bill.com IPO not the end of its global growth story in B2B invoicing

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bill.com IPO not the end of its global growth story in B2B invoicing
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25 Holiday Items You Should Buy at a Dollar Store

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25 Holiday Items You Should Buy at a Dollar Store
Impact Photography / Shutterstock.com Holiday shoppers plan to spend 4% more in 2019 than they did in 2018, according to a survey by the National Retail Federation. That translates to each consumer spending $1,048, on average, during this holiday season. There’s plenty to spend on, too. With gifts, decor, entertaining and more to fund, it’s not uncommon to spend hundreds of dollars... [...]
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Up to 65% off Disney Toys, Apparel, and more!

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Up to 65% off Disney Toys, Apparel, and more!
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here. Today only, Amazon is offering up to 65% off Disney Toys, Apparel, and more! Here are some deals you can get… Get this 21-Piece Disney Princess Dress Up Trunk for only $22.41! Get this Disney Ideas Hardcover Book: More than 100 Disney Crafts, Activities, and Games for just $12.36! Get this Melissa & Doug Disney Mickey Mouse Wooden Character Magnets for only $4.75! Get this Fisher-Price Disney Mickey & the Roadster Racers for only $16.67! Get this Sofia the First Royal Family for only $5.36! Get this Lionel Disney’s Frozen Battery-powered Model Train Set for only $34.99 shipped! Get this Toy Story Disney/Pixar Pet Patrol Playset for only $10.49! Shop the Disney sale here. Valid today only, December 11, 2019, while supplies last. Sign up for a free trial of Amazon Prime to get guaranteed FREE two-day shipping (and possibly one-day or same-day shipping!). And don’t forget you can sign up for Swagbucks to earn free gift cards to use on deals on Amazon. [...]
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These 14 Strategies Will Help You Save Big on Your Universal Orlando Trip

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These 14 Strategies Will Help You Save Big on Your Universal Orlando Trip
While theme parks are high on the list of favorite vacation destinations, they can get really expensive really quickly when you factor in extras like hotels and food.  Here at The Penny Hoarder, we believe in a healthy balance between work and play. So if you can afford it, take that dream vacation and enjoy every second of it — just make sure you don’t completely abandon your penny hoarding ways.  If you’re headed to Universal Orlando Resort — home to the incredible Wizarding World of Harry Potter — check out the insider tips I’ve developed as an Orlando native and former witch at Universal’s Diagon Alley. You’ll save money in the parks without sacrificing any of the fun.  Find Tickets for Less Your savings can start before you even step through the turnstiles — check out these ideas for cutting the cost of park admission! 1. Buy Your Tickets Ahead of Time The simplest way to save on Universal Studios’ prices for park entry is to buy your tickets before you get to the gate. You can save up to $20 per person when you buy multiday tickets online. If you’re traveling with a family of four, that’s $80 in savings already.  2. Use Your AAA Membership to Your Advantage Prices vary, so make sure to ask about discounted Universal tickets at your local AAA office. You can save 15% or more when you buy through AAA. 3. Buy the Lowest-Tier Ticket and Upgrade Later As long as you purchase your tickets directly through Universal Studios, you can upgrade your tickets at guest services at any point during your trip.  This is a good idea for anyone traveling with kids — they get sick, burned out and do not care if you spent a hundred extra dollars on a three-day ticket.  If you come to find everyone is up for an extra day, you can upgrade your tickets by paying the difference — as long as you do so before you leave the park. Once your tickets expire, you’ll have to pay for new ones.  4. Shop Around Carefully Orlando is riddled with sleazy ticket vendors promising half-price theme park tickets.  But beware — even if the tickets you purchase are real, these vendors may be selling them illegally. These tickets often come from park employees or locals who work special events and receive complimentary passes. Universal does not permit the sale of these passes.  If you get caught at the gate, you’re out of luck — and money.  Still, there are some reputable ticket sites out there. Just make sure to do your research on the seller before buying. Travel and Accommodations After tickets, the hotel and travel fees are the biggest items in your vacation budget. Here are some strategies for saving on these expenses. 5. Book Everything in Advance If you’re a seasoned Penny Hoarder, you probably already know this tactic: Purchasing plane tickets and reserving your hotel room ahead of time are the easiest ways to get the best rates. 6. To Resort or Not to Resort? Unfortunately, there is no one-size-fits-all answer here: It’s going to take some number crunching on your end to figure out which hotel situation is right for you. There are less expensive hotels (or Airbnb rentals!) if you leave the Universal Resort property, but you may end up paying more in the long run because you’ll miss out on some pretty sweet perks at the parks.  To keep it brief(ish), here’s a cost-effectiveness breakdown: Select Universal Resort hotels include shuttle transport to and from the airport and the parks. So staying on the property could save you on transportation costs, plus the $25/day parking fee you’d pay if you were driving. But more importantly, and something to consider if you had planned to buy Express Passes anyway: Certain resort hotels throw in free Universal Express Unlimited passes for each member of the family — a $129 value per person per day. (Think: Family of four spending four days in the parks. $129 times four people times four days = $2,064.)  Another bonus? Universal Resort hotel guests get early entry to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter and parts of Volcano Bay: You’ll get a whole hour to explore each morning before the major crowds come pouring in. Whew. Did you catch all that? Great, because I have one final point to make: If you go the Universal Resort hotel route, and you take advantage of those Express Unlimited passes, you could feasibly cut a day off your in-park time and a day off your trip (which means one less day paying for tickets and a hotel.)  If you’re not concerned about crowds, wait times or transportation (maybe you’re driving in to save on airfare!), then a cheaper, off-property hotel might be the right answer for your family. I’m just trying to show you all the options, friends! Making the Most of Your Time By making the most of your time, you can hit more attractions without shelling out for extra days inside the gates. 7. Decide if Express Passes Are Right for You If you’re still on the fence about whether to secure Express Passes for your trip (and you’re not going the resort hotel route), here are some points to consider. Visitors can often package Express Passes with admission tickets, lowering the overall cost significantly.  However, if you’re a serious Harry Potter fan, you should know that Express Passes are not valid for some attractions in Diagon Alley and Hogsmeade. Here’s a really helpful guide that breaks down Express Passes along with the rides and attractions they work on.  If you decide you don’t need to skip the lines all day every day, you could buy each member of your family a one-day Express Unlimited pass. You can knock out a pretty hefty list of attractions that day, then go at a more leisurely pace for the remainder of your trip. 8. Plan Your Vacation Around Peak Season Check this handy crowd calendar from Orlando Informer (a seriously great resource for all things Orlando and theme parks) to figure out which days will be the least crowded. Smaller crowds mean less wait time; less wait time means you can spend fewer days in the parks; and fewer days in the parks means you save on tickets.  Attendance is lowest on weekdays, particularly in late fall and late winter. If your family can afford the time off work and school, you’ll get the most bang for your buck at these times. Save on Universal Studios’ Prices Inside the Park While most of your savings will come from big-ticket items like park entry and the hotel, the little things can add up quickly.  9. Use the Lockers Bring everything you think you’ll need with you, and rent an all-day locker for about $10 per day. You get unlimited opening privileges, unlike the timed and complimentary lockers, so you can use your locker as a home base to return to when you need to reapply sunscreen, change into dry clothes or grab a sweatshirt for the evening chill (yep, even in Florida).  Even though you’re paying $10 a day, you’re saving money by not shelling out for $40 sweatshirts for the whole family when the sun goes down.  10. Avoid Paying for Pricy Food Theme park food is expensive. On your way to your hotel, purchase breakfast food (if your hotel doesn’t offer free breakfast) and portable snacks. The parks allow small snacks that don’t require heating or refrigeration — and while you can’t bring a picnic lunch, the rules are a little fuzzy as to what constitutes a “small snack,” so you can probably make a case for many items. Avoid buying expensive sodas and bottled water inside the parks — you can bring in sealed or empty water bottles to refill throughout the day.  Now, while this Penny Hoarder would usually recommend bringing all the snacks, splitting meals four ways, and avoiding expensive alcohol and novelty treats, I do have one caveat: If you’re primarily there for The Wizarding World of Harry Potter experience, consider investing in a dining plan. Even if you just purchase one, your whole party will be able to sample the fun Wizarding World treats — and if butterbeer i [...]
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Your Guide to Citi’s 48-Month Rule

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Your Guide to Citi’s 48-Month Rule
Citi has an impressive lineup of rewards credit cards with generous welcome bonuses. Whether you’re looking to stock up on transferable Citi ThankYou points or AAdvantage miles, Citi has multiple cards to choose from. The downer? Citi has also begun restricting the welcome bonuses on some of these credit cards. In some cases, if you’ve... Ariana Arghandewal is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: travel@nerdwallet.com. The article Your Guide to Citi’s 48-Month Rule originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
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Stop Waiting Until Your Kids Are Teenagers to Talk to Them About Money!

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Stop Waiting Until Your Kids Are Teenagers to Talk to Them About Money!
“When do you start talking to your kids about money and how old should they be before you talk to them about it?” We get this question often and we decided to tackle it head on in today’s podcast episode. And by that, I mean we talked about a number of things that might be a little be controversial. 🙂 We approach the conversation of money with our kids much like we approach anything else in our parenting — with the desire to lead by example and raise future adults. In this episode, we share when we begin talking about money with our kids, why we think it’s important to let your kids handle money from a young age, why we involve our kids in financial conversations and decisions, how we offer our kids opportunity to earn money, and why we are okay with letting our kids make mistakes with money. In This Episode:  [01:14] What’s saving our lives? It’s all about Christmas decorating,  [06:14] Off the bookshelf: A Cross to Kill by Andrew Huff and Families Where Grace is in Place by Jeff VanVonderen. [13:57] Learn four strategies to help kids learn how to think about and handle money. [14:58] Strategy number 1: Set a Great Example. More is caught than taught. [18:22] The second strategy: Start Teaching From a Young Age. It’s never to early to begin! [21:39] Strategy number 3: Involve Your Kids as Much as Possible. Make it a family conversation and work together to achieve your financial goals! [24:42] The fourth strategy: Let your kids make mistakes. Save them the $3000 and $30,000 mistakes later by letting them make $3 and $30 mistakes now. [28:12] Why we let our kids earn and handle money and what this looks like for us. Links and Resources: A Cross to Kill by Andrew Huff Families Where Grace is in Place by Jeff VanVonderen Why We Pay Our Kids For Doing Chores Crystal’s Favorite Things on Amazon CrystalPaine.com MoneySavingMom.com Crystal’s Instagram account (I’d love for you to follow me there! I usually hop on at least a few times per day and share behind-the-scenes photos and videos, my grocery store hauls, funny stories, or just anything I’m pondering or would like your advice or feedback on!) Have feedback on the show or suggestions for future episodes or topics? Send me an email: crystal@moneysavingmom.com How to Listen to The Crystal Paine Show The podcast is available on iTunes, Android, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can listen online through the direct player we’ll include in the show notes of each episode. OR, a much easier way to listen is by subscribing to the podcast through a free podcast app on your phone. (Find instructions for how to subscribe to a podcast here.) Ready to dive in and listen? Hit the player above or search for “The Crystal Paine Show” on your favorite podcast app. Note: This post contains affiliate links. If you click through and make a purchase, we may receive a small commission — at no additional cost to you. Thank you so much for your support! [...]
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NFA Proposes Amendments to Several NFA Rules and Interpretative Notices to Apply to Cleared Swaps

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NFA Proposes Amendments to Several NFA Rules and Interpretative Notices to Apply to Cleared Swaps
On December 3, the National Futures Association (NFA) proposed amendments to various NFA Compliance Rules and Interpretive Notices related to discretionary customer accounts, customer information, risk disclosures and bunched orders to apply to cleared swaps, in addition to other minor amendments. Most notably, NFA proposal would amend the following: NFA Compliance Rule 2-8 to specify that NFA’s requirements for discretionary accounts apply to cleared swaps customer accounts; NFA Compliance Rule 2-30 to expand existing customer information and risk disclosure requirements to apply to cleared swaps; and Interpretive Notice 9029 to expand the scope of the Interpretative Notice to bunched orders involving cleared swaps. NFA also proposed amendments to other applicable Interpretive Notices to integrate the proposal. Absent additional review by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), NFA may establish an effective date for the amendments as early as 10 days after receipt of the submission by the CFTC. A copy of the proposed amendments is available here. [...]
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This Man Told Us How He Turned Christmas Lights Into a Lucrative Business

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This Man Told Us How He Turned Christmas Lights Into a Lucrative Business
Editor’s note: This post was originally published in 2018 and has been updated for the 2019 holiday season. When you have a name like Josh Trees and you run a Christmas light installation business, you have to be prepared for the inevitable question: Is that actually your name? Trees — yes, that’s his real name — started his business, We Hang Christmas Lights, in 1997, decorating homes, businesses and assorted branched greenery in Temecula, California.  But Trees definitely gets the last (jolly) laugh. “When we first started doing this, people were like, ‘Oh, that’s a cute little business,’” Trees says. “We were like, ‘Yeah, cute,’ —  you don’t realize people are paying us $3,500 to put lights up on their houses.  “By my third year, I was hitting a net profit of right around $138,000.”  Now Trees crisscrosses the country with strands of lights and a tiny house to teach others how they can build their own businesses hanging twinkling bulbs. On the First Day of Christmas Lighting Ah, the fond memories of hauling out last year’s box of lights to add some holiday cheer to the humble abode. Haphazardly arrange the lights around the front stoop, throw a wreath on the door and voilá!  But if you’re starting a business hanging lights, that simplified recollection can lead to costly errors, according to Trees. And he should know, because he had the same idea. “We were making mistakes on everything — we were just a bunch of guys thinking, ‘Hey, this is going to be easy,’” Trees says. “We were hanging other people’s lights — that’s a huge no-no.… The second stage was hanging the crummy lights from retailers. “I’m surprised I made it through the first couple years.” By the third year, Trees had moved onto purchasing lights from wholesale vendors, which offered discounts for bulk purchases. He was also buying commercial-grade strands so that when one bulb went out, they didn’t all go out. But Trees says his biggest mistake had nothing to do with lights — it was underbidding jobs. “I got into it in the first year…  and I didn’t make any money — probably lost money,” Trees says. “I was charging $150 for jobs that should have been $850. “I bid a job for $3,500 that should have literally been $35,000. It was horrible.”  Enlightening Business Strategies Trees’ students echo his refrain, noting that learning from other professionals early on can help transform a business idea into a profitable enterprise — and with a lot fewer mistakes along the way. One of Trees’ early students was Jeff Krall, owner of American Holiday Lights in Illinois. In 2008, Krall attended an individual training session, which Trees conducted before he started traveling the country to teach classes. “Josh helped me get it started,” says Krall. “Everything from how to hang the lights on the rooflines… making our own extension cords, how to wrap the trees. “It would take someone… two or three years to learn how to do it correctly, whereas Josh, in two or three days, he tells them how to do everything.” In his first season of business, Krall estimates he had 30 clients. Now he manages 25 to 35 employees who light 35 to 40 houses a day during the season, at an average price of $1,400 to $1,500 per house. However, those visions of sugarplums and dollar signs dancing in your head might not be in your immediate future — or at least not the first season. In 2017, Lucas Pulvermacher decided to add a light-hanging business to his busy lawn care enterprise near Oshkosh, Wisconsin.  “My first year was tricky because I had to have an inventory of the lights. That’s a fairly large cost — and also the ladder, equipment, safety stuff like that,” says Pulvermacher. “I’d say we came out about even.” Pulvermacher says his Lucas Lights lit three houses and two businesses after launching in mid-November last year — “It was hard because we started so late.”  After taking Trees’ class to learn marketing and sales strategies, Pulvermacher invested in professionally designed materials, including a logo. Beyond Christmas Lights One of the cool things about those twinkling lights is that they still work after Jan. 1. That means there’s more business after the wintry holiday season. “A lot of the guys we work with, they do wedding lights, event lights, party lights and backyard lighting, that sort of thing, and a lot also do landscape lighting,” says Trees, who estimates that light installations for weddings bring in $1,800 on average but can go as high as $7,000. Krall, who also owns a roofing business, hangs lights all year round for backyard weddings, Diwali festival of lights celebrations and Halloween parties — “but the majority of what we do is Christmas,” he notes. Holiday Gigs So let’s say you’re not ready to start your own business but being outside hanging lights sounds like a better gig than working a seasonal retail job.  You might be in luck. Krall notes that the toughest part of his business is finding good, reliable help. “We got creative this year, so we align ourselves with other companies out there that are seasonal, like landscapers or pool companies,” Krall says. “When they’re laying off, we’re actively developing relationships.” Trees recommends that installers offer tiered bonus pay, adding an extra $1 per hour each week to incentivize continued attendance as the season winds down — particularly in January when companies have to take down the lights. “Helpers can typically make anywhere from between… $13 at the low end to about $20 at the high end — and that’s before bonuses,” Trees says. “When you find somebody that’s good, it’s key that you keep those people, because it’s temporary, and they know it’s temporary.” For people interested in finding holiday lighting jobs in their area, Trees suggests checking places like Craigslist, Indeed and the We Hang Christmas Lights site, which includes a directory of light installers that’s searchable by zip code — just mention your interest in a job when you fill out the online form.  Trees has found that these holiday gigs are best suited for people who work warm-weather jobs in roofing, tree trimming and window washing. All of which have at least one trait in common — no fear of heights.  And yes, the money is nice, but Krall and Pulvermacher agree that the best part of hanging bulbs is the way their customers’ faces light up when they see the finished product. “Everybody’s in a really good mood around Christmas time,” says Krall.  Pulvermacher adds: “It’s just kind of a cozy feeling when you see a house all lit up.” Tiffany Wendeln Connors is a writer/editor at The Penny Hoarder.  This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017. [...]
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Cheap Alternatives to Gift Exchanges

