For Your Own Good

Richard Quinn  |  May 3, 2018

IF WE WON’T SAVE for the future, should somebody do it for us? Everyone knows Americans don’t save; last year, we managed a miserable 3.4% of personal disposable income. That’s not going to cut it for either financial emergencies or retirement.
We can’t even get many workers to save sufficiently to obtain an employer match in their 401(k) plan. That’s free money left on the table. According to separate calculations by Alight Solutions and Fidelity Investments,

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Saving Is Sexy

Jonathan Clements  |  Apr 14, 2018

WE DON’T PROMISE thinner thighs and harder abs here at HumbleDollar. But—unbeknownst to us—we could be the secret to your relationship success.
This revelation comes from an academic paper, “A Penny Saved Is a Partner Earned: The Romantic Appeal of Savers,” by Prof. Jenny G. Olson and Prof. Scott I. Rick, which is based on Olson’s dissertation research.
Conventional wisdom—and earlier academic work—suggest that, if men flaunt their wealth, they’re likely to have greater dating success.

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The Tipping Point

Jonathan Clements  |  Mar 10, 2018

STARTING TO SAVE is a discouraging business. Even if you invest in stocks—and even if stocks post gains—progress initially can seem agonizingly slow.
Consider a simple example. Let’s say you earn $100,000 a year. Not exactly an everyday salary, I admit, but it makes the numbers easier to grasp. You save 12% of your income, equal to $12,000 each year. That money is invested at the start of the year and earns 6% annually,

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Caitlin Roberson  |  Oct 5, 2017

WHEN MY SISTER graduated from physicians’ assistant school earlier this year, I gave her a journal, the pretty, unmarked, paper-substantive kind that every female loves. Inside, I wrote five things that I wish I’d known, or am glad I knew, when I got my bachelor’s in 2006. Here was the first:
I’m gonna call it self-tithing. Ya know: Basically, what Mom and Dad taught us to give to the church, I’m telling you to give to yourself.

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Saving: 10 Questions

Jonathan Clements  |  Aug 24, 2017

IF YOU DON’T SAVE diligently, you are highly unlikely to amass a decent-size nest egg. Time to make amends? Here are 10 questions to ponder:

Do you regularly spend more than planned? Try writing down every purchase you make. That’ll tell you where your dollars are going—and make you think twice before spending.
How much of your income goes toward fixed living costs? We’re talking about items such as mortgage or rent, car payments,

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What It Takes

Jonathan Clements  |  Mar 25, 2017

SAVING DILIGENTLY sounds like such a rudimentary skill that it gets scant respect. Who couldn’t spend 10% or 15% less than they earn, so they set aside a little money for the future? And yet the U.S. savings rate remains miserably low and many folks are pitifully ill-prepared for retirement.
The reality: Saving money may be simple but, clearly, it isn’t easy. What does it take? Here are six key ingredients.
1. There’s the obvious: We need an income.

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Reaping Windfalls

Jonathan Clements  |  Feb 25, 2017

MANY EMPLOYEES deliberately have too much income tax withheld from their paycheck, so they receive a fat refund each spring. Federal refunds averaged $2,850 per income-tax return in 2014, the latest year for which data is available.
This is completely irrational and entirely sensible.
It’s irrational, because we’re making an interest-free loan to Uncle Sam. Why not have the correct amount of tax withheld, and then take a sliver of each paycheck and pop it in a high-yield savings account,

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