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Vehicular Mileage Update

by Luke Landes

Yesterday, I passed 30,000 miles on my new Honda Civic. This is probably the point where I should stop calling it “new.”

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Money Spent Yesterday

by Luke Landes

One of the things I enjoy doing every summer is attending and volunteering for drum and bugle corps shows. Yesterday, I drove to Allentown, Pennsylvania for part one of the Eastern Championships, and tonight, I’ll be taking my girlfriend to part two. One ticket to the last night’s show is $25. I opted for two ... Continue reading this article…

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Bill Frist and Me?

by Luke Landes

I know I’ve arrived in Bizarro World when Bill Frist and I agree on something: The introduction of a moratorium on drug ads to consumers. Frist, a Republican from Tennessee and a heart-lung replacement surgeon, on July 1 asked drug makers for a voluntary, two-year moratorium on direct-to-consumer advertising, the type that consumers see on ... Continue reading this article…

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Unexpected Gift and Contest

by Luke Landes

Apparently, when I opened a savings account with Emigrant Direct in March, they were offering a free logo baseball cap. I didn’t realize this until a package was waiting on my welcome mat as I arrived home (late) from work last night. I like surprise gifts, but I’m not a baseball cap-wearing person. Do you ... Continue reading this article…

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Foreign Exchange Trading

by Luke Landes

An article in the Wall Street Journal, Currency Markets Draw Speculation, Fraud [free], talks about day trading in the foreign exchange market. The story focuses on Marc Coppola, one of my favorite Q104.3 DJs, who apparently also dabbles in trading foreign currency. To summarize, this type of trading has grown in popularity despite its risk. ... Continue reading this article…

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Hands Off The 401(k)

by Luke Landes

Hewitt Associates, the same company that processes my company’s accounts payable, has performed a survey regarding 401(k)s. They discovered that almost half of workers leaving their jobs convert their 401(k)s to cash. This is despite the fact that in addition to income tax, there is a steep penalty (10 percent) for cashing out the tax-deferred retirement ... Continue reading this article…

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August Vacation to Williamsburg

by Luke Landes

My girlfriend and are are planning a four-day vacation to Williamsburg, Virginia in a couple of weeks. We’re trying to limit our expenses as much as possible, while still having a good time visiting Colonial Williamsburg, Busch Gardens, and other random touristy locations. We’ll be cutting expenses with discounts where possible (such as those offered ... Continue reading this article…

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Concerts in Central Park

by Luke Landes

The New York Philharmonic is one of the many great things about New York City. Unfortunately, their concerts tend to be a bit pricey for those of us looking to cut back expenses and increase savings. Luckilly for us, you can enjoy the Philharmonic for free with their Concerts in the Parks series. How can ... Continue reading this article…

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Spend Less In Retirement?

by Luke Landes

Here’s an interesting contrarian point of view, and one with which financial planners will surely disagree: You may be saving too much for retirement. According to the Department of Labor [survey results here], as age increases, spending decreases in all categories other than health care. However, the facts won’t get in the way of financial ... Continue reading this article…

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Blogging For (Fun and) Profit

by Luke Landes

Companies are paying bloggers to write about their products. Many of these bloggers don’t disclose that the company whose product they write about is providing compensation, whether it’s $5 per mention, a free vacation, or several thousand dollars. Should there be mandatory disclaimer so an advertisement isn’t mistaken for a legitimate review? It may breach ... Continue reading this article…

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Frugal Anywhere

by Luke Landes

Another article on MSN offers 50 ways to trim your budget. The Bureau of Labor Statistics provides a chart outlining the average household expenditures as a percent of income, much like I did earlier this month. In each of the categories, the article offers some suggestions for cutting back costs. Many of these I’m already ... Continue reading this article…

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Frugal In The Country

by Luke Landes

How does a single mother of three kids survive on $31,000? First of all, she doesn’t live in New Jersey. After some unfortunate circumstances and some bad moves, Tricia offers some tips for making the most out of what you earn. The MSN article offers all of her tips, but to summarize, the list includes ... Continue reading this article…

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Handy Expiration Reference

by Luke Landes

For future reference: Real Simple magazine has published a guide to product expiration times. Also, here is the Table of Condiments That Periodically Go Bad, based on the periodic table of the elements. I have a version of this chart magnetized to my refrigerator.

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Auto Insurance Refund

by Luke Landes

The good news is I’ll be getting a check in about three weeks. Since I cancelled my old auto insurance after paying most of the premium, I’ll be receiving $2,819 in the mail. I’ll put the remainder of the premium due on my new insurance into a savings account where it can earn some interest ... Continue reading this article…

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Where Does My Money Go?

by Luke Landes

Eric asked me where I can cut back my expenses. I was actually working on this issue as he was posting this question. (It’s been a slow morning at work.) The chart below shows where my money from each paycheck is going and underneath there are some comments.

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Weekend Update

by Luke Landes

I had a busy weekend — despite getting the chance to do some fun things, I managed not to spend too much money. Besides getting some schoolwork done for my class, I went to New York on Saturday to see a Mets game with my girlfriend. For this, I incurred gas, tolls, and the price ... Continue reading this article…

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Friday’s News

by Luke Landes

As Friday progresses, I’ll add articles and news I find interesting to this post. * Jim Jubak says there is no housing bubble. The first rule of Housing Bubble is you do not talk about Housing Bubble. His reasons: mortgage money is cheap (low rates), high prices are a result of inflation only, and consumer ... Continue reading this article…

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Today’s Articles and News

by Luke Landes

Here’s a look at what I’ve been reading (or more likely skimming) today. I’ll update throughout the day as I find more interesting articles. * Jeanne Sahadi discovers three individuals’ definitions of rich. * You’re never too old to be an inventive entrepreneur. By “inventive,” I mean “illegal.” Seems the 80-year old was the madam ... Continue reading this article…

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How To Feel Rich

by Luke Landes

Ben Stein has another good article in the New York Times. He tells a story of how his father taught him to feel rich rather than be rich. It’s a nice article with which to begin the work week. I’ll quote: I was on my way to another job. I got to the next stop ... Continue reading this article…

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Microsoft Millionaires

by Luke Landes

Microsoft‘s [MSFT] amazing climb from its humble beginnings is well-known. Thanks to stock options and other benefits, many early Microsoft employees are millionaires. They’re showing up as successful business owners and philanthropists. The New York Times article profiles: * Rich Tong, cofounder of Ignition Parters, a venture capital group. * John Sage, owner of Pura ... Continue reading this article…

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