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How Men and Women View Money

Differently, of course. Thankfully, my better half is the bargain hunter. I, on the other hand, think that higher price = better value. According to,

“Men and women have very different attitudes toward saving for retirement, levels of bargaining ability and confidence when dealing with investments. Not only that, but on average, women make a significantly lower amount of money than men, even when they work in the same position.”

Men Women and Money
See the full-size infographic at

As Money Dries Up, Despair Settles In

In a recent article, Michael Luo from the New York Times chronicles the trials of one lady’s plight to find permanent work after losing her job in August of 2008.

Ms. Sadler, who lost her job at an automotive parts plant in October 2008, learned last month that her unemployment insurance had been cut off.

Ms. Sadler, who lives in Carlisle Kentucky, continued…

“I’m basically applying for everything, trying to get something,” said Ms. Sadler, 52, who since early June has not received an unemployment check, which used to be about $388 a week before taxes. “If I don’t, I’m going to lose everything. I’m not going to have a roof over my head. I’m just going to have to walk away with what I have on my back, and my dog.”

On Tuesday, Ms. Sadler scored just her third interview since 2008, for a $7.50-an-hour job at a check-cashing business that is an hour’s drive from her home. It would have paid less than she received on unemployment benefits and left her still unable to cover her expenses, but she had little choice.

It took all her willpower not to reach across the table to shake her interviewer and beg for a chance. The company said she would know by Thursday, but as of Friday she had not heard back.

I know the feelings. I’ve been there although not as desperate but desperate enough nonetheless. It’s a situation that never goes away. A situation that always hangs over your head. Nights became my favorite time because I knew I had made it through another day and that I could at least forget about my situation for a few hours of fitful sleep.

Where did we get the $ Sign?

In a recent Slate article, writer Christopher Beam states that…

We got the $ from the Spanish. In the late 18th century, merchants in the North American British colonies traded mainly with two currencies: the British pound and the Spanish dollar. When the United States adopted its own currency in 1785, it used Spanish money as its model–a deliberate “screw you” to the British. Scholars have since theorized that the $ sign evolved out of an abbreviation for peso: The plural for pesos was “ps,” which eventually became “ps,” and then simply an “S” with a single stroke denoting the “p.” One early instance of the $ symbol crops up in a letter written by the merchant Oliver Pollock in 1778. Pollock also uses the “ps” abbreviation, making the letter a bridge between the two. The double-line through the S variation is less easily explained. Some believe they represent the twin pillars of Gibraltar depicted on the Spanish coat of arms. Others say it’s shorthand for the letter “U” superimposed over the letter “S”–for U.S.

Meh. I was hoping for a stork.

Read the rest of the article at Slate.

4 Splurges That Make Sense

Ever find yourself justifying an expensive pair of shoes or a pricey pair of jeans by promising yourself you’ll “wear it forever”? Often, we’re just kidding ourselves – it just makes sense to go for the lower-priced alternative, especially if you’re in the market to save. But believe it or not, some merchandise (and some memberships) can be be well worth the splurge. Here are four examples, including some ways to save on the splurge:

4 Splurges that Make Sense.

Happiness and Money

I’ve long known that our attitude towards money reveals a lot about who we really are. I coined a motto a few years ago about money and people. It goes something sort of like, “otherwise normal people do very “un”normal things when money is involved.”

I had just been through a bad business partnership in which both parties (yes, me too) made some very unwise decisions. Decisions which not only cost me dollar-wise but emotionally as well.

I’m not surprised, then, when I ran across this article from Drewberry Mortgage Insurance about the latest research which indicates, all things equal, better financial control equals greater happiness.

Continue Reading…

Renting vs. Buying

After two house buying experiences and three different renter experiences, I’ve come to the conclusion that renting, in the short term, is the way to go. I’ve always had an unsettled feeling about buying a home but have never expressed it because of the pervasive “renting is throwing away money” rhetoric.

Well, now I can feel at least somewhat vindicated. According to Moolanomy, there’s a “sobering” cost to home ownership in the short term.

Continue Reading…

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