Archive for January, 2015

Mobile Banking on the Rise

Posted on January 30, 2015 by Saldutti

A new study says Americans are getting hooked on mobile banking.  The study, conducted in September by technology consulting firm Carlisle & Gallagher Consulting Group, says that 55% of Americans access their accounts through mobile banking options (including laptops, tablets and smartphones) 2-3 times per week; 26% said they bank using mobile devices 4 or more times per week. Carlisle & Gallagher surveyed 1,005 U.S. consumers online and conducted phone interviews with financial services executives at major companies. “An ever-increasing consumer demand for instant gratification is seeping into every facet of our lives, including how we bank,” said Byl Cameron,…

Financial Tools You Need to Use Now

Posted on January 29, 2015 by Saldutti

Modern money management requires tracking a lot of moving parts: budgeting, bills and credit cards are just the beginning. To help you keep your spending under control, consider using one of these online or mobile tools, recommended by U.S News & World Report. From protecting your finances and saving you money, to tracking your spending and locating coupons, these tools help you simplify your financial life. BillGuard. The BillGuard app, using bank-level security, pulls all your transactions from various accounts, and flags ones that might be erroneous, including duplicate charges that have been flagged by other users. You can flag a…

What Does the Top 1% Make in Each State?

Posted on January 28, 2015 by Saldutti

As the economy recovers, some people are reaping the benefits more than others.  The top 1% of earners are amassing a disproportionate share of the income growth in each state, driving inequality to levels not seen in decades, according to a new report from the Economic Policy Institute (EPI). Between 1979 and 2007, more than half of all of the income growth in the nation went to the top 1%, the report found.  For the bottom 99% of taxpayers, income grew by less than 20%. “The benefits of economic growth have been flowing increasingly to this tiny share of households,” said Mark Price, a labor economist at the…

Richest 1% Will Own More Than Half of World's Wealth by 2016

Posted on January 27, 2015 by Saldutti

“The richer get richer and the poor get poorer” – a new Oxfam report is proving the old aphorism to be truer than ever.  The report, “Wealth: Having it all and wanting more,” concluded that the world’s wealthiest 1 percent would overtake the combined wealth of the remaining 99%.  Next year, the richest 80 people will equal the wealth of the 3.5 billion poorest across the globe, the report said. The report explained that even in 2014, the 1 percenters controlled 48% of the global wealth. Of the remaining 52% of wealth, the majority was controlled by those included in…

2014 List of Worst Passwords is Unbelievably Bad

Posted on January 26, 2015 by Saldutti

SplashData has announced its annual list of the 25 most common passwords found on the Internet – thus making them the “Worst Passwords” that will expose anybody to being hacked or having their identities stolen.  In its fourth annual report, compiled from more than 3.3 million leaked passwords during the year, “123456”and “password” continue to hold the top two spots that they have held each year since the first list in 2011.  Other passwords in the top 10 include “qwerty,” “dragon,” and “football.” As in past years’ lists, simple numerical passwords remain common, with 9 of the top 25 passwords…

How Much Will You Spend on Interest in Your Lifetime?

Posted on January 23, 2015 by Saldutti

The average American consumer will pay nearly $280,000 in interest over their lifetime, a figure that varies dramatically from state to state based on credit scores and mortgage size.  Residents of the District of Columbia (while not technically a state) pay the most in interest over their lifetimes – $451,890, which includes an average new mortgage balance of approximately $462,000.  D.C. residents also have an average credit score of 656, close to the U.S. average of 687, according to Credit.com, which calculated the figures based on a 30-year mortgage, average car loan balance of $22,750 (assuming nine car loans over…

Looking for a Reason to Stay in Debt?

Posted on January 22, 2015 by Saldutti

Do you remember the moment you decided to get out of debt?  You were sick and tired of being sick and tired. You might have even gotten angry at being in debt. Eventually, the burden and the stress of the constant bills and piling debt broke you down. Something inside you “clicked,” and you decided it was time to make a fresh start. But what keeps people from getting out of debt? Why would someone want to stay in chains instead of living in freedom? Sadly, there are all sorts of reasons people choose MasterCard over being free from debt. …

Easy Does It: Simple Ways to Save Hundreds of Dollars

Posted on January 21, 2015 by Saldutti

How are you doing on your 2015 Saving Challenge?  Looking for some more ways to cut costs and make a dent in your debt?  Many times, saving money requires time and energy — sometimes for very little payoff. However there are easier ways – quick hits that don’t take long but that reap big benefits.  The Daily Worth shows us some small ways to save big. 1. Call your cell phone company. In case you haven’t noticed, there’s a price war going on among cell carriers right now. The major ones are slashing the costs of their plans even as…

"Credit Invisibles" on the Rise

Posted on January 20, 2015 by Saldutti

A credit score is an essential first step in accessing things like credit cards or financing for a car or a home.  However, some Americans are deemed “credit invisible” due to non-existent, limited or dated credit histories. These “credit invisible” consumers are either forced to live on cash in a world now built on credit, or they are at the mercy of unscrupulous lenders. Those with a low score may pay higher financing rates or get their loan applications turned down altogether. A pair of surveys commissioned by VantageScore Solutions reveals that both lenders and consumers harbor misunderstandings about the…

For Better of For Worse? Marriage and Taxes

Posted on January 19, 2015 by Saldutti

The day you walked down the aisle, you dreamed about all the things that come with happily ever after – from moonlit walks on the beach to his and hers hand towels. Now it’s time to share another time-honored marital tradition: filing taxes.  If this is your first tax season as husband and wife, financial author and radio host Dave Ramsey points out 4 things that will be different this time around. Your Personal Information – To make your first tax-filing as a couple as smooth as possible, you’ll need to take care of a couple of things first. If…