See for Yourself

Kyle McIntosh  |  Jul 25, 2021

THOSE WHO FOLLOW financial news know that mid-to-late July is the middle of earnings season. While I enjoy learning how companies are performing, I also get agitated by the way the media reports earnings information.
Having spent more than 20 years in corporate finance, I know the rigor involved in preparing earnings reports. Company accountants usually take one-to-two weeks to compile financial results, which then are reviewed by external auditors. In addition, investor relations,

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Well Rewarded

Andrew Forsythe  |  Jul 25, 2021

AS JULY BEGAN, there was happy news for Chase Freedom Visa cardholders like me: One of the categories for 5% rewards this quarter is grocery stores. We spend a lot on groceries, which means I’ll get a nice cash reward from Chase.
I’m a big believer in credit card cash rewards for two reasons. First, of course, there’s the reward money. The second reason is psychological: Credit card companies are notorious for the outrageous interest and fees they exact from anyone who doesn’t pay off every nickel every month,

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Unnecessary Breaks

Richard Quinn  |  Jul 24, 2021

IT’S SOCIETY’S responsibility to provide for those in need. “Need” is the key word here. It bothers me that so many resources are directed to those of us who made it to old age.

Although there are many low-income seniors, the generalization that we’re all income-challenged is a fallacy. According to the Congressional Research Service, “The poverty rate for individuals aged 65 and older historically was higher than the rates for adults aged 18-64 and children under the age of 18,

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Picking the Fruit

John Lim  |  Jul 24, 2021

LAST MONTH, the Federal Reserve released the results of its latest stress tests of major financial institutions. As an investor in Wells Fargo, I took special interest in the Fed’s findings. Why? If Wells Fargo passed the Fed’s stress test, it would be allowed to raise its dividend, which currently stands at a paltry 10 cents a share, amounting to a dividend yield of just 0.9%.
I’m fully aware that my obsession with stock dividends is less than rational.

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Getting Short

Jonathan Clements  |  Jul 23, 2021

WE JUST LAUNCHED our newest feature: A blog that’ll be updated two or three times a day with new posts that typically run some 300 words. These posts will, I hope, complement the site’s longer articles, which we’ll continue to publish, though perhaps less frequently.
Why introduce a blog? It’ll allow HumbleDollar to be more timely. It’ll be a way to tackle topics that don’t require full-length articles. And it’ll be another opportunity to highlight the financial philosophy that drives much of what we write—and what makes HumbleDollar different from most other financial sites:

We think harping on the stock market’s daily action is foolish and that the forecasts of Wall Street’s chattering class aren’t just worthless,

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Keeping My Cool

Kristine Hayes  |  Jul 23, 2021

MY 2007 HONDA CR-V’s air conditioning system started having issues about three years ago. I took it to a shop where they added refrigerant and declared the problem fixed. A year later, the AC stopped working again so I took it to a different mechanic, who declared the problem solved after adding refrigerant and replacing a relay. Several months later, I was once again driving around in a car at ambient temperatures. Because I spent much of the summer of 2020 working from home,

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Eating My Veggies

Don Southworth  |  Jul 23, 2021

THIRTY YEARS AGO, I took a course on sales and entrepreneurship. We had to buy a few books, subscribe to The Economist and The New York Times, and buy an HP 12C calculator. This was not your usual sales class. I felt like I was piloting the space shuttle as I learned how to use that HP calculator.
I’ll never forget the first time the instructor had us calculate how much money we’d need when we retired.

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Life and Death

Dennis Friedman  |  Jul 22, 2021

I SAW MY MOTHER walking through the neighborhood the other day. She was wearing this big floppy hat hiding her face from the sun. But I knew it was her because I can tell by the way she walked. I see her from afar quite often. She drove by me just yesterday when I was coming out of the grocery store. I wonder why she didn’t wave to me. I knew she saw me.

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Checking Up

Richard Connor  |  Jul 22, 2021

MY WIFE AND I DO a mid-year and year-end financial review. This includes an updated family balance sheet, cashflow analysis, portfolio review and a review of retirement projections.
I’m semi-retired and do some consulting when work is available. This income isn’t guaranteed, so I keep a spreadsheet that estimates our income and tax burden for the year. I usually update this quarterly to see if we need to submit any estimated state or federal tax payments.

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Prices Just Doubled

Jonathan Clements  |  Jul 22, 2021

IF YOU THINK BITCOIN or any other cryptocurrency will one day be used as readily as dollars and cents, give some thought to this year’s volatility. Suppose you were using your bitcoin stash to pay your $2,000 monthly mortgage payment. Between April and today, the effective cost of your mortgage would have doubled—because bitcoin’s value has been pretty much cut in half.
Now, if you were paid in bitcoin and your mortgage payment was fixed at some value specified in bitcoin,

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