personalfinance

Brokerage Credit Cards: Can One Boost Your Portfolio?

It's easy to understand the allure of brokerage credit cards. They're cash-back cards that route the the kickbacks into a brokerage account for capital appreciation. Free money creating more free money: What could possibly go wrong?

The 10 Worst-Paying Cities in America for Women

International Women's Day honors women's successes, and also their struggles for equality. Nearly a century after American women won the universal right to vote, equal pay continues to remain a distant goal. Here are the metropolitan areas where the wage gap is the widest.

Is 'Sou-Sou' for You? Africa's Clever Savings Pool Scheme

Have you ever dreamed about winning the lottery, or having a windfall appear in your bank account? Well, a new scheme called a "sou-sou" promises to make you a "winner" not just once, but over and over. It may be unfamiliar here, the idea's pretty old hat in West Africa. Here's how it works:

7 Small Mistakes That Will Hurt Your Credit Score

Most people understand that a bankruptcy or foreclosure will tank their credit score, but there are plenty of small mistakes you can make that will turn a good score into a mediocre one. Here are seven of the more common errors, plus tips on how to avoid them.

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?

Family Money: Tips for Raising Saving-Savvy Kids

Last week was America Saves Week, but the organizations hoping to spotlight the importance of saving money have their work cut out for them. Not only are we failing to sock enough away, our kids aren't getting the message to save either. Here are four tips for passing on smart savings habits.

Worried About a Money Disaster? Here's Your Plan B

Do you fear something awful is around the corner when it comes to your finances? Given recent years' economic woes, it's not unreasonable. But you can turn your worries to your advantage by planning for the worst before anything goes wrong.

AmEx Blue Cash: Don't Get It for Gas, Get it for Groceries

The best gas cards combine generous rebates and industry-standard interest rates. In our ongoing series examining the best and worst credit card offers out there, we ask: Does American Express' Blue Cash Preferred card measure up?

Why Inflation Is Higher Than It Looks

The Consumer Price Index, which measures inflation, is only as effective as the assumptions it makes -- in this case, about what you buy. If you spend more on certain things than most people, then the CPI will do a terrible job of reflecting the prices you actually pay. In particular, retirees often don't fit the CPI profile well at all.

3 Black Success Stories Share Their Finance 'Secrets'

In honor of Black History month, DailyFinance asked three prominent African Americans to share their thoughts about what economic empowerment means to them, and illuminate what it takes to achieve it -- no matter who you are.

Should You Take That Retailer's Credit Card Deal?

Chances are you've been pitched a retail card more than once. Usually it goes something like this: "Will you be saving 10% using your [name of store] card today?" The hope is you'll find the prospect of a discount alluring enough to sign up. But should you?

Will Discount Deal Lovers Pay to be Groupon VIPs?

Active Groupon users now have a way to sweeten their relationships with the daily deals leader -- but it's going to cost them. Groupon is rolling out Groupon VIP, a program where deal chasers pay $29.99 a year for enhanced benefits on the site.

Allen Iverson Is Broke: What His Errors Can Teach Us

Former NBA superstar Allen Iverson earned $154 million from his Sixers salary alone during his career. Now, he owes more than he can pay. How did it happen, and what lessons can his fiscal foul-ups teach to the rest of us. The answers are distressingly simple.

How Much Will Your Next Car Really Cost You?

Purchase price is just the beginning of what it costs to own a car. Depreciation, insurance and maintenance costs can vary widely between competing models. But is there any way to estimate all of that in advance? A few experts have taken a stab at it.

5 Tips for Writing an Insurance Appeal

Last week, we showed you how to check your hospital bill to make sure you weren't being overcharged. This week, we'll show you what to do when your insurance company refuses to pay.

What Makes a Great Balance Transfer Credit Card?

If you're burdened by credit card debt, lenders want to help you -- by adding more plastic to your arsenal in the form of a balance transfer card, which offers generous up-front terms for moving your debt. And some of those offers are much more generous than others.

4 Money-Etiquette Questions Answered

When it comes to matters of money, tact is often in the eye of the beholder. Take some tips from etiquette experts on how to defuse these tricky financial situations.

6 Strategies for Young Adults to Save More in 2012

Saving doesn't come easily for us young adults. Entry-level salaries don't give you a lot to work with, and we tend to spend what we make. But don't worry: We're not doomed to frivolity and financial ruin. Here's how you can start saving smart.

Readers' Tips for Financial Revival, Part 3: Investing

A few weeks ago, we asked DailyFinance readers for their best tips for putting your financial house in order. We've covered saving and spending wisely. Now, we move on to another key to long-term financial security: making your money work for you.

Savings Insecurity Is Growing: Share Your Stories

Far too many Americans haven't got enough liquid assets set aside to get them through a temporary job loss or other fiscal crisis. If you're among them, we'd like to hear from you: How has an underfunded emergency savings cushion affected you and your family.

The Tricks to Maximizing the Cash-Back Card Payoff

Savers love cash-back cards, which return a fraction of what you spend in good old U.S. currency. Disciplined consumers can bank hundreds of dollars yearly: The key is knowing how to maximize your payback.

Share Your Ideas for a Sweet but Frugal Valentine's Day

Valentine's Day is coming, which means that millions of men are getting ready to drop money on Whitman's samplers and red roses. But there are other options out there -- and we know that our faithful readers have explored at least a few of them.

Readers' Tips for Financial Revival, Part 2: Spend Wisely

A few weeks ago, we asked DailyFinance readers for their best tips for putting your financial house in order. First, we covered saving, but spending in the right way is just as important. Here are some of your best suggestions for managing how your money flows out.

Could Your Shaky Personal Finances Get You Fired?

Money troubles are hard to contain. If your finances are in shambles, the problems can quickly spread, and you probably won't be able to hide them from your boss. Therein lies the trouble: How you handle your money sends a signal to your employers about how you'd handle theirs.

Readers' Tips for Financial Revival, Part 1: Smart Saving

A few weeks ago, we asked DailyFinance readers for their best tips for putting your financial house in order. Many were quick to note that the foundation of financial security lies in being ready when disaster hits. Here are some of their best suggestions for planning for those rainy days.

Older Workers Flock Back to School ... and Student Loans

The best route to a secure job still runs through the classroom, and droves of middle-aged Americans are following it. The proof is in the lending: The fastest growth in the student loan business is among people in their 40s. But are they making a good investment, or a bad bet?

4 'Must Do' Money Moves to Achieve Fiscal Fitness

There are many roads to financial security, but whatever path you follow, there are some mandatory steps everyone ought to take along the way. Alexa von Tobel, founder of LearnVest.com, cuts through the thicket of advice to give us her essential keys to sound money management.

Want to Snag a Better Used Car? Shop Like a Woman

Are women actually better at buying used cars than men? LeaseTrader, which runs a used-car marketplace for people who want to get in or out of a lease rather than buy, crunched some data and came to just that conclusion.

5 Surprising Ways to Find Extra Cash in Your Budget

When traditional financial advice doesn't fit your situation, get creative and save money by ignoring conventional wisdom. Here are five savings strategies that may seem counterintuitive -- until you add up the dramatic results.