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


Holidays are about two things: family and food. Halloween is no different. Although families celebrate some holidays with a large meal, with ingredients like turkey, ham, fish, potatoes, and pies, the central food theme of Halloween is candy.

Once a year, everyone is provided an excuse to eat the stuff that parents always told them would rot their teeth, and not feel guilty (or as guilty) about it. The costumes can be entertaining, and I try to reward the better costumes I see with the better candy. For this Halloween edition of the Carnival of Personal Finance, I’m looking at some of the better and more popular candy for the holiday.

The Carnival of Personal Finance is a weekly celebration of the best articles covering a variety of money-related topics from the blogosphere. Consumerism Commentary initiated the Carnival in June 2005 and the event has continued on a weekly basis since then.

Editor’s picks

Twix is the only candy with the cookie crunch — at least it was when George Costanza said it. Twix was first produced in the United Kingdom in 1967 but didn’t find its way to the United States until 1979. The Twix bar was known internationally as “Raider” until 1991 when the brand was changed worldwide.

Here are our favorites for personal finance articles this week:

FT from Million Dollar Journey presents Wealth Tips for New College Grads. Here are strategies for going from a net worth of a negative $160,000 to a positive $500,000 in seven years.

Jenn from Paying Myself presents I thought I was supposed to be rich.. We tend to think lawyers are rich — or at least financially secure — but there may not be much truth to that stereotype.

Ryan from Cash Money Life presents Guaranteed Ways to Get Fired, and says, “It’s easy to get fired. Just follow these tips. Or, if you like your job, do the opposite and make yourself indispensable.”

Neal Frankle from Wealth Pilgrim presents Private Career Colleges – Calculate the Value. Are private career colleges worth the cost of tuition?

Bob from ChristianPF presents 7 Reasons To Rent Instead Of Buying A Home. If you are considering purchasing a home, think through these advantages of renting before you buy.

Nicole and Maggie: Grumpy Rumblings presents Another comment on doing what you love. Should do what you love or go where the money is? This article tackles to age-old question and helps explain the main purpose of a college education.

Betty Kincaid from Control Your Cash presents Debunkery yet again. Brett Favre’s riches are derived from one thing: how much revenue he can generate for his organization.

Continue reading for more of the best personal finance articles from the past week. [click to continue…]


The Carnival of Personal Finance is a weekly collection of the best personal finance articles from across the blogosphere, usually with an entertaining or thematic presentation. This week’s Carnival was published last night by the blog Four Pillars.

Check out the articles picked for Editor’s Choice but don’t miss out on The DIY Haircut and Unexpected Check, but It Wasn’t Mine to Keep. I also participated with Which Comes First: Paying Off Debt or Starting Emergency Fund?.

The Carnival, which hasn’t missed a week since it began in June 2005, is a great way to discover new writers and new blogs.

A few of the blogs that participated in that first Carnival on June 20, 2005 are still around, and they deserve some attention for sticking it out through the years.

Only three of the original participants no longer maintain their website or now write about a topic other than personal finance.

The schedule for the Carnival of Personal Finance through June 2009 is in the final stages of organization and should be ready to be announced within the next few days. If you are looking to participate as a host, we are accepting applications for hosting for July, August and September.

If you would like to participate in next Monday’s Carnival to be hosted at Wide Open Wallet, please submit your best article from this week for consideration.

Find out more about the Carnival of Personal Finance, including what’s expected of hosts and participants.


Welcome to the Carnival of Debt Reduction, a traveling weekly roundup of the best articles in the blogosphere covering credit cards, consumer debt, mortgages, and the elimination thereof. Here is more information about the Carnival of Debt Reduction, founded by Mighty Bargain Hunter.

Through this past week, many bloggers submitted articles to be featured in today’s Carnival of Debt Reduction. What follows is the best of those submissions. Interspersed throughout the links to articles are short tips provided through Twitter. Twitter is a micro-messaging social media website. Last week, I asked the people who follow my updates to send a micro-message with their favorite debt reduction tip, and I’m included a few responses randomly throughout the Carnival.

Let’s start with the top six debt reduction articles.

The Silicon Valley Blogger kicks off today’s Carnival with the dos and don’ts of reducing debt, gleaned from her own experiences with debt elimination.

