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Bob Sullivan

Contributor |  In Personal Finance, Identity Theft

Bob Sullivan is author of the New York Times best-sellers Gotcha Capitalism and Stop Getting Ripped Off. His stories have appeared in The New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and hundreds of other publications. He has appeared as a consumer advocate and technology expert numerous times on NBC’s TODAY show, NBC Nightly News, CNBC, NPR’s Marketplace, Terry Gross’ Fresh Air, and various other radio and TV outlets. He helped start MSNBC.com and wrote there for nearly 20 years, most of it penning the consumer advocacy column The Red Tape Chronicles. See more at www.bobsullivan.net. Follow Bob Sullivan on Facebook or Twitter.

The CFPB Announces Its Largest Credit Card Discrimination Settlement Ever

Credit Cards

The CFPB Announces Its Largest Credit Card Discrimination Settlement Ever

The CFPB Announces Its Largest Credit Card Discrimination Settlement Ever

GE Capital discriminated against consumers who indicated they preferred speaking in Spanish, and deceived customers when selling credit card debt relief products, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau alleged on Wednesday. The firm was ordered to pay $225 million to impacted consumers to end two separate enforcement actions brought by the Department of Justice and the… Read More

9 Surprising Ways Identity Theft Can Hurt You

Identity Theft

9 Surprising Ways Identity Theft Can Hurt You

9 Surprising Ways Identity Theft Can Hurt You

What ailment is so devastating that its symptoms can range from an incorrect medical diagnosis, to (virtually) killing you, to hurting your kids’ chances of getting college financial aid? That distinctly digital-age malady? Identity theft. In a world of overused metaphors, this one is spot-on: If Franz Kafka were writing today, he wouldn’t haul Josef… Read More

Why It Doesn’t Pay to Be a Perfectionist

Personal Finance

Why It Doesn’t Pay to Be a Perfectionist

Why It Doesn’t Pay to Be a Perfectionist

Do you dwell on small mistakes for hours, days or even weeks after they occur? Are you crushed when someone points out a small flaw in your work? Have you ever spent four hours fine-tuning a task that could have been completed in 10 minutes? Are you haunted by uncertainty when you finish a task,… Read More

Should You Pay Your Mortgage or Your Credit Card?

Mortgages

Should You Pay Your Mortgage or Your Credit Card?

Should You Pay Your Mortgage or Your Credit Card?

In what might be a sign that Americans’ finances are getting back to normal, consumers are now less likely to be late paying their mortgages than their credit card bills, reversing a troubling trend that began in 2008. Traditionally, consumers have made paying their monthly mortgage bills a top priority. When the Great Recession struck,… Read More

Why It’s Better to Lose Money Fast

Personal Finance

Why It’s Better to Lose Money Fast

Why It’s Better to Lose Money Fast

Most new things fail. Four of five new restaurants close within five years. Three quarters of venture capital-backed startups don’t return their money to investors. Most books don’t earn back the author’s advance. Failure is so common that Google executive Albert Savoia created a rule of thumb for it, called the “Law of Failure.” No… Read More

Why Getting Out of Debt Is All About Timing

Personal Finance

Why Getting Out of Debt Is All About Timing

Why Getting Out of Debt Is All About Timing

Time is money. Everybody knows that. But everybody forgets it. A nice pair of shoes today could be worth a worth month-long Caribbean cruise in 20 years; buying a big house today might mean putting off retirement another five years. But we rarely think in these terms, because it’s really hard. We trade money for… Read More

Medical Debt Unfairly Hurts Credit Scores, CFPB Says

Credit Score

Medical Debt Unfairly Hurts Credit Scores, CFPB Says

Medical Debt Unfairly Hurts Credit Scores, CFPB Says

Credit scores unfairly punish consumers who don’t pay their medical bills right away, according to a study just released by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. What’s more, scores for consumers with unpaid or late medical bills inaccurately predict the creditworthiness of those consumers, the study suggests. Consumers who are late paying medical bills should be… Read More

5 Mindsets That Can Keep You From Your Goals

Personal Finance

5 Mindsets That Can Keep You From Your Goals

5 Mindsets That Can Keep You From Your Goals

“Shark attacks in 2010 rose 25%!” screamed one headline.  Below it was a picture of a sign posted at a tourist spot in the U.S.: “WARNING: Recent shark attack. Beach closed.” You all remember the summer of Sharkmageddon.  There was an epidemic of shark bites on swimmers.  Well, there was an epidemic of stories, anyway…. Read More

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