Welcome to the April 13, 2012 Edition #232 of the Carnival of Financial Planning.
This edition is arranged by subject heading, so that you can browse efficiently.
The Skilled Investor, Editor
Budgeting and Economics
Teacher Man presents Why Cutting The GST Was Great Politics and Terrible Economics posted at My University Money, saying, “As some of you may have picked up on I tend to have a slightly right of center bias on economic issues (not social ones I should quickly point out). I tend to believe in many of the bedrock foundations of fiscal conservatism such as a balanced budget, the responsibility of the individual, and small governments.
krantcents presents How to Run a Successful Business posted at KrantCents, saying, “How to run a successful business. Learn what skills are necessary to run a successful business.
Janet presents Expense budget tracking posted at Fee Only Financial Planner , saying, ” Many people do not track their living expenses and do not understand the magnitude of their consumption. Failure to monitor your consumption expenditures means that they are flying blindly regarding their future finances. ”
Rob Bennett presents Liberals Came Closer to the Mark Than Conservatives With Their Explanation of the Economic Crisis posted at Balance Junkie, saying, “Stock valuations affect long-term returns and the bull markets of the size we saw in the late 1990s always cause an economic crisis a few years later.
Paul Vachon presents Where to Find Financial Aid for College Tuition posted at The Frugal Toad, saying, “With college tuition rising much faster than the rate of inflation, more college-bound students depend on financial aid to help pay for college. This comprehensive guide shows where to find financial aid and scholarships.
ETZ25 presents A Dividend Stream For Entertainment posted at Entertainment Timez, saying, “We decided to create a dividend stream for Entertainment Timez. The dividend stream will help fund the entertainment activities here!
Amanda L Grossman presents A Refinance Game-Changer for Us posted at Frugal Confessions, saying, ” I could not be happier than a person whose mortgage company decides to lower their rate at no cost to them which is exactly what is happening for us!
Luke presents Inflation Protected Bonds – i Bonds are the Clear Winner posted at Learn Bonds, saying, “Looking for inflation protected bonds? In this article we give a comparison of two popular options TIPS and i Series US Savings Bonds.
Dave presents Active Investing – Alpha Returns posted at Wall Street Nerds , saying, ” The Old Testament of indexing is Burton Malkiel’s classic A Random Walk Down Wall Street, first published in 1973 by W.W. Norton and now in its ninth edition. For typical individual investors, without special access to information, it offers what is likely the best financial advice they will ever get: It is hard to consistently beat the market, especially after fees. A passive strategy will do better in the long run. ”
Daisy presents Big Decision posted at Add Vodka, saying, “This week has been a very -Daisy centered- week so far on WLGYL, because I started off the week with my budget and goals and now I’m going to tell you all about a big decision I have to make.
Jeffrey presents Time and Money Goals, Aligned posted at Money Spruce, saying, “There are productive things I could be doing instead of _____. Many things fit in that blank: watching sports, Facebook, sleeping. But there are also things that might not be a productive use of my time, and they cost money, too. I’m talking about going out to bars or restaurants, taking trips on the weekends, or other things of similar nature.
TSI presents Superior professional mutual fund manager performance. posted at Skilled Investor Blog , saying, ” If investment mutual fund managers were truly skilled at beating the market, then you would expect mutual fund manager performance prowess to persist over time. Unfortunately, the evidence indicates that superior past professional performance among mutual fund managers tends not to persist. Past superior mutual fund performance is simply not a predictor of future superior mutual fund performance. ”
Everything Finance presents How to Survive Unexpected Unemployment posted at Everything Finance, saying, “Were all supposed to plan for the worstthats why its recommended that you have at least 3-6 months of living expenses reserved in an emergency fund. But what happens when youre saving up and are met with that unexpected unemployment? Perhaps you were part of a group layoff, or maybe there was an illness in the family.