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Cheap Alternatives to Gift Exchanges
Looking for cheap alternatives to gift exchanges? Here are 12 ideas to still have fun while on a tight budget! Recently, a reader wrote in and asked this question: “Our extended family usually does a gift exchange for the kids each year where we all draw names of which kids we will buy for. The spending amount is usually $20-25 per child. This year, one of the families is struggling financially and asked that we do not exchange gifts at all. Others would like to give something to the kids, but don’t want anyone to feel bad. My question is, are there any other fun, cheap alternatives to a kids’ gift exchange? -a reader” I posted this question on Facebook and got so many great responses. Here are 12 of my favorite cheap alternatives to gift exchanges: 1. Stocking Fill Up Every child can bring a stocking to fill and each family puts a little something into each stocking. That way everyone goes home with the same thing and nobody needs to know who gave what. Just drop in whatever fits your budget, whether it’s a candy cane, a book, or a fro-yo gift card. -Jenny 2. Saran Wrap Ball Have one of the families that wants to do gifts do a Saran Wrap Ball super big for the kids. That way everyone gets something and no one is left out. It’s so much fun to watch the kids do it. Give them a set of oven mitts to hold the ball and unwrap it with them on. You’ll love it! -Autumn We have done the Saran Wrap Ball and it is so much fun!! Just have the families who can afford to pitch in help pay for the small gifts. We went to the Dollar Tree and Five Below and there were items for every age group!! So much fun… and then the kids don’t have to feel bad or the parents! -Tonia 3. Experience Gifts Maybe instead of gifts everyone who can afford to chip in can do so to pay for the kids to all go bowling, ice skating, or some kind of outing? This way, they can make memories together. You could even make little gift certificates to the outing/event for all of the kids.  -Kristin 4. Our Favorites Game We do something called “our favorites”. We pick a theme (this year is Favorite Cracker) and if you want to participate you can but you don’t have to. You bring your favorite cracker, wrapped, and then we all sit in a circle and read a story that has a lot of ‘lefts’ and ‘rights’ and you pass the gifts accordingly. At the end of the story, the gift you have in your hand is yours. We take turns opening the package and guess who the gift originally belonged to. We keep the theme very simple so it’s affordable but it’s something to do together. One year was a favorite candy bar, favorite salty snack, favorite magazine. Some families bring one gift to share as a family, some families bring a gift for each person in the family and the kids LOVE passing the gifts back and forth during the story. -Jenny 5. $5 Gift Exchange With our extended family we used to have the kids draw names and exchange $5 gifts. Last year, we didn’t draw names for the older ones (10+) and instead they played a passing game with their $5 gifts and they loved it! I mean, some of them literally ended up with nail clippers and gum but they had so much fun choosing interesting cheap gifts and playing the game that it didn’t matter how small the gifts were. -Kimberly 6. Homemade Gifts One year, our gifts all had to be homemade. It was so great! We had chili mix, homemade vanilla, a “fort kit”, baked goods, handmade blankets, and more! -Emily 7. Ice Cream Social & Toy Swap How about an evening of “toy sharing” and dessert buffet or sundae bar? Have the kids pick one or more of their own toys to bring and share with their cousins for the evening or day. Kids always love to even just play with a toy that’s new to them. Each family can also bring either a treat to share or an ingredient for an ice cream sundae bar. Those who can spend more can buy the ice cream or more elaborate toppings and those who have limited budgets can bring something inexpensive like a bag of mini marshmallows (usually under $2 or $1 on sale) or chocolate chips. Set it all up and let kids and adults indulge. The kids get to go home with their toy (or maybe even swap for a bit if a cousin is willing) and everyone enjoys an evening of fun and treats. -Ulana 8. White Elephant Gift Exchange We do a White Elephant Gift Exchange in our family, so you can do what you already have or snag something from a thrift store, (we have a $5 limit). Then we do the draw numbers to see the order we open, then you can either open yours or steal someone’s already opened one and they can either open/keep or steal. After something has been stolen 3 times it gets to be kept by that person/out of play. It is a riot, you still get to open something, it took all the pressure off of the shopping aspect which made everything more enjoyable for everyone! -Laura I would do a funny white elephant gift. Pick stuff from around the house. The whole family can get in. Just pick fun and goofy things, that you might have laying around! We did this at work, and there was everything from a t-shirt folder, used candles, ugly decorations, etc. Everyone had a great laugh! And for those that didn’t have stuff, they went to Goodwill and spent like a dollar or two! – Dawn 9. Secondhand Exchange One year, we did an exchange that had to be used or second hand. We could hand down our own toys, book, or clothes, or purchase from a garage sale or thrift shop. -Emily 10. Gingerbread Building House Night What about building gingerbread houses together? We make simple ones out of graham crackers ahead of time and have everyone bring some candy to share. It’s one of my kids’ favorite Christmas activities. -Jessica Tip: If someone is buying the gingerbread house supplies ANYWAY, wrap up the various candy. That way the kid’s ‘gifts’ are actually contributions to the gingerbread house! Everyone feels like they made an important contribution to the house and then when leaving, all the kids split up the house and take some home for a treat later. -Shannon 11. Ornament Exchange My mom and her sisters always did an ornament exchange. There were lots of homemade ornaments and some store bought ornaments when times were better. The cousins all had Christmas ornaments for their first tree as an adult. One of the favorite ornaments was a box made of old Christmas cards with M&M’s in them. My aunt was so embarrassed that she had almost no money and made them with reused cards. She was a married in aunt and the sisters all had tremendous artistic talents. All of the cousins loved them the best that year and they were refilled for many Christmases to come. -Anne 12. Book Swap We do a book exchange among all cousins. We encouraged gifting beloved books from their own library or our local used book store. -Sarah Tip: I love to read and to give books for presents but that can be rather expensive. However, I have found a FABULOUS way to keep the cost of books down to a minimum: I hit the used book store and the thrift stores in my area. It’s like a treasure hunt, you simply NEVER know what kind of good books you might be able to find. Periodically, I have to purge my book shelves of books I don’t want anymore. If I know someone in my family that might enjoy it, that’s what I give them for their birthday or Christmas. If I don’t know anyone in my family to give it to, I take it to the used book store for a credit. Once I have enough credit, I use that credit for books to use as gifts. It’s such a fun way to spend the day. Also, many of the libraries in my area also have a “Friend s of the Library” room where they sale the books they are discarding for whatever reason for a nominal fee (usually it’s like 10 cents for magazines, 25 cents for paperbacks and 50 cents for hardbacks). -Constance What other ideas would [...]
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How to Earn AmEx Points via Rakuten’s Shopping Portal

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How to Earn AmEx Points via Rakuten’s Shopping Portal
Are you a member of Rakuten and have an AmEx credit card that earns Membership Rewards points? You could rack up extra AmEx points by using a new or existing Rakuten account. Here’s how the new partnership works. About Rakuten First, let’s talk about Rakuten: It’s a shopping portal designed to reward customers for everyday... Caroline Lupini is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: travel@nerdwallet.com. The article How to Earn AmEx Points via Rakuten’s Shopping Portal originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
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17 Renovations That Are Unlikely to Help Sell Your Home

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17 Renovations That Are Unlikely to Help Sell Your Home
goodluz / Shutterstock.com We all like to think that making positive changes to a home can make it more attractive to buyers. However, some renovations, while they might make you feel more comfortable, might not actually help you sell your home in the long run. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) recently released its 2019 Remodeling Impact Report, finding that some renovations are less... [...]
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How to find the ideal buyer for a company

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How to find the ideal buyer for a company
The post How to find the ideal buyer for a company appeared first on ONEtoONE Corporate Finance. [...]
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Put Yourself in the Driver’s Seat: 4 Tips to Limit Debt When Buying a Car

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Put Yourself in the Driver’s Seat: 4 Tips to Limit Debt When Buying a Car
Ready for a new (or new-ish) set of wheels? Before you set foot in a dealership or start picking out the trim, you should prepare your bank account for a hit — the average price for a mid-size car was $27,968 in October 2019, according to Kelley Blue Book.  For people who don’t have an extra $30,000 lying around, that means taking on auto loan debt — and plenty of us do. Outstanding debt balances on auto loans rose $18 billion in the third quarter of 2019, ballooning to $1.3 trillion, according to the Federal Reserve. For comparison, credit card debt rose $13 billion in the same period to $880 billion.  But just because you need a vehicle doesn’t mean you have to dig a huge financial hole you’ll spend years climbing out of. We’re here with strategies to help you get behind the wheel with the least amount of debt. 4 Ways to Limit Auto Loan Debt Ready to hit the open road? Before you rev your car-shopping engines, put your finances in park and check out these four ways to avoid taking on any more auto loan debt than necessary. (And in return, I promise to stop with the car puns.) FROM THE DEBT FORUM Eliminating Credit Card Debit - Take out personal loan with low interest rate 12/4/19 @ 2:28 PM L Balance transfer credit card 11/27/19 @ 6:39 PM Credit card Debt 11/19/19 @ 3:56 PM Student loans 11/20/19 @ 2:17 PM See more in Debt or ask a money question 1. Set a Budget Here’s the thing about budgeting for a car: You’re not just budgeting for a car (or at least you shouldn’t be). You’re also paying for the tax and title, the gas, the oil changes, the insurance and the inevitable nail-in-a-tire-costs-me-how-much moment. So before you let a dealership lure you in with the promise of a low monthly payment (while glossing over the fact that it’s for a seven-year loan), do your homework.  Set a budget that you can comfortably live with each month for the car payment plus the regular maintenance — the average maintenance and repair costs for a small sedan are 8.53 cents per mile, according to AAA — and other expenses associated with owning a vehicle. Better yet, before you start figuring out how big of a loan you’ll need, consider ways you can save money to buy a car. A bigger down payment — or, gasp, paying for that ride in cash — means you’ll fork over less of your hard-earned money for interest on the loan. 2. Know Your Credit Score Before you drive, you should know where you stand.  Knowing your credit score can help you figure out how much a car loan will cost since. Your credit score is calculated by a number of factors, including whether you pay your bills on time — and thus can be trusted with lower interest rate on a loan.   If you’re a superprime (800s) kind of borrower, you can expect to pay thousands less in interest over the life of the loan than the deep subprime (300 to 500) borrower.  So what if you’re in the less-than-prime territory? Consider ways to improve your credit score before you buy, shop for a more affordable (perhaps used) set of wheels or find a co-signer who has good credit. 3. Get an Auto Loan Preapproval Once you know your credit score and how much car you can afford, it’s time to get a loan. And although the dealership may seem like a convenient place to finance your vehicle, it’s also likely the costliest (dealers often make more money on the finder’s fee for your loan than they do on the car itself). Instead, start shopping online for an auto loan preapproval — a financing offer that includes the maximum loan amount, interest rate and terms of the loan. By shopping online, you can compare offers from multiple lenders without a dealer pressuring you to make a decision on the spot. Pro Tip Just because you can get approved for a loan doesn’t mean you need to take the full amount — stick to what your original budget dictated you can comfortably pay monthly. An auto loan preapproval letter gives you leverage when it comes time to discuss financing — simply present the letter to the dealer and ask them to beat your lender’s offer. Having a preapproved auto loan could end up saving you thousands in interest and gives you the power to search for the best price on the vehicle rather than being shackled to whichever dealer will offer you financing. 4. Break Free of the Underwater Auto Loan  All of these tips are great if you’re starting fresh with an auto loan, but what if you’re still paying for your old car — and you owe more than it’s worth (also known as negative equity)? You have a number of choices for getting out of an underwater auto loan. There are the easy-but-unwise options like rolling over your negative equity, which probably puts you underwater immediately on your new auto loan. Or you can choose the tough-but-sensible options, like holding onto your old hunk of junk until you get your loan back above the waterline. Breaking the cycle of auto loan debt lets you save on the interest you pay and eventually own your wheels outright. Eliminating that extra debt will put you in the driver’s seat to decide where to spend all that extra cash. Tiffany Wendeln Connors is a staff writer/editor at The Penny Hoarder. Read her bio and other work here, then catch her on Twitter @TiffanyWendeln. This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017. [...]
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Christine Lagarde pioneers ECB climate change policies – what can Fintechs do?

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Christine Lagarde pioneers ECB climate change policies – what can Fintechs do?
Christine Lagarde made waves when she got chosen as the first woman president of the ECB. Now she is making waves with her push for climate conscious monetary policies. In her new role as the ECB president, she is hitting the ground running with some amazing policy work around climate change. The vision is to […] The post Christine Lagarde pioneers ECB climate change policies – what can Fintechs do? appeared first on Daily Fintech. [...]
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Life Update: Pregnancy (week 19), our first foster care placement, plus more!

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Life Update: Pregnancy (week 19), our first foster care placement, plus more!
Welcome to my weekly life update where I share about my pregnancy & give you a peek into our life this past week. If you want to follow a lot more behind-the-scenes and real-time updates every week, be sure to follow my stories and posts on Instagram. 19 weeks!! It feels like the last two weeks have sort of dragged by slower than usual as I anticipated being at the halfway mark. I have a feeling once I hit 20 weeks, then it will feel like it flies by for a bit until I start anticipating 30 weeks and then 40 weeks. HIGHLIGHTS I definitely started looking more pregnant this week. A lot of people noticed it and it’s fun (and weird!) to look down and see a protruding belly! I also broke out my first pair of maternity jeans (see photo above!) which felt pretty monumental! NOTABLE I started taking only one dose of iron daily + one dose of Blood Builder (instead of a double dose of SlowFe). It seems like this combo is working well for my stomach + I seem to have had more energy this week and I have to wonder if the B12 is helping with that?! I’m still nauseous at least part of most every day and running on about 50% the energy that I usually am, but it’s SO much better than the first trimester and I’m so grateful! CRAVINGS Scrambled eggs, avocados, and sourdough toast with butter continue to be my go to’s. I also had this obsession with making a pie mixing yogurt and whipped topping and freezing it in a graham cracker crust (thanks to a suggestion from a follower for how to use up all this plain yogurt I got marked down at a crazy price!) Weight gain: 10 lbs. We bought and decorated a Christmas tree this week! I felt like we were at least a week behind the rest of the world in getting this up, but I guess there are no rules for Christmas, right? The good news is that because we waited, we were able to get the tree for half price! (Psst! If you’ve been around here for awhile, you’ll remember that we ditched having a big Christmas tree last year. But this year, we decided to bring back the tradition and we don’t regret it! Want to hear about more of our Christmas traditions? We all recorded a podcast as a family on that very topic.) Silas had this big wart on his finger that he got burned off this week at the pediatrician’s office. Growing up, I had to get a lot of warts burned off, so I felt so badly for him when he was in pain for the next day as a result. But he really wanted to get it taken off and it was so big that I didn’t think any of the natural remedies would work (I tried a bunch of them growing up, including ACV, duct tape, wart remover ointment, and more and none of them ever worked at all for me!!) Gratefully, the pain only lasted for a day and he’s really happy that it’s healing! Kathrynne had her first basketball games of the season this week. She’s on Varsity this year and has a new coach, so she’s being stretched in good ways. We love getting to cheer her on and try to go to every single game that we can go to. It becomes a fun family activity — and we also get to see new parts of TN as we drive to little towns in different places for her away games! We also had a big Christmas gathering for all of the youth group members from both campuses of our church + the leaders. I laughed so hard and it was such a gift during a very full week. (By the way, Jesse and I have just loved the opportunity to serve as youth group leaders this year. It has brought us so much joy and life to pour into these kids!) Friday afternoon, we got a call about a 3-sibling group in foster care that didn’t have a home for the weekend. They were 13, 11, and 3 and Jesse and I felt strongly we were supposed to say yes. It turned out to be such a wonderful weekend. Tiring, but such a gift to get to open our home up and love on these kids. They had never decorated Christmas cookies before, so we had a fun time baking and decorating cookies together. The 3-year-old gave Kaitlynn a makeover! 🙂 The stay included one night with very little sleep because the 3-year-old had a bad cough and it kept waking her up and then she’d get scared and cry. I finally figured out that if I laid next to her bed, when she woke up, she’d be a lot less scared if I was right there with her. Her cough got worse on Saturday, so I took her into urgent care just to be safe. Gratefully, no ear infection (she’d be complaining of her ears hurting) and just an upper respiratory infection. They suggested honey and a humidifier. We also found Zarbee’s cough syrup that was approved for kids under 6 (we discovered this weekend that almost no meds are approved for kids under 6! I think maybe things have changed since our kids were little?) and we gave her that on Saturday night and she only woke up twice!) We are so thankful we had the opportunity to open up our home this weekend — if only for a short while — to love on and provide a safe place for these kids to stay. I also have quickly realized how many big feelings are going to be involved in this foster care journey we’re on… as I told someone yesterday, it’s both beautiful and brutal. [...]
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CrowdStreet Review 2019: Pros, Cons and How It Compares

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CrowdStreet Review 2019: Pros, Cons and How It Compares
With its in-depth vetting of real estate developers and operators, CrowdStreet provides a convenient platform for accredited investors to add commercial real estate projects to their portfolio. But investors should do their own due diligence and be prepared to leave their money locked up for years at a time. NerdWallet is a free tool to... Andrea Coombes is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: acoombes@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @andreacoombes. The article CrowdStreet Review 2019: Pros, Cons and How It Compares originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
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This Week in Fintech

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This Week in Fintech
This weekly summary from our 5 experts, brings you insights based on their experience as investors, entrepreneurs & executives. Ilias Hatzis started his first company, an internet search engine, during the dot-com era & now focusses on crypto. Efi Pylarinou worked for top tier Wall Street firms and is now a top global Fintech influencer. Jessica […] The post This Week in Fintech appeared first on Daily Fintech. [...]
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Afternoon Deals: Saturday, December 7

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Afternoon Deals: Saturday, December 7
Every morning and afternoon we publish a list of the latest and best deals from our partner, DealNews. To learn more about the discounts and details, click on any of the deals for more information. To have this list, along with our latest news and stories, delivered daily to your inbox, sign up for our free newsletter. For links to deals as they’re published, follow @mtndeals on Twitter. [...]
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Sign up with EF Education First to work from home as an ESL teacher!

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Sign up with EF Education First to work from home as an ESL teacher!
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here. Looking for unique ways to earn a part-time income from home? Apply to teach with EF Education First! If you hold a Bachelor’s degree, you can currently apply with EF Education First to to make money teaching kids English online from the comfort of your home! With EF Education First, your teaching is supplemental to what they’re already learning in a classroom environment. You don’t need any mandatory props or teaching backdrops. And you can earn up to $2,000 per month teaching part-time with EF Education First! Interested? Here’s how to apply: Go HERE and and enter your name and e-mail address to get started. Complete the application form. Speak to someone from the recruitment team. If hired, you’ll get a contract and be up and running in as little as two weeks! Go here to apply to teach with EF Education First! Psst! Looking for more opportunities like this? You can also apply with VIPKID or Qkids to teach part-time from home! [...]
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7 Places to Find Secondhand Gifts Your Friends and Family Will Adore

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7 Places to Find Secondhand Gifts Your Friends and Family Will Adore
Gifting your friends and family with something they’ll love this holiday season doesn’t require buying something brand new. You can save a considerable amount of money by buying used gifts for Christmas instead. Thrift stores and private sellers price merchandise at a fraction of their original cost — not to mention the treasures you might be able to regift without spending a penny. Before you cringe at the idea, consider this: A recent survey by the selling app Mercari found 60% of people felt comfortable receiving a previously owned gift.  Likewise, Accenture’s annual holiday shopping survey found more than half of respondents said they’d willingly accept secondhand apparel as gifts this holiday season. Of course, you’ve got to consider the gift recipient — and the gift. Your vintage-loving sister would appreciate a good thrift store find, and your 2-year-old nephew won’t realize (or care) if his “new” toy truck used to belong to another kid.  But if your husband has been yearning for a specific tech gadget that just hit the market or your mom wants a 2020 calendar, maybe they aren’t the best candidates to give used gifts for Christmas. When gifting anything used, examine the item’s condition the best you can. Arrange to meet individual sellers in safe, public places. If you’re purchasing online, vet the website to ensure it’s trustworthy and secure. Check out the reviews or ratings of sellers you buy from. Opportunities to find pre-owned presents are widespread. Here are seven places to shop for inexpensive gifts this holiday season. 7 Outlets to Find Used Gifts for Christmas Some places you’ll discover great secondhand gifts (that won’t bust your budget) include: 1. Brick-and-Mortar Thrift Stores and Consignment Shops Thrift store chains like Goodwill and the Salvation Army have a varied assortment of goods. Proceeds from sales go to community programs that support the nonprofits’ missions.  You may find for-profit consignment shops in your area have a particular focus, like children’s clothing or men’s fashion. 2. Online Resale Retailers and Private Sellers Sites like Poshmark, Tradesy and ThredUp are great outlets to find clothing and accessories at a discount.  Other e-commerce websites, like Facebook Marketplace, Craigslist, eBay and Mercari, have less of an online store interface. On these sites, private sellers post a variety of previously used products for sale, including toys, tech, furniture and home decor. 3. Yard Sales, Estate Sales or Flea Markets Yard sales, estate sales and flea markets can include a great array of options You may even find a table of trinkets the seller is giving away for free.  4. Public Libraries Occasionally libraries will hold fundraisers where they’ll offer a selection of books for sale. You can find titles for only a couple bucks a pop. It’s a good opportunity to get something for the book lover in your life. 5. Pawn Shops Disregard the negative reputation that pawn shops (often unfairly) have. This venue is popular for finding jewelry at low prices. You can also find a great assortment of other merchandise — from DVDs to bikes to musical instruments. 6. Buy Nothing Groups The Buy Nothing community (which connects neighbors via Facebook) provides an opportunity to find a gift that won’t cost you anything. Members of Buy Nothing groups post items they own that they choose to give away for free.  Search Facebook to see if your community has an active group, and join to see what your neighbors are giving away. 7. Your Own Home Regifting gets a bad rap, but it’s honestly no different than giving something from a secondhand retailer. The plus? You incur zero cost.  Consider items you’ve barely or never used, like that waffle maker that’s still in the box from when you got married. Just don’t give someone a present they originally gave to you! Nicole Dow is a senior writer at The Penny Hoarder. This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017. [...]
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Set of 7 Doll Outfits for just $9.75 shipped!! (Fits American Girl and Our Generation Dolls!)

