Sat, August 14, 2010
Credit cards are convenient and they effortlessly provide a record of every purchase you make. But using a credit card doesn’t feel like spending money. Consequently, it's easier to overspend with one than it is if you only use cash and checks. Unless you constantly monitor your purchases, there’s no easy way to stay aware of how whether your spending out of control. In a few months, though, Citigroup will introduce a credit card that lets you define a monthly cap for different purchase categories: instant budgeting for credit cards. Read the full article
Mon, November 30, 2009
As the Christmas shopping season approaches, it’s a good idea to do what you can to reduce your risk of identity fraud when you shop online. Read the full article
Fri, October 23, 2009
Today the House Financial Services Committee approved a bill establishing the Consumer Financial Protection Agency (CFPA). Read the full article
Mon, June 08, 2009
The Credit Card Accountability and Disclosure Act of 2009 Act, signed last month, was supposed to drastically improve protections for consumers. While the new law eliminates some problems, banks are good at finding loopholes. Read the full article
Wed, May 06, 2009
College graduation season, which lasts for several weeks, is upon us here in the Boston area. According to the National Postsecondary Student Aid Study (NPSAS), graduating seniors with educational debts carry an average debt load on the order of $20,000. More and more, college students are beginning their working lives with fairly heavy debt loads. It's more important than ever for newly-minted grads to hit the ground running with a plan for their finances.
Read the full article
Mon, October 20, 2008
Since this week is National Protect Your Identity Week, I’ve decided to post a couple of articles that are largely drawn from a newsletter that I wrote a while ago. The threat of identity theft is real, although as I have noted before, ID theft rates don’t seem to be increasing. Even so, if you aren’t taking precautions to avoid identity theft, you make yourself an easy target. Fraud-related theft tends to increase in times of economic crisis, so it’s wise to be cautious.
The National Foundation for Credit Counseling is spearheading National Protect Your Identity Week; you may want to check out their Protect Your ID site, which has a number of useful resources on this topic.
Read the full article
Wed, September 03, 2008
As a result of a class-action suit against the Transunion credit bureau, consumers can obtain six to nine months of free credit report and credit score access if they qualify for inclusion in the class. Read the full article
Fri, July 11, 2008
Many homeowners struggling to keep up with mortgage payments are probably using their credit cards to make ends meet. Now, apparently, people who can't pay their mortgages have a new alternative: they can charge their monthly mortgage payments to a credit card directly. I wish I were making this up, but I'm not. Read the full article
Wed, May 14, 2008
Identity theft seems to get a lot more attention than it used to. I’ve given it my share by writing two client newsletters offering advice on how to avoid ID theft. But this is a topic that holds considerable personal interest for me, as I’ve been the victim of a series of thefts of credit card numbers over the years. Read the full article
Fri, May 02, 2008
What does it actually cost if you donâ€™t pay off your credit card balances each month? What does a credit card purchase cost if you just make the minimum payments? Read the full article
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