Posts filed as “”

If you have to celebrate National Princess Week, don’t buy the goods

Disney princesses are a $4bn industry – but parents, hold onto your wallets and read your kids a book on Elizabeth I instead

National Princess Week is just about upon us. Parents, hold on to your wallets.

No, National Princess Week is not a celebration of the former Kate Middleton, with London tourist shops holding giveaway sales on leftover wedding memorabilia, in order to clear it out in time for the...Read more.

Why ‘financial literacy’ is a bunch of hooey – and why the banks promote it | Helaine Olen

Companies and colleges say that if we all understand our finances, financial crises won't happen. This is simply untrue

April is National Financial Capability Month. You know what that means. We will be subject to many a tedious lecture, telling us how the financial crisis would not have happened if only those darn, irresponsible Americans knew how to handle their funds. And, of course, we'll believe it.

Almost all of us are...Read more.

Why you don’t need life insurance to protect against your child’s debt

It's easy to tell someone to save for their children's college, but higher education costs more than double since the 1980s

These articles … they are all the same. They open with bereaved parents, moms and dads dealing with the death of a young adult child. There is Angela Smith, whose son Donte Newsome, 25, was murdered in 2008. Or David and Rose Prior, whose son Andrew, 23, died after getting...Read more.

Missing jobs create a hole in the lives of the unemployed

Long-term consequences of unemployment will have a ripple effect, causing income and net worth loss decades in the future

Since the start of the Great Recession in December 2007, the American economy has lost 8.7m jobs. While economic growth has resulted in the creation of more than five million new positions, that's still almost three million short of the number of jobs needed.

All those missing jobs didn't belong to numbers,...Read more.

Do as I say, not as I do: Michelle Rhee and the public education paradox

Education activist argues for radical change in public schools but sends her children to private school, like many other officials

Our personal finances play an all-but-unspoken role in how our children are educated. In the United States, we fund public education via local property taxes. This means the more expensive the neighborhood real estate, the more likely that the children living there will attend a school with decent teacher-student ratios and...Read more.

Why the federal budget can’t be managed like a household budget

Not all budgets are created equal – even if politicians say they are. The fed is much better off when it is short on cash

Today in homespun homilies that are out-and-out political hokum, we're going to take on the case of why so many of us believe the federal budget should be managed just like our household finances.

This old saw is routinely trotted out by politicians looking to give themselves...Read more.

Should you pay off your US student loan debt quicker than scheduled? | Helaine Olen

Don't get ambitious about your student loan bill. Build up a decent-sized emergency fund first

So you want to pay down your student loan debt quicker than scheduled. Should you?

When my editor assigned me this piece, I called Zac Bissonnette, the twentysomething financial guru and author of the New York Times bestseller How to be Richer, Smarter and Better Looking Than Your Parents. Zac, who I consider a friend and,...Read more.

America’s silent freelance army

The US last calculated the number of contingent workers in 2005 – how can we structure better policies without hard data?

What kind of job do you have?

No, I don't mean what do you do for a living. Do you have a job, a regular position with set days and hours? One of those old-fashioned things that comes with – at least we hope – health insurance, retirement benefits, vacation and sick...Read more.

Cyprus is no reason to hide your money

Right-wing pundits are scaremongering over fears the US will be the next Cyprus, which is is totally out of the question

My late Tante Bessie had a bank account. In fact, she had more than one. Like a lot of people who lived through the Great Depression as adults, she didn't really trust the banks. She liked to spread her Social Security and pension checks around.

Just in case all those...Read more.

Sheryl Sandberg is the ultimate good girl careful not to upset those in power

The good girl myth states that women only have to behave themselves and play by the rules to win in the workplace

Sheryl Sandberg, the chief operating officer of Facebook, is perpetuating the "good girl" myth.

The good girl myth states that women only have to behave themselves and play by the rules, and then they'll get everything they want. In 2010, Sandberg declared in a 15-minute TED talk that women...Read more.