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One-Third of Home Loans are Under Water

by Luke Landes

A few years ago, a coworker formed an investment partnership in speculative real estate. He promised investors a 10 percent annual return and was using the capital to invest in Florida real estate, earning 15 to 20 percent overall. As most of the real estate had not even been inhabited or built yet, the investments ... Continue reading this article…

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

by Luke Landes

This year is passing by too quickly. It is time again for my monthly financial reports, originally designed to keep myself accountable for my financial (usually, spending) decisions. This was a technique that has worked well for about nine years, the last six of which have included this monthly public review. July was a strong ... Continue reading this article…

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Podcast 14: ING Direct’s “We, the Savers” and the AICPA’s Feed the Pig Campaign

by Luke Landes

Episode 14 of the Consumerism Commentary Podcast includes interviews with representatives from ING Direct and the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA). Our discussion with Jim Kelly, the chief operating officer of ING Direct, focuses on the bank’s “We, the Savers” campaign and we also discuss ING Direct’s beginnings in the United States and ... Continue reading this article…

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50 Actions You Can Take Right Now to Pay Off Debt

by Luke Landes

There are many differing opinions about whether you can assign a quality like “good” or “bad” to debt. In general, I tend to believe that if debt is providing access to a necessary asset, like an education, a car, or a house, debt is at the least understandable. With debt, there is always a risk, ... Continue reading this article…

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Preserving the Harvest

by Jeff

If you planted your garden in mid-to late April like we did, you’ve already started to see the beginnings of your harvest. Our green onions have been out of control for a little while now, and our radishes are starting to get nice and big as well. We’re just now getting great peas and beans, ... Continue reading this article…

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Evaluating My Progress Towards 2009 Goals

by Luke Landes

Now that the halfway mark of 2009 has passed by, it wouldn’t hurt to review the financial mini-goals I set for myself at the beginning of the year and determine how far I have strayed from my path. For me, these goals are only milestones. They help my gauge my progress but numbers in my ... 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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Citigroup Employees to Receive 50% Pay Raise

by Luke Landes

After receive bailouts from the government on two separate occasions, Citigroup has announced that it will be increasing its expense for the salaries of the company’s rank-and-file employees, not upper management, by 50 percent. This will be a nice benefit, designed to compensate employees for smaller bonuses and raises last year. The government’s new “pay ... Continue reading this article…

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