Karl presents Sprint Training for your Money posted at CultOfMoney, saying, “The point of spring training for baseball is so that players can shake the rust off after a long off-season, work on their fundamentals, and lets coaches evaluate what players will work best on the baseball team. Ive written with the baseball analogy with respect to fantasy baseball before. If you follow the same process for real baseball and have a spring training for your money, youll be ready for opening day too. Just remember though, theres actually no off-season for your finances!
Kyle presents Earn $10-$20/Hour Completing Mini-Jobs Around Town for FieldAgent posted at The Penny Hoarder, saying, “There’s an app for that called the Field Agent. With the Field Agent app you basically get paid performing small tasks.
Walter presents Best Bond Mutual Fund posted at Fixed Income Fund Investing, saying, “The bond investment fund market is no place for an individual investor to try to beat the market and get higher returns through attempts at clever fixed income investing. Even professional bond market money managers do not beat the bond market.”
FamilyMoneyValues presents From Riches to Rags posted at Family Money Values, saying, “There is a lot of advice out in the world for folks trying to get out of debt, or trying to save enough to retire, put their kids through college, or even take that next family vacation. There isnt much around to help people like you, who have made (or are working on it) their first million or two and are wondering how best to manage their money and their families to enable a lasting wealth effect for a few generations, instead of going from Riches to Rags in three generations.
Aloysa presents Dealing with Wants: How I failed my No-Buy Challenge posted at My Broken Coin, saying, “Remember I was on a self-induced three month no-buy challenge? Here is my confession: I failed it miserably in March. People say that the first two months are the most difficult, and then the miracle happens. You get out of the habit of wanting things. Maybe for some of us it works.
PFP presents Investment Asset Tax Location posted at Pasadena Financial Planner , saying, ” As you move your cash, bond, and stock financial assets into lower cost, more broadly diversified investment mutual funds and/or ETFs, you should also consider how to “locate” your investment asset allocation with respect to more optimal taxation. ”
Ken Faulkenberry presents Who Should, and Shoud Not, Convert a Traditional IRA to a Roth IRA? posted at AAAMP Blog, saying, “Because of the benefits of the Roth IRA everyone should consider who should, and should not, convert an IRA to a Roth IRA?
Justin presents Helping Moms Make the Most of Their Budgets posted at Budget Snob, saying, “Being a mom is one of the most important jobs on the planet, so its only natural that youll want to dedicate as much time to your kids as possible without worrying about whether your budget will last until the next payday. For most of us, there are plenty of things we can do to help spend less and save more, and even though it might take a bit of planning to start with, once you get into the habit, it could make a big difference.
Martin presents Top Law Schools in The Country posted at Studenomics, saying, “Do you know what the best law schools are?
Grand Per Month presents How to Make $1000 a Month with Multi-Level Marketing posted at Grand Per Month, saying, “The topic of multi-level marketing attracts many different responses from quite a wide variety of social classes. Your neighbor down the street might have a 2×4 holding up his house and hes excitedly telling you about his multi-level marketing business thats going to make him millions you politely listen, but are secretly rolling your eyes at his optimism. Then, youve got the other end of the spectrum where your very successful doctor starts discussing his side business, which sounds very much like the operation that your toothless neighbor was talking about! What gives? What is this whole multi-level marketing thing anyway?
Insurance and Risk
Ashley presents Tenant Default Insurance? posted at Money Talks Coaching, saying, “There is a new insurance for us residential landlords out there called Tenant Default Insurance.
Larry presents ID theft protection posted at Objective Financial Planner, saying, “As a threat to your financial security, you should take the potential for identity theft very seriously. Identity theft sometimes entails a loss of your money, but whether or not you lose money, it can take a very large amount of your time to rectify.”
Dividend Growth Investor presents AT&T (T) Dividend Stock Analysis posted at Dividend Growth Investor, saying, “AT&T Inc. (T), together with its subsidiaries, provides telecommunications services to consumers, businesses, and other providers worldwide. This dividend aristocrat has paid uninterrupted dividends on its common stock since 1984 and increased payments to common shareholders every for 28 consecutive years.
