Five Cent Nickel

Written by a man who has been meticulously recording his finances since 1997 (stored in Quicken), Five Cent Nickel is one of the oldest and most respected blogs around. This blog often provides great commentary on—and summaries of—useful financial tips featured by other publications. If you’re too lazy to read every little money article out there, just stop by Five Cent Nickel and get the cream of the crop.

Latest Posts from Five Cent Nickel (page 139)

401(k), 403(b), and 457(b) Contribution Limits for 2010

Back in August, I suggested that 401(k) limits might be decreasing in 2010. Fortunately, that’s not the case. Rather, the limit on elective deferrals will be holding steady at $16,500/year. This limit not only applies to 401(k) accounts, but to 403(b) and 457(b) accounts, as well. […]

The Economics of Gift Giving

With Christmas now in the rearview mirror, I thought it would be interesting to talk about gift giving strategies. According to a recent blurb in Money Magazine, Joel Waldfogel (Wharton School economist) has argued the following about gift-giving: “The problem with buying presents is that it’s economically inefficient. […]

Paying for Quality Saves Time and Money

As long as you are not smack dab in the middle of aggressive debt reduction (and perhaps eve if you are), paying extra for quality is rarely a bad idea. Sure, as with anything there are exceptions to the rule, but rather than focus on those exceptions, let’s focus on the rule itself. Quality is well worth the price My father, bless his heart, has always been a man who valued price over quality. […]

Lending Club: The Cost of Inactive Money

I updated our account in Quicken over this past weekend. In doing so, I was able to get a better look at the “real world” performance of my Lending Club portfolio. According to Lending Club, my net annualized return is currently right at 9.60%. According to Quicken, however, I’m running at about 7.5%. Why the difference? […]

When Should You Use Your Emergency Savings Fund?

Emergency funds are a hot topic amongst financial writers. How much do you need? How should you go about building one? Where should you keep it? It seems like every time you turn around, people are writing about the importance of emergency funds. Despite all of the attention paid to emergency funds, relatively little attention is paid to when you should tap into yours. […]

Get Focused on Your Finances

It’s easy to complain when you don’t reach your goals, but it takes real commitment to figure out what you can do to improve your situation – and then to act on it. […]

AmEx Blue Cash Rewards Performance

The anniversary date on our AmEx Blue Cash rewards card is in December. That means that the rewards that we’ve accrued throughout the year will be paid out this month. […]

Can You Retire With a Million Dollars?

I recently received an e-mail from a reader who is frustrated by their lack of progress when it comes to retirement savings. In short, they thought it unlikely that they’d ever be able save more than a million dollars, if that. […]

Your 401(k) Match: Don’t Miss Out on Free Money

Does your employer offer to match a portion of your retirement contributions? If so, are you taking advantage of it? I hope so. […]

What Happens if Lending Club Goes Out of Business?

I recently got an e-mail from a reader who was concerned about the long-term stability of peer lending outfits like Lending Club. In it, he asked: Is there any credible data as to how long companies such as Lending Club are likely to persist (5, 10, 20, 50 years)? […]