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Set of 7 Doll Outfits for just $9.75 shipped!! (Fits American Girl and Our Generation Dolls!)
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here. Whoa! This is SUCH a good deal on doll clothing! Amazon has this Set of 7 Doll Outfits for just $9.75 shipped when you use coupon code VRVXSZOQ at checkout. This is a GREAT price for doll clothing that fits American Girl and Our Generation! Note: This is not Prime eligible, and it currently says the arrival date is between December 12th and 17th. You can also still get this Doll Clothes 28-Piece Set for just $29.95 shipped — also a great deal! Thanks, Hip2Save! [...]
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Get Paid to Spread Holiday Cheer as Santa Claus. Here’s How to Find Gigs

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Get Paid to Spread Holiday Cheer as Santa Claus. Here’s How to Find Gigs
Remember that sixth helping of stuffing you devoured? Oh, and countless heaps of grandma’s cherished mac and cheese? Don’t regret eating them. (We don’t.) Instead, think of those extra pounds as preparation for the grandest holiday side gig of them all. Every year, thousands of shopping malls, department stores and corporations throw Christmas-themed events and parties that rely on guest appearances from Ol’ Saint Nick himself.  (Spoiler alert: not the real one. He’s too busy. It’s actually a complex network of Santa Claus impersonators.) If you’ve got what it takes — e.g. a burly chuckle, a mean beard, a background check and liability insurance — you can find a variety of Santa Claus jobs this time of year. How to Find Santa Claus Jobs (Mrs. Claus, Too!) Becoming Santa Claus is a little more complicated than walking into your local shopping mall with an application in hand. Many malls and department stores rely on event companies, talent agencies and freelancers to meet their Kris Kringle needs. Here’s how to join those ranks. Work at an Event or Photography Company When you think of Santa Claus jobs, do you think of a winding single-file line through the atrium of a shopping mall, everyone waiting for a photo with the big guy? These types of events are often coordinated by events and photography businesses.  Some companies contract with shopping malls or department stores as full-service vendors – handling all the staff, decorations and photographs. Others may only provide photography services or Santa-staffing services.  Cherry Hill Programs and Instant Photo Corporation of America (IPCA) are two national companies that partner with regional shopping malls across the nation to hire Santas, Mrs. Clauses and other festive characters (as well as some photographers). Pro Tip Not having any luck with national Santa companies? Narrow your job search to local events and photography companies. If all else fails: Call your local mall to see how they usually hire Santa. Use a Talent or PR Agency Maybe you have experience as Santa under your well-worn leather belt. In addition to looking the part, you sing or act to enliven your impersonation. Simply put, you’re down to do more than sit on a red velvet throne for a few pictures. A talent agency is just what you need. Such agencies find the Santa Claus jobs — the corporate events, the media appearances, the charity drives — and reach out to you if you’re a part of their network and meet certain criteria. Pro Tip Real-bearded Santas are generally higher in demand and can charge better hourly rates. Some agencies may even require the applicant to have a real beard. Three free nationwide Santa networks, Hire Santa, Real Santa and Santa for Hire, are looking for talented actors to play the part. Applications are open for Mrs. Claus as well. Freelance as Santa Whether you find gigs through an events company or talent agency, you can always boost the profile of your Santa enterprise by finding clients on your own. This will require a bit more legwork on your part, but the reward can be well worth it. Some Santas we spoke to earn up to $7,000 a season by running their own show. In our ultimate guide to becoming a professional Santa, The Penny Hoarder spoke to several pros who built their own websites or made listings on talent-freelancing websites like Gig Salad. They shared insider tips on finding the best clothes, enrolling in Santa school (it’s a thing — we checked) and getting into character, even when you’re off the clock. “Before you become a Santa, you really need to understand what it’s going to do to your life,” said Santa Tim, a retired professional Santa from Kansas. “You are going to have to be Santa Claus.” Adam Hardy is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder. He specializes in ways to make money that don’t involve stuffy corporate offices. Read his ​latest articles here, or say hi on Twitter @hardyjournalism. This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017. [...]
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Afternoon Deals: Thursday, December 5

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Afternoon Deals: Thursday, December 5
Every morning and afternoon we publish a list of the latest and best deals from our partner, DealNews. To learn more about the discounts and details, click on any of the deals for more information. To have this list, along with our latest news and stories, delivered daily to your inbox, sign up for our free newsletter. For links to deals as they’re published, follow @mtndeals on Twitter. [...]
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The selling process of a company

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The selling process of a company
The post The selling process of a company appeared first on ONEtoONE Corporate Finance. [...]
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Is Lack of Trust a First Order Function in Narrowing the Insurance Protection Gap?

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Is Lack of Trust a First Order Function in Narrowing the Insurance Protection Gap?
image The Geneva Association released an ambitious discussion of trust and its effect on insurance transactions, particularly in the perspective of well-known ‘protection gaps’ that are pervasive across many lines of insurance within mature economies.  Is, as Jad Ariss, Association Managing Director notes in the publication’s foreword, a “lack of trust fundamentally impeding insurance demand,” […] The post Is Lack of Trust a First Order Function in Narrowing the Insurance Protection Gap? appeared first on Daily Fintech. [...]
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How to Save on Prescriptions With the Kroger Rx Savings Club

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How to Save on Prescriptions With the Kroger Rx Savings Club
The following reader tip is from Rachel: Our family has some insurance, but not on prescriptions. I shop a lot at Kroger and recently realized that we could save a BUNCH on our prescriptions if we joined the Kroger Rx Savings Club. The club costs $32 per year for individuals and $72 per year for a family. This annual fee paid for itself when we filled my husband’s $100 prescription for only $28.50 at Kroger! Their website allows you to enter your medication information and to figure out what the cost would be as part of the Kroger Rx Savings club. NOTE: A family plan is good for up to 6 members (including pets!) and could potentially be a great option for those without traditional insurance. What is your best advice for saving money on medical expenses? Related Posts: 5 Simple Ways to Save on Medical Bills Cutting Down on Healthcare Costs 8 Ways to Save on Medical Necessities What Not to Do When You Get a Large Medical Bill [...]
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How to Get a Health Professions Student Loan

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How to Get a Health Professions Student Loan
A health professions student loan is a government loan for students at participating schools who demonstrate financial need. There are four kinds of health profession loans: Health Professions Student Loans (HPSL). Loans for Disadvantaged Students (LDS). Primary Care Loans (PCL). Nursing School Loans (NSL). Before taking on any loans, make sure to exhaust free aid... Ryan Lane is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: rlane@nerdwallet.com. The article How to Get a Health Professions Student Loan originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
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Our December Bucket List for This Year

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Our December Bucket List for This Year
One of the most requested podcast episodes has been for us to talk about our Christmas traditions, what Christmas looks like for our family, and how we do gifts for our immediate and extended family. In this episode, we sat down with Kathrynne, Kaitlynn, and Silas and had a discussion on our favorite Christmas memories, why we make a December Bucket List, what we chose for our bucket list this year, some things we’re doing differently for Christmas this year, how we do gifts, and what Christmas Eve and Christmas Day look like for our family. One of our biggest goals for each December is to keep things simple, not over-commit, and focus on memory-making and shared experiences. We sit down at the end of November and talk about what we want to prioritize for the Christmas season and then we make a list and block out days and times on the calendar to make these priorities happen. We’re excited about some new things we’re trying this year and we’re looking forward to another special December season of celebrating the true meaning of Christmas and spending lots of time together as a family! In This Episode:  [01:58] We kick off the show by each sharing one of our favorite Christmas memories. [07:29] Want to know what’s on our December Bucket List this year? [11:16] Hear about our Dollar Tree stocking tradition and why we’re stepping it up this year. [13:16] How we do presents at our house. [15:45] Giving is something that is always a big priority for us, thanks to the kids’ initiative in this area! [18:00] What does our actual Christmas Eve and Christmas Day celebration look like for our family? [21:38] The kids share our quirky wrapping tradition. Links and Resources: Dollar Tree Stocking Stuffers Jesse Tree Ann Voskamp She Reads Truth He Reads Truth Crystal’s Favorite Things on Amazon CrystalPaine.com MoneySavingMom.com Crystal’s Instagram account (I’d love for you to follow me there! I usually hop on at least a few times per day and share behind-the-scenes photos and videos, my grocery store hauls, funny stories, or just anything I’m pondering or would like your advice or feedback on!) Have feedback on the show or suggestions for future episodes or topics? Send me an email: crystal@moneysavingmom.com How to Listen to The Crystal Paine Show The podcast is available on iTunes, Android, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can listen online through the direct player we’ll include in the show notes of each episode. OR, a much easier way to listen is by subscribing to the podcast through a free podcast app on your phone. (Find instructions for how to subscribe to a podcast here.) Ready to dive in and listen? Hit the player above or search for “The Crystal Paine Show” on your favorite podcast app. Note: This post contains affiliate links. If you click through and make a purchase, we may receive a small commission — at no additional cost to you. Thank you so much for your support! [...]
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7 Everyday Items You Can Get Paid to Recycle

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7 Everyday Items You Can Get Paid to Recycle
Some of the links in this post are from our sponsors. We provide you with accurate, reliable information. Learn more about how we make money and select our advertising partners. Why toss things in the trash when you can repurpose or recycle them?  In addition to diverting items from the waste stream and keeping them out of landfills, you can also make extra money or help out worthy causes. From scrap metal to ink cartridges, bullets to construction materials, you can recycle a huge variety of items in exchange for cash or goodwill. Ready to see all the different things you can recycle for money? Find a Collection Point To find a recycling center near you, head over to Earth911.com and plug in the item you’re looking to recycle along with your location. The site lists collection locations for everything from antifreeze to ammunition. Of course, not everything pays, but it’s important to properly dispose of potentially hazardous items.  Prepare Items for Recycling Check with your local collection point for specific rules for preparing your recyclables for the collection center. Some centers require you to remove bottle caps, rinse and bag bottles in certain increments, or sort and tie together cardboard. Checking the rules before you go will save you time later on.  Be sure to properly bag items that may make a bit of a mess. Even if you thoroughly rinse all your bottles and cans, there might be water and other residue on them, so be sure to transport them in bins or bags to protect the interior of your car. If you’re donating a cell phone or other electronic item, be sure to clear your personal information from it, including contact lists, voice mails, text messages, photos, passwords, downloads and anything else that you wouldn’t want random strangers to access. Back up your information on your new phone, your computer or a cloud-based service, then restore your phone to factory settings before recycling it. 7 Items You Can Recycle for Money Depending where you live, you can get paid to recycle certain items. Here are some common recyclables and how to recycle them. 1. Scrap Metal Scrap metal is one of the more profitable materials to recycle. For this reason, scrap metal theft is not uncommon. Many local recycling programs fund their programs through scrap metal collection, so be sure to check your local rules or laws about collection. Copper, steel and aluminum are just a few of the scrap metals that you can recycle for money. Google your local area and “scrap yard” to find a facility that takes whatever metals you have and learn their procedures for drop off. Once you have rounded up your metal, find out if it is ferrous or non-ferrous by seeing if a magnet sticks to it. If it does, the metal is ferrous and likely a common metal like steel or iron. These items typically aren’t worth much, but it’s still worthwhile to recycle them. If the magnet does not stick, you likely have copper, aluminum, brass, bronze or stainless steel on your hands. These metals are more valuable.  You can make money recycling a variety of these metals. Copper is one of the more profitable metals: Some scrap yards offer over $2 per pound. Aluminum typically earns between 40 and 70 cents a pound, yellow brass can yield $1.40 per pound, and die-cast metal goes in the 30-cents-a-pound range, though local prices vary.  2. Bottles and Cans One Penny Hoarder writer made $1,500 cashing in soda cans he collected at work. You, too, can make money by rounding up bottles and cans, whether from work, friends and family, at events, or just the recyclables you use at home. California offers 5 cents for most plastic and glass bottles and aluminum cans smaller than 24 ounces, and 10 cents for 24-ounce or larger containers. It’s technically a bottle deposit, but many people don’t bother to collect their refunds, so it’s easy money for bottle and can collectors.  Michigan has a 10-cents per bottle recycling rate, which has prompted people to illegally smuggle in empty bottles purchased out of state to cash in. (This was even the plot of one Seinfeld episode!) Many states have similar deposit programs, so check what’s available where you live. 3. Car Batteries Advance Auto Parts offers a $10 store gift card to customers who bring in their used car batteries (light-duty truck batteries are also accepted). If the company doesn’t have an outlet near you, call your local auto parts stores to see whether they offer similar deals. 4. Ink Cartridges A number of office supply stores, including Staples and Office Depot accept used ink cartridges for recycling. Staples offers $2 back per cartridge, with a maximum of 10 returns per month, and you have to spend at least $30 on ink or toner within 180 days of recycling.  Office Depot also gives you $2 back in program rewards for each ink or toner cartridge you recycle, up to 10 cartridges per month. But you must also purchase ink from them the same month. There is no limit on the number of cartridges you recycle, but you will only receive points on the first 10 per month. You can use your points toward a number of different perks and discounts.  5. Electronics Eco-Cell is one of many companies that offers cash for old cell phones and other electronics. The company accepts working or broken phones, tablets, rechargeable batteries, circuit boards and a variety of other electronics. Even if an item is broken or was submerged in water and is unusable, Eco-Cell will accept it in order to divert electronics from landfills and properly dispose of their toxic components and metals. Many cell phone providers, including Verizon and AT&T, have trade-in programs where you can receive a voucher, gift card or other reward for turning in your old phone. Amazon Trade-in is another way to earn gift cards. A number of charities also accept cell phones, whether to re-purpose or sell and use the funds for a charitable purpose. Cell Phones for Soldiers refurbishes and sells your old phone to active-duty military members and veterans. If a phone is too old or broken, Cell Phones for Soldiers sells it to recyclers who strip it for parts and dispose of its metals responsibly. The proceeds from the sales go to purchase international calling cards for troops and provide emergency financial assistance to veterans. And of course, you can always sell your old phone yourself. 6. Junk Cars Your rusted old jalopy? You can recycle it for money. There are companies that pay cash for broken down cars.  Junk Car Medics is one, and you can sell your car to them online or over the phone. You enter details about your vehicle, such as condition and mileage, and quickly get an offer. If you accept it, you’ll have to provide proof of ownership and a few other details before you get paid. The company says most transactions are same-day, and they take the car away for you. 7. The Rest of Your Unwanted Stuff You can “recycle” belongings you no longer want on a variety of apps and platforms and get a little something back for them. ThredUp and Poshmark are popular second-hand clothing apps where you can sell your wares.  ThredUp will send you a free shipping label and apply credits for anything that sells to your own account, but it’s often not a lot of money. Poshmark offers bigger potential payouts, but you have to put in more work to make your items move. Letgo is a second-hand site where you can buy or sell just about anything you no longer use. Kristen Pope is a freelance writer and editor in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017. [...]
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The SME trends fintech companies need to know in the MENA region

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The SME trends fintech companies need to know in the MENA region
Jessica Ellerm is a thought leader specializing in Small Business and the Gig Economy and is the CEO and Co-Founder of Zuper, a neowealth disruptor in Australia. This week we turn our eyes to the middle east when it comes to SME fintech trends. Dubai based SME lender Beehive, has released its SME State of the […] The post The SME trends fintech companies need to know in the MENA region appeared first on Daily Fintech. [...]
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Up to 64% off PlayMonster Games and Toys!

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Up to 64% off PlayMonster Games and Toys!
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here. Today only, Amazon is offering up to 64% off PlayMonster Games and Toys! Here are some deals you can score… Get this PlayMonster 5 Second Rule Game for only $7.99! Get this The Game of Things for only $8.99! Get this Relative Insanity Party Game for only $7.99! Get this MOLUK Plui Rain Cloud Tub Toy for only $9.02! Get this Patch ProductsToss-Up Dice Game for only $5.05! Get this MOLUK Bilibo in multiple color options for just $20.99! Shop the PlayMonster sale here. Valid today only, December 4, 2019. Sign up for a free trial of Amazon Prime to get guaranteed FREE two-day shipping (and possibly one-day or same-day shipping!). And don’t forget you can sign up for Swagbucks to earn free gift cards to use on deals on Amazon. [...]
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Should You Trust the Official Medicare Website?

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Should You Trust the Official Medicare Website?
If you haven’t yet chosen a Medicare plan for 2020 — the deadline is this Saturday, Dec. 7 — beware of putting too much faith in the program’s official website. If you have chosen a 2020 plan already, beware of assuming the plan details you received from the official Medicare website are accurate. The information you find at Medicare.gov may be wrong... [...]
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The Ultimate Guide to Working as a Professional Santa Claus

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The Ultimate Guide to Working as a Professional Santa Claus
Editor’s note: This article was originally published in 2014, but we’ve brought it back for any new Santas. Do you love Christmas? Are you full of cheer? Can you grow a belly and — more importantly — a beard? You might have what it takes to work as a professional Santa Claus. If you’ve thought about pursuing this unusual seasonal job but didn’t know where to start, keep reading for advice from professional Santas in three different states. They share the inside scoop on working as Santa this Christmas. What Are the Requirements for Santa Jobs? Yes, there are a few important requirements if you want to work as a professional Santa Claus. First, you need to look the part. It’s best if you’re over age 50, have a belly and can grow an impressive beard. (But it doesn’t have to be white. Some Santas actually bleach their beards!) Jim Beck, who worked as a professional Santa in Denver for eight years, says he got into the business because people kept telling him he looked like Santa — even without the beard. So after he became disabled and could no longer work in construction, he decided to give it a shot. Michigan Santa Claus was also a natural. “Mrs. Claus always says, ‘My Santa has a real beard and natural cookie zone.’ I’ve actually had my beard for nearly 45 years!” More importantly, you have to want to be Santa Claus. You should have a genuine love of Christmas and children. Santa Tim was a professional Santa in Lenexa, Kansas. He started working as a Santa to “enjoy the whole Christmas spirit and give back a little bit — to share hope and joy and love.” (If that’s not a Santa answer, I don’t know what is!) Where Can You Find Santa Jobs? Professional Santa Clauses have lots of work options, including shopping malls, corporate and community events and private home parties. The Santas we interviewed mostly did private home visits, with some corporate events mixed in. None of them worked as mall Santas — though some Santas do prefer these gigs because they’re long-term positions with steady hours. When asked why he didn’t work at the mall, Santa Tim explained, “First of all, I want to be independent; secondly, you can only spend around 30 seconds with a child while at the mall. When I do a home visit or corporate event, I get a lot more time with each child.” Santa Jim Beck has worked at the mall in the past, but now sticks with mostly private parties because he “enjoys the smaller venues.” How to Start Working as a Santa Ready to find work as a professional Santa Claus? Here are the techniques our Santas suggested: 1. Go to Santa School You probably didn’t know it, but Santa schools are a big business. One of the most comprehensive is the Professional Santa Claus School in Denver.. Course options even include technological training to do online visits.  Santa Tim graduated from this school and found it a “very worthwhile investment” because there are “certain amounts of psychology that go into speaking to children.” He learned a lot about that there, including how to react when a child says they want an iPad or tells you about abuse. Mostly, he enjoyed the school because it set “such a high standard; you’re not just Uncle Joe from next door anymore.” 2. Network With Other Santas You don’t have to go to Santa school to find success as a Santa. Santa Jim Beck got started by working for an established Santa who “subbed out other Santas.” Though he had to pay the lead Santa a cut of his earnings, the experience led to gigs of his own. If you’re just starting out, this is a smart move. Find a local Santa who has more work than he can handle, then offer to take on any gigs he can’t or doesn’t want to do. If you offer him a percentage of your earnings, what Santa is going to say no? 3. Buy a Suit… and Start Working That’s how Michigan Santa Claus did it. His first Santa suit was made by a friend who is a professional sewer. He wore it while helping to sell Christmas trees at the Home Depot where his son worked. He wanted to “see what the response would be and if I liked it.” 4. Build a Website For all of the Santas we interviewed, web inquiries are key to the majority of their business. Creating a website is an essential step in starting your business. If you don’t have the money for professional web design, don’t fret: You can ask a friend for help or even use free tools to DIY your site. 5. Create a Profile on Gig Salad When looking to hire a professional Santa, most people’s first stop will be an internet search. And Gig Salad, a site for booking live entertainment, might be one of the first things that pops up. For that reason, Santa Tim says creating a Gig Salad profile was the “most effective” thing he did. Membership ranges from $29.99 to $39.99 per month. 6. Book Return Visits The first year of being a Santa is definitely the hardest. However, once you’ve visited some families, Santa Jim Beck says, “They’re generally going to want you back next year.” People want continuity for their kids, which means guaranteed repeat business each year — in addition to any new clients you drum up. Santa Tim says this works for corporate events, too — as does word of mouth. “One HR lady will ask another one, ‘What Santa did you hire?’ and that will get you some more gigs.” How Much Money Can You Make Working as a Santa? The pay range for professional Santas varies widely, depending on how much you work and how much effort you put into marketing yourself. The majority of Santas only work during November and December, though some keep the holiday spirit going all year long. Santa Tim estimates you can earn “$3,000 to $7,000 in a season” working part-time on some weekday evenings and during both the morning and evening on the weekends. How Much Does It Cost to Start Working as a Santa? In addition to growing out your beard, there are some start-up costs involved in working as a Santa. If you choose to attend Santa school, that will be one of your biggest expenses. Santa Tim says the rest depends on your “level of professionalism,” adding, “If I’m going to represent Santa for children, I want to be as professional and realistic as I can be. Children are looking at everything about you: your eyes, your cuffs, your boots, your belt. I put $200 to $300 into bleaching my hair and beard; I have two suits that each cost over $1,000, a $300 belt and $300 boots.” Michigan Santa agrees, saying it’s “very important” to “not ‘skimp’ on the suit.” His is “lined wool with real sheepskin white fur trim.” In addition to the suit and the website, he also says, “It’s very important to set up as a business account and register the name of the business with the state establishing LLC … [And] we’ve never had an issue, but we do carry Entertainment Liability Insurance.” What Do Aspiring Santas Need to Know? So you still want to work as a Santa? We asked our professionals for the one piece of advice they’d give to aspiring Santas, and here’s what they said: “Grow a beard and learn how to laugh!” — Santa Jim Beck “Before you become a Santa, you really need to understand what it’s going to do to your life… You are going to have to be Santa Claus. I have a different standard every day; it’s a high level of responsibility. It’s everywhere you go: If you’re driving your car, and you have road rage — people are going to say: ‘Oh, Santa’s having road rage.’ You have to really govern yourself … Even in street clothes, some kids will come up and grab your legs and tell you what they want — so you’ve got to spend a few minutes with them.” — Santa Tim “Always stay in character when you have your Santa suit on. Work on that ‘HO HO HO;’ it must come from deep within the belly! When [Mrs. Claus and I] have an event, we take the children into our arms and on our laps and in our hearts, as our own. [...]
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Figure Lending Review: Student Loan Refinancing

