Credit & Debt

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Exercise Your Banking Options

With Bank of America announcing that it will soon charge a fee for debit card use, you may be worried that your bank is next—and if so, what can you do? According to consumer banking experts, you’ve got several choices. Stay where you are, but...

Making Your Budget Work

Our top budget question is, “How do I get started?” The second: “How do I stick to a budget?” The truth is, you don’t have to “stick to a budget”; it’s already there (money’s coming in, bills are going out, right?). But you need to make a...

Credit Card Calculator
Free credit card payoff calculator by Bankrate.com

Revive Your Credit, Restart Your Life

Thinking about filing for bankruptcy, but worried about whether you’ll ever recover? It’s actually a chance to rebuild your credit and your life, says Ed Boltz, an attorney and board member of the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy...

Can Credit Cards Help Us Spend Better?

In the midst of the recession, some credit-card companies are trading in the old, carefree “life takes Visa” approach and rewarding more responsible credit use instead. Chase Blueprint is a system that can be activated with certain Chase cards....

It’s Not Just About the U.S. Anymore

Whether you’re an avid day trader or your portfolio is on set-it-and-forget-it, we have some news from the market frontlines. The days of thinking and behaving like a U.S. investor are over. Done. Sayonara. Auf wiedersehen. Why? Three words:...

Your Anti-Panic Guide to the U.S. Downgrade & More

What is a “downgrade” exactly? It’s similar to when your credit score takes a hit; lenders question whether you’re going to repay your debts. Similarly, the credit rating of the U.S. was knocked down from AAA to AA+ by Standard & Poor’s, a credit...

Lessons from the U.S. Debt Debacle

Months of doom-filled predictions, public debates, people scrambling to protect themselves from disaster. Remind you of anything? No, not the recent debt ceiling debacle, silly. We’re talking about Y2K: widespread hysteria that engulfed the final...

FSA Money: 4 Days to Use It or Lose It

The grace period for spending down the 2010 funds in your flexible-spending account is up on March 15. Remember, whether you allocated $200 or $2,000 to be saved in your FSA last year, those are use-it-or-lose-it funds. Not every company provides...

Single Mom Start-Up Debt

For the first time in 10 years, I have gone into debt—a whopping $4,200—to restart my life as a single mom.  I’ve had to buy a car ($1,000 down payment)  rent an apartment ($2,400 for the first month and security)  buy furniture for the apartment...

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