CD Strategies: Minimizing Your Risks While Maximizing Your Returns

As a followup to Friday’s post about the recent changes to Ally Bank’s deposit agreement, I wanted to share some thoughts on minimizing your risks while seeking the best (safe) yields possible. Certificates of deposit (CDs) are an attractive option when trying to boost your savings yield because they pay more competitive rates than a […]

Ally Bank Changes CD Withdrawal Policy

According to Ken over at, Ally Bank has changed (or at least “clarified”) their CD early withdrawal policy. As I’ve noted several times in the past, Ally CDs have been particularly attractive due to their low 60 day interest penalty for early withdrawals. When this policy was combined with their rather competitive rates, Ally’s […]

Series I Savings Bond Rates – November 2012

The September inflation numbers are now out, which means that we can now predict the new (November 2012) rate for Series I Savings Bonds… As a reminder, the rate for Series I Savings Bonds is made up of two pieces: the fixed rate and the variable rate. The fixed rate is set by the feds, […]

Extending Your Health Insurance Benefits With COBRA Coverage

I was just perusing my employers HR web page looking for information on our upcoming open enrollment period when I ran across a link to information on COBRA coverage for employees who have separated from their employer. While I’ve never had to use COBRA coverage myself, it’s a valuable option to have. In case you’re […]

Popularity and Earning Potential

Years ago — during the first month of this site’s existence, in fact — I wrote about the fact that “good looking” people tend to earn more than others. In fact, they claimed there was a “plainness penalty” of 9% and a “beauty premium” of as much as 5%. Given the above, it should perhaps […]

Inflation Not as High as You Think?

Inflation isn’t as bad as you think. Or at least that’s the premise of a recent article on NPR’s Planet Money. According to economists, consumers consistently overestimate inflation. And not just here in the United States, either. Rather, this misperception appears to be a common occurrence in many countries. Why? Good question. More than likely, […]

Online Price Matching Bad for Business?

While we’re on the topic online price matching at big box retailers (both Best Buy and Target have come out with new policies on this front), I thought it might be worth looking at how this might affect their bottom lines. While the primary goal of these programs — to turn casual shoppers using the […]

New Target Price Matching Policy

Earlier this week, I reported on Best Buy’s new online price matching policy and my experiences getting them to honor it. The short version is that they’re now matching prices from a number of major online retailers, Amazon included, and it was dead simple to get them to do it. Well, according to a press […]

When to Haggle

I’ve talked quite a bit in the past about the fine art of haggling. While many are afraid to dicker over the price of a purchase, there’s no doubt that you can save a good bit of money by simply asking for a better price. If you fall into the “I don’t like to haggle” […]

The 2013 Social Security Cost-of-Living Adjustment

According to the Social Security Administration, Social Security benefits will rise by just 1.7% in 2013. This is less than half of the 3.6% cost of living adjustment in 2012, though infinitely higher than the 0% increase in 2010 and 2011. For those of you that are still working, this means that the Social Security […]