presents Want to Invest in a Hedge Fund? You Can’t – Here’s Why. Here are the barriers holding most of us back, and maybe it’s a good thing we can’t invest in these funds.
Free Money Finance presents How to Buy and Sell Physical Gold and Silver, Part 1, and says, “An interview on the specifics of buying physical gold and silver.”
Kristia from Family Balance Sheet presents My Dumbest Money Decision. Would you blindly hand over your retirement savings? Kristia did and it was a costly lesson.
Silicon Valley Blogger from The Digerati Life presents Gold ETF Investing Options For Your Money.
Blain Reinkensmeyer from Stock Trading To Go presents 6 Great Ways to Minimize Investment Risk with Earnings Releases.
Investor Junkie from Investor Junkie presents Dividend Aristocrats – Who Are They Currently?.
Dividend Growth Investor presents Dividend Stocks for the next decade and beyond, and says, “Some of the best dividend stocks in the world are characterized by strong competitive advantages.”
Caramel apples: credit cards and debt
Now that we’ve introduced a few of the good types of Halloween candy, let’s start talking about the bad. Caramel apples are the most sticky, messy, foul tasting “treats” ever invented. Just picture sinking your teeth into a substance so sweet and rich, followed by something soft and moist, then having to chew it for hours just to get the caramel out of your teeth. And if the stick falls off your apple in transit, you’re left with a big sticky round ball that’s 100% impossible to eat. It’s the worst kind of Halloween candy ever created.
Our list of top credit card and debt articles this week includes:
Connie Prater from Taking Charge presents Credit card contract database gets makeover, but still needs more work under the hood. The Fed still has a long way to go with their efforts to make it easier to compare credit card contracts online.
MD from Studenomics presents Three Reasons Why YOU Are in Debt, and says, “Here are the most common reasons so many young people are in debt.”
Tim Chen from NerdWallet Credit Card Blog presents Have a Limited Credit History? Avoid These 5 Pitfalls. If you want to buy a car, buy a house, or just get a credit card for emergencies, limited credit could be a problem.
Miranda from MoneyNing presents 5 Credit Card Traps to Watch Out For.
Balance Junkie presents Mixed Messages from TD Bank, and says, “TD Bank changed its mortgage structure to allow homeowners to borrow more money at the same time that TD Economics released a report claiming our debt levels are too high.”
Doctor S from Finance Your Life presents Student Loan Moral Victory, and says, “Looking back at how I financed my college career, I would have done pretty much everything differently. However, dealing with the cards I was dealt, I have made huge strides to make the situation right. Progress takes baby steps.”
Briana Ford from Go Banking Rates presents Top 5 Most Common Pitfalls in Eliminating Debt, and says, “These tips can help you avoid some common pitfalls of getting out of debt.”
Jason from One Money Design presents Reasons You Should and Shouldn’t Have a Credit Card, and says, “Is it okay to have a credit card? Do you need one? Are there reasons why you shouldn’t have one?”
And some affiliate-focused credit card articles:
DoughRoller: Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Credit Card from Chase
PT Money: Best Airline Miles Credit Cards
Free From Broke: ZYNC Card From American Express
Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups: banking
Peanut butter is tough to master in a candy, but Reese’s gets it right. I’ve tried peanut butter Twix bars, peanut butter M&M’s and almost every other peanut butter candy but nothing compares to the Reese’s peanut butter cup.
Here are this week’s top banking articles.
FIRE Finance from FIRE Finance presents Direct Deposit to Bank Account – Handle With Care!. Can anyone take out money from your bank account without your permission? Find out here.
The Smarter Wallet from The Smarter Wallet presents What To Expect From A Good Bank Account.
The definition of Halloween candy must include the word “sweet,” but somehow, pretzels find their way into candy baskets and sacks.
Possibly the most depressing aspect of personal finance, our best tax articles are below:
Kim Snider from Kimmunications presents Preparing for a World of Higher Taxes.
Ken from Spruce Up Your Finances offers The Power of Investing In Tax Deferred Accounts.
Madison from My Dollar Plan writes Social Security 2011 Wage Base Remains Unchanged.
Hard candy: everything else
Our last bit of candy to discuss today is hard candy. This means your Jolly Ranchers, your Blow Pops, Jawbreakers and anything else that would shatter if you throw it on the ground. Hard candy is probably the worst kind of candy when it comes to taking care of your teeth but I enjoy its place in the holiday of Halloween.
Last but not least, here are the articles that didn’t quite fit into any of the above categories:
Kevin from Financially Poor presents Managing Awkward Financial Situations.
Ryan from The Military Wallet presents Troops to Teachers Program, and says, “The Troops to Teachers Program gives military veterans a grant to help pay for their education to become a teacher.”
Aloysa from The Kitchen Sink presents His Wallet is Empty But What About His Head?.
Big Cajun Man from The Canadian Personal Finance Blog presents Financial Bondage, and says, “How dangerous are the financial bondage devices in your life?”
Stephan Marks from Promo Code Center presents Bed Bath & Beyond Coupons Never Expire. I’ve taken advantage of this fact on many occasions.
Ask Mr. Credit Card presents Credit Checks Still an Issue in Hiring.
John from Passive Family Income presents Solar & Wind Power: Create a Renewable Income Stream & Save on Bills, and says, “Solar and wind power often make the news headlines because of their ability to lower the impact of our lifestyle on the planet. For most people, however, greater appeal is found in the way solar and wind power can save them money.”
J. Money from Budgets Are Sexy presents Think You Could Live in a Hotel?, and says, “There are so many perks to this, if you can get over all the cons.”
Junior Boomer from Consumer Boomer presents How Does Your Net Worth Compare, and says, “It is important to know your personal net worth and how it can help you with your finances.”
Jeff Rose from Soldier of Finance presents Essential First Steps To Kick Butt and Dominate Your Finances, and says, “When it comes to your finances, it often feels that you matter how hard you scrape, how much you cut back, how much you save, you never really have full financial domination.”
Kate Kashman from The Paycheck Chronicles presents The Value of a Stocked Pantry, and says, “Keeping your pantry stocked can help prevent unnecessary spending when sickness, busyness, or craziness happens.”
Sean Smarty from Grow Money presents 5 Things New Homebuyers Should Know Before They Dive In.
RJ Weiss from Gen Y Wealth presents 5 Unconventional Ideas That Really Shouldn’t Be, and says, “There are always options. Define the circumstances you want to live. Then, find a way to create them.”
Paul Williams from Provident Planning presents Good Money Management Is About Avoiding Dumb Mistakes, and says, “You don’t have to be a personal finance expert to manage your money well. You simply need to know the basics and be aware of the dumb mistakes to avoid.”
I hope you enjoyed this week’s edition of the Carnival of Personal Finance. Next week, make sure to check out PT Money for the 282nd edition.
Updated December 20, 2011 and originally published November 1, 2010. If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the RSS feed or receive daily emails. Follow @ConsumerismComm on Twitter and visit our Facebook page for more updates.