As featured in The Wall Street Journal, Money Magazine, and more!

Personal Balance Sheet, May 2010 ($344,474, -2.7%)

by Luke Landes

After the end of each month, I take a closer look at my personal finances. Although I’ve moved away from tracking every cent I spend, I still look at most of my purchases and expenses to ensure I’m not doing anything I consider financially unreasonable. While my spending wasn’t excessive this month, my reports do ... Continue reading this article…

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Qualifying for Vanguard’s Voyager Services

by Luke Landes

The more money you have, the more opportunities you have to save money. That is Vanguard‘s message. I’m not sure I agree with the philosophy from a consumer standpoint, but it is a way to reward loyal customers — generally customers who make the most money for the company. Yesterday I received a notification in ... Continue reading this article…

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Television of the Future

by Bryan J Busch

Hi, I’m new here. Flexo invited me to create some original videos for Consumerism Commentary, and I’m happy to present the first one, which explains how I managed to retain my (possibly saturated) television habit but simultaneously remove the monthly cable bill. At the core of the problem was the fact that we were paying ... Continue reading this article…

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Citi Dividend Card Changing Cash Back Benefits

by Luke Landes

Editor’s Note: Thank you for your interest, this offer expired and is no longer available. Several years ago, the Citi Dividend Platinum Select MasterCard was a great credit card to use for the spending you would have done anyway. At that time, you could earn 5 percent cash back on all your purchases. For a time, ... Continue reading this article…

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Information Consumerism Commentary

by Smithee

In an earlier part of the century I was suffering from information overload. TV, radio, podcasts, Twitter, Facebook, clones of Twitter and Facebook… and even with a feed reader, there were too many websites to keep up with. I was getting burned out, and I started having frequent daydreams about giving up and raising goats. ... Continue reading this article…

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Scottrade Discount Brokerage Review

by Luke Landes

This is a brief review of my experiences with the discount brokerage Scottrade. If you are interested, you can open an account at Scottrade here. I first opened my account with Scottrade a little over five years ago. At the time, my current discount brokerage, Wachovia, began charging an inactivity fee. They claimed I was ... Continue reading this article…

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Memorial Day Weekend Reading: Guinea Pigs and the End

by Luke Landes

It’s been a hectic weekend so far. I’ve spent many hours on the road between my home in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Queens. Friends of mine will be married to each other in a few weeks, and they wanted to have some wedding photographs shot including their pet guinea pigs. They were concerned about dealing ... Continue reading this article…

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Podcast 58: How to Keep From Going Broke with a Broker, Richard Lewins

by Luke Landes

Today’s guest on the Consumerism Commentary Podcast is Richard Lewins, founder of the LewinsLaw legal practice and author of the book, How to Keep From Going Broke with a Broker – A Guide to Opening, Maintaining and Surviving Your Brokerage Account. Tom Dziubek talks to Richard about the basics of what being a broker is, ... Continue reading this article…

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How Does Fraud Detection Work on Your Cards?

by Smithee

You probably know that your debit and credit cards have someone watching over them for indications of fraud and/or theft, and we’ve written here before about making sure you tell the bank in advance of a trip so that they don’t mistakenly block your card. I’ve personally seen this system work well, and also not ... Continue reading this article…

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Is It Time to Give Up On the Stock Market?

by Luke Landes

I’ll admit I’m nervous with my investments right now. Back at the beginning of May, the stock market, as measured by the S&P 500 and other indices, dropped sharply. This was around the time of the “flash crash,” and it appeared to me that the value of my primary vehicle for investment, VTSMX, fell irrationally. ... Continue reading this article…

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