@MillionMommyND‘s debt reduction tip: “Create a wall chart and update it weekly. Keep an eye on your goal and focus on driving the line on your graph consistently downward.”

Can a housing assistance program help prevent foreclosure and assist with housing debt elimination? The Smarter Wallet explains where to look within the federal government for assistance, if you qualify and if the programs operate as advertised.

Lately, a number of banks are shoring up their own finances by closing credit card accounts that have been inactive. PFR from Personal Finance Reviews explains what to do when your credit cards are closed due to inactivity.

@bargainr‘s debt reduction tip: “freeze cards, pay everything cash until you’re cc debt free.”

The Happy Rock explores what it means to “live within your means” with his recent article, As Long as You Can Make the Payments, You’re Fine. Don’t judge the article by it’s title, however.

The Military Finance Network fields this question: Will my credit cards affect my ability to get a car loan? PatrickCML explores the effect of credit scores on loan qualification and the best use of credit cards to maintain a high credit score.

@banker_girl‘s debt reduction tip: “Downsize your residence.”

Christian from Our Personal Finances explains how his family must start rearranging their finances to thrive with only one income for a time. While living below their means previously, they’ll need to make some choices; namely, whether to liquidate retirement savings to eliminate the mortgage, easing the stress on other living expenses.

@jeffrosecfp’s debt reduction tip: “Stop viewing new purchases as “It will only cost this much per month”. If you can’t pay cash, don’t buy it.”

Continue reading the Carnival of Debt Reduction for more of the best from the blogosphere and Twitter. [click to continue…]


If you didn’t have enough Independence Day celebration and you’re looking for more, visit Mighty Bargain Hunter for the latest edition of the Carnival of Personal Finance.

The Carnival of Personal Finance (or just “Carnival”) is a weekly selection of many of the best articles written about the topic and published recently online by bloggers. Each Monday, the Carnival is hosted at a new location, usually with a “theme.”

Today’s theme is the history of the flag of the United States. In addition to nuggets of historical wisdom, there are a few excellent articles I’d like to highlight:

The schedule of hosts for the Carnival of Personal Finance has been finalized, but a few stragglers have not confirmed their dates yet. The scehdule will be posted shortly.


Carnival of Personal Finance #157: Third Anniversary Edition

by Luke Landes

Welcome to the third anniversary edition of the Carnival of Personal Finance! It’s hard to believe the Carnival has been in operation for so long, traveling to so many different locations week after week, yet here we are, starting the Carnival’s fourth year with a presentation of some excellent articles. Last year’s second anniversary was […]

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Festival of Frugality #119: The Quitting My Day Job to Blog Full Time Edition

by Luke Landes

This morning I have the honor of hosting the 119th edition of the Festival of Frugality! I’d like to lead off with an announcement: I gave my notice yesterday. As of April 12th, I will be a full-time blogger. After months of deliberation, I have decided to take Consumerism Commentary to the next level, and […]

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The Carnival of Personal Finance is Up!

by Luke Landes

The latest edition of the Carnival of Personal Finance, a weekly round-up of some of the best articles on the web about personal finance, has been published at Stock Trading to Go. In addition to the host’s Editor’s Picks, be sure to read How to Manage Your Asset Allocation With Multiple Accounts, Grow Your Investments […]

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Bloggers: Apply to Host the Carnival of Personal Finance

by Luke Landes

Did you catch this week’s Carnival of Personal Finance hosted by The Baglady? She interspersed a plethora of good to excellent articles with facts (and widely-believed myths) about the homeless. Check out these tidbits bringing attention to the issue as well as the recent articles from the blogosphere at the the latest edition of the […]

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The Carnivals are Up!

by Luke Landes

Consumerism Commentary is included in two blog carnivals today. The Carnival of Personal Finance, hosted at Frugal Law Student, includes Another Case of Misleading Statistics, and the Carnival of Debt Reduction, hosted at Finance Psychology, includes Paying Off Debt: 6 Steps to Building a Better Snowball. Here are some of the articles I enjoyed from […]

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The 2nd Anniversary Carnival of Personal Finance: Wow!

by Luke Landes

J.D. from Get Rich Slowly did an awesome job hosting the second anniversary edition of the Carnival of Personal Finance. I particularly like the theme he has chosen — bloggers’ “greatest hits.” Here we have a hundred or so of the articles bloggers have chosen as their favorites from the past two years. This Carnival […]

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