Welcome to the June 15, 2012 Edition #241 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
Paul Vachon presents Frugal Living Made Easy posted at The Frugal Toad, saying, “Frugal living is all about making informed and deliberate choices in how to spend money. In other words, frugality allows me to get more value for my hard earned dollar and who wouldn’t want that?
SB presents How can you stick to your budget consistently posted at One Cent at a Time, saying, “Creating a budget is difficult task but, sticking to the budget is tougher. Budgetary allocation requires discipline and consistency. Learn how you can amend regular over spending habit and stick to the budget.
Janet presents Expense budgets posted at Independent Financial Planner , saying, ” Many people do not track their living expenses and do not understand the magnitude of their consumption.”
CCS presents Savvy Credit Card Use: Track Your Spending posted at Credit Card Smarts, saying, “A big key to using your credit card wisely is tracking your credit card spending. Se how you can do this any why you need to.
Odysseas presents Forget Your ATM Card? No Biggie, As Long as You’ve Got Your Phone posted at Wallet Blog, saying, “Like the idea of using your smartphone for everything, but would rather use cash than make contactless payments and lose track of your budget? Well, not to worry. Thanks to NCR, using your smartphone to make withdrawals at an ATM is on the horizon.
Jason presents Car Loans Are Now Americans’ No. 1 Bill-Paying Priority posted at One Money Design, saying, “In the past, Americans would pay their home loans first, then their credit card and finally their car loans. Not so today.
Don presents Alpha Returns posted at Wall Street Financial Engineering , saying, “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. ”
John presents Q1 2012 Credit Card Debt Study posted at Card Hub, saying, “The first quarter of 2012 indicates consumers are paying down credit card debt. Will this trend continue throughout the year, or will consumer credit card debt follow the same path it has in previous years? Take a look at the new data – Then decide which road you want to travel.
Wally presents Best Fixed Income Fund posted at Bond and Fixed Income Funds, saying, “Even professional bond market money managers do not beat the bond market.”
Deacon Hayes presents 10 Ways to Trim Your Budget posted at Well Kept Wallet, saying, “There are two sides to the financial equation: income and expenses. The only way that you can improve your situation financially is by either increasing your income or cutting your expenses. Often times increasing your income can be a challenge, so I offer 10 ways you can trim your budget.
PFP presents Tax Management posted at Pasadena Financial Advisor , saying, ” You should also consider how to “locate” your investment asset allocation with respect to more optimal taxation.”
Squeezer presents My previous job as a pizza delivery guy posted at Personal Finance Success, saying, “During the summer-fall of 2004 I worked at a local Domino’s Pizza as a driver. Let me recount the experience with you and detail what it was like working there.
Insurance and Risk
Mac Hildebrand presents What is catastrophic health insurance coverage? posted at Insurance Providers, saying, “From routine trips to the doctor to extended hospital stays, the average health care bill is $8,000 per year. Without insurance, this could literally break the bank for many people. Health insurance helps keep your health care costs lower by offering you various benefits in exchange for a premium. This expense is usually well worth the trade. Catastrophic health insurance is a less expensive alternative to complete health care coverage by offering benefits for catastrophe type situations only.”
Sally presents Risk and returns posted at Do-It-Yourself Finance , saying, ” More conservative portfolio investments have yielded substantially lower investment returns than the returns that riskier investments have delivered. With either lower or higher risk-adjusted market return strategies, you simply cannot have your financial cake and you eat it too.”
FMF presents Using Dynamic Asset Allocation to Boost Returns posted at Free Money Finance, saying, “Think of static asset allocation as where to set your sails and dynamic asset allocation as a way to keep your balance as your boat glides and sometimes bounces through the waves.
Habeeb presents How to Calculate Cost of Equity on Common Stock posted at Best Dividend Mutual Funds, saying, “Cost of Equity is defined as the annualized rate of return (%) that investors must achieve on their investments in shares of companies or mutual funds. Those returns can be composed of annual dividend payments, capital appreciation in the value of the shares, special one time distributions, etc.”
