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Monthly Update – February

This article was written by in Monthly Update. 8 comments.

Two things helped to stabilize my net worth over the past month. First of all, the bonus, although relatively small, helped me out. Unfortunately, that money will go to my car insurance payment and the balance due on my taxes. Secondly, the market turned upwards in February, so my investments gained some value, although that makes little difference to me until I liquify the funds. That’s not part of my plan for many, many years.

If you look at the chart, you’ll see I switched a few things and made some changes.

* I’m evaluating my funds on the last day of the month now instead of the first. I’ve revised the past numbers to fit the new accounting style.
* I reevaluated the value of my car through edmunds.com, including past values.
* My next paycheck (to be received this week) will be the first to include a reduction of 401(k) pretax contribution from 12% to 4%.
* My student loan is now in deferrment since I have started taking classes for my MBA again.

Continue reading to see the numbers.


Updated January 16, 2010 and originally published March 2, 2005. If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the RSS feed or receive daily emails. Follow @ConsumerismComm on Twitter and visit our Facebook page for more updates.

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About the author

Luke Landes is the founder of Consumerism Commentary. He has been blogging and writing for the internet since 1995 and has been building online communities since 1991. Find out more about Luke Landes and follow him on Twitter. View all articles by .


avatar Luke Landes

The layout is based on a report from Quicken but it’s done in Excel. I export a report from Quicken and copy and paste the values into the Excel format.

I reduced the 401(k) because I can’t make a higher contribution and meet all my expenses. The next step is to find a job where I can be paid enough to max out the 401(k).

avatar Robin

This is a nice rolloup. Did you come up with the format yourself is Excel or do you use some other software to gather data and figure out the overall monthly based on payments, etc? I need to set this sort of thing up for myself. Why so much less into the 401K?

avatar Luke Landes

Hi Jonathan,

at ING Direct, just open another savings account. You can open multiple accounts under the same login id/customer information. They just call them accounts instead of sub-accounts. Technically, they are sub-accounts because FDIC considers your total in savings when it comes to coverage.

avatar Jonathan

How do you to set up those sub-accounts at ING? I tried a couple days ago and couldn’t find the link for the life of me. TIA,


avatar Ed

Have you prepared a similar spreadsheet to track monthly expenses and savings?

avatar Luke Landes

Good idea, Ed. Posted.

avatar HELOC

Hi -

Noticed that you’re using the Upromise credit card. I used to use this card but switched to the 2% Fidelity 529 card for college savings. I think I did a pretty thorough comparison and made the right choice, but am curious if I missed anything. The main drawback of the Fidelity card is that you have to use their 529 products – but I’m OK with that.

BTW – I don’t work for Fidelity. I do have 4 kids though and maximizing college savings is important to me.


avatar Luke Landes

I use the Upromise credit card, but I do not invest in a 529. I have the rebate returned directly to me.