Monday, May 29, 2006

Carnival of Personal Finance #50

Welcome to the golden jubilee of the Carnival of Personal Finance: #50! Isn't it exciting? Not to be outdone by Queen Elizabeth, I arranged to have the Blue Angels fly over New York City this past week to commemorate the occasion.

If you are visiting this site for the first time, welcome! Check out my Rules and Other Favorite Posts in the left sidebar, as well as the posts linked in my "about" section if you want a good sampling of what My Open Wallet has to offer.

As for the carnival itself, I've decided to present the posts in the order they were received, so you will know who was very nice and considerate about how I'd be spending my time on this sunny holiday weekend! I have then color coded them a bit for those who want to quickly scan for posts in certain categories.
Orange=Real Estate
Green=General Personal Finance

And to make things even more colorful, I decided to add some photos of Brooklyn's wonderful Coney Island, where you can enjoy a carnival atmosphere every day of summer.

On to the posts:

Moses Wong at Investhinker presents How to Pick an Online Stock Broker?, a very detailed comparison of online brokerage sites.

Wenchypoo at Frugal Wisdom from Wenchypoo's Warehouse presents It's Hurricane Season Again!, with some ways to prepare and protect yourself.

Steve Faber presents Save Gas Cheap? - Let's Find Out posted at Debt Free. Steve will be evaluating gas saving devices to see if they're really worth it.

Steve Selengut at presents Income Investing: Selecting the Right Stuff , exploring the surprising ideas that "(1) Higher Interest Rates are good for investors, even better than lower rates, and (2) Selecting the right securities to take advantage of the interest rate cycle is not particularly difficult."

David A. Porter presents Ask Dave: Do I have to sign form 4506 at my mortgage closing? posted at Pacesetter Mortgage Blog. If what you tell your lender and what you tell the IRS don't match, that's mortgage fraud.

Matthew Crist presents Keep the Change posted at We're In Debt. He likes Bank of America's Keep the Change program.

Sarah Lewis at Frugal Underground presents What's the Best Strategy for Summer Cooling? She's looking for answers on how to stay cool while saving money.

Trent presents Keeping an Eye on Bad Debt: An FIS Case Study posted at Stock Market Beat, an example of how investors can tell whether a company manipulates its earnings.

LA MoneyGuy presents If rising interest rates causes the Real Estate Bubble to pop, will you be any better off waiting to buy? posted at It's Just Money. This is a great analysis of how rising interest rates and falling prices don't necessarily balance each other out.

Bob Vineyard, CLU presents M.I.T. posted at InsureBlog. No, it's not about tuition at the school-- it's about a new kind of identity theft with pretty scary implications!

Free Money Finance presents Free Money Finance Guide to Making More Money. What he said is what it is: lots of tips on how to make more moolah!

Kevin Surbaugh at Becoming and Staying Debt Free presents Buying 2nd Hand Is A Way Of Life: some people are committed to saving money by only buying pre-owned items.

"D"igital Breakfast presents Sun Tzu and My Other Investments. He went on mini shopping spree in the stock market this week. As Sun Tzu said, "move for advantage" and he's hoping it works out.

Pete at My Financial Awareness presents Importance of Your Words, on how your vocabulary relates to the responsibility you take for your financial life.

Personal Development for Brains presents Fast Calculations: Vedic Mathematics, an intriguing set of rules for doing complicated math without a calculator. The post does not specifically address personal finance applications but I want to try this technique the next time I have to balance my checkbook.

Jeff Howard at - Ideas on Financial Planning, Wealth Management, Investing, and Economics presents The Hidden Costs Embedded in Mutual Funds, a not-very-cheering look at why your investments might be costing you more than you think.

John MacKenzie presents What can we do to make financial blogs relevant? posted at Adult ADD and Money. He presents some concerns about what the finance blogosphere has to offer, including a link to an article that claims personal finance blogs are boring because there is no sex in them-- I beg to differ! (See here and here, just for starters!)

Jon presents Mechanics of Money Financial BBS: Free Answers to a Wealth of Finance Questions posted at Mechanics of Money Financial BBS Blog. The link submitted was not a permalink to a specific post, but the most recent article is some tips on changes to the Medicaid program.

Jon presents What You Need to Know About Financial Advice posted at Clarity Wealth Management: Investment Advisor Financial Blog, some things you should be aware of before consulting a financial advisor.

Nick presents Are Your Finances Ready For A Disaster? posted at Punny Money. I will be following all of Nick's tips on how to prepare for emergencies, especially the last four. [quack]

Amanda at Young and Broke presents Lesser-known Debit Card Fees, which you should definitely read before you whip out your debit card to pay for something in a store!

Financial Reflections at FinancialReflections presents Credit Card Applications: Deals or No Deals?, some pet peeves about those annoying credit card applications we all get in the mail.

