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

Check Your Notices

by Luke Landes

When a credit card company with which you have a card sends a letter in a thin envelope, it’s best to read it. Likely, the company is notifying you of changes within the terms of the agreement. (The thicker envelopes are usually new card offers and unless it’s a great deal, it’s best to shred ... Continue reading this article…

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More on 401(k) Borrowing

by Luke Landes

Following up on the topic of 401(k) loans, which was discussed here, there is a new article on CNN Money by Walter Updegrave. This article compares a scenario for two options: borrowing $40,000 through a 401(k) loan and borrowing the same amount through a home equity line of credit. Assuming the two options are available ... Continue reading this article…

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Six-Figure Yentl

by Luke Landes

If you’re looking for a career change with six-figure possibilities, consider becoming a professional matchmaker. You’ll be providing a sought-after service for other professionals who don’t have time to meet new people. There are many differences between matchmaking and dating services, but are they worth the big bucks? I could use the service, sure. It’s ... Continue reading this article…

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Luke Landes, An Introduction

by Luke Landes

I’ve had many new returning visitors to Consumerism Commentary over the past couple of months, so I think it is only fair to formally introduce myself. I’ve updated this introduction in December 2013, although it was originally published in 2005. On this site and in this context, I originally called myself Flexo. I appropriated the ... Continue reading this article…

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Predicting Markets

by Luke Landes

Neville is writing about predicting the markets. Are the markets predictable? What were people predicting in 1930 and 1940, and were those predictions accurate? I was researching these questions and I came across a paper by Felix Stalder, a PhD Student at the University of Toronto, entitled The Nature of Financial Networks. It’s an interesting ... Continue reading this article…

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Dave and Annie Hall, Future Millionaires

by Luke Landes

CNN Money has yet another profile of a couple, Dave and Annie Hall, on their way to $1M in net worth. The couple’s income is $120,000 and they budget wiseley. Much of their net worth is in their home and other investment property, which is the same story shared by many of the subjects of ... Continue reading this article…

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Investing Scams

by Luke Landes

CNN Money is running a story about the most popular investment scams. Similar stories are being run on MSN Money and Bankrate as well. In fact, the story is everywhere. Here are the top ten scams, as measured by the North American Securities Administrators Association. The links below provide more information on each of these ... Continue reading this article…

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Emigrant Direct Account Opening

by Luke Landes

As you may know, I am in the process of opening a savings account with Emigrant Direct, an on-line bank currently offering an interest rate yielding 3.25 percent. On March 15 I posted about my experience with a customer service representative at the aforementioned bank. That was three days after I began the process of ... Continue reading this article…

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Should You Borrow From Your 401(k)?

by Luke Landes

Borrowing from your 401(k) is generally a bad idea. There are some positive aspects of doing so, however. It’s a nice option to have if you are stuck with no other choices. Here are some of the drawbacks, as mentioned by Lewis Schiff from the Armchair Millionaire. The money you take out of your 401(k) ... Continue reading this article…

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ING Direct Savings Rate Up

by Luke Landes

ING Direct now offers a 2.8 percent APY on their savings accounts, up 20 basis points. This rate is still well below the one offered by Emigrant Direct for that bank’s no fee, no minimum balance savings account. You may want to consider ING Direct’s certificates of deposit if you don’t mind not touching your ... Continue reading this article…

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