TSI presents Should you pick investments according to the Morningstars? posted at The Skilled Investor , saying, ” Individual investors and their advisors appear to make investment decisions that are heavily influenced by the Morningstar Rating system. Because the stars are very widely used and often misunderstood, these are articles to help investors make more rational decisions about the stars. ”
Matt presents Investing 101: A Magic Concept That Grows Money posted at RamblingFever Money, saying, “This is one of the most important life lessons that should be taught to everybody concerning finance, money, or investing. In fact, I feel so strongly about this that I think it should be mandatory that everybody learn this. Ideally, this would be required learning for every single student before they graduate from high school.
Jack Parker presents Top NoLoad Funds posted at Preferred Investment Funds, saying, “Some mutual funds and ETFs must be better than others, but which ones are they? How can you tell before the fact?”
Boomer presents Decoding Your Company Pension Plan posted at Boomer & Echo, saying, “Here are five crucial questions to ask about your company pension plan to determine how it stacks up:
Larry presents Personal risk tolerance posted at Independent Fee Only Financial Planner , saying, ” Individual investors with different levels of investment risk tolerance for financial risks tend to be more satisfied with risk management strategies, which are better aligned with their financial risk and return profile. ”
Div Guy presents Dividend Growth Index 2012 Q1 Update posted at The Dividend Guy Blog, saying, “The quarterly update of this index
YFS presents 6 Awesome Places to Retire Abroad posted at Your Finances Simplified, saying, “The US economy currently isn’t at its best. I mean we are recovering but, right now the economy is on a topsy-turvy ride as it battles the influences of the European debt crisis.
Glen Craig presents In Honor of Financial Literacy Month: Back to Basics posted at Free From Broke , saying, “April is Financial Literacy Month. Here is a refresher course on financial basics you should look into if you are planning to spruce up your finances.
Danny presents Kids and Money: A Recent Credit Card Lesson for My Daugther posted at One Money Design, saying, “A recent trip to the dentist provided an opportunity to teach my child a lesson about credit cards that she’ll hopefully remember forever.
KT presents 3 Easy Ways to Grow Your Emergency Fund posted at Personal Finance Journey, saying, “For many people, putting money aside in an emergency fund is no easy task. Whether you are struggling with a low paying job or too much debt to repay, you may feel that every dollar is already accounted for. However, there are some ways to save that are nearly painless.
Mike presents MBNA Smart Cash MasterCard Review posted at Rewards Cards Canada, saying, “It doesnt get much better than receiving cold-hard cash back just for using a credit card for your every day spending. Here are the benefits for using the MBNA Smart Cash MasterCard:
Wayne presents Managing Your Finances Takes Time posted at Young Family Finance, saying, “Managing your finances takes time. As a general rule, there are very few financial mistakes that you can correct in a short period of time.
Jen presents The Easiest Way to Improve Credit Scores posted at Master the Art of Saving, saying, “So my husband’s credit score was stagnant and his credit report was pretty much empty, even after mine began to flourish. So I did the easiest thing
Peter presents Trying to Buy a New House When Your Current Home Is Underwater posted at Bible Money Matters, saying, “Our current house has dropped in value from our purchase price of $273,000 in 2006, to a recent property tax valuation of around $200,000. Given that those values tend to be a bit on the high end, were realistically looking at a loss of value in our home of probably around $80,000-85,000. Thats going to be a problem if we try to sell as it means we may be underwater, or if not, we will have lost that $60,000 down payment we put down last time we bought our house. While we can most likely come up with another 20% down payment, what are our options when trying to upgrade homes with an underwater house?
Little House presents How Much Crime Is in Your Neighborhood? posted at Little House in the Valley, saying, “My search continues for a place to settle down permanently and purchase a home. Due to jobs, traffic, and climate, my goal is to stay in California. California is a large state and thankfully much of it has awesome weather. However, in narrowing down towns Im unfamiliar with, I not only look at housing prices, but crime rates. Higher crime usually equals lower property prices so I cant get too excited when I see homes for under $300,000 ? it could mean its in the hood.
