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Investing

Is “Buy and Hold” Still a Good Investing Strategy?

by Luke Landes

From the time I started investing for the long term, almost all the advice I’ve read has pointed towards buying stocks (usually in the form of index mutual funds) and holding them for decades, rather than following trends in the news and trying to buy and sell stocks frequently. The reasons for this strategy were ... Continue reading this article…

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ETFs or Index Funds: Which are Right for You?

by Luke Landes

About the author: This guest article is presented by ABCs of Investing, a new website for novice investors which offers two short and simple investing posts each week. Feel free to subscribe the the RSS feed. With last year’s market meltdown affecting both managed mutual funds as well as their low-cost counterparts index funds and ... Continue reading this article…

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Investing Ethically

by Smithee

Last year we wrote an article about Ethical Consumerism, the practice of spending your money on businesses who support your ideas of a healthy community and environment. In addition to where you spend your money, you can also put a lot of thought into which investment vehicles agree with your personal ethics. This is something ... Continue reading this article…

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What Do I Know About Investing?

by Smithee

Flexo has often touted the benefits of using a real credit card (as opposed to a debit card) for daily spending, and paying off the balance each month. I guess this finally permeated my skull, since as soon as I saw the news about a credit card that deposits 2 percent cash back into a brokerage ... Continue reading this article…

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Your TARP Money Put to Good Use

by Luke Landes

About the author: Jeff Rose is an Illinois Certified Financial Planner™ and co-founder of Alliance Investment Planning Group. He is a veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom, having served in the National Guard. Warning: For those of you that have been laid off recently, received a pay cut due to the recent economic crisis or frustrated ... Continue reading this article…

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Should Investors Who Profited From Madoff Scheme Return Their Money?

by Luke Landes

Consumerism Commentary readers: Please complete this readership survey for a chance to win a $50 Amazon.com gift card! It may be true that everyone who invested with Bernard Madoff without knowing the extent of his scheme was a victim, but some investors have profited from Madoff’s plan. For example, assume an investor gave $1 million ... Continue reading this article…

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2009 Economic Outlook from Jeremy Siegel

by Luke Landes

Jeremy Siegel, author of The Future for Investors and Stocks for the Long Run believes that the economic recovery will be faster than expected this year. Siegel has been criticized in the past for being overly optimistic, but he may be right considering stocks don’t have to perform well this year to improve over 2008. ... Continue reading this article…

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401(k) Contribution Limits for 2009

by Luke Landes

If you contribute to a 401(k) plan, you may be happy to hear that this year’s contribution maximum is increasing. In 2008, the tax code allowed employees to contribute up to $15,500. Anyone who turned 50 years old in 2008 could also add a catch-up contribution of $5,000 above this limit, bringing the maximum to ... Continue reading this article…

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When to Begin Investing for a Child’s Education

by Luke Landes

I do not have any children. I am, however, planning to have children at some point in the future. It is part of my long-term vision for my life, despite endless stories from co-workers who seem to have such a difficult time with their own. (These stories are always followed by a confession that they ... Continue reading this article…

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First Five Days of 2009 May Indicate Stock Market’s Performance

by Luke Landes

Over the last 36 years whose first five days resulted in a stock market increase, 31 of those years experienced an overall good year for stocks. While that’s a good track record, it’s not an infallible indicator. There are three trading days left in 2008, a lost cause for the stock market. This method has ... Continue reading this article…

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Is Your Special Investment a Ponzi Scheme?

by Luke Landes

Here is how a Ponzi scheme works. The individual running the scheme promises abnormally high returns over a short period of time to the initial investors. These investors provide the start-up capital, and the schemer will do whatever he likes with that money, either invest it, spend it, or let it sit in a bank. ... Continue reading this article…

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Coworkers Excited About Investing

by Luke Landes

In the sea of cubicles in my office, two of my coworkers were talking yesterday about their investments. As stocks — primarily our company stock — have increased a little from their recent lows, they seem to believe that this might be a good time to increase 401(k) contributions and enroll in the company stock ... Continue reading this article…

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Lessons Learned From Losing a Quarter Million Dollars

by Luke Landes

About the author: This guest article is presented by Debtkid, who recently begun working part-time for LendingClub. He regularly writes at Debtkid about his journey to become debt free. A few years back, I was playing poker at a bachelor party. There were about 12 guys there, and the pot was around $100. During the ... 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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TradeKing Extends $50 Bonus Offer

by Luke Landes

If you are interested in opening a new brokerage account, you will now have more time to qualify for TradeKing’s $50 new account bonus. The promotion was originally slated to end this week, but the brokerage has decided to extend the $50 bonus through November. In order to qualify, open a new account at TradeKing ... Continue reading this article…

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When Your Company Stops Matching Your 401(k) Contribution

by Luke Landes

Yesterday, GM announced that it would be suspending the company’s matching contributions into its employees’ 401(k) retirement plans starting November 1 and lasting until financial conditions improve. For people like me who make their living working for a corporation, the 401(k) match is practically expected. One way to look at the company match, if dollar ... Continue reading this article…

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Warren Buffett is Buying American Stocks Right Now, You Should Too

by Luke Landes

Warren Buffett, a rock star in the world of investing, has noticed the pattern of panic in the stock market recently and is using this volatility to his advantage. I am still buying into the market; the only change I’ve made is to buy more stocks, even if I don’t get the price at the ... Continue reading this article…

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Economist’s Advice on the Local News Program

by Luke Landes

Here’s what an economist had to say about investing on ABC 7 Eyewitness News tonight: Third quarter 401(k) statements are reaching homes now. Don’t look at your statement. If you put more money in your 401(k), put it into Treasuries. If you are thinking about stocks, think again. They look cheap now, but they’ll be ... Continue reading this article…

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The Market Collapse in Terms of Champagne

by Smithee

If you’re still confused, as I was, about what exactly led to the failure of just about everything financial, here’s a video made by a Senior Editor at Marketplace, explaining what happened with a clever metaphor: Crisis explainer: Uncorking CDOs from Marketplace on Vimeo.

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My Recent Experiences With Buying the Market on Dips

by Luke Landes

Last week, I suggested considering tax-exempt money market funds as an alternative to high-yield savings accounts. As an example, I looked at one of the best options for me, the Vanguard New Jersey Tax-Exempt Money Market Fund (VNJXX), citing its 4.83 percent 7-day yield. Today, a week later, the yield is already down more than 100 ... Continue reading this article…

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