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Saving

Sell Your Unwanted Gift Cards at Plastic Jungle

by Luke Landes

Whether you’re giving or receiving gift cards, it’s usually a pretty positive experience. Both the giver and receiver are often satisfied because most gift cards allow the receiver to spend money in the way they want, as long as the giver has taken the receiver’s interests into account. Sometimes a gift card can miss the […]

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Recent Changes in My Personal Finance Plan

by Luke Landes

It’s easy to fall into financial habits. Even people who consider themselves inflexible can grow accustomed to a financial change after time. That’s the beauty of automation — an automatic 10 percent transfer to a high-yield savings account every time you receive a paycheck eventually becomes painless. Habits aren’t always perfect; just as you adjust […]

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Curb Your Consumerism

by Kelly Whalen

This article is presented by Kelly Whalen, Consumerism Commentary staff writer. The temptation to spend money is everywhere, especially during the holidays. There is something magical about lights glowing, soft Christmas music playing everywhere, and the hustle and bustle of the holiday season that seems to make money fly right out of everyone’s wallet. Whether […]

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Ten Things to Do With $1,000 Right Now

by Luke Landes

Mention to your friend that you suddenly received an unexpected $1,000 and I would be willing to bet he could come up with several suggestions for you. Most of those suggestions will likely involve handing the money over to him. My first suggestion is to refrain from telling your friend when you have $1,000 more […]

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Is It Possible to Save Too Much Money?

by Luke Landes

For most humans, life is much shorter than we would like, and for many of us saving even ten percent of our income will never result in a state of wealth within our lifetime. There are too many forces working against this endeavor: a lack of sufficient opportunity, inflation, and unplanned events to name a […]

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What Percentage of Income Should Be Saved to Be Financially Responsible?

by Luke Landes

I’m pointing out a recent article featuring advice from Walter Updegrave, a senior editor of Money Magazine. Recently, he was asked to quantify the percentage of income that any individual should save in order for this particular action to be considered “financially responsible.” Normally, the advice I’ve seen suggests a rate somewhere between 10 percent and […]

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Eight Tips for Living Through a Recession

by Luke Landes

If you have been affected by the recession, perhaps by losing a source of income, you may not want to hear suggestions for turning a bad situation into an opportunity. In fact, the idea of turning challenges around for your own benefit is in line with the annoying soundbites that productivity gurus sell. But I […]

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Can an Emergency Fund Be Too Big?

by Luke Landes

Being prepared for financial emergencies is a primary step on the path to creating and maintaining solid footing, but as with other good things, too much of a positive can be negative. Every individual’s or family’s situation is unique, so it’s difficult to prescribe a hard and fast rule about the right size of an […]

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8 Ways to Create Your Own Stimulus Check

by Luke Landes

In 2008, millions of people received checks or direct deposits from the government in an effort to stimulate the economy. The extra cash certainly helped many families and individuals, who, like the banks that received TARP funds later in the year, cushioned their bank accounts and paid off debt. Some used the found money to […]

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The Paradox of The Paradox of Thrift

by Luke Landes

If you’ve been paying attention lately, you might have heard that throughout the economic recession, Americans have been saving more of their income. Some economists worry that saving, while good for the individual, can be harmful to the economy as a whole. This is commonly called, “the paradox of thrift,” a theory developed by John […]

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