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Consumer

Tame Your Achilles’ Heel for Financial Freedom

by Ginger
Achilles' Heel

This is a guest article by Ginger, owner and curator of Girls Just Wanna Have Funds. She works as a psychotherapist with clients with whom money is a frequent topic. When people think about financial freedom, most tend to think of it as this abstract state of being since it’s something that has yet to ... Continue reading this article…

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Record-Setting Cyber Monday

by Luke Landes
Cyberman - Cyber Monday

Consumers in the United States spent more money online in one day, this past Monday, than they spent in any other one day in history. Online browsing and shopping resulted in $1.25 billion in sales on Cyber Monday, up 22 percent from the previous one-day record, last year’s Cyber Monday. The $1.25 billion in sales ... Continue reading this article…

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How Much Money Did You Spend This Weekend?

by Luke Landes

From a retail perspective, this holiday weekend was successful. The National Retail Federation — an organization that represents retailers and is always happy to report good news in the industry — says that total spending over the four-day weekend from Thanksgiving to Sunday increased 16 percent over the same time period in 2010 when measured ... Continue reading this article…

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One Black Friday Tip to Rule Them All: Buy Nothing

by Luke Landes

For those in the United States, tradition and media influence have established today as a day for spending time with family, over-eating, and watching television. What could be more American than Thanksgiving Day? Fast becoming a tradition for consumers is Black Friday (and to a lesser extent Cyber Monday). Retailers have discovered a tendency to ... Continue reading this article…

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American Express’s Small Business Saturday

by Luke Landes
American Express

I’ve avoided writing about Black Friday this year. In the community I follow, promoting the day after Thanksgiving for shopping has gotten completely out of hand. I wrote an article for PC World a few years ago, The Insider’s Guide to Black Friday Bargains, where the tips are still relevant for today’s shoppers. I’m not ... Continue reading this article…

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Netflix Wal-Mart Class Action Lawsuit

by Luke Landes
Netflix

A few years ago, Netflix and Wal-Mart allegedly entered an agreement where Wal-Mart agreed to exist the DVD rental business and promote Netflix’s service and Netflix would not sell new DVDs to compete with Wal-Mart. A group of Netflix customers have banded together to enter a class action anti-trust lawsuit against the two companies for ... Continue reading this article…

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The Best Holiday Gift: A Shared Experience

by Luke Landes
Wrapped Gift

You’ll never reach the top level in Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, self-actualization, if you concern yourself with your possessions. If you focus on acquiring gadgets, showering your children with toys, or achieving other materialistic pursuits, if you do so while neglecting the pursuit of including satisfying experiences in your life, you can never reach ... Continue reading this article…

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20+ Christmas Gift Ideas Under $100

by Luke Landes

While I’ve already offered my suggestions for this year’s best holiday toys, not everyone on your Christmas or gift-giving list is a child. You may have a special adult someone on your list who would appreciate something more useful. Although it’s early in the holiday shopping season, at least for me, some of the best ... Continue reading this article…

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Layaway Programs: How to Buy What You Can’t Afford (Yet)

by Luke Landes

In the midst of the economic recession a few years ago, layaway programs made a big comeback. Previously a great method for buying items that may have been on the expensive side in eras when credit was not available to many consumers, the same economic conditions returned when credit card offers became scarce recently. Layaway ... Continue reading this article…

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5 Saving Money Tips for Car Owners

by Emily Guy Birken
Rusted Car

This is a guest article by Emily Guy Birken, author of The SAHMambulust. In this article, she offers suggestions for cutting the costs associated with car ownership. Owning a car is an expensive proposition, but most of us never stop to consider the cost of each trip. Unless you live in a city with great ... Continue reading this article…

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Amazon.com’s Month of Black Friday Deals

by Luke Landes

When a sales approach reveals itself to be significantly profitable for a company, you can bet those who run that company will want to expand that approach. Last year’s “Black Friday” day-after-Thanksgiving sale on Amazon.com was popular, and this year the major online retailer is extending the event throughout the week leading up to Thanksgiving, ... Continue reading this article…

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Spirituality and Money: Knowing is Only Half the Battle

by Ellen Cooper-Davis
Pants

This article is written by Consumerism Commentary’s columnist, Ellen Cooper-Davis. Ellen’s column looks at the role of spirituality within the context of personal finance. For an introduction to this column, see Ellen’s first article, The Pastor and the Purse. Your feedback is welcome. It’s time for a little geography lesson. Look at the tag in ... Continue reading this article…

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Best Holiday Toys 2011

by Luke Landes

Christmas and Hanukkah are right around the corner, and if you have children, they might already be looking forward to the holiday season. Gift-giving is a big part of the holiday season, as it has been for a long time. Commercialism is the most popular American religion as we approach the end of the year. ... Continue reading this article…

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Google Wallet Not Ready for Prime Time

by Luke Landes

Simplification is usually a good choice for finances whenever it is available, and the bulky wallet is due for a technological upgrade, simplifying back pockets of men’s jeans everywhere. I’ve received the occasional comment about my “George Costanza” wallet; as I collect receipts from my day-to-day transactions, the leather becomes increasingly distended. Google’s first in ... Continue reading this article…

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UPS Premium Service

by Luke Landes
UPS Truck

Delivery company — or logistics company, depending on how you look at it — UPS is taking a page from Amazon.com’s Prime service and offering better delivery options for customers willing to pay a fee. When I didn’t work out of my home, I’d often come back after work to be greeted by the familiar ... Continue reading this article…

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Honda Recalls One Million Cars

by Luke Landes
Honda CR-V

As an owner of a Honda Civic, I was concerned with the car maker’s latest round of recalls. My 2004 Honda Civic manual transmission LX sedan was not affected by the recall, but it wasn’t too long ago that both Honda and Toyota were issuing recalls. At the time, I reacted by buying shares in ... Continue reading this article…

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Department of Justice Blocks AT&T Acquisition of T-Mobile

by Luke Landes
Cell Phone

Earlier this year, AT&T announced its plans to acquire T-Mobile, a plan that would change the landscape of wireless service in the United States and pave the way for an industry dominated by two large players: the new AT&T and Verizon Wireless. Today, the U.S. Justice Department stepped in, issuing a complaint to block the ... Continue reading this article…

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How to Hedge Against Gasoline Price Increases

by Luke Landes
Gas Pump Fuel | crowt59

When gasoline prices at the pump increased to the point where the cost was a major news item engendering backlash among the public, oil companies were sporting big profits. Consumers reacted by buying more fuel-efficient cars and traveling less, but there is another approach for investors — an approach that mimics what commodities and hedge ... Continue reading this article…

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Retail Marketers Attract Shoppers With 13 to 20 Seasons

by Luke Landes
Cadbury Egg Easter

I always wondered why stores like Target and Wal-Mart added groceries to their already wide variety of products for sale. I figured these stores were attempting to be more of a one-stop-shop for all shopping needs, keeping customers in the store longer, and providing less of a reason to go to the supermarket, grocery store, ... Continue reading this article…

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Extreme Couponing: Woman Arrested for Stealing Newspapers

by Luke Landes
Grocery shopping

I’ve spoken out against the concept of “extreme couponing” a few times already. In search of ratings, television shows — and in particular, “reality” television shows, use creative editing to make practitioners seem crazier than they are, but the concept has caught on so well, some people, in real reality, stop at very little in ... Continue reading this article…

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