Category: Become an Educated Consumer

COVID 19

Since the turn of the millennium, the market's negative response to health crises has been relatively short-lived. As this table shows, approximately six months after early reports of a major outbreak, the S&P 500 bounced back by an average of 10.47%. After 12 months, it rebounded by an average...
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Balancing Work and Family

At one time, the typical American family looked like this: a breadwinner father who commuted a short distance to work and earned a very good living, and a stay-at-home mother who took care of the kids and family home with aplomb. Life seemed easy and manageable, with plenty of...
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Getting Help from a Financial Professional

Are you suddenly on your own or forced to assume greater responsibility for your financial future? Unsure about whether you’re on the right track with your savings and investments? Finding yourself with new responsibilities, such as the care of a child or an aging parent? Facing other life events,...
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Refinancing Your Mortgage

When you refinance your mortgage, you take out a new home loan and use some or all of the proceeds to pay off the existing one. There are a variety of reasons why you may want to consider refinancing your mortgage, such as: Lowering your monthly mortgage payment by...
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Choosing a Credit Card

Like dandelions in a spring lawn, credit card offers pop up everywhere–stuffing your mailbox, flashing on the Internet, even falling from the magazines in your doctor’s waiting room. And they all sound so attractive. “0% APR until next year!” “No fee if you transfer a balance now!” “Low fixed...
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Top Financial Concerns of Baby Boomers, Generation Xers, and Millennials

Many differences exist among baby boomers, Generation Xers, and millennials. But one thing that brings all three generations together is a concern about their financial situations. According to an April 2016 employee financial wellness survey, 38% of boomers, 46% of Gen Xers, and 51% of millennials said that financial...
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What should I know before doing my holiday shopping online?

In order to skip the lines and traffic, many people opt to shop online for gifts during the holiday season. Unfortunately, hackers often target online shoppers to steal their personal information. Before you click, you might consider these tips for a safer online shopping experience. Research websites before you...
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What do you need to know about chip-card technology?

When you’re checking out items at the store, should you insert your card into the payment terminal? These days, as the use of chip-card technology grows, the answer to that question is less clear. The computer chip now embedded in debit and credit cards uses EMV (Europay, MasterCard, and...
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How can technology help me manage my money?

It may seem that there’s an app or software program for every purpose, and that includes managing your money. Here are some examples where technology may be useful in helping you get a handle on your money. Creating a budget: There are multiple apps available that enable you to...
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Grandparents Can Help Bridge the College Cost Gap

Grandparents Can Help Bridge the College Cost Gap For many families, a college education is a significant financial burden that is increasingly hard to meet with savings, current income, and a manageable amount of loans. For some, the ace in the hole might be grandparents, whose added funds can...
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What are some tips for creating a home inventory?

Imagine having to remember and describe every item in your home, especially after you’ve been the victim of a fire, theft, or natural disaster. Rather than relying on your memory, you may want to prepare a home inventory — a detailed record of all your personal property. This record...
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How can I prepare financially for stormy weather?

How can I prepare financially for stormy weather? Floods, tornadoes, torrential rain, lightning, and hail are common events in many parts of the country during the spring and may result in widespread damage. Severe weather often strikes with little warning, so take measures now to protect yourself and your...
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Buying a Fuel-Efficient Vehicle

You’re searching for a new car and interested in fuel-efficient vehicles. On the surface, they sound like a good idea: You may save money by making fewer trips to the gas station, and you’ll help protect the environment. However, there are pros and cons to owning and driving a...
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Municipal Bonds and Tax Planning

Even though the interest from municipal bonds is generally exempt from federal income tax, there are other tax issues you need to keep in mind when considering whether to purchase a muni. Only interest is tax exempt A bond’s tax-exempt status applies only to the interest paid on the...
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