Posts filed as “US personal finance”

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.

The economic plan to rob grandma’s bread basket | Helaine Olen

Republicans insist the government is spending too much on social security. Their solution? Something called chained CPI 

Here is one of the problems in retirement planning: you can go along for years, faithfully using retirement calculators, re-balancing your stock market investments, reading your estimated social security payouts, just sure you are on track and – well, poof! – the rules of the game can change in an instant.

And, apparently, the United...Read more.

Your 401k won’t save you | Helaine Olen

Most of us have less than $100,000 in retirement savings, less than half what some estimate is needed

Most of us respond to questions about our financial prospects after retirement with sentiments that could be best be compared to the look on Captain Quint's face when he realized he was about to be eaten by the shark in the 1970s classic Jaws.

There is a $6.6tn gap between what we...Read more.