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Figure Lending Review: Student Loan Refinancing
Bottom line: Best for applying and receiving funds fast. Reviewed loanStudent loan refinancing Interest ratesFixed: 3.49% - 6.99% Variable: 2.21% - 6.21% includes autopay discount of 0.25% Loan terms5, 7, 10, 15 or 20 years Loan amounts$5,000 to $250,000 Co-signer release availableNo Can transfer a parent loan to the childNo Check rates at Figure Lending Pros & Cons... Ryan Lane is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: rlane@nerdwallet.com. The article Figure Lending Review: Student Loan Refinancing originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
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All the Best Cyber Monday and Black Friday Deals Still Available!

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All the Best Cyber Monday and Black Friday Deals Still Available!
Make sure you don’t miss out on any of the best Cyber Monday and Black Friday Deals with this round-up! This year has had a CRAZY amount of Cyber Monday Deals and Black Friday Deals, so we thought we’d round them all up in one post for you! Crystal’s Top 10 Picks: Get a year of Hulu at just $1.99 per month! Chromebook Cyber Monday Deals | Acer Chromebook for $124.99 shipped, plus more! Denise Albright 2020-2021 Planner Bundle for just $19.95 + shipping! Get over 50% off one of my favorite sweaters for Cyber Monday!! Oral-B Genius Pro 8000 Electronic Power Rechargeable Battery Electric Toothbrush for just $89.94 shipped (Originally $250)! Old Navy: Sherpa Pullovers for the Family only $10 today! *HOT* The Children’s Place: Fleece Pullovers and Pants just $4.99 shipped! Instant Pot 6-Quart 7-in-1 Programmable Pressure Cooker only $49.99 shipped! DaySpring Hand-Thrown Mugs for just $2.80 each! *HOT* TaoTronics Essential Oils Diffuser for just $6.99!! Cyber Monday Deals Still Available: Get 50% off ALL of my courses! Hypoallergenic Shredded Memory Foam Pillows for just $14.99 each, shipped! Amazon FreeTime Unlimited | 3 Months for just $0.99! {$29 Savings!!) Shark Vacuum Cyber Monday Deals *HOT* 61-Piece 3D Magnetic Building Tile Play Set only $19.49 (Reg. $100!) MUK LUKS Anais Moccasin Slippers only $12.99 shipped! Target: 40% Off Bedding and Bath! T-Rex & Triceratops Dinosaur Bump & Go Toy Cars (Set of 4) only $14.99 shipped! Ring Video Doorbell with Echo Dot 3rd Generation only $79.99 shipped (Reg. $150!) *HOT* Free $5 Starbucks Gift Card with $20 Gift Card Purchase {Limited Quantity!} Carter’s: 7-Pack Baby Bodysuits only $10 shipped! 50% off Hydro Flask Bottles at REI! Carter’s: Toddler & Girl’s Leggings only $5 shipped! Cricut Explore Air 2 only $179.99 shipped, plus more! Dreamworks Holiday Collection DVD for just $6.99! HOT Deals on Marvel Action Figures! HOT Discounts on Play-Doh Sets, Playskool Toys, My Little Pony, Littlest Pet Shop, and Baby Alive Dolls! *HOT* HUGE Savings on Monopoly and Hasbro Games! HOT Cyber Monday Deals on LEGO, Lincoln Logs, Tegu Blocks, K’Nex, Playmobil, and Tinkertoys!! *HOT* Up to 50% off Nerf Toys! Keurig K-Mini Single Serve K-Cup Coffee Maker for just $42.49 shipped (Reg. $90)! Bose SoundSport Wireless Headphones for just $139 shipped!! Dinosaur Racetrack for just $16.99 shipped! Men’s Croft & Barrow Festive Microfleece Sleep Pants only $3.99! Converse Chuck Taylor All Star High & Low Top Sneakers only $25 shipped! Black Friday Deals Still Available: Holiday Doormats and Accent Rugs as low as $3.99! Dick’s Sporting Goods: 25% off Hydro Flask Bottles and Tumblers! Canon EOS Rebel T6 DSLR Camera Kit for just $260.99 shipped (Reg. $750)! Robotic Vacuum Black Friday Deals Apple Macbook Air for just $649.99 shipped (Reg. $999)!! Gift an Amazon Prime membership at 10% off! Women’s Sweaters only $7.99! Muk Luks Women’s Bootie Slippers for just $7.99 shipped! Elmer’s Rainbow Slime Starter Kit only $4.99! LEGO Classic Creative Fun Box for just $20! Dick’s Sporting Goods: Extra 25% off YETI Tumblers, Coolers and Mugs! *HOT* Sam’s Club Membership Deal | $50 in Savings! Echo Show 5 for just $49.99 shipped! Echo Dot 3rd Generation for just $22! HOT Deals on Dinosaur Toys!!! Matching Family Pajamas 60% Off! Get two holiday graphic shirts as low as $14.98 each, shipped! Women’s Boots only $19.99 at JCPenney! Royal Luxe White Goose Feather & Down Comforter (Any Size) for just $50.99 shipped!! *HOT* Pura Vida Bracelets Black Friday Sale | 50% Off Plus Free Shipping! LEGO Minifigures Series 19 Building Kit only $2.99! Nike Men’s Running Shoes only $29.99 shipped (Reg. $60!) Mega Bloks Building Basics Let’s Get Learning 150-Piece Set only $12.97! ABCmouse Deal: Annual subscription for just $3.75 per month! American Explorer Hardside Luggage for just $39.99 (Reg. $180)! *HOT* Roku Streaming Stick+ only $29! Kindle Black Friday Deals | Lowest Prices on Record! *HOT* Adventure Academy Annual Subscription for just $3.75 per month! Starbucks Black Friday Deal: Free Coffee & Tea in January with Tumbler Purchase Amazon Fire TV Cube for just $89.99 shipped! Black Friday Deals on Sony and Beats Headphones at Target! Fire Tablet Black Friday Deals | Lowest Prices on Record! *HOT* ReadingIQ Deal: Annual subscription for just $2.49 per month! {Silas loves this app!} *HOT* Amazon Fire TV Stick with Alexa Voice Remote for just $19.99! Step2 Modern Cook Kitchen Set for just $34.99! KiwiCo Promo Code: Get a box for just $7.98 shipped! We hope you grabbed some great deals over the past week! Also, be sure to sign up for our Hot Deals newsletter and join our Deal Seekers Facebook group so that you don’t miss out on any of the hottest, time-sensitive deals as soon as they go live throughout the rest of the holiday season! [...]
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How to find the ideal buyer for a company

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How to find the ideal buyer for a company
The post How to find the ideal buyer for a company appeared first on ONEtoONE Corporate Finance. [...]
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It’s Cyber Monday: Here Are the Best Deals at Amazon

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It’s Cyber Monday: Here Are the Best Deals at Amazon
Not to worry if you missed out on any deals on Black Friday. Cyber Monday — today — brings plenty of second chances. In fact, on Amazon, you will find many discounts that are at least as steep as they were on Black Friday — as well as deals that weren’t even available on Black Friday. Just take a look at the hundreds of deals on Amazon’s Cyber Monday site. Or... [...]
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Pack Your Swimsuit for a Layover at These 3 Airports

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Pack Your Swimsuit for a Layover at These 3 Airports
Having access to airport lounges can completely change the way you travel. The complimentary refreshments, Wi-Fi and comfortable places to rest are great perks, but did you know that some airports have places to swim? If you could use a refreshing dip between flights, here are a few airport spaces to check out the next... Caroline Lupini is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: travel@nerdwallet.com. The article Pack Your Swimsuit for a Layover at These 3 Airports originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
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Life Update: Pregnancy (week 18), a trip to Kansas, Thanksgiving meal prep

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Life Update: Pregnancy (week 18), a trip to Kansas, Thanksgiving meal prep
Welcome to my weekly life update where I share about my pregnancy & give you a peek into our life this past week. If you want to follow a lot more behind-the-scenes and real-time updates every week, be sure to follow my stories and posts on Instagram. Week 18! I can’t believe I’m almost halfway!! HIGHLIGHTS Baby has been kicking up a storm and all the kids were excited that they were able to each feel kicks this week!! They want to sit and just keep their hands on my belly so they don’t miss any kicks!! NOTABLE I implemented some of your suggestions for heartburn and sleep and while I can’t point to one specific thing that I’m certain worked, I am thrilled to report that I only had one really bad heartburn/nausea day this week and I’m positive it was because I wasn’t super careful with what I ate that day. Otherwise, I had very little heartburn this week and I slept for six hour stretches multiple nights!! Also notable: this week marked my last planned flights until (likely) well after the baby is born. It feels weird that, if all goes as planned, I won’t be hopping on a plane again for months and months! I’m excited to get to stay home and write my next book, possibly get to love on and care for a child who is in foster care (we think there’s a good chance we’ll be getting a placement soon!), and start prepping for bringing this new baby into our home! CRAVINGS Scrambled eggs and avocados with sourdough toast and butter (this has become one of my go-to meals) and frozen yogurt. Also, I absolutely loved the turkey and mashed potatoes at Thanksgiving! It hit the spot! WEIGHT GAIN: 9 lbs. We went to Wichita, Kansas all week to spend time with both sides of our family. I took almost zero pictures the entire time because I was just offline and soaking up the time with family, so I have almost none to show of our time there. But it was a really fantastic trip and we’re so glad our families both live so close so that we can spend holidays with both sides! We all enjoyed getting to spend a lot of time with so many of the nieces and nephews/cousins. Each year, we have two family Thanksgiving celebrations with extended family on Thursday and everyone who comes signs up to bring parts of the meal. This year, because I’m running on a lot less energy that I usually have, I asked the kids if they would be willing to help out. They each signed up to make one item for both houses. Kathrynne made Pistachio Salad and Green Bean Casserole. Kaitlynn made two Apple Pies (be sure to check out the braided crust she did — see below!). Silas made two Pumpkin Pie fillings. And Jesse peeled and cut up 10 lbs. of sweet potatoes. All I did was oversee, make pie crusts, and finish the two Sweet Potato Casseroles — and we were done in two hours with everything! Mamas of littles, holidays might be really hard right now. You’re tired. There’s so much to do. And you have to do so much of it yourself. Well, just hang on… there’s a day coming soon when your kids will be old enough to not only take care of getting themselves dressed and fed, but they’ll be cooking Thanksgiving dinner for you, too! What I’m… Reading: Parenting and The Killing Tide Watching: We subscribed to Disney+ for December at the kids’ request since we usually watch a lot more family movies together this month! The kids are loving it! We watched 12 First Dates last night as a family. This was a fun, feel good movie that reminds us to see our blessings right in front of us. (Note: It was a big cheesy in parts, had a tiny bit of mild language in it, and was definitely a bit of a rip-off of Groundhog Day, but we all still enjoyed it.) What are your family’s favorite Christmas movies? Listening to: Christmas Music! (Of course!) Also, after months of getting nauseous from listening to audiobooks (just one of the many weird things that makes me sick to my stomach in pregnancy!), I just downloaded a few from Libby and am going to try again this week! Loving: That it’s December and we have so many memory-making plans for this month! It’s one of my favorite months and I’m excited about it! What are you reading, watching, listening to, and/or loving? I’d love to hear! [...]
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How to Repay Student Loans When You Don’t Know Where to Start

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How to Repay Student Loans When You Don’t Know Where to Start
If you graduated from college this year, congratulations!  Also, your first student loan payment is due. (Cue sad trombone.) If you borrowed federal student loans to cover your college expenses, you get a six-month grace period from Uncle Sam before he starts pestering you for payment. If it’s any comfort (I know, it isn’t), you’re not the only one who owes. Outstanding student loan debt clocked in at $1.48 trillion in the second quarter of 2019, according to the New York Federal Reserve. It’s easy enough to feel overwhelmed — you just graduated, started that first job (hopefully), moved out of your parents’ place and into your own (maybe).  But besides the obvious benefit — getting out of debt — making on-time student loan payments will reflect well on your credit score, which will follow you long after your dorm life memories have faded.  Ready to tackle that student loan debt? Good, let’s get started. A Guide to Student Loan Repayment  When you’re ready to start repaying your student loans, it’s best to create a plan to avoid wasting time, money and energy. Here’s what you need to do before you make that first payment. 1. Know How Much You Owe and Who You Owe If you’re like most grads, you took out multiple student loans over your multi-year college career — the average borrower has 3.7 student loans, according to a 2017 Experian report.  So it’s best to start organizing by figuring out who you owe, how much you owe and when it’s due. Oh, and interest rate is important, too. Need some help figuring it all out? Then check out this article that explains how to find out how much you owe in student loans. 2. Pay Off Your Interest Before the End of Your Grace Period If you have the cash, pay off at least the accrued interest on your federal student loans before your grace period runs out. It can save you a bundle of money by helping you avoid interest capitalization — when the interest gets lumped in with your principal amount and you start getting charged interest on the total amount. Wondering where to find extra money before the deadline? Consider taking up a side hustle to make some extra cash to throw toward the payment. 3. Come Up With a Plan… a Repayment Plan Didn’t land that six-figure job — or maybe any job? Rather than sticking your head in the sand and avoiding your student loan payments, you need to ask for help. That means getting yourself on an income-driven repayment plan. These plans cap your monthly payment typically somewhere between 10% and 20% of your discretionary income. Contact the loan servicer for your loan to find out which plans you can qualify for. 4. Think About Forgiveness It’s possible that you can get your student loans forgiven. But it’s not easy or fast… or likely (cue the second sad trombone). But if you work in specific fields — like teaching or nursing — you could be eligible for loan forgiveness after a set number of years. There are typically a lot of hoops to jump through — including making sure your loan repayment program and your employer qualify — so be sure you know the requirements of your forgiveness program. FROM THE DEBT FORUM Balance transfer credit card 11/27/19 @ 6:39 PM Credit card Debt 11/19/19 @ 3:56 PM Student loans 11/20/19 @ 2:17 PM Debt collections 11/23/19 @ 5:57 PM See more in Debt or ask a money question 5. Avoid Delinquency and Default Remember that part where I told you not to stick your head in the sand? This is why: If you miss your payment by even one day, your federal loan becomes delinquent. If you’ve missed payments on your Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) or direct student loan for 270 days, your loan is considered to be in default. If you can’t afford your monthly payment due to unemployment or an approved economic hardship, you might qualify for deferment or forbearance. You can also qualify for deferment if you’re enrolled in an approved graduate fellowship program. During deferment, you won’t owe monthly payments on your federal loans and your subsidized loans won’t accrue interest (but all the rest will).  A high or good credit score allows you to qualify for better loans and credit cards with lower interest rates and more favorable terms. A poor credit score may not even qualify you for a loan. If you don’t qualify for deferment, the other option is forbearance, during which your lender allows you to stop making payments or reduces your monthly payments for up to one year. However, during forbearance, interest will continue accruing on all of your loans. Both options are only temporary fixes, and you’ll probably end up owing more money in the end. But at least you won’t wreck your credit score. 6. Consider Life After College (and Student Loans) It can be tough to see beyond that soul-crushing debt, but remembering that there is more to life than student loans is important for your financial future. First, while throwing every available dollar at your student loan might help you feel like you’re making progress in that arena, don’t sacrifice your present financial state by pillaging your emergency fund (you have one, right?). It’s there to cover those unexpected expenses — like a new set of tires or unexpected vet bill — without sending you into credit card debt.  Additionally, you shouldn’t sacrifice your future for today’s debts. Instead of paying every dollar toward student loans, start saving for your retirement now. With plenty of years to go, you’ll be able to build an impressive nest egg future you will thank you for.  Bonus: Socking away your money in a 401(k) or IRA reduces your taxable income. So if you do decide to apply for an income-driven repayment plan, the federal government won’t count the money you’re saving for retirement. Cue the big brass band. You deserve it. Tiffany Wendeln Connors is a staff writer/editor at The Penny Hoarder. Read her bio and other work here, then catch her on Twitter @TiffanyWendeln. This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017. [...]
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Get 50% off ALL of my courses!

