Finance Globe

U.S. financial and economic topics from several finance writers.

4 Tips for Paying Your Bills

Growing up, you never really think about bills. You may hear your parents complain about them or warn you that you'll one day have to deal with bills, but other than that, it's like bills were just something adults had to deal with. Then one day, you were the adult getting letters in the mail from companies who expected you to send money by a certain date. They may have trickled in, one bills each month...
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Don't Let Expense Tracking Drain You

One of the best solutions to many money issues, especially those pertaining to cash flow, is to track your spending. If you can’t figure out why ends don’t seem to meet, tracking your spending for a month or two can help. Or, if you’re looking for places to cut back so you can accomplish other goals, watching what you spend can help you identify those areas. If you’ve ever counted calories as part of diet or...
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Dealing With Financial Burdens

Many of us probably have monthly expenses that seem to drain our financial resources. You probably think of this particular expense (or these expenses) and dream about the way your life would be if you didn’t have this major outlay of cash every month. Oh, the things you could buy, the money you could save if you could just get rid of (name-your-financial-burden). It may be a mortgage, or debt payments, child care expenses, or a...
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Employer Use of Payroll Cards Can Be Expensive for Employees

Every financial product that appears to make your life easier, likely comes with a fee that, in some way, will actually make your life more difficult. Take payroll cards, for example. Many employers are choosing to pay their employees via payroll cards in lieu of a paper check or direct deposit into a checking account. The cards operate like a debit or prepaid card, allowing the employees to make purchases, pay bills online, or withdraw cash...
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Nickel and Dime Yourself to Life, Part 2

It’s here! The beginning of my new fiscal year, and in my new fiscal year I hereby resolve to get control of my finances. In order to accomplish that I have to be smart, or rather S.M.A.R.T. As in, that acronym that gets touted so often as The Formula for successful goal setting it’s almost a cliche. I’m not a big fan of cliches, but I am a fan of stuff that works. Nearly 2 decades...
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Nickel and Dime Yourself to Life, Part 1

I have an embarrassing confession. It has taken me nearly eight months to write this. I’ve written and rewritten this column--heck, this sentence--more times than I care to admit. My original plan was to write a blog-like series in which I presented money management tips that I would actually follow myself, to be kicked off with some sage advice about making financial New Year’s Resolutions. Yeah, I know. Missed the boat on that one. Thank you,...
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Many Americans Confused About the Purpose of Budgeting

A recent survey from the National Foundation for Credit Counseling revealed a surprising misconception that may explain why so few consumers take time to create a budget. More than half of survey respondents – 57% - considered a budget to be a restriction on their spending. Less than half – 43% - said a budget gives them the freedom to spending money as they’ve chosen. Of course, the latter is most accurate.Another poll conducted by Gallup...
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McDonald's Sample Budget Reveals Low Wage Struggle

If you want a quick, cheap meal while you’re on the go, McDonald’s may be the first place that crosses your mind. But, it’s probably not a good idea to rely on the billion-dollar fast food chain for financial advice. McDonald’s recently partnered with Visa to release personal finance advice via a website named Practical Money Skills for Life, found at www.practicalmoneyskills.com. On the site, you'll find basic financial advice like how to create a along...
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Making a Bad Financial Situation Better

Living paycheck to paycheck and making just enough money to pay the bills is no fun. Living this way month after month, year after year can take a toll on your emotional well-being. The financial strain you’ve lived under for weeks can make you unhappy. That’s no way to live. If you’re tired of living this way, it’s time to do something about it. Do you know how much you’re paying? You may mindlessly write the...
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Court Orders $9.2 Million Judgment Against "Rachel" from "Cardholder Services"

You may be one of the millions of people who received one of those annoying phone calls, or several phone calls, from “Rachel” from “Cardholder Services” promising to help you reduce your credit card interest rate. Unfortunately, many consumers found out after spending hundreds of dollars that “Rachel” was just part of a scam. The FTC shut down one of the companies behind the scam in November 2012. Now, A+ Financial Center, the company behind the...
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