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Forex

The Hidden Sand Trap Of Dividend ETFs

Nowadays you can buy just about any kind of ETF you like – including ETFs that hold dividend paying stocks. What’s cool about this idea is that if you choose carefully, you can buy very low cost ETFs and enjoy those juicy dividends at the same time. Win-win. So what’s the problem with going that […]

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Revolving Debt vs. Installment Loans: Why the Type of Account Matters to Your Credit Score

When it comes to how your credit scores are calculated, there are many factors at play. Credit scoring models consider how well (or how poorly) you pay your bills. They also consider what kind of debt you have, and how much of it you’ve got. The list goes on and on, but if you want to earn and maintain great credit scores, you’ll need to perform well across all of the various credit scoring metrics. That means understanding which factors matter, …

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Questions About Travel Rewards, Water Bottles, Credit Card Balances, and More!

What’s inside? Here are the questions answered in today’s reader mailbag, boiled down to summaries of five or fewer words. Click on the number to jump straight down to the question. 1. Earning more interest? 2. Carrying a credit card balance 3. Disabled and taking next steps 4. Travel rewards 5. US citizen investing outside US 6. Water bottle when flying 7. Purchase-generating media 8. Trusting international foods 9. Assets included in net worth 10. Pokemon Go as frugal hobby? …

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The Disney Hangover: Are Brand-Name Vacations Worth the Price?

If you ask nearly any American kid about their trip of a lifetime, almost all will mention Walt Disney World or Disney Land. Obviously, my kids are no different. They’re both girls and ages 5 and 7, after all, which means most of their waking hours are spent daydreaming about princesses and different ways to have fun. Even though they’d never visited either park until earlier this summer, they were somehow already well aware of Disney and its magic. Starting at …

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Eight Numbers That Show How American Families Struggle with Money

When it comes to managing our money, Americans have plenty of room for improvement. Sure, we’re the richest country in the world… but most of us still struggle financially to some extent. Either we’re mired with debt, can’t seem to improve our incomes, or have trouble budgeting for the things we really want in life. These issues are so prevalent that struggling with money has practically become the American way of life. But, why? While it’s hard to pinpoint the root …

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How to Get a Ton of Extra Value Out of Earning a College Degree

When I first attended college some number of years ago, I really didn’t take the experience as seriously as I could. I kept my grades high enough to maintain scholarships and loans, but I often glossed over my classes and completely skipped out on optional things unless they came with free pizza. The handful of smart things that I did do stand out like a beacon from those years. It was those good moves that really made a difference in …

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At Peace with Being ‘Cheap’

A few years ago, I wrote and published a book entitled 365 Ways to Live Cheap. It’s a fairly straightforward guide to frugality that delivers exactly what the title implies – 365 tactics that people can use to reduce their living expenses. It was an enjoyable book to write and a fitting “first book” for someone writing a personal finance website. However, there was one little hitch along the way: I intended to call the book 365 Ways to Live …

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FedLoan Servicing: Working With Your Student Loan Servicer

Ready for a shock? Seven million Americans are currently in default on their student loans. A whopping 40% of student borrowers aren’t making any payments at all. That can have far-reaching consequences on your credit history and your life. Federal student loans generally don’t appear on your credit report — unless they’re in default, and that’s going to put a serious drag on your credit for years to come. One way to avoid getting into that kind of hot water …

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Til Death Do Us Check? When a Joint Bank Account Makes Sense

First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes… a joint checking account. Combining assets when uniting as a married couple seems only natural, and often it is a wise idea. Other situations may also come about when sharing an account with someone else makes perfect sense. On the other side of the coin, caveats arise, and there are definitely times when having a joint checking account can do more harm than good. Let’s take a look, then, at the practical …

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The Six Things I Care About Most When Looking at an Investment

For most people, one of the most intimidating parts of signing up for a 401(k) or a Roth IRA or another investment account is looking at all of the investment options. How do I know which one is right for me? How do I compare them? I remember exactly how that feels. When I signed up for the retirement plan at my very first job after college, I was hit with a plethora of investment options. I had no idea …

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