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Get 50% off ALL of my courses!
For the many of you who have been asking when we were going to offer a sale on our online courses, I have GREAT news for you! We’ve been hard at work behind the scenes to bring you a BIG Black Friday Sale — and it’s now LIVE! Through Tuesday, December 3, 2019, you can get 13 of my online courses for 50% off! You can order as many as you’d like at this price! These would make a great Christmas gift for yourself, for a friend, or something to help you get off to a great start in 2020! You might even consider buying one for each of your friends and then you could go through them together and keep each other accountable! See all the details of our 2019 Black Friday Sale here. Black Friday Sale Pricing — Our Best Prices of the Year! Here are all of the courses included in the Black Friday sale: Make Over Your Mornings — just $8.50 (regularly $17) — this is our #1 selling product! Slash Your Grocery Bill eBook — just $8.50 (regularly $17) Make Over Your Evenings — just $8.50 (regularly $17) Make Over Your Year — just $8.50 (regularly $17) 15 Days to a Healthier You — just $7.50 (regularly $15) 4 Weeks to a More Productive Life — just $8.50 (regularly $17) Blog Start-Up 101 — just $18.50 (regularly $37) WordPress 101 — just $18.50 (regularly $37) Branding Basics 101 — just $18.50 (regularly $37) Content Creation 101 — just $18.50 (regularly $37) Email List Set-Up 101 — just $18.50 (regularly $37) Build Your List 101 — just $18.50 (regularly $37) Facebook Live Strategies Masterclass— just $8.50 (regularly $17) Monetize Your Blog online course — just $97 (regularly $127) Want to purchase more than one course? Go to this page and you can add multiple courses to your cart at one time. Here are more details on our six best-selling courses: Make Over Your Mornings — a 14-day online course to help you start your days well. This is our #1 best-selling course and it’s regularly $17, but you can get it for just $8.50 through Tuesday at midnight. Purchase it here for just $8.50. Make Over Your Evenings — a successful day begins the night before! Find out how to set up a realistic, workable, and life-impacting evening routine in this 14-day sequel to Make Over Your Mornings. It’s regularly priced at $17, but you can get it for just $8.50 through Tuesday at midnight. Purchase it here for just $8.50. Make Over Your Year — a 4-week goal-setting course to teach you how to set realistic, achievable goals… and then actually follow through with them! This course is a very down-to-earth course that my husband and I filmed live together and it comes with 4 video lessons plus a workbook and projects to help you become a goal-setting rockstar! It’s regularly $17, but you can get it for just $8.50 through Tuesday at midnight. Purchase it here for just $8.50. 15 Days to a Healthier You — This is my holistic health course! Want to feel better, have more energy, and make healthier choices? I’ll teach you how in this 15-day, step-by-step, hands-on course! It’s regularly $15, but you can get it for just $7.50 through Tuesday at midnight. Purchase it here for just $7.50. Blog Start-Up 101 — Have a great idea for a blog but don’t know where to start? In this popular course, I’ll teach you how to set up your first blog — from start to finish! And you don’t have to have any technical experience to do it! Blog Start-Up 101 is regularly $37, but it’s just $18.50 through Tuesday at midnight. Purchase it here for just $18.50. WordPress 101 — Struggling to make sense of WordPress? Let us help you! We’ll walk you through everything you need to know to get started with your WordPress blog and to conquer your fear of WordPress once and for all! This course is regularly $37, but it’s on sale for just $18.50 through Tuesday at midnight. Purchase it here for just $18.50. Want to purchase more than one course? You can add multiple courses to your cart when you go to this link here. Happy Savings! I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving! P.S. All of these courses come with a money-back guarantee, so if you buy them and decide they just aren’t for you, we’re happy to honor our guarantee — no questions asked! [...]
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The Block vs Binance intersection of niche media implosion and Crypto Fintech cambrian explosion

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The Block vs Binance intersection of niche media implosion and Crypto Fintech cambrian explosion
Daily Fintech lives at this intersection. Thankfully we avoided the temptation to monetize via advertising and as we are self funded we have no pressure to meet external growth expectations (which is the sort of pressure that leads to sacrificing editorial independence). So the media implosion does not worry us and we can focus on […] The post The Block vs Binance intersection of niche media implosion and Crypto Fintech cambrian explosion appeared first on Daily Fintech. [...]
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Is the Hawaiian Airlines Mastercard Worth Its Annual Fee?

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Is the Hawaiian Airlines Mastercard Worth Its Annual Fee?
For just about any travel rewards credit card, the biggest reason to hesitate before signing up is the annual fee. Over time, membership fees can make the “free” travel you earn expensive. The Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite Mastercard® has an annual fee of $0 intro for the first year, then $99. So is it worth... June Casagrande is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: travel@nerdwallet.com. The article Is the Hawaiian Airlines Mastercard Worth Its Annual Fee? originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
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Never Leave These 9 Things in a Car

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Never Leave These 9 Things in a Car
It’s fine to keep many things in your car. In fact, our cars can become storage areas for clothes, sports equipment and even snacks. But some things are likely to cause problems if left in a vehicle. They won’t respond well to extreme temperatures, or may attract thieves who break into vehicles. What follows are nine examples of things you should not leave behind after parking your car. [...]
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Starbucks for Life Instant Win Game (Over 2 million winners!)

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Starbucks for Life Instant Win Game (Over 2 million winners!)
If you love Starbucks, don’t miss this chance again this year to play the popular Starbucks for Life Instant Win Game! You might win bonus stars, free drinks and bakery items, or even FREE Starbucks for months or for life! (Want to save more on Starbucks? Check out my post on how I justify drinking Starbucks even on a budget! Hint: I use Swagbucks to get Starbucks gift cards so I pay nothing out of pocket! 😉And don’t forget about Starbucks Happy Hour each week!) Win Starbucks For Life! The popular Starbucks for Life Instant Win Game is back again this year! Starting Monday, December 2nd, you’ll be able to log in to your Starbucks Rewards account to play the Instant Win Game. There is a chance to win bonus stars, free drinks, free bakery items, and more. Plus, there will be lots of grand prizes up for grabs: 5 Grand Prize Winners will win Starbucks for Life 15 First Prize Winners will win Starbucks for a Year 50 Second Prize Winners will win Starbucks for 6 Months 125 Third Prize Winners will win Starbucks for 3 Months 100 Fourth Prize Winners will win Starbucks for 1 Month And more! There are over 2 million winners, and you can enter twice per day through January 6, 2020. And don’t forget to sign up for Starbucks Rewards so that you can play the Starbucks for Life game! You’ll also get a free drink on your birthday, rewards and freebies, special Starbucks Happy Hour promos, plus more! Psst! Did you see how this post on how to throw a Starbucks birthday party on a budget? SO cool! [...]
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6 Easy Ways to Outsmart Porch Pirates and Protect Your Holiday Packages

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6 Easy Ways to Outsmart Porch Pirates and Protect Your Holiday Packages
The porch pirates got me good one holiday season.  I arrived home after a long day at work to find two empty packages on my front stoop. The thermal sweatshirt that was supposed to be a Christmas gift for my dad? Gone. The pricy face cream I bought for myself? Gone. And the townhouse I was living in, which was on a residential street, didn’t have security cameras.  There were plenty of places to tuck the packages out of sight, but the delivery person was either too busy or had done so only to be foiled later by the thieves. That was years ago. Now I can simply install a smart lock on my front door and have Amazon or Walmart deliver items directly to my living room. Thieves can’t steal your packages if there’s nothing on your doormat to yoink. But what if you’re trying to receive packages and deliveries without allowing our e-commerce big brothers to let themselves in on a regular basis?  6 Ways to Stop Porch Pirates Once and for All In a 2017 report, insuranceQuotes estimated that 25.9 million Americans had a holiday package stolen from their front porch or doorstep that year. And across the United States, 36% of consumers have reported having a package stolen at least once, at an average cost of $109.  Don’t want to be a part of that very sad group of people? Try one or more of these methods to deter package thieves when you’re doing your online holiday shopping.  1. Make Delivery Requests Some online ordering systems allow you to make delivery requests, like putting the package in a secure area. Making a request doesn’t guarantee that it will be met, but you may be surprised at how attentive delivery people are when dropping off your goods. “Leave on basement steps” or “upstairs neighbor can sign” are simple instructions that can help ensure your package gets to you. If you happen to run into your regular local USPS, UPS or FedEx carrier, you may be able to make requests in person. But keep in mind that your neighborhood delivery person may have the best intel on which bushes are ideal for concealing packages. 2. Work With a Neighbor If you know your neighbors — come on, go meet your neighbors — you can work together to thwart package theft. If you have alternating or overlapping schedules, swiping a package off their stoop — for good, not evil — means you can make sure it gets into their hands after dinner or whenever they get home.  3. Get Packages Delivered to Your Workplace Not every employer will welcome your holiday shipments with open arms, so check with your office manager to see if they’d mind signing for packages you don’t want to risk having delivered at home.  Hauling items home can be cumbersome later, but if you want eyes on a package ASAP, your workplace may be your best bet. 4. Pay for a Package Receipt Service This isn’t the cheapest option, but it may be the most secure. Some businesses offer to receive packages for customers for a small fee.  I once lived around the corner from a dry cleaner that always had a line at the counter. Why so popular? Not only did it offer quick cleaning services, but you could pick up your dry cleaning and your packages in the same trip — and the hours were convenient, too. 5. Get Your Stuff Delivered to an Amazon Locker It’s not quite as convenient as home delivery or the corner store, but if you’d rather have your Amazon package delivered to a secure location, add an Amazon Locker location to your account.  Amazon will deliver the package to the locker and when it’s ready for pickup, you’ll receive an email with a six-digit code to pick up the package from the self-service kiosk. Lockers are located in stores, apartment buildings and malls across the United States, which offers you convenient times to pick up packages on in the evenings or on weekends. And if you’re a Prime member, you get to use the lockers for free.  6. Watch Your Tracking Info Like a Hawk Ah, the beauty of technology. I can see the exact moment my package went from a warehouse plane to another warehouse and onto a truck. And I can see the moment it finally lands at my home. Tracking services may not prevent you from losing packages to theft, but the available tools can help you stay up to date on its path and estimated arrival so you can plan accordingly.  Frequently, you can sign up for text or email updates on your package’s journey, and if you miss a delivery you need to sign for, you can sometimes have the package rerouted to a shipping service center, like the UPS Store, so the delivery person doesn’t spend three days knocking on your door.  Pro Tip If you have the Ring doorbell camera, sign up for reports on the Neighbors App, where you can share info about package thieves if they hit your area. The postal service even offers Informed Delivery, which sends you images of small pieces of mail that are on their way to your mailbox that day. If you’re willing to make a bigger investment, home security systems like the Ring can also let you monitor your front door — and the police department can use the footage to track down the porch pirates. If the worst-case scenario happens, detailed tracking information and video can help make a case to your credit card company, which may reimburse you for lost or stolen packages, or it could help you get a replacement item from the retailer. Lisa Rowan is a former senior writer and producer at The Penny Hoarder. This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017. [...]
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This Week in Fintech

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This Week in Fintech
Daily Fintech brings fresh daily fintech insights from people just like you – senior executives, entrepreneurs & investors working in the fintech revolution. Our weekly summaries give you a look at what you will get by reading the whole article and a brief summary with links to the daily articles. If you want to continue […] The post This Week in Fintech appeared first on Daily Fintech. [...]
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Crystal’s 10 Favorite Black Friday Deals

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Crystal’s 10 Favorite Black Friday Deals
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here. There were SO many great Black Friday deals today!! You can see ALL of the deals we posted here. I went through all of the deals we posted and picked out 10 deals that are my favorites. Here are my 10 top favorite deals from today… Dick’s Sporting Goods is offering 25% off Hydro Flask Bottles and Tumblers! Zulily has this 101-Piece 3D Magnetic Building Tile Play Set for only $29.99 today! Shipping is $5.99 making this only $35.98 shipped. This is a fantastic price for this set! Cents of Style is running Black Friday Sales on my favorite tee today — both the short-sleeve and long-sleeve versions! Get the Jagger Boyfriend Short-Sleeve Tee for just $10 shipped when you use code STEALDEAL. Or get the Joanna Boyfriend Long-Sleeve Tee for just $12 shipped when you use coupon code STEALDEAL. Amazon has this TaoTronics Essential Oils Diffuser for just $6.99 when you use coupon code GYLWZUQT at checkout. This is the lowest price on record and a really GREAT price on a diffuser! This is perfect if you are just getting started out with essential oils, need an extra diffuser for another room, or want to give a gift idea to someone who loves their essential oils! The HOT Hulu Black Friday Deal is back again this year! When you sign up for a year of Hulu as a new customer, you’ll pay just $1.99 per month! This is a savings of $4 per month, so an annual savings of $48! Note: This deal is only valid on the cheapest version of Hulu that is regularly $5.99/month. It does NOT include commercial-free or live tv options. WooHoo! Love this deal, and it always goes FAST! Grab four free kitchen appliances after Kohl’s Cash and rebates. Here’s how: Buy 4 select Toastmaster small kitchen appliances at $18.99 each Use promo code GIVETHANKS (15% off) Get $15 in Kohl’s Cash for spending $50 Submit for 4 $14 in mail-in-rebates Free after coupon code, Kohl’s cash, and rebates! There are 12 different appliances to choose from at this price: 5-cup coffee maker, plastic kettle, mini blender, mini chopper, immersion blender, 1.5 qt slow cooker, 2-slice toaster, 6-in skillet, mini waffle maker, hand mixer, can opener, electric kettle. Amazon has this Elmer’s Rainbow Slime Starter Kit for just $4.99 right now! This would be a great gift idea. Looking for a great deal on an electric toothbrush? Amazon currently has the Oral-B 7000 SmartSeries Rechargeable Power Electric Toothbrush priced at just $79.94 for Black Friday! This is a HOT deal as it retails for $179 and the lowest price we’ve ever seen it prior to this is $104. Whoa! Amazon price-matched Walmart on this HOT Black Friday deal!! Amazon has these Apple AirPods with Charging Case for just $129 shipped! This is the lowest price ever on record! Amazon has this Instant Pot 6-Quart 7-in-1 Multi-Use Programmable Pressure Cooker for only $49.99 shipped! This is the lowest price on record! [...]
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6 Underrated Reasons to Get the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Card

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6 Underrated Reasons to Get the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Card
At first glance, the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless™ Credit Card might not seem especially enticing, because it’s been a rough year for the Marriott Bonvoy program. Marriott has devalued the program, reduced status benefits, gone to a variable award chart and struggled with disruptive IT issues all year. Given all that, why would you want to... Caroline Lupini is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: travel@nerdwallet.com. The article 6 Underrated Reasons to Get the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Card originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
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8 Surprising Facts You Didn’t Know About Black Friday

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8 Surprising Facts You Didn’t Know About Black Friday
You may be a veteran Black Friday shopper with the inside scoop on the greatest deals and strategies — but how much do you really know about the day itself?  For example, can you name which generation goes nuts on Black Friday? Or how Black Friday really got its name? Knowledge is power, so we’ve rounded up eight of the most interesting Black Friday facts and shared them below. 1. More Than 50% of Americans Shop on Black Friday Sure, you knew Black Friday was popular, but did you know it was this popular? Last year, 165 million people shopped during Black Friday weekend (which lasts from Thanksgiving Day through Cyber Monday). That’s roughly half of all Americans.  Wondering how to stay sane amidst the hustle and bustle? Think ahead and develop a plan of attack — bonus: Strategizing can also help you avoid holiday debt.  2. Black Friday Can Be Deadly You may have joked about toy rage and trampling before, but the scary, sad fact of the matter is people actually have died shopping on Black Friday.  In the past 12 years, 12 deaths and 117 injuries have been attributed to Black Friday, Black Friday Death Count reports.  If you’re nervous about battling it out in the stores, then Cyber Monday might be more your scene. 3. The Day Owes Its Name to Philly Cops  You probably heard “Black Friday” originated from an accounting term: the day retailers’ profits finally went into the black.  But, the name really came from Philadelphia cops who were frustrated with traffic and smog caused by the mass of shoppers. Retailers didn’t like the negative connotation, so they spread the accounting rumor.  4. The Average Shopper Spends More Than $300 Can you believe it? Shoppers spent an average of $313.29 on their Black Friday shopping last year, according to a survey from the National Retail Federation.  Don’t let your holiday shopping get out of control: Create a holiday budget before doing anything else.  5. Black Friday Might Not Be the Cheapest Day of the Year Eek! You’ll find plenty of bargains on Black Friday, but don’t automatically assume everything is at its lowest price.  The cheapest day of the year may be later in the holiday shopping season. Before you buy, check out our comprehensive guide for the best time to buy just about anything. 6. Millennials are the Biggest Black Friday Shoppers Would you have guessed millennials are the generation most devoted to Black Friday? We wouldn’t have.  Technically, the group that spent the most were older millennials and younger Gen X-ers (35-44 years old), who spent an average of $413.05 last year.  That probably shouldn’t come as too great a surprise, since that’s also prime parenting age for younger children. Consider a new, budget-friendly tradition this holiday season: the four-gift rule. 7. It’s the Busiest Day of the Year for Plumbers It may no longer be the busiest day of the year for retailers, but Black Friday still reigns supreme for another industry: plumbing. “Often, the case is that a house already has partially clogged drains that go unnoticed, until holiday guests arrive and overwhelm the system,” explains Roto Rooter. Want to earn money on Black Friday, instead of spending it? Advertise your handyman services in the weeks leading up to the holiday.  8. Most Shoppers Actually Stay Home If you only go for the bargains — and not for the Black Friday experience — you might as well stay home and shop online.  Last year, 41.4 million shoppers said they bought exclusively online, compared to 34.7 million who said they patronized brick-and-mortar establishments only.   Susan Shain is a contributor to The Penny Hoarder. This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017. [...]
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Has Softbank’s Vision fund lost sight as it invests in PayTM $1 Bn raise despite mounting losses?

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Has Softbank’s Vision fund lost sight as it invests in PayTM $1 Bn raise despite mounting losses?
They lost $4.6 Billion with the WeWork deal. They have struggled to raise fund-2. They are now focused on profitability rather than growth. Yet, Softbank fund joined by Alibaba’s Ant Financial pooled in $600 Million for PayTM’s recent $1 Billion fund raise. PayTM is valued at $16 Billion at the end of this funding round. […] The post Has Softbank’s Vision fund lost sight as it invests in PayTM $1 Bn raise despite mounting losses? appeared first on Daily Fintech. [...]
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Happy Thanksgiving + Don’t Miss Any Black Friday Deals!

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Happy Thanksgiving + Don’t Miss Any Black Friday Deals!
Black Friday is almost here! As we’ve done the past few years, our team will be taking Thanksgiving Day off to spend with our families. But we’ll be back bright and early on Friday morning to live-blog the BEST online Black Friday deals all day long! We’d love for you to come join us here. We’ll start blogging deals around 6 a.m. CT and will keep blogging as long as we keep finding deals! You can follow along here on the blog or on our Facebook Page. I’m planning on doing several Facebook Lives throughout the day so we can hang out and talk about the best deals, too. Join us from the comfort of your couch with your PJ’s on and your favorite hot beverage in hand! It’s going to be fun — and I hope you’re able to find some great deals on items you were planning to buy! Make sure you don’t miss any deals! If you want to make sure you don’t miss any of the HOTTEST time-sensitive deals throughout the day, be sure to sign up for our HOT deals newsletter! You’ll receive a few emails throughout the day with a round-up of the BEST Black Friday Deals before they have a chance to expire. And be sure to also join our Facebook group if you haven’t done so yet! We’ll post every deal in that group as soon as it goes live, and you’ll get notifications via Facebook all day long! (This is especially helpful if you’ve been missing our posts in your regular Facebook newsfeed.) Looking for Black Friday deals that are already live? Black Friday Deals have been rolling out really early this year! We’ve already posted hundreds of early Black Friday deals! Go here to see all of the latest Black Friday Deals we’ve posted. And you can also check out all of the in-store Black Friday Ad Scans here. Happy Thanksgiving! Have a WONDERFUL Thanksgiving (if you’re struggling this Thanksgiving, be sure to read this) and we’ll see you back here on MoneySavingMom.com bright and early for all the Black Friday goodness! [...]
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3 Ways to Downsize Your Life to Save Money, Time and Stress

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3 Ways to Downsize Your Life to Save Money, Time and Stress
Downsizing — what exactly does it mean? Smaller house, fewer bills, less stuff? Yes, yes and yes. Many think of downsizing as moving to a more compact house after the kids have grown and gone. And it is. But let’s not stop there. Downsizing makes sense in other ways, too. Following are other areas of life where downsizing can yield serious financial savings, not to mention save you... [...]
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*HOT* Hulu Black Friday Deal | Get a year of Hulu at just $1.99 per month!!!

