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

Vacation vs. Social Networks

by Smithee

Summertime is traditionally when most people take their annual vacations, and since the social media explosion, more aspects of a given person’s vacation will end up as photos on Flickr, or “wish you were here” messages on Facebook. I’m a big fan of openness (with the obvious exception of my use of a pseudonym on ... Continue reading this article…

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SmartyPig Should Be Compared With CDs, Not Savings Accounts

by Luke Landes

I enjoyed Tom Dziubek’s discussion with Jon Gaskell, the CEO of SmartyPig, in the latest episode of the Consumerism Commentary Podcast. If you have a chance, listen to the part discussion in which they discuss SmartyPig’s interest rates. Tom asked how SmartyPig can continually offer high interest rates. Jon Gaskell intimated that SmartyPig’s restrictions and ... Continue reading this article…

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Personal Balance Sheet, Net Worth, Income, and Expenses, June 2009

by Luke Landes

We have reached the half-way mark for 2009, and time certainly does fly when you keep busy. As long-time readers know, the original purpose of Consumerism Commentary was to keep myself accountable for my own financial decisions and to blog about interesting things I find on the web. I freely admit that Consumerism Commentary has ... Continue reading this article…

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Podcast 11: Jon Gaskell from SmartyPig and New Consumerism Commentary Contributor, Jeff

by Luke Landes

Today’s guests in the eleventh episode of the Consumerism Commentary Podcast are Jon Gaskell from SmartyPig and Consumerism Commentary’s newest contributor, Jeff. SmartyPig is a unique banking application that works closely with West Bank to offer surprisingly high interest rates but presents limitations to its customers. In this interview, Tom Dziubek and SmartyPig founder Jon ... Continue reading this article…

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Flexo’s Investment Portfolio, 2Q 2009

by Luke Landes

Happy Independence Day to anyone celebrating today! I’m celebrating by spending time with friends later and sharing my investment portfolio with readers now. Last month, I began sharing my investment portfolio more in-depth than I have in the past. This is part of a renewed effort to make myself more familiar with the investments I ... Continue reading this article…

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Best of Consumerism Commentary, June 2009

by Luke Landes

Monthly subscription reminder One of the best methods of reading Consumerism Commentary and staying up-to-date with the latest articles and posts is through RSS subscription. By subscribing to the Consumerism Commentary RSS feed with feed-reading software such as Google Reader or aggregators such as My Yahoo, you’ll always be aware of new content here. If ... Continue reading this article…

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Credit Card Fair Fee Act of 2009

by Smithee

Businesses are hoping to get more bargaining power when it comes to how much they are charged to accept credit and debit card purchases. The Credit Card Fair Fee Act (read the whole bill), was reintroduced this year and is now being discussed in Congressional committees. I first heard about it when I was buying ... Continue reading this article…

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Still Having Problems With TIAA-Cref? Tell Us Now

by Luke Landes

On July 20, TIAA-Cref will be holding its annual participant meeting. There is an effort underway to encourage the company to be more socially responsible and accountable to its customers, and representatives will be attending the meeting to bring any common problems directly to the board’s attention. Are you having customer service problems with TIAA-Cref? ... Continue reading this article…

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EverBank’s Confusing Array of Interest Rates

by Luke Landes

I plan to open up an account with EverBank within the next week to take this bank for a test drive. I like what I see of EverBank’s interest rates, but I have to admit the structure is not as simple as I like to see. As of October 23, 2009 the savings product, “Yield ... Continue reading this article…

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Credit Card Issuers Making Life Tough For Consumers

by Luke Landes

Whether due to the economy or the impending regulation enacted within the Credit CARD Act of 2009, credit card companies are taking the opportunity to raise interest rates and minimum payments. This is perhaps an unintended consequence of increasing regulation. These changes affect consumers with manageable debt, but others who are trying to get out ... Continue reading this article…

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