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Investing

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
Bernanke

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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Investing During Four Asset Bubbles: Don’t Blow It

by Luke Landes

Earlier this month, I stopped my automatic monthly investment of $1,000 in the stock market through Vanguard’s Total Stock Market Index Fund (VTSMX), and it’s possible that this will prove to be a good decision. Shawn Tully from Fortune Magazine identifies four current asset bubbles that all investors should heed, and one of these bubbles ... 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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401(k) Contribution Limits For 2010

by Luke Landes

In 2010, the basic maximum for 401(k) contributions is $16,500. Employees 50 and older can add an additional $5,500. These limits take your pre-tax, after-tax, and Roth 401(k) contributions into consideration, so the sum of all your 401(k) contributions in 2010 cannot exceed the limit for your age group. This limit is the same as ... Continue reading this article…

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Are Values-Based and Socially-Responsible Investments Worthwhile?

by Luke Landes

Yesterday, FaithShares added two new exchange-traded funds to their lineup, already consisting of funds called “Catholic Values,” “Christian Values,” and “Methodist Values.” These and the two new funds, “Baptist Values” and “Lutheran Values,” focus on investing in only those companies that live up to the values encouraged by each of these communities. It is more ... Continue reading this article…

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Ben Stein Offers Four Lessons From the Recession

by Luke Landes

The United States must be approaching the end of the recession when economists begin offering their retrospectives. Even if the data are pointing to an end to the recession, in technical terms, the economy is a long way from recovery. Just look around at the people out of work. Even those who have maintained their ... Continue reading this article…

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2010 Roth Conversion: Good Idea?

by J.J.

Over the next couple of weeks, six finalists will be auditioning for the opening of “staff writer” at Consumerism Commentary. Each will be providing two guest articles to share with readers. After the six writers have shared their guest articles, readers will have an opportunity to provide feedback before we select the staff writer. This ... Continue reading this article…

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The Trouble With Target Date Funds

by J.J.

Over the next couple of weeks, six finalists will be auditioning for the opening of “staff writer” at Consumerism Commentary. Each will be providing two guest articles to share with readers. After the six writers have shared their guest articles, readers will have an opportunity to provide feedback before we select the staff writer. This ... Continue reading this article…

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Should Target Date Funds Be Standardized?

by Luke Landes

The Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) is setting up a new division to oversee new financial products, and this group is starting with target date funds. These are mutual funds usually taking the form of baskets of other mutual funds, designed to target a certain year of retirement. As the year approaches, the fund automatically ... Continue reading this article…

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$50 Bonus for New Prosper Lenders

by Luke Landes

Peer-to-peer lending institution Prosper is offering a $50 bonus for new lenders who sign up for for the service and bid on two loans. Peer-to-peer lending is an interesting way for people to qualify for loans and to lend money to others. In an economy where savings account interest rates are under 3 percent or 2 percent, ... Continue reading this article…

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How is Your 401(k) Retirement Account Performing?

by Luke Landes

I’ve been investing in a 401(k) retirement account since I joined the ranks of the corporate employed seven years ago. I started with a small percentage of my income, just enough to take advantage of the full company match. As my income increased, I diverted a larger percentage to the 401(k) with the hopes of ... Continue reading this article…

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Three Detailed Income Strategies for Retirement

by Luke Landes

Earlier this week, I reviewed common financial rules of thumb and offered a quick evaluation of how each rule would likely perform if accepted by an individual as the final word. One of these was the rule that convinces retirees they will be financially secure if they withdraw 4 percent of their nest egg for income ... Continue reading this article…

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5 Reasons to Take Another Look at DRIPs

by Clare

This is a guest article written by Clare, the founder of MoneyEnergy, where she writes about international dividend investing, DRIPs, and increasing your cashflow. If you like this post, consider subscribing to her RSS feed to get others like it in your reader. DRIPs (dividend reinvestment plans) were fairly popular back in the 1980s I ... Continue reading this article…

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Zecco Trading Offering 20 Free Stock Trades

by Luke Landes

I do very little stock trading. In fact, the only individual stocks I hold are Microsoft (MSFT) and Akamai (AKAM), both of which I purchased with free money for opening a brokerage account. Naturally, I think free cash is a perfect candidate for experimentation with the stock market and I most likely would not have ... Continue reading this article…

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Employee Stock Purchase Plan Dilemma

by Luke Landes

For the last few years, I have been participating in my company’s stock purchase plan at the maximum level. Every paycheck, ten percent of my gross salary is withheld. At the end of each quarter the funds are used to buy my company’s stock at a 15 percent discount from the lower price of either ... Continue reading this article…

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