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*HOT* Hulu Black Friday Deal | Get a year of Hulu at just $1.99 per month!!!
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here. Whoa! Don’t miss this HOT Hulu Black Friday Deal! Yay!! The HOT Hulu Black Friday Deal is back again this year! When you sign up for a year of Hulu as a new customer, you’ll pay just $1.99 per month! This is a savings of $4 per month, so an annual savings of $48! Note: This deal is only valid on the cheapest version of Hulu that is regularly $5.99/month. It does NOT include commercial-free or live tv options. Go here to sign up for this HOT deal! [...]
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Innovate from the customer backwards- but caveat innovator!

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Innovate from the customer backwards- but caveat innovator!
image The insurance industry is in large part past the hysteria of disruption, innovation and entrants solving the issues of the insurance world, and is moving into the stage of implementation, collaboration and iteration. Startups that have gained traction are now broadening their markets, and in some cases, their offerings. And, the industry is recognizing […] The post Innovate from the customer backwards- but caveat innovator! appeared first on Daily Fintech. [...]
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Edfinancial Services Customer Service: What It Can Do and How to Contact

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Edfinancial Services Customer Service: What It Can Do and How to Contact
Edfinancial Services is one of nine companies that service federal student loans by collecting and tracking payments. It is sometimes seen as HESC/Edfinancial. If Edfinancial is your student loan servicer, here’s what it can help you do. Register for online access to your account. Once you have access you can contact Edfinancial, access your monthly billing... Anna Helhoski is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: anna@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @AnnaHelhoski. The article Edfinancial Services Customer Service: What It Can Do and How to Contact originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
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5 Ways to Buy Discounted Gift Cards So You Can Save Big on Black Friday

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5 Ways to Buy Discounted Gift Cards So You Can Save Big on Black Friday
Some of the links in this post are from our sponsors. We provide you with accurate, reliable information. Learn more about how we make money and select our advertising partners. The concept of buying discounted gift cards is simple enough. You “stack” your savings by combining Black Friday sales with discounted gift cards as payment.  And most retailers let you use their cards in-store or online.  Here are five ways you can buy gift cards for less than face value. 1. Online Gift Card Vendors Sellers that specialize in gift cards normally sell them at face value, but they do have sales.  Typically, quantities are limited and the deals sell out fast, so check often. You can sign up on Doctor of Credit to receive phone notifications of these types of deals. 2. Discounted Gift Card Sites Many websites help you buy discounted gift cards with unused balances. Discounts vary according to demand, and from site to site.  Gift Card Granny currently shows that a Cold Stone Creamery gift is available for 14% off and a 1800Flowers gift card is available for 8% off.   3. Local Store Promotions I once bought gift cards for several retailers at Dollar General for 15% off. To find these deals, check weekly ads online for various stores near you. Gift card promotions are usually on or near the last page.   Gift cards at Sam’s Club (online and in-store) often sell at a discount, but the selection is limited and the best deals are usually for restaurants. You can currently get two $25 cards for Olive Garden, Subway or Starbucks — a total value of $50 — for $39.98 online. 4. Use a 5% Cash-Back Category Reward If you have a credit card that pays 5% cash back on certain categories, you can use it to get 5% back on gift cards for non-category retailers.  For example, Discover’s 5% categories currently include Amazon.com, Walmart.com and Target. Discover doubles your cash back after the first year, so you actually get 10% back if you’re a new card holder. Chase Freedom is another card with rotating 5% cash back categories (new ones every three months). Just remember that with both Chase and Discover, you have to activate your 5% bonus online at the beginning of each quarter. 5. Use Amex Offers If you have an American Express card, take advantage of Amex Offers to get discounted gift cards. Just watch for offers at places that sell gift cards. For example, my offers (each account theoretically gets different ones) once included a $10 statement credit for spending $50 at JCPenney. I can go to JCPenney, find their gift card rack, buy a $50 card for some other store, and get $10 back.  American Express says they’ll credit your account within 90 days, but it has never taken more than two weeks for my credit to appear.  You might even get gift cards for free. I used an offer of $10 back for any purchase at Newegg to buy a $10 Home Depot gift card — three times. There was no shipping charge, so I got $30 in Home Depot cards for free.  Get Ready for Black Friday   To prepare for Black Friday, you may have to guess where you’ll spend the most money, and how much, in order to buy the right gift cards in advance.  If you’re uncertain, just buy cards for places where you usually shop. That way, you can easily “liquidate” them after Black Friday if you haven’t used them all. If you wait until the last moment (or are reading this on Black Friday), you can still buy digital gift cards as necessary and print them out at home. Most vendors say it takes up to a day to email you the link to print your “card,” but I’ve always received it within two hours.   If you’re a scientific shopper, you’ll prepare a list of doorbusters and other items you plan to buy, and where. Then you’ll find the necessary gift cards at the best discounts available. You’ll also use… More Advanced Gift Card Strategies Paying for Black Friday purchases with discounted gift cards is a simple way to “stack” your savings.  But you can save even more if you add additional savings tactics, like using the right rewards credit card. Here are some examples of how to really stack up those savings. Example #1 Suppose Gap and Old Navy gift cards are currently on sale for 20% off at Staples. Buy a $50 card with a Chase Ink or American Express Simply Cash Business card (I have both), to get $2 cash back on the $40 purchase (5% back at all office supply stores).  Spend $50 on half-priced gifts on Black Friday, and pay with the gift card for a total net cost of $38 for things that would normally cost $100.  That’s how you stack three savings tactics: a sale, credit card cash back and a discounted gift card. Example #2 You plan to spend $140 on gifts at Michaels, so you do this: Go to Cashback Monitor and enter Raise to see which cash-back portal pays best for shopping at that discount card vendor. At the moment, the best rate is 5% from Mr. Rebates. Go to Mr. Rebates and set up an account, because they offer 5% cash back if you shop at Raise through their link. Use the Mr. Rebates portal link to go to Raise. Search through the many Michaels gift cards. As I write this, a card with a balance of $202.25 is listed for $174.95, a 13.5% discount. Buy the gift card with a credit card that gives you cash back, like Citi Double Cash (2%) or Barclaycard CashForward World MasterCard (1.5%). Buy stuff at Michaels for at least 50% off on Black Friday. Here’s the breakdown on what you would save on the first $140 of purchases, if you buy only Black Friday deals that are 50% off: Half-off sale savings: $140.00 Gift card discount: $27.91 Portal cash back: $3.36 Credit card cash back: $2.24 By stacking four savings tactics, you save $173.51, and pay just $106.49 for gifts that would have cost $280 at the regular prices. Example #3 Add a coupon to the last example to use five savings tactics for one purchase. I once a five-level stack recently (not for Black Friday).  I earned portal cash back (1) when I bought a discounted gift card (2) with a cash-back credit card (3), and then I used the gift card and a coupon (4) to buy items already on sale (5) — all just to get cheap cat food at Petco in that case, but the strategy can also work at all of your favorite Black Friday stores. Steve Gillman is the author of “101 Weird Ways to Make Money” and creator of EveryWayToMakeMoney.com. He’s been a repo-man, walking stick carver, search engine evaluator, house flipper, tram driver, process server, mock juror, and roulette croupier, but of more than 100 ways he has made money, writing is his favorite (so far). This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017. [...]
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Battleship Game Retro Series 1967 Edition only $8.09!

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Battleship Game Retro Series 1967 Edition only $8.09!
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here. This is a great price on this Battleship Game Retro Series 1967 Edition! Amazon has this Battleship Game Retro Series 1967 Edition for just $8.09 right now! This would make such a fun gift idea. Sign up for a free trial of Amazon Prime to get guaranteed FREE two-day shipping (and possibly one-day or same-day shipping!). And don’t forget you can sign up for Swagbucks to earn free gift cards to use on deals on Amazon. Looking for more Black Friday Deals? You can go here for all of the best online Black Friday Deals as we live blog them all week long! Also, be sure to sign up for our Hot Deals newsletter andjoin our Deal Seekers Facebook groupso that you don’t miss out on any of the hottest, time-sensitive deals as soon as they go live throughout the rest of the holiday season! [...]
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Apple Airpods with Charging Case for just $134 shipped!

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Apple Airpods with Charging Case for just $134 shipped!
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here. If you’ve been wanting Apple Airpods, don’t miss this Black Friday Deal! Amazon has these Apple Airpods with Charging Case for just $134 shipped! This is just $5 more than the lowest Black Friday price we’ll see at Walmart ($129). So if you want to avoid the rush and just go ahead and grab them now, this is a really nice price! Sign up for a free trial of Amazon Prime to get guaranteed FREE two-day shipping (and possibly one-day or same-day shipping!). And don’t forget you can sign up for Swagbucks to earn free gift cards to use on deals on Amazon. Looking for more Black Friday Deals? You can go here for all of the best online Black Friday Deals as we live blog them all week long! Also, be sure to sign up for our Hot Deals newsletter and join our Deal Seekers Facebook group so that you don’t miss out on any of the hottest, time-sensitive deals as soon as they go live throughout the rest of the holiday season! [...]
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Transparency, Transparency, Transparency in portfolio performance

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Transparency, Transparency, Transparency in portfolio performance
Four years ago, I started preaching about Transparency in wealth management. In the Global Transparency movement in Portfolio Performance from the Daily Fintech archives in October 2015, I asked for `…  a world in which Barron’s top advisor annual rankings take into account performance. Believe it or not, right now these rankings don’t include performance […] The post Transparency, Transparency, Transparency in portfolio performance appeared first on Daily Fintech. [...]
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This Habit Saves Me Money and Stress All Week Long

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This Habit Saves Me Money and Stress All Week Long
Figuring out what to cook for dinner every night can add stress to an already long day. But going out to eat or picking something on the way home adds up to a pretty penny. What if there was a way to avoid the hassle of what’s for dinner and save money in the process? Enter meal planning. This one switch — from deciding what to eat on the fly to planning out your meals &#8212. [...]
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Take Care: How to Ask for Work Benefits When You’re an Elder Caregiver

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Take Care: How to Ask for Work Benefits When You’re an Elder Caregiver
Editor’s Note: This story was originally published in October 2018. Usha Tewari has two full-time jobs, but she only gets paid for one of them. Tewari works as an administrator for the Orange County Property Appraiser in Orlando, Florida, but she started an unpaid position on Jan. 28, 2017 — the day her mother, who was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, moved in with her. Tewari made the decision to move her mom, Mila, in with her after she noticed that the staff at a rehab facility wasn’t making Mila take her medicine or eat her meals.  She discovered that alternative options were limited — caregiving facilities provide varying levels of care, and a dementia diagnosis eliminates many lower-cost choices. “I got very frustrated with the process,” says Tewari, who couldn’t afford memory care facilities that charged thousands of dollars per month to feed and bathe her mom — on top of the base price. “That’s when I realized I can’t depend on other people. I have to figure it out myself.  “I basically had no choice but to learn how to balance my work and taking care of her.” Tewari is among the more than 40 million Americans who provide unpaid eldercare, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That number is expected to increase, as older people will outnumber children by 2030, according to the Census Bureau’s Population Projections. And like Tewari, most family caregivers cannot simply quit a job to tend to family members full time.  Although everyone’s caregiving situation is unique, we’ve gathered advice from experts about work benefits and caregiver rights as well as tips from real-life caregivers to help you achieve a work-life balance. Employee Benefits That Work for Caregivers In this tight labor market, more companies are expanding benefits to attract and retain employees. General Mills, for instance, added two weeks of paid leave for family caregivers to its benefits plan in 2018. So review your employer’s policies before you start the conversation. One resource for caregivers is an employee assistance program, a company intervention program.  Benefits within these plans vary greatly, so it pays to investigate what your company offers, advises Chatrane Birbal, the Director of Congressional Affairs for Health Care and Employee Benefits at the Society for Human Resource Management. “EAP benefits can include support groups… and programs for supporting an employee’s economic stability during a crisis,” Birbal says. “The plan can also include a wide array of other services, such as nurse advice telephone access, basic legal assistance… or assistance finding elder care services.”  Additionally, find out your employer’s policies on telecommuting, flextime and compressed work weeks, all of which help when scheduling around your caregiving duties. If your employer doesn’t list specific family care benefits in your employee manual, you can use it as an opportunity to bring up these benefits with your employer. Know Your Caregiver Rights as an Employee Before you start a conversation with your employer about your caregiving duties, it’s best to first research what you’re legally entitled to. If you’ve worked at least a year for a company with 50 or more employees, you can qualify for 12 weeks of unpaid leave annually through the Family Medical Leave Act.  Depending on your state, you may have additional rights to paid leave — eight states and Washington, D.C., have passed legislation that provides for paid family leave.  During your approved leave, employers by law must maintain group health benefits and cannot fill your position. If you don’t live in one of those states, FMLA provides some relief for caregivers, but once you run out of the allotted time, you’re at the mercy of an employer, notes lawyer Amanda Singleton of St. Petersburg, Florida. In 2010, Singleton was working at a law firm when her mom was diagnosed with brain cancer and suddenly required 24-hour care.  Singleton tried to use her time off intermittently that year to care for her mom. But two months before her mom died, the firm’s human resources department informed her that she had used all of her FMLA time.  Singleton was told she could either resign or be fired if she missed any more work. Knowing her mom didn’t have long to live, she chose the latter. “It was a really big kick in the teeth while I was down,” says Singleton. “I was losing my mom, and I was going to lose my profession.” Singleton went on to start her own law firm, Singleton Legal, with a specialty in advocating for caregiver rights. FROM THE ANNOUNCEMENTS FORUM This week in... The Penny Hoarder Community 11/15/19 @ 9:02 PM This week in... The Penny Hoarder Community 11/8/19 @ 2:28 PM Happy November! 11/1/19 @ 5:47 PM This week in... The Penny Hoarder Community 10/25/19 @ 2:18 PM See more in Announcements or ask a money question One Woman’s Story of Balancing Work and Caregiving Tewari says a few factors have allowed her to keep her job while taking on caregiving duties.  The first is location. Tewari can walk to work, which allows her to check on her mom at lunch or rush home if there’s an emergency.  Tewari also chose an apartment complex that has security personnel on duty. “Fortunately, they’re very understanding of my situation, so if my mom does not answer the phone right away, I’ll send security to make sure she hasn’t fallen,” Tewari says. “I’ve had to do that in one or two instances. “Unfortunately, I have to pay a little more rent, but I have that peace of mind rather than living in a house.” Second, Tewari hired a caregiver to bathe her mom and help prepare food. The caregiver charges $14 per hour and comes over twice a week for a total of 10 hours. “That’s all I could afford at this time,” Tewari says. And finally, when she can’t find help elsewhere, Tewari relies on technology. “I have a camera installed,” she says. “I check on my mom via the camera, and I call her to make sure everything is OK.” Tewari also feels lucky to have understanding coworkers and managers. “There’s quite a few of them who are taking care of their own parents,” she notes. Talk to Your Employer About Caregiving Duties Although the timing isn’t always up to you, the earlier you can speak to your employer, the better you’ll be able to negotiate accommodations for your caregiving duties, advises Jana Panarites, author and host of the Agewyz podcast on caregiving and healthy aging. “Talk about your caregiving duties before you reach a crisis situation,” says Panarites, who became a caregiver in 2009 when her mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. “The last thing you want to do is have to make decisions under duress —  you’re already going to be stressed out.” In retrospect, Singleton wishes that she had negotiated with her employer immediately after her mom’s diagnosis. Pro Tip If it’s tough to prioritize caring for yourself when your budget is tight, check out these inexpensive ways to create a DIY spa day. “Caregivers frequently take a year to start asking for help,” Singleton says. “Ask for help early and often — whether it’s your family member [...]
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Instant Pot 6 Quart 7-in-1 Programmable Pressure Cooker for just $35.99 shipped!

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Instant Pot 6 Quart 7-in-1 Programmable Pressure Cooker for just $35.99 shipped!
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here. Still in the market for an Instant Pot? Don’t miss this Kohl’s Black Friday Deal! Kohl’s has a GREAT Black Friday Deal on the Instant Pot: Instant Pot 6-Quart 7-in-1 Programmable Pressure Cooker — $59.99 (Reg. $99.99) Use code GIVETHANKS to get 15% off Shipping is FREE Get $15 back in Kohl’s Cash Like paying $35.99 shipped after Kohl’s Cash This is an amazing price on an Instant Pot!! Looking for more Black Friday Deals? You can go here for all of the best online Black Friday Deals as we live blog them all week long! Also, be sure to sign up for our Hot Deals newsletter and join our Deal Seekers Facebook group so that you don’t miss out on any of the hottest, time-sensitive deals as soon as they go live throughout the rest of the holiday season! [...]
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Green Kid Crafts Promo Code | Get a box for just $8.99 shipped!

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Green Kid Crafts Promo Code | Get a box for just $8.99 shipped!
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here. This is a RARE discount on a Green Kid Crafts box! Green Kid Crafts — a monthly subscription box of hands-on science and art activities — is offering a super rare deal to get 70% off your first box! That means you’ll pay just $8.99 shipped for a box! Just use coupon code BLACK70 during checkout to grab this deal. Green Kid Crafts allows kids to explore educational topics like oceans, safaris, space, volcanoes, music, and much more. Each Discovery STEAM Box is themed and comes with 4-8 science, technology, engineering, art, and math kits for kids ages 2-10! This deal is valid through December 1, 2019. {Note: When you sign up for this deal, you’ll have to choose a subscription plan. After your first discounted box, your subscription will continue at the regular monthly price. If you don’t wish to continue, you can cancel at any time after receiving your first box, though!} Go here to get your Discovery STEAM Box for just $8.99. Looking for more Black Friday Deals? You can go here for all of the best online Black Friday Deals as we live blog them all week long! Also, be sure to sign up for our Hot Deals newsletter and join our Deal Seekers Facebook group so that you don’t miss out on any of the hottest, time-sensitive deals as soon as they go live throughout the rest of the holiday season! [...]
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This Company is Looking for Clinical Trial Participants (And Will Pay up to $12,000)

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This Company is Looking for Clinical Trial Participants (And Will Pay up to $12,000)
Taking part in a clinical research study is a great way to help find treatments for common illnesses…  …and, we’re not going to lie, it’s also a great way to potentially earn some extra money.  Wait! Before your imagination runs wild, know that clinical trials really aren’t that scary. You just have to find legit opportunities that are worth your time. We suggest starting with a contract research organization called Parexel, which has been around since 1982. It conducts clinical trials in Baltimore, Los Angeles and London — and it’s willing to pay you up to $12,000 per study. Sooo… Tell Me More About These Trials These research organizations spend years testing new medications and devices in hopes of treating common illnesses. After all that research, they move to the next step — these clinical trials — so the Food and Drug Administration will give its stamp of approval. It’s the last stop before something is offered to the public. And that’s where you can help. You don’t necessarily have to have an illness, either; Parexel is looking for healthy participants, as well. The first phases of Parexel studies typically focus on healthy volunteers, and these studies tend to pay more.   Here’s how to get started: Go to Parexel’s website, and scroll through its available studies in Baltimore, Los Angeles and London. Take note of each study’s dates, requirements and compensation. If you find a match, apply for the study online by filling out some basic information. If you don’t find a match? Join Parexel’s mailing list, and it’ll email you when new trials become available. Are There Any Major Requirements? Hop over to Parexel’s list of available studies. It outlines any specific requirements upfront so you won’t waste your time. For example, one study, available at the time of writing this article, simply needed healthy volunteers who don’t smoke. Others will be more specific — like those with arthritis or non-childbearing women. As a general rule of thumb, Parexel is looking for participants who: Are ages 18 to 55. Live anywhere in the U.S. and can travel to Baltimore, Los Angeles and London. Generally have a body mass index (BMI) of 32 or less. (You can calculate your BMI on Parexel’s site.) For healthy volunteers, Parexel is looking for people in overall good health, who are not diagnosed with any major medical conditions and don’t consistently require prescription medications.  Some trials will require you to stay on site for up to 20 nights (those pay more), and others simply require you to stop in for flexible tests and screenings. Generally, you’ll get paid per visit — with Parexel, the average is $300 to $350. So if you’re looking for some extra money and want to help find treatments to common diseases, sign up for a clinical research study. Carson Kohler (carson@thepennyhoarder.com) is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder. This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017. [...]
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Glass Lewis Releases 2020 US Proxy Paper Guidelines

