21 Best Money Blogs of 2010

Money Help for Christians just published his list of the 21 best money blogs of 2010 based on results from the Best of Money Carnival. Want to guess who was #1? :-) I'd like to really be the best personal finance blog out there, but I think this list is a bit skewed because it only includes blogs that submit to the Best of Money Carnival (which leaves out a lot of great sites). […]

When Investment Banks Fail, What Happens to the Little Guy?

One of the most frightening things (to me) about the 2008 investment bank failures of Lehman Brothers and Bear Stearns coupled with the fraud of Bernie Madoff is the impact it had on individual investors who had used these groups as a means to invest. […]

Life After Salary: COBRA vs. Individual Health Insurance

One month ago, I notified my boss at the corporation where I worked that I would be leaving. I was headed for the new frontier. Leaving my salary and benefits behind, I looked to the horizon and contemplated what I needed to do in order to keep my life secure. […]

Itemizing Taxpayers Must Wait to File Tax Returns

You know how it took until the 11th hour for Congress to extend the Bush era tax cuts? One of the consequences of that late change to the tax structure was that the IRS had been preparing for the the tax cut to expire. […]

What We Got for Christmas

Inquiring minds want to know, right? What did FMF and family get for Christmas? Here are some of the items we each received: FMF Real Madrid jersey (Google them if you don't know who they are) Manchester United t-shirt (Google them if you don't know who they are) Wow Hits 2011 CD Mrs. […]

When Talk Is Cheap: Ways to Save Money On Your Phone Bill

Overpriced data packages and pay-by-the-minute cell phone service can cost the average family a pretty penny.  In fact, the Utility Consumers’ Action Network, a San Diego consumer advocacy group, reported that the average cell phone user pays $3.02 a minute.  Customers paying for “anytime minutes” only use a third of the time allotted to them by their service providers.  If that w […]

Investing for Future Income: Start Early, Save Often

It’s been said that every dollar that you save (and invest) during your twenties will provide one dollar of investment income during your sixties. But is this really true? I recently ran across an interesting test of this idea, and the results were enlightening. Using the historical S&P 500 total return data compiled by Prof. […]

Reader Mailbag: The New Year

What’s inside? Here are the questions answered in today’s reader mailbag, boiled down to five word summaries. Click on the number to jump straight down to the question. 1. What does “savings” mean? 2. Getting out of a lemon 3. Dealing with multiple debts 4. Is a prenup needed? 5. Investing help 6. Best movie of 2010 7. Working on a goal 8. Saving for someone else’s college 9. […]

Year-End Personal Balance Sheet, December 2010

I’ve been tracking my personal finances for about ten years now, and I’ve been making the information public but anonymous on Consumerism Commentary since 2003. This, in addition to learning about money, was my primary purpose for creating this website and it still is a major part of what I do. I don’t pay as much attention to each cent as I did in 2003, however. […]

Who Cheated Us Out of Our Amazing Future?

At least as far back as the 1950s, people were talking about how automation would mean that in the future, we'd only have to work 20 hours a week to support ourselves — freeing up the rest of our time for recreational or creative pursuits. The technology came through, but the lifestyle didn't. […]

New Year, New Resume

If one of your new year's resolutions to find a new job, maybe it's also time for a new resume. After all, isn't your current resume so 2010? Here are four tips for improving your resume for the new year. Be Unique If there is something unique or memorable about you or your work experience, include it in your resume (within reason). […]

Exercising in a Winter Wonderland: How to Be Fit and Frugal

While training for a marathon last winter, I quit my gym membership. Running 18 miles on a treadmill is simply not possible (one could argue, successfully, that running 18 miles is simply insane altogether, but that’s beside the point). […]

Kids Play in the Stock Market, Adults Go Elsewhere

Financial planners love to give examples about a hypothetical investor who placed $2,000 in the stock market every year since he was eighteen years old in 1950 and retired rich thanks to the stock market’s returns. They talk about the power of compound interest and getting rich slowly, investing in low-cost index mutual funds. There’s nothing wrong with this idea. […]

2010 Top Safety Pick Cars

Every year, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety puts out a list of cars that earn their Top Safety Pick. The list isn’t limited by any number, it simply lists all the cars that satisfy it’s requirements which include a litany of safety tests from front and side crash tests to whiplash tests to roof crushing. […]

How to Take Control of Your Finances in 2011

The new year is upon us! I’ve talked to a lot of folks lately who have resolved to make this the year they get out of debt. Or start an emergency fund. Or earn more money. These resolutions don’t mean a whit, though, if you don’t have a plan. For the past five years, I’ve shared the following road map, adding one new tip every January. […]

My Main Financial Issues for 2011

As we begin the new year, I thought I'd list the financial issues I'll be working on/considering this year. Here goes: Keep going. Spending less than I earn to have as big of a gap as possible. Yes, it's the boring part of personal finance -- it's the same thing year after year after year. Then again, it's the main reason my net worth keeps chugging along at a decent rate. […]

Six tricks to finding deals on coins

Nickel is talking up entrepreneurship to his oldest son, and has found a stash of coins that could be ripe for reselling on eBay.  He asked his Twitter followers about starter investment books for kids because they were starting to get fairly sizable savings accounts.  (I never addressed that question but I recall Peter Lynch’s One Up on Wall Street specifically mentioned that he had elementary sc […]

Investing In REITs To Diversify Your Investments

The real estate market has been the black sheep of the financial world since the summer of 2008 when the real estate bubble burst to cause the American economy to plunge into what many feared would be the next Great Depression. But as you can expect with the economy and the markets, what goes down will eventually come back up. […]

Best of Consumerism Commentary 2010

This was a fantastic year for Consumerism Commentary. Readership has grown by 10% since 2009, and I’m happy with these results considering the website has been around since 2003. There are many readers who were with Consumerism Commentary since its start — thank you! And for those who may be new to Consumerism Commentary, welcome. I hope we continue to have something to offer anyway. […]