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Charts: Municipal Bond to US Treasury Yield Ratio

I've been investing in tax-exempt municipal bonds for a few years now. I made the change due to a combination of reasons. For one thing, I started running out of room in my tax-deferred accounts for US Treasury bonds, TIPS bonds, and REITs. Second, … [Read the rest]

Do Financial Advisors Really Keep Portfolios and Clients Disciplined?

I written about Dimensional Fund Advisors (DFA), a mutual fund family that is powered by top academic research. Another things that makes DFA unique is that they are only sold through approved financial advisors. You can't buy them with just any … [Read the rest]

Economic Trend: Affordable Housing via Multi-Generational Living

As a parent of young children, the following chart from this CityLab article definitely caught my attention: The trend is clear that as time goes on, more and more people are living with their parents. At what point does it start being … [Read the rest]

Discover Apple Pay 10% CashBack Bonus – Up to $2,000 Value!

Discover credit cards will work with Apple Pay starting on September 16th, 2015. But the big news is that per this press release, those who pay with their Discover card using Apple Pay from 9/16 to 12/31/15 will automatically earn an extra 10% … [Read the rest]

Fidelity 2% Cash Back Credit Cards At Risk?

One of my long-time favorite credit cards is a grandfathered Fidelity College Rewards MasterCard that gives me 2% flat cash back on all purchases. I'm not sure exactly when I first applied for this card, but it was in the early 2000s. The current … [Read the rest]

Ting GSM SIM Cards: Bring Your Own Phone + Referral Credit

Updated August 2016. Here's the current status of things: New Ting customers get a $25 credit with a referral link. Thanks in advance if you use it, you'll be saving my parents some money on their bill, as I set them up with Ting service … [Read the rest]

Verizon Wireless New Plans August 2015: Existing Customers Should Compare Prices

In August 2015, Verizon Wireless announced that it was ending 2-year contracts for new customers. Before, you got a ~$450 discount on a new phone but also got locked into a 2-year contract with an inflated monthly plan price. Now, you have to buy … [Read the rest]

Free FICO Score from Chase Credit Cards

This post provides updated information and instructions regarding the free FICO score that is available to select Chase credit card holders. Background. Chase started offering free FICO® scores to select US cardholders in March 2015. In … [Read the rest]

Free FICO Score from Barclaycard Credit Cards

This post provides updated information and instructions regarding the free FICO score that is available to Barclaycard US credit card holders. Background. Barclaycard started offering free FICO® scores to select US cardholders in late 2013, … [Read the rest]

Retirement Income Risks: Longevity, Sequence of Returns, and Stupidity

One of the first things that pops up when doing research on retirement annuities is the "annuity puzzle". Essentially, economists have done their calculations and shown that simple, immediate income annuities are theoretically the best fit for many … [Read the rest]

Amazon Prime: Download Shows and Movies, View Offline For Free

Amazon has announced that Amazon Prime members can download select movies and TV episodes for offline viewing, at no additional charge. This works on all Apple iPhones, iPads, and Android-based devices. You may need to update your apps to the … [Read the rest]

Lifetime Income vs. Lump Sum Payouts: You May Live Longer Than You Think

My parents are in the midst of planning their retirement payout structure. I don't know about everyone else, but in my mind I tend to plan to live to pretty much exactly age 80. Early death is depressing to think about (even though I have term … [Read the rest]