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Glass Lewis Releases 2020 US Proxy Paper Guidelines
On November 1, Glass Lewis released its 2020 US Proxy Paper Guidelines. The updates to the voting guidelines primarily add additional factors that Glass Lewis will review when evaluating proposals and issuing its voting recommendation for shareholders. According to Glass Lewis, the updates seek to fulfill Glass Lewis’ overarching goal of protecting and enhancing shareholders’ interests by (1) continuing to increase transparency at the board level, both with respect to the selection of board members and with respect to decisions the board undertakes, and (2) discouraging companies from undertaking actions that would bypass the shareholders’ ability to vote on matters deemed important by Glass Lewis. Significant updates to the voting guidelines are summarized below. Nominating and governance committee assessment In September, the SEC issued guidance stating that when a company seeks to exclude a shareholder proposal, the SEC will inform the shareholder and the company of its position to (1) concur, (2) disagree or (3) decline to state a view with respect to the company’s asserted basis for exclusion. The SEC further clarified that, beginning with the 2019-2020 shareholder proposal season, the staff may also respond to no-action requests orally rather than in writing. Glass Lewis clarified that it will recommend voting against all members of the governance committee if a shareholder proposal is omitted and either (a) the SEC declines to state its view with respect to the company’s basis for exclusion or (b) the SEC verbally permits the exclusion, but there is no written record and the company fails to provide any disclosure regarding such relief. Glass Lewis also added additional factors that it will consider when evaluating governance committee members’ performance. In particular, Glass Lewis will recommend voting against the chair of the nominating and governance committee if (1) board and committee meeting attendance records of directors are not disclosed or (2) a director attended less than 75 percent of board and committee meetings, and the disclosure is vague to a point where it is not possible to determine such director’s identity. Audit committee and compensation committee assessments Glass Lewis also established additional factors that it will consider when evaluating audit committee and compensation committee performance. In particular, Glass Lewis will generally recommend voting against the chair of an audit committee if fees paid to a company’s external auditor are not disclosed. In addition, Glass Lewis will recommend voting against all members of the compensation committee if the board adopts a frequency proposal for its advisory vote on executive compensation and such proposal was not approved by a plurality of shareholders. Contractual payments and arrangements for executives Glass Lewis clarified that, with respect to ongoing and new contractual payments and executive entitlements, it disfavors contractual agreements that include excessive severance payments, new or renewed single-trigger, change-in-control arrangements, excise tax gross-ups, multi-year guaranteed awards and other provisions that Glass Lewis considers to be problematic. Similarly, contractual arrangements providing for problematic entitlements that are not addressed upon renewal or revision are viewed by Glass Lewis as a missed opportunity to remedy provisions unfavorable to shareholders and could lead to a negative voting recommendation. Company responsiveness to say-on-pay Glass Lewis further clarified what it considers an appropriate response to low shareholder support for prior say-on-pay proposals, including the levels of responsiveness based on the severity and persistence of shareholder opposition. Glass Lewis may recommend voting against future say-on-pay proposals if, in response to negative shareholder feedback, a company with low (less than 80 percent) support on a say-on–pay proposal fails to provide robust disclosure of engagement activities and specific changes in response to shareholder feedback. Exclusive forum provisions Glass Lewis generally recommends voting against the chair of the governance committee if the board adopts an exclusive forum provision without shareholder approval. However, Glass Lewis may now make exceptions to this policy if it can be reasonably determined that the exclusive forum provision is narrowly crafted to suit the company’s specific circumstances. In addition, Glass Lewis has made various minor clarifications and edits to its guidelines. The full text of the Glass Lewis 2020 US Proxy Paper Guidelines is available here. [...]
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Afternoon Deals: Sunday, November 24

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Afternoon Deals: Sunday, November 24
Every morning and afternoon we publish a list of the latest and best deals from our partner, DealNews. To learn more about the discounts and details, click on any of the deals for more information. To have this list, along with our latest news and stories, delivered daily to your inbox, sign up for our free newsletter. For links to deals as they’re published, follow @mtndeals on Twitter. [...]
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Life Update: Pregnancy (17 weeks) + Thanksgiving break!

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Life Update: Pregnancy (17 weeks) + Thanksgiving break!
Welcome to my weekly life update where I share about my pregnancy & give you a peek into our life this past week. If you want to follow a lot more behind-the-scenes and real-time updates every week, be sure to follow my stories and posts on Instagram. 17 weeks and the bump is starting to finally make its appearance more regularly! I still get shocked every time I look in the mirror and see that there’s a BABY bump there!! HIGHLIGHTS I’m slowly transitioning into a few maternity tops! And I’m feeling the baby move so much more now — Jesse was even able to feel some movement!! NOTABLE After a few weeks of lots of pregnancy-induced insomnia, I actually slept over 7 hours straight the past two nights!!!! I forgot what that felt like!! Also, I have significantly changed my diet and that seems to really be helping my heartburn. I usually have severe heartburn that gets progressively worse in my pregnancy but I found that limiting my fats to eggs, avocados, butter, and grape seed oil + having almost zero acidic foods has made a massive difference in the last week for me. I don’t know how long the relief will continue but every hour that I’m not experiencing intense heartburn is such a gift right now! CRAVINGS Carbs and more carbs (at least I’m craving whole grains most of the time, though!!) Plus (gratefully!) some fruit, veggies, and meat. I’m thankful that while I’m still nauseous at least some of every day, overall I’m able to eat and (mostly) enjoy healthy food again! Also, I’m back to drinking close to a gallon of water again — yay!!! WEIGHT GAIN: 9 lbs. Got any great suggestions/solutions to help with insomnia or heartburn? Send ‘em my way! The kids are SO excited to have a whole week of school off for Thanksgiving break! We’re headed to Kansas to spend time with both of our families and can’t wait! Kathrynne got Friday off, too, so she went with me to Panera while I worked on a writing project and she worked on this art project (she’s been loving sketching and drawing and doodling recently!) The finished product! Something From My Heart… They say you should use a nice camera, use editing software, and use photo presets if you really want to grow your online following and increase your engagement. I think blogs and social media accounts like that are beautiful and amazing, but that’s just not me. I’m not that organized, put-together, or patient. Plus, I wouldn’t know the first thing about how to use photo presets. So instead, I bring you real-life photos and videos taken in the moment on my phone. Because this is my life and this is what I have to offer. The “experts” would say a darkly-lit photo with a messy table and dishes on it should never see the light of day on someone’s social media account or blog. But y’all, I think this photo that I took the other night of the Silas and Jesse working on Silas’ rough draft together is so much more meaningful than most all edited and staged photos I have. It speaks of a dad who loves his son, of a boy who is working hard on school, and of the beauty that is real life. These are the moments I don’t ever want to forget. If I took the time to try to get the lighting right, cleared the table strewn with dishes and books, and staged the setting, it would completely lose the meaning for me. So thank you for following here and joining me in the imperfect. Thank you for not expecting pretty and staged and edited from my blog or social media accounts. Thank you for showing up for the real and the raw. And thank you for loving me — and us — exactly as we are! It means the world to me and it makes me look forward to hanging out online every day! ❤️ [...]
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Over 50 and Still Owe on Student Loans? Here’s How to Get Debt Free

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Over 50 and Still Owe on Student Loans? Here’s How to Get Debt Free
Student loan debt isn’t reserved for the young. In fact, it’s becoming a bigger problem for those well beyond the traditional campus quad years. Of the $1.5 trillion student debt Americans owe, people age 50 and older owe 20% of it — $289.5 billion. And borrowers 62 and older held $72.9 billion in outstanding federal student loans, up $10.4 billion from the previous year, according to the U.S. Department of Education. Why so much? The majority of the loans are for children’s and grandchildren’s education, although some of it is also for career changers taking out later-in-life loans for their own education. Unfortunately, with the prospect of retirement on the horizon, there’s a lot less time to pay off those student loans, and there can be painful consequences if you don’t — including having your Social Security wages garnished. If you’re among those who are closer to retirement than the legal drinking age, we have solutions for dealing with student loan debt when you’re over 50. Paying Off Student Loan Debt After Age 50 Everyone has their own reasons for staring down student loans when they’re on the verge of retirement. And while we have plenty of strategies for paying off student loans in general, we’re here to address some of the most common scenarios that lead to student loan debt after 50 and offer tips on how to pay them off. 1. You Took Out Federal Student Loans  You may have heard this before: Your kids can borrow for college, but you can’t take out loans to retire. Regardless of whether you took out federal loans for your own education or your kid’s, saving for retirement should still be a priority. In fact, it could potentially save you thousands on student loan repayments.  If you have federal student loans, you can qualify for an income-driven repayment plan, which calculates your monthly student loan payments based on your income. But your contributions to a 401(k) or IRA are pre-tax dollars, which reduce your salary in the eyes of the federal government. And a smaller salary reduces your monthly student loan payment. Depending on the repayment plan, after 20 to 25 years of on-time payments, the remaining balance will be forgiven, although that amount will be counted as taxable income. “If that’s the case, you’re in your 70s — your income traditionally is lower,” said Amy Irvine, a Certified Financial Planner and founder of Rooted Planning Group. “So you may end up paying less income tax on the amount that’s forgiven with the income-driven plan than you would have if you had made the full payment.” Pro Tip If you’re 50 or older in 2020, you can contribute up to $26,000 to your 401(k) and up to $7,000 to your IRAs. Another option for socking away money to lower your taxable income: a Health Savings Account. In 2020, you can contribute up to $3,550 as an individual or $7,100 as family to an HSA if you have a high-deductible health plan. And as a bonus, you’ll probably appreciate the extra money for health care as you continue to get older. “One of the biggest reasons that a financial plan ‘fails’ in retirement is because of medical expenses,” Irvine said. 2. You Took Out (or Co-Signed) Private Student Loans If you have a private student loan staring you down — either ones you took out or that you cosigned for your student — you’ll need to get a little more creative when it comes to paying it back. Because it isn’t a federal loan, you typically do not have the income-driven options that the federal loans offer. However, it doesn’t hurt to call your lender and ask about extended payment plans. Other options: Consider refinancing the loan or taking out a personal loan with a lower interest rate, which can save you money over the life of your loan.  Pro Tip If you’re married and one partner earns significantly more, ask your tax adviser whether filing your taxes as “married filing separately” could help you qualify for an income-driven plan. If you own your home and car, consider using a home equity loan rather than taking out a loan against your vehicle, Irvine advised.  “[Your home] is a more stable asset than a car that’s depreciating,” she said. Regardless of the strategy you choose, the ultimate goal should be to get the payment low enough so the student can take over the payments — and eventually the loan — themselves. 3. You Have Multiple Loans With High Interest If you have federal and private loans, you may be looking for a one-stop solution, like consolidation. However, that could negate some of the benefits you get with federal loans. “Federal loans are dischargeable if the borrower is permanently disabled or dies,” said Joseph Valenti, senior policy advisor with the AARP Public Policy Institute. “Doing the private refinancing means losing some of those rights and options.” However, that doesn’t always mean holding onto high-interest loans for death and disability benefits is the best option financially, Irvine noted. “Let’s say you’re paying 7% on those direct loans, and you can go out and refinance those into a private loan for 3%,” she said. “Then you may want to up your disability policy so that you know you have the money to repay that loan or take out a life insurance policy so that if something happens to you, the loan can be paid off.”  4. You’re Paying Your Child’s Federal Student Loans So there’s the obvious answer to this one: Tell your kid to start footing the bill for their own student loans. But you’re a parent (or grandparent), not some heartless thug. You want to help your kids if they can’t afford those astronomical student loan payments. But your offspring can still do their part to help by getting themselves on an income-driven repayment plan. “Even if the parent or grandparent has to make that minimum payment, it’s still much better than the full payment,” Irvine said. FROM THE DEBT FORUM Debt collections 11/23/19 @ 12:57 PM Student loans 11/20/19 @ 9:17 AM Paid off Debt, however Credit Score stayed the same....Why? 4/23/19 @ 7:10 PM Credit card Debt 11/19/19 @ 10:56 AM See more in Debt or ask a money question 5. Your Kids Are Heading to College and You Still Owe on Your Own Student Loans If your kids have dreams of campus life, but you’re still paying for your own college years, it’s best to come up with a strategy before they start applying. Scholarships and part-time jobs during the school year and summer jobs can help your child put a dent in their debt, giving them a better chance to manage their repayment without your help. But your strategy for paying off loans could also require a little creativity — and working with your kid’s prospective school. “One of my clients had a really high interest rate student loan that they were repaying,” Irvine said. “We actually used the Plus loan to pay off their loan, and then figured out how to do an installment payment to the college to get the student’s tuition covered.”  6. You’re Ignoring the Problem This one is on you. It’s stressful, it’s confusing and sometimes unfair, but ignoring the debt is the worst mistake Irvine said she sees clients make. “They don’t know what th [...]
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Brigette’s $87 Grocery Shopping Trip and Weekly Menu Plan for 6

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Brigette’s $87 Grocery Shopping Trip and Weekly Menu Plan for 6
Aldi 1 20-lb Turkey – $15.40 2 64-oz cartons Orange Juice – $3.28 1 gallon Whole Milk – $0.97 1 gallon 1% Milk – $0.97 1 64-oz carton Unsweetened Almond Milk – $1.79 1 bag Coffee – $3.49 1 Olive Oil Cooking Spray – $0.97 2 5-lb bags Flour – $1.98 1 5-lb bag Corn Masa – $1.65 1 box Pie Crusts – $0.99 1 jar Baking Cocoa – $1.49 1 pkg String Cheese – $1.99 1 24-oz carton Cottage Cheese – $1.59 5 single-serving size cartons Greek Yogurt – $3.45 1 2-lb bag Shredded Cheese – $4.99 2 bag frozen Broccoli Florets – $1.90 1 bag frozen Riced Cauliflower – $1.89 1 bag Steamed Mixed Vegetables – $0.95 1 head Cauliflower – $1.99 1 3-lb bag Mandarin Oranges – $2.39 1 3-lb bag Apples – $2.99 1 large tub Organic Spring Mix – $3.49 1 pkg Romaine Hearts – $1.99 2 bags Fresh Green Beans – $2.98 1 bag Lemons – $1.99 1 bunch Bananas – $1.09 1 pkg Snacking Tomatoes, reduced – $0.99 1 pkg Pepperoni – $1.99 1 16-oz pkg Deli Meat – $2.69 1 pkg Flour Tortillas – $0.65 1-lb Ground Sausage – $1.89 2 large cans Chicken Breast – $3.98 1 bag Pecans – $3.99 1 pkg Deli Sliced Cheese – $1.49 1 can Whipped Topping – $2.65 1 large jar Corn Syrup – $1.69 1 bag Brown Sugar – $0.89 2 cans Tomato Sauce – $0.38 2 large cans Crushed Tomatoes – $1.04 1 jar Spaghetti Sauce – $0.75 1 box Frosted Flakes – $1.19 2 boxes Honey Crisp Oats – $2.38 1 large canister Quick Oats – $2.16 1 loaf Sandwich Bread, reduced – $0.25 1 pkg Plain Rice Cakes – $1.15 2 dozen Eggs – $1.54 Used a $20 Aldi Gift Card received as a gift from a friend Total: ($102.52 – $20): 82.52 Harris Teeter 1 pkg fresh Cauliflower Rice, reduced – $1.00 1 bag Spinach, reduced – $1.00 5 cans Green Beans – $1.38 Sweet Potatoes ($0.25/lb) – $1.38 Total: $4.76 Grocery Total for the Week: $87.58 Weekly Menu Plan Breakfasts Everyone is responsible for making/cleaning up their own breakfasts. Choices include: Cereal, Oatmeal, Banana Muffins, Boiled/Fried/Scrambled Eggs, Veggie Omelets, Toast, Yogurt, Smoothies Lunches Cheese Quesadillas, Apples, Mini Carrots Deli Meat/Cheese Sandwiches, Grapes, Mini Cucumbers x 2 Peanut Butter on Rice Cakes, Oranges, Cheese Sticks, Grape Tomatoes x 2 Leftovers x 2 Dinners Spaghizza, Tossed Salad, Roasted Cauliflower, Breadsticks Chili with Shredded Cheese, World’s Best Honey Cornbread Chicken Pot Pie, Steamed Green Beans, Tossed Salad Pancakes, Hashbrowns, Sausage, Roasted Broccoli Meatloaf, Twice Baked Potatoes, Cauliflower Rice (I make it similar to this without the cilantro), Green Beans, Butterhorns, Pecan Pie (company for dinner) Date Night Out (kids will eat leftovers or something simple at home) Leftovers [...]
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Grocery Savings that Come in a Box

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Grocery Savings that Come in a Box
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here. Do you struggle with the cost of produce for your family? If so, check out this solution for grocery savings that come in a box — delivered to your door! Psst! Looking for more grocery savings? Sign up for my FREE cheat sheet on 10 ways to cut your grocery bill by $50 per week! The following is a guest post by Samantha Hatcher from Inspired By Lucile and Self Care Mama Club. The Cost of Produce Have you ever gotten to the middle of the pay period only to discover you have either run out of produce or what you have has gone bad? That was my problem for years. Produce would go bad because I didn’t get to it fast enough, or we would be scrounging around for any vegetable to put with our main dish. (And with nine people in the house, this is a real problem!) Besides meat, produce is usually the most expensive item for most people. When you are trying to make sure your family has a nice variety of fruits and vegetables, it can start to add up in cost. And when not everything is in season, the prices of out of season imported produce is even higher! My family has their favorite veggies and fruits that I almost always pick up at Aldi, and while they have some of the best prices for organic produce, their out of season produce isn’t very flavorful. Think of a garden-fresh tomato and one from the store. They taste completely different. The Struggle with Buying Produce Buying produce can be overwhelming. Maybe you pick up the same exact produce each shopping trip, despite being sick of eating it. Why? Because you know these tried and true purchases will work for your family. Or perhaps you stand there not knowing what to buy, overwhelmed by the rainbow of produce in front of you. Or maybe you’re the mom who doesn’t have time to go to the store to buy real food between work, errands, and kids’ activities. You don’t care what they eat; you wish it would show up at your door like magic. I have dealt with all these struggles during different seasons of my life. I know the stress and brainpower it takes to plan meals, shop, put it all away, and cook all the meals. And the night of shopping, we usually just end up having pizza. I’ve honestly gone through seasons when even going to the grocery store made me want to consider having my entire family fast. This past year I realized I desperately needed a solution — one that would take care of all these struggles and not break the bank. Enter Misfits Market A few months ago, I discovered Misfits Market through a friend. On a whim, I decided to sign up with her referral link to get 25% off my first box. And I was SO pleased!! Everything was fresh, delivered with several cold packs, and was shipped to my house in two days. The variety of items was overwhelming, but looked like almost all of it was something I would have bought anyway. Things were a bit odd-shaped or sized, but I definitely didn’t mind! I checked out the price and picked the larger box, which says it is for a family of five and is 18-22 pounds. The box is normally $35, but with the 25% discount it brought it down to $26.25 — which is a great price, considering all of it is organic! I was pretty hooked after my first box and knew that I couldn’t get that much produce at the store for that price, especially organic. I decided to give it a try, and knew that we could cancel the subscription if we didn’t like it. Changing Up Our New Favorite Produce I was the mom who bought the same produce over and over without thinking. And when I got tired of it, I just stood there and stared at the produce, hoping it would have some answers for me. When my first Misfits Market box arrived, everything looked like something we would eat, except for eggplant. I have only eaten eggplant a few times in my life. It was slimy and gross, but I was determined to give it a try. I found this great recipe for eggplant fries, and that changed everything! The first night we tried them, we ran out of eggplant fries instead of chicken, and my children were asking for more! We had a hit on our hands. The next box contained swiss chard and more eggplant. We once again made the fries, and we roasted the swiss chard with gnocchi. Yum! Once again, something new was a big hit for our family. When our third box arrives, my six-year-old said, “Oh, goodie, I hope there is an eggplant.” To her disappointment, there wasn’t eggplant, but we discovered how much we loved pomegranates! Grocery Savings that Come in a Box Because of the Misfits Market box, I no longer have to make a mid-paycheck trip to the grocery store, which would cost more than it should. This Misfits Market box not only has saved me from going to the grocery store, but has pushed me to expand my culinary skills and our children’s taste buds. Never did I imagine that any of my children would say they hope we got eggplant. Never did I imagine my kids would be so excited about new foods and finding recipes to try. But here we are! I have cut my grocery bill by $250 each month, my family is trying new things, and my children are learning to like new things that I would never have bought before. Because of all these reasons, I’ve become a faithful Misfits Market subscriber! Samantha is a SAHM of 7 children who has spent 25 years learning how to live on one income. She used the wisdom of her Grandma Lucile, who grew up during the depression, to learn how to get the best bang for her buck. When she isn’t homeschooling her kids, you will find her blogging at Inspired By Lucile or the Self Care Mama Club. [...]
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Top 7 Global Fintech Trends 2019

