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Should Payday Loans be Banned?
Mon, 03/18/13 | 26 Comments
Should Payday Loans be Banned?

Nothing good can come from a payday loan.
According to new research from Pew, the average payday loan borrower must pay back $400 within two weeks, but can only afford a $50 payment. What comes next? …

Monthly Budget: Here’s Mine & the U.S. Average. What is Yours?
Wed, 03/13/13 | 43 Comments
Monthly Budget: Here’s Mine & the U.S. Average. What is Yours?

One of the most enlightening and beneficial personal finance exercises one can complete is to calculate your average monthly budget.
I say “monthly budget”, but for the purposes of this post, monthly budget is synonymous with …

2013 Tax Brackets & Standard Deductions
Tue, 03/5/13 | 6 Comments
2013 Tax Brackets & Standard Deductions

Update: the 2014, 2015, and 2016 tax brackets and standard deductions have since been announced. What follows is relevant to the 2013 calendar year. 
There seems to be a good amount of confusion around what the …

How I Got $435 Cash Back Last Year Just for Buying my Regular Groceries
Wed, 02/27/13 | 14 Comments
How I Got $435 Cash Back Last Year Just for Buying my Regular Groceries

2012 concluded my first full year using the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express as my primary card of choice for groceries (by far, the biggest expense category I charge by credit card).
So I …

Secured Debt vs. Unsecured Debt
Mon, 02/11/13 | 17 Comments
Secured Debt vs. Unsecured Debt

As you begin your own personal adventures in credit and debt land, you’ll notice an interesting phenomenon: borrowing rates vary quite dramatically from one type of loan to another.
Credit cards, for example, can have interest …

E-File Tax Identity Theft Fraud is Exploding: Here is How to Protect Yourself
Wed, 02/6/13 | 5 Comments
E-File Tax Identity Theft Fraud is Exploding: Here is How to Protect Yourself

As with anything, when the majority of a population uses something, it usually becomes the target of malicious or criminal activity. Just ask Microsoft Internet Explorer engineers.
Now that over 77% of individual tax returns are …


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