For Questions and Orders, Call
Wall Street on the Up and Up Good news coming from Wall Street today, as the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 258 points, or 2.9%, to close above 9,000 for the first time since November. Standard & Poors 500 index gained 3.2%, and the Nasdaq composite rose 3.5%. Numbers have been rising since this past Wednesday but experts are remaining cautiously optimistic, according to CNN.coms David Goldman: Investors should brace for wild market swings as companies and the economy struggle to rebound. This past year was marred by horrid ... Federal Reserve To Cut Interest Rates to Historic Low The Federal Reserve decided this afternoon to cut a key short-term interest rate to historic lows, making things clear that it will employ all available tools in its effort to save the country from its current economic crisis. The Fed announced that it would pull back its target for the federal funds rate to a figure between 0% and .25%, more than .75% lower than the 1% Chairman Ben Bernanke and the Reserve had previously planned to implement. Its the lowest interest ... Will Credit Card Debtors Get Government Aid? While much has been said of the current financial situation in terms of mortgages and homeowners, other types of debtors have been neglected. Though it is certainly true that mortgages and banks failing are the story in this failing economy, it is equally true that bad consumer debt has played a role in hurting the economy and causing people to lose their homes. You might not hear about it as much on the news, but credit card debtors are ... Managing Your Credit Card Account Online Managing Your Credit Card In order to make full use of your credit card, you need to manage it well and don't spend more than what you can afford to buy. You need to file up all your credit card statements that are sent monthly, so that should there be any dispute, you have the proof in black and white. The purpose of the credit card is to make life easier and more convenient for you, not to tie ... Credit Card Fraud Protection There are many fraudsters all over the place sending fraudulent emails to phish for bank, Paypal and credit card details. As long as you don't key in personal financial information in this unsolicited emails, you are safe. But many unsuspecting people, thinking that the bank need to verify passwords that are lost in the database or some other valid excuse, inadvertently entered their personal information and their banking details are compromised. Same too with credit card fraud. People steal ... Credit Card Interest Rates If you apply for and are accepted for a credit card, you will have to deal with credit card interest rates. A credit cards interest rate is how card issuers the people or organization giving you the card and credit earn their revenue. When a person uses a credit card, they borrow money. While the money is borrowed, the organization, usually a bank, charges the cardholder an interest rate that can accrue or build over time. The interest ... Using a Credit Card Wisely Lets get one thing straight. Even though this article is about using credit cards wisely, credit cards still have redeeming qualities. One such quality is convenience. They come in quite handily when carrying larger sums of cash is out of the question, you are provided with a full record of your purchases, it is possible to consolidate payments with them and when checking out you need not give the cashier any form of ID as is the case ... Choosing Between Credit or Debit Choosing between credit or debit can be a little confusing. At the bank, you have an account that is termed a debit account. You put money into the account, then write checks or withdraw against that amount, and only that amount. When you take out a debt with a store or financial company, you now have a credit account in that you have a predetermined line of credit that you can spend up against. In reality, your available bank ... Custom Credit Cards Credit cards are the rage now in this time and age. More and more young people turn to credit cards to make their purchases so that they can accumulate points to redeem for gifts of their choice. Besides, the credit card cashless transaction makes it very convenient to buy big expensive items. And when you dine in high end restaurants, you don't have to carry excess cash anymore. There are many types of credit cards offered by different banks ... Borrowing Cash Through Credit Cards If you have ever been in a pinch and needed immediate cash, in a hurry, and wanted to do so without any applications or loan interviews, you may consider borrowing cash through credit cards. You can withdraw cash from any ATM, at a bank or credit union, or via a paper convenience checks from your credit card company. There is no waiting and you have cash in hand for yourself, or emergency expenses, immediately. Borrowing cash through credit cards ... Credit Card Rewards Decoded Credit cards are everyone, and because of this, many credit card companies compete with one another by offering new and exciting rewards to their cardholders. With all of the rewards, it can be hard to understand what to do to earn those big snazzy prizes listed on websites and credit card advertisements. However, if you keep a level head and know what to look for, credit card rewards will not only be easily decoded, but you can be sure ... The Delicate Balance If you have multiple credit cards and you are carrying unpaid balances on them, using a balance transfer has probably crossed your mind. More than likely, you have received offers for pre-approved balance transfers in your own mailbox and they sound like a great deal. If you read the ads, you may figure you would be crazy NOT to move your money to another card! Before moving anything, make sure you fully understand the terms and conditions of the ... Q & A: Is “cashless” really where we want to go? I admit it. Since debit cards have become readily accepted, I rarely have cash. I like the fact that I can use a debit card for $3.51 or $351, whatever the situation calls for. And I like NOT having to think about whether or not I need to go to the bank before I go somewhere to purchase something. I stop short, though, when I hear talk of conversion to a "cashless" society. There is something about that idea that just ... Discovering The Danger In A Debit Card According to the Federal Reserve, the number of debit card transactions is increasing by more than 20% each year. Debit cards seem to be the ideal balance between carrying cash and using credit cards (i.e. increased debt and interest charges). After all, don't debit cards look, act and get accepted like credit cards? Yes, but it does not change the fact that they are NOT credit