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


TD Ameritrade In Trouble For Misleading Investors

by Luke Landes

According to the Pennsylvania Securities Commission, brokers for TD Ameritrade misled investors in 2007 in order to sell a mutual fund, taking advantage of customers looking for higher returns. A certain mutual fund, the Reserve Yield Plus Fund, was sold as a high-rate investment to investors looking for a money market fund. The brokers allegedly ... Continue reading this article…

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P/E Ratios

by Luke Landes

I’m not a skilled investor, particularly when it comes to short-term prognostication, and my long-term track record has yet to be established considering my first investing decision was less than ten years ago. I don’t invest in many individual stocks. My 401(k) includes company stock as part of my employer’s matching contribution, and I opted ... Continue reading this article…

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SmartMoney’s Top 10 Discount Brokers

by Luke Landes

Discount brokers are everywhere. Not long ago, only a few companies offered the ability to trade stocks with low commissions. If you wanted to trade with a full-service brokerage, it might have cost $30 for each transaction. For this fee, you would talk with a broker assigned to your account, who would help you make ... Continue reading this article…

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Financial Services Companies Get Ready for Boomers

by Luke Landes

The Baby Boomer Generation consists of Americans born between about 1946 and about 1964. Many individuals in this generation are approaching the typical retirement age, as defined by the U.S. government’s tax and benefit policies. While some are delaying their retirement thanks in part to recent poor stock market performance, underfunded nest eggs, and the ... Continue reading this article…

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How to Invest $300,000 — Or Any Amount

by Luke Landes

Last week I wrote about lump sum investing vs. dollar-cost averaging, voicing the opinion that in most cases, if a lump sum is available, it’s a better choice in the long run. But how do you invest that lump sum? It’s great that the financial media has been encouraging young people to start thinking about ... Continue reading this article…

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Dollar-Cost Averaging

by Luke Landes

Is dollar-cost averaging (DCA) a sound investing strategy? In theory, dollar-cost averaging allows you to invest smaller portions of your money over a longer period of time, reducing the chance that you pay a price too high for any individual investment. If your ideal allocation calls for $50,000 to be invested in the stock market ... Continue reading this article…

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Scottrade Discount Brokerage Review

by Luke Landes

This is a brief review of my experiences with the discount brokerage Scottrade. If you are interested, you can open an account at Scottrade here. I first opened my account with Scottrade a little over five years ago. At the time, my current discount brokerage, Wachovia, began charging an inactivity fee. They claimed I was ... Continue reading this article…

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Discover Bank’s IRA CDs: High Interest Rates, FDIC Guarantee

by Luke Landes

With thirty years or so until retirement, I haven’t considered investing in certificates of deposit in my retirement accounts, money I would hopefully have no need to touch for decades. Despite recent problems, the stock market is expected to provide the best returns, even with risk, over a long period of time. But not everyone ... Continue reading this article…

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Opening an IRA With a Discount Brokerage

by Luke Landes

As a fan of index mutual funds for the long term, I’ve stuck with first TIAA-Cref and currently Vanguard for my IRAs. I started with TIAA-Cref because when I first discovered Roth IRAs, I didn’t have enough saved to qualify for Vanguard’s minimums. Both brokerages offer low-cost options for those who want to invest in ... Continue reading this article…

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The Best Way to Invest in Real Estate

by Christian

This is a guest article by Christian of Money Obedience. If you enjoy this article, please consider subscribing to the MoneyObedience RSS feed. My parents offered a very important piece of wisdom to me: Even if everybody is doing something, you do not have to do it, too. Unfortunately I usually applied this advice to ... Continue reading this article…

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How to Invest With Inflation on the Way

by Greg McFarlane

This is a guest article by Greg McFarlane, the author of Control Your Cash: Making Money Make Sense, a financial primer for people in their twenties and thirties who know nothing about money. People have feared inflation ever since… well, since the dollar’s last rampant bout of inflation in 1977. However, there’s every reason to ... Continue reading this article…

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The Wrong Reason to Dollar-Cost Average

by Pop
Dollar-cost averaging

Pop writes about the intersection of our lives and economics at Pop Economics. There, you can find biweekly posts on everything from how your behavior affects your personal finance decisions to what the Fed’s most recent move means to you — not to mention some killer pop art. He recently wrote: Resistance is futile: Why ... Continue reading this article…

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Zecco Discount Online Brokerage Account Opening Review

by Luke Landes

Zecco is a discount online brokerage offering trades for $4.50. I decided to open an account with Zecco recently to try my hand with stocks with a small amount of “fun money.” Trading stocks, not to mention options, is a risky way to manage your money, and I prefer to buy mutual funds and hold ... Continue reading this article…

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I Might Need $3,000,000 To Retire: What’s Your Number?

by Luke Landes

ING Direct‘s recent survey results about retirement are scary. I don’t know what the world is going to be like in thirty years, the time I’ll be approaching “retirement age.” I do know that if my pattern of increasing expenses doesn’t change until then, and if I’m still earning primary income by trading my time ... Continue reading this article…

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You’re Not That Great: 4 Ways to Combat Overconfidence

by Luke Landes

Overconfidence leads investors to believe they can make buying and selling decisions that would result in their performance beating the indexes. Most professional fund managers don’t beat the indexes on a consistent basis, so there is little reason to believe that amateur stock-pickers will be able to succeed where professionals have failed. Are you overconfident? ... Continue reading this article…

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Breaking an Art Sale Record With $104.3 Million for Running Man I

by Luke Landes

This past weekend, a sculpture by Alberto Giacometti broke the previous record for most expensive piece of art sold at auction. An anonymous bidder purchased “L’Homme Qui Marche I” for $104.3 million, up to five times more than the expected price. This may be a good sign for the art world in need of a ... Continue reading this article…

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Creating a Risk-Free Retirement Plan

by Pop

Or, how to invest like a grandmother. This is a guest article by Pop. Pop writes about the intersection of behavior, economics, and personal finance at Pop Economics. He writes about investing for a living and turns famous economics figures into pop art for fun. I’m young, as I bet a whole bunch of you ... Continue reading this article…

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More Toyota Cars Recalled: Time to Buy Shares of TM?

by Luke Landes

Another day, another recall. Normally, automobile recalls are not much of a problem. A recall usually involves bringing your car to a dealership, subjecting yourself up to some sales pitches, getting your car fixed, and driving home. Toyota’s recent string of recalls is more complicated because some of the problems do not have solutions yet. ... Continue reading this article…

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Between a Rock and a Hard Debt

by Smithee

Well, I didn’t want to have to make this decision, and I know that all of you smart people will think I’m making a mistake, but I’ve decided for the time being to stop making pre-tax investments into the 401(k)-like thing that my company operates. Over the last year I’ve directed $1,879.18 out of my ... Continue reading this article…

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Start the Decade Off Right: Invest For the Future

by Luke Landes

With new technology becoming available to consumers every day, like 3-D high-definition televisions, it certainly feels like I’m living in the future. How did we all survive without such marvels as wireless internet, video games that react to movement, GPS, text messaging, and video on demand? In ten years, we could as easily be wondering ... Continue reading this article…

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