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Podcast 63: 8Coupons, Investing vs. Paying Down Mortgage

by Luke Landes

Today’s episode of the Consumerism Commentary Podcast has two guests. First, Tom Dziubek talks with Landy Ung, co-founder of the online coupon and deal aggregation website 8Coupons. Landy discusses what features the website offers and how they use natural language processing to help discover deals. In the second segment, Tom speaks with Consumerism Commentary founder ... Continue reading this article…

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Independence Weekend Reading: Priceline, Secrets, and Condoms

by Luke Landes

For many Americans with typical jobs, this is a long holiday weekend. I could use the break from my day job, which is becoming increasingly stressful with many co-workers out of the office at various times this summer. Frankly, I’d rather be spending the time working on my own projects. As readers know, I’ve been ... Continue reading this article…

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Track Savings Goals With Mint.com

by Luke Landes

Mint.com added a new feature this week to its online personal finance management software. Like SmartyPig, the new focus is on savings goals. I’ve recently become a fan of SmartyPig’s approach to goal tracking, so I was interested in seeing Mint.com’s new feature. In addition to tracking your account balances as any other personal finance ... Continue reading this article…

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Buy a Meal at Panera, Pay What You Want

by Luke Landes

In the movie Clerks, the convenience store cashier, Dante, occasionally takes a break from manning the counter. Rather than ensuring every customer paid for his or her items, he leaves a sign: “Please leave money on the counter. Take change when applicable. Be honest.” Dante believes customers assume they are being watched and will leave ... Continue reading this article…

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Eco-ergonomics: Reducing Strain on Your Budget

by Donna Freedman

This is a guest article by Donna Freedman. Donna writes the Living With Less personal finance column for MSN Money, posts weekly at MSN Smart Spending and blogs at Surviving and Thriving. Is your budget hurting? It could be overuse syndrome. Ergonomically speaking, a body part that is forced to work at a greater level ... Continue reading this article…

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Save Money By Driving With Your Toe

by Smithee

“Hypermiling” is a word we use for doing everything you can to squeeze the best mileage possible from your car, including hardware modifications which may or may not void your warranty and certain driving techniques which may be both dangerous and illegal. You may have seen some of these tested on Mythbusters, such as driving ... Continue reading this article…

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Free Checking On the Way Out: Who Should Pay?

by Luke Landes

July 1 and August 15 are the dates consumers need to worry about. New Fed rules for bank accounts go into effect on July 1 for anyone who opens a new bank account, while current account holders should know about changes to their accounts starting August 15. On these dates, the Federal Reserve is limiting ... Continue reading this article…

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A Review of PerkStreet’s 5% Cash Back Debit Card and Checking Account

by Luke Landes

PerkStreet Financial, a company that launched just over a year ago has decided to kick things up a notch by offering something new in addition to their online checking account. Previously, PerkStreet enticed customers with a $50 cash bonus for signing up a new account, then 2 percent cash back on all non-PIN debit card purchases ... Continue reading this article…

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Podcast 62: Families and Money Survey, Bank Overdraft Fees

by Luke Landes

Today’s episode of the Consumerism Commentary Podcast features two guests. In the first segment, Tom Dziubek talks with Carrie Schwab-Pomerantz, president of Charles Schwab Foundation. Carrie discusses the findings of their 2010 Families & Money Survey and also talks about the financial tools available at Schwab MoneyWise. In the second segment, Tom speaks with Jim ... Continue reading this article…

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Good and Bad Uses of Leverage

by Luke Landes

Earlier this year, I suggested starting the decade off right by paying off debt. In general, debt is something that should be eliminated. Credit card debt is expensive and often unnecessary, personal loans generally carry a cost to personal relationships as well as interest, and mortgages hang around forever and make you a renter who ... Continue reading this article…

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