Author Archive | Matt Bell

Finding Deals Online

Assuming you still have some holiday shopping to do (What’s that? You haven’t even started?), _Kiplinger_ recently listed its favorite places to find deals on the Internet. Its top online bargain site is “DealsOfAmerica.com”:http://www.dealsofamerica.com. This site lists new deals every hour, offers comparison-shopping in its “Compare Prices” tab, and lists products or services that are […]

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Running the Numbers on Retirement

It’s no secret that many of us are not saving enough for our later years. One step that’s proven effective at motivating people to get in the savings game is to crunch a few numbers. A story in the _Chicago Sun-Times_ on 11/6/06 recommended some web sites where we can do just that. First, go […]

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Buyer Beware

The old adage, “if it seems too good to be true it probably is” remains as valid as ever. However, it’s becoming more difficult to determine when a deal is not really a deal. According to a recent story on _MSNBC_, for example, instead of increasing their prices, many packaged goods companies have kept their […]

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Tis the Season…for Paying Down Debt

The end of year holiday season has become much more than “the most wonderful time of year.” It’s become one of the most debt-inducing times of year, with many people going a little too crazy at the mall. However, if you have too much debt, this can also be a great time of year to […]

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Shopping While the Turkey’s Still Warm

The day after Thanksgiving is the traditional start to the holiday shopping season and that usually prompts a number of stores to open at the crack of dawn. Crowds of shoppers gather in the dark as they wait for the doors to open and their chance at deeply discounted DVD players and such. This year, […]

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Plastic Traps

Credit card fine print is getting even finer both from a cardholder’s perspective (more difficult to read and understand) and from a card issuer’s perspective (likely to contain provisions that generate additional revenue). According to an article in the _Washington Post_ on 10/15, a recent government report found cardholder agreements difficult to read and riddled […]

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The Store Less Traveled

Have you ever set foot in a dollar store? Apparently more and more of us have. Citing ACNielsen data, the 10/22 issue of the _Chicago Tribune_ noted that two-thirds of all Americans shopped at a dollar store last year. The article said dollar stores not only offer good prices on a lot of items, they’ve […]

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Investing in Happiness

In our search for happiness we often assume money must play a role. And it does. Research shows that when people move from poverty to the middle class their happiness grows a lot. However, research also shows that as a person moves further up the economic ladder, happiness hardly grows at all. The _Wall Street […]

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A Little Goes a Long Way

One of the roadblocks we sometimes face when thinking about giving money to charitable causes is the sense that our money can’t make much of a difference. Warren Buffet’s billions could certainly make a dent in solving some of the world’s problems, we figure, but what can my measly $50 do? Quite a bit, it […]

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What the Boss Drives

What type of car do you think the average CEO drives? What types and brands come to mind? As reported on _BusinessWeek Online_ on 10/6, a recent survey from CareerBuilder.com and Cars.com found that most people think the typical company leader drives a luxury sports car costing over $70,000. However, when CEOs were asked, they […]

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