Sicorra presents These Tiny Houses Fascinate Me posted at Tackling Our Debt, saying, “People are living in these Tiny Houses and they are living mortgage free. They are saving a great deal of money on their day to day expenses, and they no longer work simply to pay for a big home and with lots of furniture and fancy appliances. Check out the inspiring videos in this post to see how happy these families are with their Tiny Houses.”
MMD presents Will Dividend Stocks Help Me Retire Early? posted at MyMoneyDesign, saying, “Could the income from dividend stock investing be a useful part of your early retirement strategy? Lets review the benefits as well as figure out how much money well need to create our desired income.
Franklin presents Traditional IRA Versus Roth IRA Contributions posted at Better Retirement Planning , saying, ” Many taxpayers puzzle over whether to contribute to traditional versus Roth tax-advantaged retirement plans. For most people, contributions to traditional tax-advantaged plans will probably provide a higher net present value over their lifetimes.”
Jim Yih presents How to deal with the new changes to OAS posted at Retire Happy Blog, saying, “Will changes to OAS affect retirement? The new changes are not insignificant and will impact the future of Canadians.
Whitney presents Retirement Worksheets posted at Retirement Saving Plans, saying, “While personal wealth should measure current financial investments and other salable assets, it should also measure your ability to sustain your household budget, build up your investment portfolio, and weather potential financial risk and misfortune across your lifetime.”
Todd Tresidder presents The Essential Wealth Building Principle Revealed By Roth IRA Conversions (It’s Not What You Think!) posted at Financial Mentor, saying, “Discover how I transformed one of the dumbest financial decisions of my life into gold using Roth IRA conversions, and learn the essential wealth building principle it illustrates.
Jason presents Understanding the Basics: 401k, 403b, 457, Roth IRA, and Traditional IRA posted at Work Save Live, saying, “Last week I started my series – Understanding Retirement Planning & Investing- with Everything You Need to Know About a Roth IRA & Why to Start One.
Mike presents Should You Even Save Money in Your 20s? posted at The Financial Blogger, saying, “Is it worth saving in your 20s?
Jason presents Gas Reward Cards and a Few Other Ways to Cut the Cost of Gas posted at One Money Design, saying, “Gas prices are on the rise so consider these tips to cut the cost of gas and use the money for more important financial goals.
TSI presents Savings determine wealth posted at The Skilled Investor , saying, ” How much you earn, spend, budget, and save are by far the most dominant determinants of your long-term financial well-being. Self-control in your financial decision-making regarding budgeting and consumption is far more important than clever investing. ”
Srinath presents Ways to save energy and save money in the process and save Earth too posted at The University Of Money, saying, “Simple yet smart tips to save money by some steps to save energy. This will help save you money as well as save the precious resources of mother nature.
Tim presents Federal Tax Extension Tips posted at Faith and Finance, saying, “If you don’t think you’ll be able to file your taxes by April 17th this year, you’ll want to file an extension. Remember these tips before you file for your tax extension!
Kevin presents How to Avoid The Underpayment Penalty posted at Thousandaire, saying, “If you want to avoid the federal income tax underpayment penalty, make sure you pay as much in taxes this year as you did last year.
Monroe presents Evaluating Roth IRA Conversions posted at Do-It-Yourself Financial Planning , saying, ” This article could help you to make a more informed decision about your family’s Roth investment strategy. Key to you making a better decision about your lifetime Roth account contribution and asset conversion strategy is the need for a sophisticated financial planning software tool. ”
Jill presents What Is a Personal Tax Exemption? posted at My Dollar Plan, saying, “You pay taxes based on your income. But before that income is calculated, the IRS allows you to reduce it based on exemptions. What is a tax exemption?
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