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Top 7 Global Fintech Trends 2019
This is my third year at DailyFintech. Looking back, this year has been the most eventful year of the three, with several significant Fintech trends emerging across the world. Typically, I am not a big fan of the “Top” titled posts. But, I have had to use it, thanks to the events of 2019. A few […] The post Top 7 Global Fintech Trends 2019 appeared first on Daily Fintech. [...]
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The Best Perks of the United Explorer Credit Card

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The Best Perks of the United Explorer Credit Card
The United℠ Explorer Card is a great card for travelers who want to get the most out of their United excursions. The card is simple, yet packs a punch. If your preferred airline is United, it could be well worth applying for the United℠ Explorer Card. Here are the best perks the card has to... Chris O'Shea is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: travel@nerdwallet.com. The article The Best Perks of the United Explorer Credit Card originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
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The aeronautic industry in 2019

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The aeronautic industry in 2019
The post The aeronautic industry in 2019 appeared first on ONEtoONE Corporate Finance. [...]
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20+ Gifts for Board Game Lovers Under $30

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20+ Gifts for Board Game Lovers Under $30
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here. Looking for unique gifts for board gamer lovers this holiday season? We have you covered with this Board Game Gifts Guide — and they’re all under $30 to help you stick to your gift budget! This Holiday Board Game Gifts Guide was thoughtfully put together by Meg on the MoneySavingMom team — who is a lifelong strategy board game player and is always on the hunt for the latest and greatest board games. Are you looking for gifts for board game lovers this Christmas? Check out this list of unique board game gifts for all types of gamers that are sure to be a hit! And the best part about giving a board game is that it’s a gift that provides years of entertainment! Note: Most of these games are usually less than $30, but prices do fluctuate quite a bit on board games. If one is slightly over $30, be sure to check the price history on CamelCamelCamel.com and wait for a better price — especially with Black Friday and holiday sales right around the corner! If it’s on this list, then it’s usually under $30! Strategy Board Game Gifts 1. Castles of Burgundy — This game is like Catan on steroids, and it’s my all-time favorite strategy game. It has multiple levels and layers of strategy, and every single game plays completely differently. This is a great gift idea for an experienced strategy board gamer. 2. Pandemic — This cooperative game is so unique and one of my favorite games to play with friends! I often find that it appeals to people who are typically “non-gamers” for some reason! It’s really unique because of the co-op factor. 3. Carcassonne — This is a fun little tile placing game that has quick game play. You can usually play an entire game in about 30 minutes. This is one of my favorite games to play as a two-player game, and it travels well since the game pieces are simple. 4. Seven Wonders — This is probably my second favorite strategy game. Again, it has multiple layers of strategy and every game plays completely differently. There are two things I love about this game that differ from most complex strategy games: It has really quick play time (30-45 minutes max) and it can be played with up to 7 players. (Most complex strategy games only support up to 4 players.) 5. Splendor — This is another really fun and quick strategy game that plays in under 30 minutes. This is my go-to game on a night when I’m really craving a good strategy board game but don’t have time to invest in an hour or two of game play before bed. I now have the expansions and absolutely love it. I’ve played it over and over again, and it never gets old. 6. Othello — “A minute to learn…a lifetime to master!” The tagline describes it perfectly. It takes just a second to teach someone the basic premise of this game, but there’s a lot more to this game than meets the eye. If you know someone who loves strategy games like Chess where you need to be thinking rounds ahead of time, this is perfect for them. I love this quick two-player strategy game! And you could probably get kids to love this one, too! 7. Azul — This is a game I picked up last year on a whim during a Black Friday sale after reading some of the reviews, and it’s turned out to be loads of fun! This is another one that “non-gaming people” still tend to really love. The tiles are beautiful and it’s a unique game — unlike anything else I have in my game closet. It’s also one that older kids could pick up on pretty easily. 8. Spy Alley — Oh my goodness, the fun memories I have of this unique game! I used to play this game with a group of gaming friends each week, and it was SO much fun!! It’s sort of like Clue but with an international espionage twist. 9. Labyrinth — This is a great strategy game to play with kids or as a family. It’s super simple to learn and involves pretty basic strategy. It’s a fun one, though! I like it when I’m more in the mood for a lighthearted strategy game. 10. Tsuro — This is another great strategy game to play with kids or as a family! It’s SO much fun, really easy to learn, and a quick game play! You can also play with up to 8 players, which is SUPER fun! The more players, the more challenging this game becomes. 11. Photosynthesis — Okay, I’ll admit I’ve never played this game. But it’s one that has been on my list to buy for a really long time. It gets amazing reviews and I’ve heard it’s pretty easy for kids to learn to play, too. I love it for the really unique game concept, and I can’t wait to play this one some day soon! 12. Santorini — This game, based on Greek mythology, plays sort of like 3-dimensional checkers. It’s a really fun and quick strategy game to play with two players! Great for kids, too! Party Board Games 13. Balderdash — This is one of my favorite party games! It requires so much creativity and I love seeing the unique ideas people come up with! If you’re looking for a unique party game that requires quite a bit of original thought and creativity, this is a great option!! This game plays best with about 5-6 players. 14. Ultimate Werewolf — This is a super fun game to play in a crowd, and you can play with up to 10 people! The more, the merrier! Everyone is given a specific role with eyes closed, and everyone has to bluff and figure out who is who. It’s SO fun. This is one of my go-to games when a lot of people are gathered together to hang out. 15. Dixit — If I had to pick the most beautiful board game on the market, this would be it. The artwork in this game is just stunning, and the game play requires a lot of imagination. I always love playing this with people, because it’s so interesting to get a peek into different people’s personalities and how they view the world. It’s super easy game play, can be played with up to 6 players, and is another one that’s great for “non-gaming people.” 16. Farkle — This is another fun one that can pretty much be player with as many people as you have. If you have more than 10 people, you can play in teams! It’s kind of like Yahtzee with a twist (but WAY more fun). Stocking Stuffers for Game Lovers 17. Catan Card Game — This card game is perfect for Catan lovers, because unlike regular Catan, it can be played as a two-player game! 18. Dutch Blitz — This is SUCH a fun card game! It’s fast-paced, competitive, and sure to get just about anyone who loves games hooked immediately. Our family has been playing this for over a decade, and we play it any time we meet up! 19. Collapsible Board Game Bowls — I would LOVE to receive this unique gift for board game lovers! I can’t tell you how often I pull little bowls out of the kitchen cabinet to use for game pieces when playing complex strategy games! These would be so convenient to have, and they’re easy to store since they’re collapsible! 20. Bananagrams — Know someone who loves Scrabble? This is a fun, fast-paced twist! And it travels well. I take this on a lot of vacations to play with friends and family! Bonus Ideas (Over $30) Have a little extra wiggle room in your Christmas budget and willing to spend a bit more? Try one of these gifts for board game lovers: 21. Charterstone — This is the ultimate legacy board game — perfect for a longtime strategy game player who wants something different and unique. Once you enter the world of legacy games, you can’t ever go back. Legacy games are played with the same group of people over several rounds, and the game board and rules change as you play. This game is amazingly creative, innovative, and fun. I can’t sing the praises of it enough. ItR [...]
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Got a Product to Pitch? A Walmart Buying Manager Told Us How to Do It Right

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Got a Product to Pitch? A Walmart Buying Manager Told Us How to Do It Right
Every entrepreneur in the world thinks they have a great idea. But how do you convince other people? By delivering a stellar business pitch, of course. A great business pitch is essential to building valuable partnerships and ensuring financial backing that will take your product from conception to the shelves. When it comes to pitching, you’re going to have a short amount of time to get your idea across, so you have to use that time effectively. But it can be easy to get so caught up in the excitement or confidence in your product that you fail to fully express its value to a buyer. We decided to ask a professional for some tips on how to pitch an idea. Here’s the inside scoop. Tips for Pitching a Great Idea We sat down with Kinna Thomas, a senior buying manager for Walmart who also helped create the famous Patti Labelle Sweet Potato Pie. Thomas has a lot of experience listening to product pitches, thanks to Walmart’s annual Open Call event, where hundreds of entrepreneurs turn out with hopes of getting their products on the retail giant’s shelves. Here are the five tips she gave us to better your chances of nailing a pitch. Focus on the Customer You might think your product is the best thing in the world, but it doesn’t really matter what you think — it’s what the customer thinks. And really, customers don’t care about the product itself — they care about what the product can do for them. Maybe it will make their day-to-day life easier or maybe it will save them money. Get the message across that your product is an actual benefit to a consumer and that it’s something the buyer doesn’t already offer. “We want you to make sure that you are definitely locked and loaded on understanding the assortment that we need to carry,” says Thomas. Nail Down Your Product You’ve got this amazing idea! Everyone spills stuff, right? Well, what if when you made a big mess… you could just suck it right up? Genius! A vacuum. You just pitched a vacuum. Unless your vacuum is state-of-the-art and can promise that the user will never have dog hair in their carpet again, your idea is not going to be received well. “The product needs to be exciting, invigorating, innovative and different from what’s out in the market,” says Thomas. Make sure you can explain what you’re selling quickly and efficiently. And while you might be tempted to claim your product has zero competition, that’s most likely not the case. Show that the product or idea deserves to be backed by pointing out what makes it different from competitors. Don’t Forget About the Cost This one really shouldn’t be a surprise: Buyers want to make sure the price is right. Where your product is on the timeline will mean a lot to an investor or buyer. Is it a newly formed idea that hasn’t been tested and sold? Or have you already moved forward with manufacturing and set up a cost model? Proving you can create a product and sell it at a profit — without breaking the consumer’s bank — goes a long way. Go to your pitch with numbers that validate why it would be beneficial for the buyer to back you. Be open and honest about the costs your product will require, as well as the sales numbers and future projections. Think About the Logistics You might think your product is the absolute bee’s knees and everyone in the world will want it, but consider the reality of who will actually buy it. Yeah, your Do-It-Yourself Ice Sculpture Kit is pretty cool (see what I did there?), but try selling that product in a Walmart in South Florida. It just doesn’t work — you’re in the wrong market. This point goes back to knowing your product. Consider where it would sell best and include that in your pitch. “We want to know scalability,” says Thomas. “Whether or not you should be in a hundred stores or thousands of stores.” Be Prepared One thing you shouldn’t lose sight of is that buyers are looking to back not only your product but also you — that is, they are investing in you as much as in the product itself. “Doug McMillon tells us all the time ‘Be prepared,’” says Thomas, referring to Walmart’s CEO. “So that’s exactly what we want for you.” You could have the best idea in the world, but if you walk into a meeting without presenting yourself as a prepared, collected and efficient individual, it could ruin the whole pitch. Think about it from a buyer’s point of view: If you were risking your hard earned money, why would you give it to someone who doesn’t inspire confidence and assure you that they will handle your investment wisely? “Practice makes perfect” is a well-known mantra for a reason. Rehearse your pitch in front of real people beforehand. That way, you can walk into a meeting confident that you can nail your pitch. Kaitlyn Blount is a former staff writer at The Penny Hoarder.  This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017. [...]
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What is the future of insurance?

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What is the future of insurance?
image Have we seen the future of insurance? No, unless you have conquered the whole space-time continuum thing, or yours is a parallax view of the insurance industry to come.  Is there good discussion and collaboration addressing what that future might be? Yes, if this week’s buffet of InsurTech news pieces is any indication, and […] The post What is the future of insurance? appeared first on Daily Fintech. [...]
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Effective Date for Amendments to NFA’s Promotional Material Rules and Interpretive Notices

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Effective Date for Amendments to NFA’s Promotional Material Rules and Interpretive Notices
On November 13, the National Futures Association (NFA) issued Notice to Members 1-19-25, announcing that amendments to NFA Compliance Rule 2-29 and NFA Compliance 2-36 will become effective on January 1, 2020.  Compliance Rules 2-29 and 2-36 and related Interpretive Notices establish requirements for an NFA Member’s communications with the public and use of promotional material. NFA recently amended Compliance Rules 2-29 and 2-36 to clarify their applicability, better reflect current technology and business practices and address the use of hypothetical performance in promotional material by Commodity Pool Operator (CPO) Members operating pursuant to a CFTC Regulation 4.7 exemption. NFA amended Compliance Rule 2-29 to accomplish the following: Clarify that the scope is limited to Futures Commission Merchant (FCM), including an FCM dually registered as a swap dealer with respect to its FCM activities, introducing broker, CPO and commodity trading advisor Members; Expand the scope to specifically apply to all commodity interest (not just futures-related) activities; Update the definition section to replace the term “futures” with the term “commodity interest” and specify that promotional material includes communications disseminated through electronic communications; Specify that a Member must submit to NFA for review and approval all forms of audio and video promotional material that make specific trade recommendations or discuss profit achieved in the past or that can be achieved in the future; and Modify existing relief available to CPO Members operating pursuant to a CFTC Regulation 4.7 exemption to require those Members to generally comply with the Rule’s hypothetical performance disclaimer requirements, including certain requirements set forth in the NFA Interpretive Notice entitled “Compliance Rule 2-29: Use of Promotional Material Containing Hypothetical Performance Results” (e.g. requirements related to extracted performance and composite performance). NFA also amended Compliance Rule 2-36(g) to specify that forex dealer members (FDM) and Associates of FDMs must comply with certain provisions of Compliance Rule 2-29 and related Interpretive Notices. Finally, NFA made corresponding amendments to the related NFA Interpretive Notices. The Notice is available here. [...]
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7 Expensive Medical Problems That Strike After Age 50

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7 Expensive Medical Problems That Strike After Age 50
As we age, health issues often creep up that threaten to tarnish our golden years. Treating some of these diseases and conditions can be expensive. Fortunately, there are ways to cut the cost of such care. Following are some health conditions that tend to strike after age 50 — and how to lower the price of care if you are diagnosed with them. Arthritis strikes about 91 million Americans. [...]
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10+ Eco-Friendly Gifts Under $30

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10+ Eco-Friendly Gifts Under $30
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here. Looking for the best eco-friendly Christmas gift ideas this season? We have you covered with this Eco-Friendly Gifts Guide — and they’re all under $30 to help you stick to your gift budget! This Eco-Friendly Gift Guide was thoughtfully put together by Meg on the MoneySavingMom team — who is very passionate about making healthy and eco-conscious life choices. Do you know somebody who is striving to live an eco-conscious, lower impact life by choosing more sustainable products in their everyday life? Check out this list of fun eco-friendly gift ideas that are sure to excite that person in your life! Eco-Friendly Gift Ideas 1. Essential Oils Diffuser — A diffuser is a great gift idea for someone wanting to replace candles with essential oils to avoid polluting the air in their home. There are lots of great diffusers less than $30 on Amazon that come in all shapes and sizes! 2. Beeswax Food Wraps — One of the easiest ways to reduce plastic use is to stop using plastic baggies for food storage and transportaion. These Beeswax Food Wraps are the perfect replacement solution, and you can get them in all kinds of really fun designs! 3. Bamboo Toothbrush — Bamboo is compostable and biodegradable, so it’s a great option to replace plastic toothbrushes! I personally love the ones with activated charcoal for an added whitening effect! 4. Stainless Steel Straws — For someone who loves using straws at home, a stainless steel straw is an excellent option to help reduce plastic use. Straws are one of the biggest plastic pollutants, and it’s such an easy replacement! I use these inexpensive straws in my YETI every day and love them. 5. Reusable Produce Bags — These mesh produce bags are a great way to reduce plastic bag use when you’re at the grocery store. I have this set and love them! And they’re easily washable. 6. Ella+Mila or Zoya Nail Polish — If you know someone who loves doing her nails, this is a great eco-friendly gift idea! Zoya Nail Polish is 10-free and Ella+Mila is 7-free. These are two of my all-time favorite nail polish brands, because not only are they more eco-friendly than other brands but they’re also quality polishes that go on nice and opaque and have beautiful finishes to them. 7. Starbucks Reusable Cup with Gift Card — Do you know someone who frequents Starbucks? Consider buying them a Reusable Starbucks Cup! It saves on plastic and also gives them a $0.10 discount each time they use it. Stick a Starbucks gift card inside for a nice little surprise! 8. Mason Jar Lids and Straws — This is such a fun, eco-friendly way to hydrate! Gift someone this set and they can just re-use mason jars that they already own. This works great for on-the-go hydration — perfect for water, infused fruit drinks, lemonade, teas, and more! 9. Lush Body Care Products — Lush has worked really hard to almost completely eliminate plastic use in their packaging products. Many of their products are “naked” without packaging and the rest are made from recycled and recyclable/compostable materials. To encourage recycling even further, you’ll receive a free face mask when you bring in 5 empty Lush pots. They have tons of beautiful gift ideas, including luxurious bath bombs and yummy lotions. (This Sleepy Lotion is my FAVE.) 10. Reusable Grocery Bags — This is an idea that’s been around for a long time now and has become more mainstream, but it can be fun to give cute and different reusable grocery bags as a gift! Amazon has lots of fun options! Maybe even add a gift card to a whole foods grocery store! 11. Organic Cotton Socks — For someone who loves socks, organic cotton is a great sustainable option, because it doesn’t use any chemical pesticides or artificial fertilizers. Plus, they’re extra cozy! 12. Tarte Cosmetics — All of Tarte’s products are made without harmful parabens, mineral oil, or sulfates. They also have an entire line called Rainforest of the Sea that are made from entirely plant-based ingredients. Be sure to check out their sale section for lots of options under $30. 13. Succulents — Plants are a go-to gift idea for someone who is interested in a sustainable lifestyle. And succulents are so much fun and easy to take care of! 14. Zero Waste Home Book — For someone interested in reducing waste and lowering their environmental impact, this book would be a great gift! It’s full of all kinds of easy and creative ideas. Bonus Ideas (Over $30) Have a little extra wiggle room in your Christmas budget and willing to spend a bit more? Try one of these bonus recommendations for eco-friendly Christmas gifts: 15. YETI or Hydro Flask — This is another easy way to hydrate in a plastic-free way! I love my YETI and Hydro Flask and use both almost every day for different uses (YETI for everyday water drinking and Hydro Flask for yoga or working out). Both are quality brands that will last forever and keep water super cold. 16. Pela Phone Case — These phone cases are really cool because they’re 100% compostable! Choose from lots of different colors and fun designs! I’ve been eyeing these for a while now, but haven’t splurged to buy myself one yet! This is a really unique gift idea for the eco-conscious person on your gift list! More Holiday Gift Guides Looking for other budget-friendly holiday gift guides? Don’t miss these: Beauty Gift Guide Tweens Gift Guide LEGO Gift Guide Outdoor Gift Guide Gluten-Free Gift Guide Little Boys Gift Guide Expectant Mothers Gift Guide Psst! Be sure to sign up for our hot deals newsletter to make sure you don’t miss any of the hottest deals each day this holiday season! Can you think of any other great eco-friendly Christmas gifts? Let us know in the comments! [...]
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Comparing Travel Insurance Options: Airline or Credit Card?

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