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Smart Financial Moves for Transitioning Vets

By Jason Alderman The latest generations of veterans face a particularly complicated financial picture, attributed to multiple deployments, a tough civilian economy, predatory lending threats at home, and disability and health issues. That’s why the Veterans Financial Coalition was formed in June 2014 by a diverse group of organizations including Visa’s Practical Money Skills for Life, Association for Financial Counseling and Planning Education (AFCPE), Consumer Action, and the Consumer Federation …Read More

The Dangerous Appeal of Subprime Credit Cards

By Jesse Campbell Do you remember the early months of 2014? They were cold. Really cold. Cold enough, economists have suggested, to actually freeze the economy. Well, maybe “freeze” isn’t the right term. Cool down. The first quarter of 2014 showed a significant spending slow down, very likely related to the weather. It was very cold. People didn’t want to leave the house and visit retail stores, or so the …Read More

Jobless Grad With Student Loans, $29,000 Card Debt Ponders Bankruptcy

By Erica Sandberg, Dear Erica, I relocated to California two years ago and could not find a job. I was a full-time student and just graduated last week, but am still searching on the job market. During this time I have accumulated $22,000 and $7,500 both through my credit cards. Now I am struggling just to make the minimum payments, which are mostly interest. I realized I could not keep …Read More

Limits Are Not Answers

By Gary Silverman Many times folks are proud that they have been contributing the maximum to their IRAs, but when I look at their statements, I’ll see that they are contributing $2000 or $4000, or some other number that was the annual contribution limit….years ago. It’s news to some folks that  the limit is $5500; and if you are 50 or older it’s $6500 per year. This is one way …Read More

Smart Tax Moves to Consider Before New Year’s Eve

By Jason Alderman The flurry of activity during the last weeks of December can make it difficult to pay attention to finances. If you want to save on your tax bill come April, now’s the time to make some critical moves. If you have a tax advisor or financial planner, it’s wise to run these ideas by that individual first. Here are some suggestions to investigate by year-end with follow-up …Read More

Are You Financially Naughty or Nice This Holiday Season?

By Gail Cunningham To help consumers remain financially level-headed as they enter the final two weeks of holiday shopping, the NFCC created the Financially Naughty or Nice Checklist. Everyone wants to land on the nice side of Santa’s ledger, but what if Santa made his decision based on a person’s holiday spending habits, and only those who acted financially responsible were rewarded? Consumers need to remember that Santa only comes …Read More

Ten Ways to Cut Your Holiday Expenses

By Jason Alderman You’ve heard it before – plan your holiday spending so you won’t have debt come January. But for most of us, the holiday season is tough on our budgets. Various 2014 surveys put average household holiday spending around $600-$700. Most of us know it doesn’t take long to exceed that limit. To avoid the January money hangover, you’ll need smart planning and execution throughout the year. Developing …Read More

Start the New Year Off Right

By Mark Foster Are you completely satisfied with your finances? Most of us wish we could do even better. But, don’t just wish things were different — now is the perfect time to take some action and set some financial goals for the new year. It’s important to set financial goals. Otherwise, as the saying goes, “If you aim at nothing, you’ll probably hit it.” Don’t overwhelm yourself with setting …Read More

Poll Suggests Consumers May Have Seven-Year Post-Recession Spending Itch

By Gail Cunningham The November online poll hosted by the NFCC revealed that close to half of all respondents (49%) predict that their financial situation will be better at this time next year. Consumers exhibiting financial confidence is certainly a positive sign for the American economy. Having been cost-conscious since the beginning of the recession, consumers may now be experiencing the seven-year itch with a desire to begin spending again. However, …Read More

Join the NFCC on December 9th for a #HolidaySpending Twitter Party!

By Drew Kessler The 2014 holiday shopping season is in full swing! And while many retailers are praising the season’s hottest deals, consumers are overspending more than any other time of the year. Are your finances equipped to handle everyone on your holiday gift list? Join the NFCC on Tuesday, December 9th at 9PM ET for a #HolidaySpending Twitter Party that will help equip you with all the tips you need to save this holiday season! Let …Read More