The State of American Money, April 1, 2013
As Wise Bread's Senior Editor, I have the opportunity to read several IMPORTANT FINANCIAL FACTS. How do I know that they're important? Because they're written in all caps. DUH.
Here are the top five totally important, totally real financial facts I've learned in a variety of categories. (See also: New Legislation Gives Coupons "Equivalent Cash Value")
- 100% of people who have saved no money HAVE NO SAVINGS.
- The retirement savings plan for 15% of Americans is an unsubmitted application to "Wheel of Fortune."
- 87% of bank tellers do not believe customers who say "Sure, I have money at this bank. But it accidentally got deposited under another customer's name."
- It is most difficult to save for a rainy day in Seattle, where there are 150 rainy days a year.
- In 2012, the winner of the Chicago's Scariest Halloween Decorations contest was the Bouchard family, who decorated under the theme "You won't have enough money to live off of when you retire."
- 100% of people who spend money later discover that they HAVE LESS MONEY THAN THEY STARTED WITH.
- Women spend money on clothes and shoes. Men also spend money on clothes and shoes, because we're all humans and need these things.
- 100% of all online shopping happens on the Internet.
- Despite popular belief that it's a frugal activity, window shopping can actually turn out to be very expensive — just the glass and installation can cost up to $500 per window.
- Giving gifts can be expensive. However, giving animated gifs is totally free.
- More people than ever are reusing items instead of throwing them away! Here's a tip — take leftover baby food jars. Fill them with your otherwise useless pee. Now you have a collection of pee jars to decorate your house with or give as gifts!
- Penny pinching actually does very little for most people, unless your goal was to tightly hold a round piece of copper between two of your fingers.
- Clipping coupons can be a great hobby if you like saving money or carrying around little pieces of paper.
- Potlucks can be a great way to share the expense of a meal while, out of politeness, being forced to eat that one weird salad made by your aunt who doesn't understand how to cook.
- It totally isn't rude to regift. Just make sure that if you're regifting a pee jar, you're at least not giving someone their own pee back.
- Real estate can be a poor investment if you purchase one of those old Hollywood buildings that looks like a real house from the front but turns out to be two-dimensional. Don't do that.
- When you're ready to invest, make sure that you're investing in the stock market and not the Stalk Market, a new grocery store that only sells celery and asparagus. That place will be out of business way soon.
- For years, people have been recommending CDs as a low-risk (if also low-reward) investment vehicle. I, however, think they're being replaced by MP3s.
- Consider investing in the futures of food products like corn or wheat. Primarily because you can't invest in their pasts.
- 100% of unsuccessful investments have failed.
- 100% of people who lent $5 to bears NEVER GOT THAT $5 BACK.
- And, even worse — the bears didn't use the money!
- The American bear unemployment rate is even higher than the American human unemployment rate.
- If given a choice between the two, 95% of bears will take a live salmon over cash — even if the salmon is worth less than the money!
- The wealthiest bear in America is celebrity-impersonator Beary Manilow. The second-wealthiest is mystery writer Beary Higgins Clark. The third wealthiest is the bear from Bear Sterns.
Do you have any IMPORTANT FINANCIAL FACTS to share?