Top 5 Financial Lessons of 2010

PHILOSOPHER GEORGE SANTAYANA SAID, “Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” That’s why, at the end of the year, I like to study the past twelve months and ask myself, what is it that I learned? Some years the answers to the question are easy, like in 2000, when the obvious moral was that the stock market doesn’t always skyrocket. In 2002, we were lucky to learn that the inverse, stock markets don’t always plummet,   Continue reading this post >

Black Friday Shopping Tips

The day after Thanksgiving, “Black Friday,” is one of the busiest shopping days of the year. I’ve often wondered why they couldn’t have come up with a better name – it always makes me think of the plague… But actually, the day received its title because it’s when retailers finally go from the “red” to the “black”, meaning that they become profitable. On this single day the malls are packed with shoppers. Every big box store offers massive deals to   Continue reading this post >

Paying Off Credit Card Debt

Ever watch a hamster spin the wheel inside of its cage?

My daughter Kiera has a hamster named Violet. At least once every day I’ll find my kids in their bedroom giggling as they watch poor Violet spin faster and faster, her little legs pushing harder and harder. Where does she end up? Right where she started. Funny entertainment for my children, but a lot of work with no payoff for the hamster.

Many people with credit card debt feel like the   Continue reading this post >

Drowning in Debt?

“I’m drowning!”

That’s the common cry when people tell me they have too much credit card debt. It isn’t simply “I have too much debt,” or a polite “I’d like fewer bills, please.” They’re sinking in debt and need to be rescued fast. It’s a full-fledged, panic-stricken wail.

Maybe it should be. According to CBS News, the average credit card interest rate jumped 13 percent to 14.7 percent in just the last twelve months. I met a woman last week with   Continue reading this post >