Dave presents How Did Your Portfolio Do During The Correction? posted at Dividends For The Long Run, saying, “I compare how my portfolio of dividend growth stocks performed during the 10% market correction compared to major stock indexes and the total bond market index.”
TSI presents Morningstar Ratings 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.”
Dr. Dean presents Are You An Investing Scaredy Cat? posted at Dr. Dean’s TheMillionaireNurse.com Blog, saying, “Risks and rewards in investing…Do you understand them? What makes people sell when they should buy?”
DL presents Global Financial Markets posted at Nerds on Wall Street , saying, ” Stock markets are almost perfectly transparent, with full information available to all, and the best electronic clearing and settlement in history. These technologies were omitted in building the skyscraper of cards (“house of cards” seems too mild) out of collateralized debt obligations (CDOs), credit default swaps (CDSs), synthetic collateralized debt obligations (SCDOs), and the rest.”
Willie presents Superior Fund Performance posted at NoLoad Funds , saying, ” Screen out inferior mutual fund performance — but only after using other ETF and mutual fund selection criteria. Superior or even average mutual fund performance in the past simply does not predict similar fund performance in the future.”
Bob presents How to remove a co-signer from a loan posted at Christian Personal Finance, saying, “When I was going through the process of getting a student loan for my first year at college – I thought little of the fact that my dad stepped in to cosign my student loan. I now have a greater understanding of the risk he was taking by cosigning. If I failed to come through on my repayment of that loan, he could have been saddled with the debt. How do you remove someone as a cosigner? Here are the answers.
Shannon McNay presents Should You Pay Off Loans Early? posted at ReadyForZero Blog, saying, “If you’re thinking of paying off a loan early, there are many factors that you need to consider. In this post we walk you through the decision process to ensure you make the best long-term decision possible.
Mike presents Choose Your Rewards Card Carefully posted at Rewards Cards Canada, saying, “Some rewards programs come with an annual fee and place restrictions on how you redeem your points. Consider the following tips when choosing a rewards card:
Theresa Torres presents Do Men and Women Use their Credit Cards Differently? posted at CreditDonkey.com Tips, saying, “According to an online consumer survey we conducted, there are basic differences in how men and women use their credit cards which is illustrated in the following infographics.”
Sam Puri presents Optimistic Stats Hide Deeper Debt Problems posted at Credit Card Help Topics
Miss T. presents Save Money with an Organized Approach to Home Maintenance posted at Prairie Eco Thrifter, saying, “In an effort to navigate the home maintenance waters successfully, I created the following checklist for how homeowners can organize their efforts and save money at the same time.
Emily presents Retirement Withdrawal Strategies: 4% Rule vs. The Bucket Method posted at PT Money Personal Finance, saying, ” Discusses the pros and cons of both strategies before you need to use them, so you can make the best choice.
Franklin presents Traditional and Roth IRA posted at 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.”
Tim presents Do I Need a Living Trust or a Will? posted at Personal Finance By The Book, saying, “Many people do not really enjoy thinking about their impending passing from this earth, which means that questions about wills, trusts, and estate distribution can be disconcerting. Still, it’s smart to consider what will happen to your estate and your sentimental belongings at your passing.
Knowles presents SandP 500 Funds posted at Large Cap Index Funds, saying, “The no load index fund strategy of the Schwab S & P 500 Index Fund tracks the S and P 500 stock index. This no load index fund was listed as one of the top 25 lowest cost index mutual funds in a research study.”
Freedom presents Savings Rates posted at Financial Freedom Plan , saying, ” Understand how your current savings rate and retirement withdrawal rate would affect all of your lifetime personal financial planning goals ”
Paul presents Retirement Planning posted at Tax Planning Software, saying, “Retirement planning software should automate the development of lifetime projections that incorporate tax laws and rules associated with tax-advantaged retirement investment incentive programs such as traditional IRA, Roth, 401k, 403b, SEP, Keogh, and other retirement plans.”
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