cards! There are some very significant differences, even potentially dangerous ones, between credit ... Deal With Debt Differently It's the time of year when DEBT becomes a "four letter" word. Consumers that spent more than they should have for Christmas gifts are dreading the arrival of the next credit card bills. This dread and a promise to not get into this financial situation "ever again" has become an annual event, just like decorating the tree and finding full stockings on Christmas morning. What if there was no "holiday debt dread" to deal with at the beginning of ... Setting a Holiday Budget For longer than I would like to admit, my holiday budgets have consisted of buying gifts now and figuring out how to pay for them later! I have always STARTED my holiday shopping with specific spending limits in mind but I have not stayed within those limits very well. Even the most disciplined and conscientious money managers can fall behind during the holiday season. Let's face it, the period between mid-November and the New Year is full of holiday ... Will YOUR Account Be “In The Black” on Friday? If you have managed to miss any of the "Black Friday" marketing efforts aimed at getting people in stores early and often on Friday, count yourself lucky! That is not to say that their are not some good deals to be had but at what cost - dealing with crowds, sitting in traffic, searching for parking? All so that RETAILERS can get THEIR accounts "in the black" before the end of the year. What about YOUR accounts? Who is ... Did you hear? Charging is Changing During the next few weeks, borrowers will start to see the effects of some significant changes in the credit industry. For people that are caught up in the mortgage mess and the real estate slow down, these changes may not seem important. For at least 60 million people, however, these changes will definitely have an impact on what they are carrying in their wallets. 1. FICO '08 IS ALMOST HERE The newest version of the Fair Isaac Corporation credit scoring formula ... America, We Are Eating Ourselves To Debt! The idea that a link exists between Americans shrinking wealth and bulging waistlines is not a new one. While the details of such a link have been difficult to prove, increasing numbers of Americans are classified as overweight or obese and the savings rate of Americans has hit negative numbers. Linked or not, both of these issues are serious. They can and should be addressed! WHAT DO THE NUMBERS SAY? In 2003-2004, 66% of American were classified as overweight or ... Finding A Fix: 10 Tips For Resolving Financial Disputes Account and billing mistakes are a reality of personal finances. From the cable bill to the credit card statement, at some point, errors will occur. These errors, even the small ones, become financial disputes that must be resolved. Handling these financial disputes effectively is a skill that can and should be learned. Certainly, each dispute is unique and it must be handled accordingly. These tips, however, will provide some general guidelines for getting a satisfactory result, no matter what ... The End of the Paper Check Path (a financial fairy tale) Once upon at time in the United States of America, there were small rectangular pieces of paper called checks. Officially, a check was "A negotiable instrument drawn against deposited funds, to pay a specified amount of money to a specific person upon demand." Paper checks were numbered, bound in books and issued by banks. Before issuing checks, banks required customers to set up a checking account and deposit money in it. Many citizens used checking accounts as the primary ... Put your article here… If you have an article that you would like to have featured on My Money Thinks, submit it for our blog carnival consideration. We are accepting articles related to all areas of personal finance and we want to read what you have written. SUBMISSION DEADLINE: Saturday, August 25, 2007 Links to accepted articles will be posted on Tuesday, August 28, 2007 ALL submissions should be sent to http://blogcarnival.com/bc/cprof_2240.html We cannot wait to hear from ... Pros and Cons of Debt Consolidation Debt consolidation has become a popular way to reduce interest rates and monthly payments for people that owe money to several different creditors each month. In spite of its popularity, debt consolidation is NOT the best solution for everyone. Before you agree to a debt consolidation process, analyze the pros and cons of this tool. DEBT CONSOLIDATION PROS: Money or credit for debt consolidation is relatively easy to obtain. Often, homeowners can use the equity built up in their ... Debt Consolidation: Considerations Before You Commit How many different "monthly payments" do you make each month? With credit cards, car loans, and mortgages, the average American household has 7 credit accounts. That translates to large amounts of monthly interest charges and minimum payments. Increasingly, Americans struggle with the number of accounts they have AND with making those monthly payments. People are looking for ways to lighten that monthly load. One way to "lighten" the load is debt consolidation. Debt consolidation is the process of grouping a ... Money Up Front: 5 Tools for Paying Right Now In her recent article, "Many In U.S. Don't Have Bank Accounts", Jeannine Aversa indicates that "As many as 28 million people in the United States are forgoing traditional financial institutions..." More than likely, those people are living, working, and buying without plastic! In today's society, there are very few things that cannot be bought with some form of plastic. Since Americans are accumulating more and more debt, perhaps we would be better off if we were forced to pay ... From the Fine Print: A Closer Look At Credit Card User Agreements Every credit card that you have includes pages and pages of "fine print" known as the CREDIT CARD USER AGREEMENT (CCUA). This printed agreement spells out specific details between the credit card issuer (CCI) and the card account holder. Each card agreement is different. The best way for you to use credit responsibly is to be aware of what is contained in the written agreement(s) for the card(s) you carry. More than likely, that means you will ... My Life (In Credit Card Years) Recently, I pulled my credit reports from all 3 of the credit reporting agencies (Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax). As I looked through the information in those reports, I was struck by the parallel between my credit card life (financial) and my real life (personal). I was in college from August, 1985 until May, 1989. During those years, I had a couple of summer jobs and a couple of on-campus jobs. I lived on campus and all my expenses were paid by my ...