Chris McLeod presents Budgeting 101: Happiness is a Good Budget posted at The Get Rich Project. This is the first of a planned series of articles about budgeting basics.

frugal presents Geographic Location: How It Affects Your Wealth posted at My 1st Million At 33. Can living in an expensive city actually be better for your finances? Depending on how and when you do it, maybe it can-- which I'm very glad to hear!

Christine Kane presents Building a Relationship with Money (Money Series #3) posted at Christine Kane. A thoughtful post with advice on ways to understand psychological issues that may be preventing you from being happy about your financial life.

Canadian Capitalist at Canadian Capitalist presents Reasons to Avoid Actively Managed Funds. One of them is that they often underperform against their benchmark indices.

Penny Nickel at Money and Values presents Could you walk (or bike) to more places? I walk a lot but my bike is gathering dust. Penny has inspired me to take it in for a tune-up!

Chris Welch presents Misconception: Renting is for Suckers posted at InvestorGeeks. The author has come up with his own formula to answer the rent vs. buy question, and looks at why renting might be the better financial choice in some cases.

J.D. at Get Rich Slowly presents How Compound Interest Favors the Young, with a great example of why when you save is just as important as how much you save.

Dan Melson at Searchlight Crusade presents Buyer's Agents: What Do They Do? It's the inside scoop on the difference between buyers' and sellers' agents and how you can get burned if you're not careful.

jim at Blueprint for Financial Prosperity presents IRS Ends 3% Long Distance Telephone Excise Tax Jim comments on one of the quirkiest bits of financial news this week, that a tax dating back to the Spanish American War was finally repealed-- and this post tells you how you can get your money back!

aboutpmi at About PMI presents Zero Down Payment Mortgages Debate, collecting some opinions about the pros and cons of different types of no-down-payment mortgages.

Tricia presents The Makings of a FICO Score posted at Blogging Away Debt. Why your FICO score may be higher than you'd think, even if you have a lot of debt.

JLP presents College Tuition Estimator Online Calculator posted at AllThingsFinancial. I love calculators like this-- I tap in a few numbers, and out pops a brand new reason to say "Holy crap, I'm so glad I'm never having kids!"

Amy Allen Clark at The MotherLoad presents Simplifying Gift Giving , a great collection of tips for frugal gift-giving that won't make you look cheap.

David Lorenzo presents Never Settle posted at The Career Intensity Blog. A good reminder to make sure your work is working for you.

The Dividend Guy presents Selecting Stocks to Buy with the Dividend Yield posted at The Dividend Guy Blog. Looking at a stock's current vs. historical average dividend yield may tell you whether it's a good buy.

Philip Jones presents The Education of a Gaming Investor: and what it means for you posted at The Education of a Gaming Investor. Can an online stock predicting community give you useful information for your own investments? Some tips on what to look for.

Nina Smith presents Jules posted at Queercents. What's the craziest thing you've ever done to make money? Or what was your ingenious way to pay off your credit card debt?

Thatedeguy at A Penny Saved... presents Advantages of being 26, on why he took the recent stock market downturn in stride.

Cap at Stop Buying Crap presents The Best Credit Card Offer Ever, in which he reads the small print on a very exciting offer. Fully illustrated, so you can bask in the absurdity!

Bill at Ask Uncle Bill presents Sucking Downward, some excellent career advice.

Moneywise presents Dividend ETFs posted at The Real Returns. A survey of dividend-paying ETFs.

mbhunter at Mighty Bargain Hunter presents Raising the minimum wage, some comments about the living wage movement.

nickel at presents Withdrawing Your Roth IRA Contributions , some more useful info that most people probably don't know about IRA withdrawals. Be sure to read Nickel's original post too.

Consumer-Driven Finance presents Consumer-Driven Finance 2: Preemptive Strikes Against Medical Debt posted at Consumer-Driven Finance. Here's something many of us probably don't think of: why not negotiate for better prices on expensive medical procedures, just as you would when buying a car or home?

That's all, folks! (46 submissions!) Next week's Carnival of Personal Finance will be hosted at Mapgirl's Fiscal Challenge. For more information about hosting or participating, check out the guidelines at Consumerism Commentary.

Best Memorial Day wishes to you all, especially those with loved ones they are remembering today.


Flexo said...

Thanks very much for hosting! Very colorful!

hgstern said...

Well done, Madame X!

Thank you for sacrificing your long weekend...and Thank You for hsoting!

Nick said...

Superb job. I feel like I've tasted the rainbow.

Now I want Skittles.

~Dawn said...

Thanks for hosting. I found some excellant ones to read.

Anonymous said...

I really like the idea of colors but the red an orange are pretty close on my screen. Moreover, you need to be a regular reader to know the colors or continue to put a legend on the mainpage. I suggest that you put a the categories in parenthesis at the end of the post. For example: (Investing), (Real Estate) etc.

Keep up the good work!

Amy said...

Wonderful job and thank you for hosting- especially during the holiday weekend!

mapgirl said...

Taste the Rainbow! That's the phrase I was looking for... Thank you for hosting and including all those pictures of Coney Island.(Am I right?)

Anonymous said...

Nice coloring. Keep the good work.