Best Money Tips: NPR Explains Financial Mess in Terms the Average Joe Can Understand

By Will Chen on 1 October 2008 4 comments
Photo: Nicola

Welcome to Wise Bread's Best Money Tips roundup!

NPR gives the best explanation of the economic collapseTwo programs on NPR explain the situation using great analogies anyone can understand.  If you know how Vegas bookies work, you can understand credit default swaps.  Fresh Air  and This American Life

Can you travel for less than you live on at home? "Factoring in my flight, insurance and gifts, I actually spend less on a regular basis while traveling than I do in New York." Emma Johnson, MSN Money 

Dave Ramsey's plan to fix the credit crisis. Instead of a bailout, Ramsey advocates removing capital gains tax and insuring the underlying subprime mortgages with a FHA-type insurance.  All Financial Matters

Watch out for this grocery pricing trick. Mighty Bargain Hunter asks what's wrong with this picture:

"DiGiorno’s Pizza — 5 for $3.99 each"

Are you getting paid for what you're worth? Use these online tools to compare your salary with your peers.  Get Rich Slowly

How to find a good financial adviser. "A really good financial planner will always look towards structuring your financial and personal situation first."  Free Money Finance

The 3 biggest risks of retirement. Longevity, inflation, and market changes are the key risks -- diversification is the way to diffuse them.  Five Cent Nickel

The stock market is on sale.  "Because I believe this economic crisis will end within the next few years or sooner, I took today’s 777+ point decline in the Dow and 8.8% decline in the S&P 500 as a sign that the stock market, as a whole is on sale."  Consumerism Commentary

How I live without borrowing money.  "It’s been four years since I borrowed money or used a credit card.  Here’s how I live without borrowing money."   No Credit Needed

6 simple steps to creating a to-do list. "Consider the list as a planning tool, an anti-anxiety device (if it’s on the list you won’t forget it), a push in the behind to get the engine started, and a rationale in the name of getting something done. Grace Kepplin on Dumb Little Man

Personal finance management on a biweekly pay schedule. "My last job paid me every two weeks, and I know quite well some of the traps people can fall into…" The Simple Dollar

Finding great deals at government surplus sales. Want to help out the government and your pocketbook at the same time? Geener Pastures via Smart Spending

Wait one day for every $100 you might spend. "A friend of mine has had a series of status updates on Facebook regarding an iPhone. Every few days he lets us know that he’s successfully resisted the temptation to buy one again. I like that he’s put it out there because the longer he waits, the more likely he is to avoid the purchase. " My Daily Dollars

Should couples keep their finances separate? Kristy shares a juicy cautionary tale: "Being in the banking industry, you always know when the husband or wife has been unfaithful because nine times out of ten, the other will come in and clean out the bank account. The drama we witness, let me tell you! At any rate, we recently had a customer come to the credit union to pull out money because her husband was cheating..."  Master Your Card

The low-down on FDIC insurance. Don't panic.  Check out this FAQ for accurate information about the insurance protecting your deposits.  Julia Scot from Daily News

Credit default swaps: Are taxpayers ultimately responsible? "In the end, it's the taxpayers - it's always the taxpayers - who are left to cover all the losses..." Money Aisle

Happy birthday to Gov Gab!  Gov Gap is the official government blog that shares little-known (and usually free) government resources available to help you out.  Find information like:

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Guest's picture

That's a great list. It seems like almost everyone is focused on the economy or the bailout right now. I personally think that, while we should be informed, we shouldn't focus on the economic situation right now. We should just lead our daily lives the best we can. Decisions based on fear are some of the motivating factors of the economy continuing to decline.

Guest's picture

I second the idea mentioned by the previous poster. We should just tighten our belts and continue on with our lives living simply and not making fear-based financial decisions.

Guest's picture

Thanks for taking the time to compile these great resources. I especially enjoy Gov Gab. I am going to check that out for sure.

Andrea Karim's picture

I disagree with the first two guys - this crisis matters. Of course, it's not all there is to talk about, but it still needs to be talked about, regardless. I liked the round-up.