Should You Think Twice About Facebook Gifts?

Identity Theft

Should You Think Twice About Facebook Gifts?

Should You Think Twice About Facebook Gifts?

Q: Facebook recently announced a new service, Facebook Gifts, that allows users to send Starbucks gift cards, Magnolia Bakery cupcakes, GUND teddy bears and other knickknacks for events like birthdays, job promotions and anniversaries. (The Palo Alto, Calif., social networking giant has plans to add more types of gifts every day.) Are there any risks… Read More

Rates on a Plane: The Expanding Frontier of Credit Card Sales

Credit Cards

Rates on a Plane: The Expanding Frontier of Credit Card Sales

Rates on a Plane: The Expanding Frontier of Credit Card Sales

Passengers are used to hearing flight attendants give safety briefings and warn of the perils of using their smartphones below 10,000 feet. But in recent years, flight attendants have added a new in-flight announcement to their repertoire: the credit card sales pitch. It’s a bit jarring the first time you hear the pitch and see… Read More

5 Fun Jobs If You Are 50+

Personal Finance

5 Fun Jobs If You Are 50+

5 Fun Jobs If You Are 50+

Millions of Americans are finding the leisurely retirement of their dreams is just that: a dream. Some have to work because their retirement savings and/or Social Security income won’t go far enough. Maybe the mortgage, car loan or credit cards they thought would long be paid off by now aren’t. Others may realize they need… Read More

Delinquency Drops Once Again in Second Quarter

Managing Debt

Delinquency Drops Once Again in Second Quarter

Delinquency Drops Once Again in Second Quarter

Consumers have been very interested in cutting all of their late payments in the last several months or more, and seem to have been successful in doing so overall in the second quarter of the year. Industry-wide instances of delinquency – defined as payments that are 30 days or more past due – slipped between… Read More

Government Survey Signals Housing Market Recovery

Mortgages

Government Survey Signals Housing Market Recovery

Government Survey Signals Housing Market Recovery

There have been a number of positive developments in the housing market over the last several months, and that trend continued into September, as many areas continued to improve. The housing market has strengthened considerably since the end of last year, and as a result, there is now an additional $860 billion in home equity… Read More

Domestic Violence & Financial Abuse: A Troubling Trend

Personal Finance

Domestic Violence & Financial Abuse: A Troubling Trend

Domestic Violence & Financial Abuse: A Troubling Trend

For JoHanne DuFort, getting beaten by her husband caused physical wounds that gradually healed. But even 20 years later, the financial wounds remain. DuFort graduated with a master’s degree in fine art from the University of Michigan in 1986. She didn’t earn much money as a part-time art professor, but even so she tried to… Read More

Why Do HELOCs Have Such Low Delinquency Rates?

Mortgages

Why Do HELOCs Have Such Low Delinquency Rates?

Why Do HELOCs Have Such Low Delinquency Rates?

Delinquency rates on home equity lines of credit, commonly known as HELOCs, have significantly declined since the beginning of the Great Recession, particularly compared to the delinquency rates of traditional mortgages. Why are these loans seemingly more immune from the housing crash? The answers provide some interesting insights into the current state of certain segments… Read More

Many Americans Think Having a Low Credit Score Is Fine

Credit Score

Many Americans Think Having a Low Credit Score Is Fine

Many Americans Think Having a Low Credit Score Is Fine

After years of economic turmoil faced by millions of Americans, a large number of consumers now have new attitudes toward the kinds of financial missteps that can land borrowers in credit trouble, including strategic defaults. A sizable amount of Americans now consider it socially acceptable to have a low credit score or strategically default on… Read More

Consumers Rush to Refinance Mortgages

Mortgages

Consumers Rush to Refinance Mortgages

Consumers Rush to Refinance Mortgages

These days, mortgage rates are hovering at or near all-time lows for nearly all types of home loans, and that has led many consumers to refinance so far year. That trend continued last week as well. The number of refinance applications filed in the week ending September 28 led to a major surge in overall… Read More

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