low interest rates

Dividend Stocks: The Best Raises You'll Never Earn

Conventional wisdom says that the most conservative investors were the ones most interested in capturing dividend income. But dividend stocks are now favored by many others as well, and they have lots of high-yielding options to choose from.

Bernanke Defends Fed's Low-Interest-Rate Policies

Facing criticism from Republican lawmakers, Chairman Ben Bernanke stood behind the Federal Reserve's low-interest-rate policies Wednesday and sought to reassure Congress that the central bank has a handle on the risks. Bond purchases are needed to help boost a still-weak economy, Bernanke said.

Bernanke Signals Continued Fed Support for Low Interest Rates

The Federal Reserve's low interest-rate policies are giving key support to an economy still burdened by high unemployment, Chairman Ben Bernanke told Congress on Tuesday. Bernanke signaled that the Fed's efforts to keep borrowing costs low -- buying treasuries and mortgage bonds -- will continue.

Should You Invest Your Emergency Fund?

Smart personal finance rules dictate having an emergency savings fund set aside where you can access it fast. But do you really have to keep enough money for three to six months of expenses in a savings account where it earns almost no interest?

Falling Food, Gas Costs Push U.S. Wholesale Prices Lower Again

U.S. wholesale prices fell for the third month in a row in December, propelled by falling food and gas costs. The drop is the latest evidence inflation is tame, which means consumers have more money to spend. Low inflation also gives the Federal Reserve more freedom to keep interest rates low.

How the Fiscal Cliff Deal Saved Dividend Stocks

In recent years, with low interest rates devastating the returns on conservative investment options, income-hungry investors have turned more and more to dividend stocks. And had there not been a fiscal cliff deal, even that last refuge for income investors could have disappeared.

Fewer Americans Late on Mortgages in Third Quarter

U.S. homeowners are doing better at keeping up with their mortgage payments, aided by an improving housing market and more refinancing opportunities. The percentage of mortgage holders at least two months behind on their payments fell in the third quarter to 5.41%, the lowest point in more than three years.

A Winning Strategy for Saving: These Sites Make It a Game

With interest rates so low these days, it's hard to get motivated about putting money into a savings account. But it is important to save, and so services have popped up that use other methods to encourage us. Two in particular -- SaveUp and SmartyPig -- turn saving and paying down debts into a game.

What the End of Savings Account Interest Means to Me as a Parent

I often have a hard time explaining to my kids why they should put some of their money in the bank. My 9-year-old daughter got me when she asked how much she'd be paid for trusting the bank with her cash. The honest answer is that she'd get paid basically nothing.

To Pay or Not to Pay? How to Handle Old Debts

With interest rates at record lows, now is the time to refinance your mortgage. But what if you find an old unpaid debt that's impairing your credit score? The answer isn't as obvious as you might think.

Credit Card Rates Rise Again

Borrowers continue to pay record low rates, with one major exception: credit cards. Banks have been raising rates on credit card users of all stripes over the past year, but those with no credit histories or poor credit scores saw the biggest increases.

Builders Start More Single-Family Homes; Permit Requests Surge

U.S. builders started work on more single-family homes in May and requested the most permits to build homes and apartments in three and a half years. The increase suggests the housing market is slowly recovering even as other areas of the economy have weakened.

The Money-Saving Refi Move You've Never Considered

Millions of homeowners have garnered huge savings in recent years from one simple move: refinancing their mortgages. Now, the refinancing craze has spread to an unexpected industry: car loans. Could an auto refi be a smart move for you?

Send Credit Card Banks a Message, and Save Money

Remember Bank Transfer Day? Well, mark your calendar: Dec. 11 is being publicized as "Balance Transfer Day," with Americans urged to transfer their credit card balances from high-interest cards to low- or no-interest ones.

How Retirees Can Get Better Returns on Their Nest Eggs

A retiree named Bob is confronting a dilemma many of his peers face: His nest egg is parked in safe cash investments, like certificates of deposit, and earning barely any interest. What can he do to get a better return? Laura Rowley looks at an increasingly popular alternative.

Escape the Low-Interest Trap With Dividend Stocks

A few years ago, with $1 million invested in CDs, you could have lived off your interest, but with rates at historic lows, now your returns would barely cover a few mortgage payments. This is forcing retirees to find new, fairly safe ways to get those returns. The experts' recommendation? Dividend stocks.

Refinancing Tips: How to Snag Today's Low Rates

With the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage down to 4.09%, -- another record low -- it's a great time to refinance. But before you go running off to your lender to catch the best rates since 1951, get yourself straight. According to LendingTree, many people are making major refinancing mistakes that can cost them dearly.