Dollars and Cents, Pesos and Sense

The tenets of a sound investment philosophy are well established. Good investors seek quality equities that are undervalued, but offer strong upsides. In so doing, they often disregard conventional wisdom, boldly going where others fear to tread. At payoff time, they’re glad they followed the road less traveled. I was thinking these thoughts on a […]


Buying Paper Savings Bonds in a Paperless Era

Last week I mentioned that paper savings bonds (both Series I and EE bonds) are going away at the end of 2011. To be honest, the lack of paper doesn’t really bother me – I’m fine with using TreasuryDirect – my concern is that this effectively cuts the purchase limit in half. There has been […]


Three Reasons to Build a Financial Database

It’s no secret that I’m a big (huge!) fan of keeping close track of our finances. In fact, I’ve been tracking and balancing our accounts in Quicken (and now Moneydance) since January 1st, 1997. The end result of my efforts has been the production of a relatively massive database containing our detailed financial history. Today […]


Paper Savings Bonds Going Away?

Last night while noodling around on the web, I ran across a press release from the Treasury stating that they will stop over-the-counter sales of paper U.S. Savings Bonds at the end of the year. In other words, you’ll no longer be able to stroll into your bank and load up on Series I or […]


Religious Schools – Good or Bad Idea?

I recently met with new clients who happen to be religious people. The couple is very nice. In fact, they are wonderful people. But they struggle financially. Why? Do they have lousy jobs? Nope. They are great earners. Are they big spenders. Not really. They live very frugally except for the one item – a […]


Chase Freedom $150 Cash Back Signup Bonus

It’s time for another credit card signup bonus… This time around, it’s from the Chase Freedom card. In short, if you apply and get approved for the Chase Freedom and spend $500 in purchases on the card within the first three months, you can get a $150 bonus. Chase also pays an additional $25 bonus. […]


Moneydance as a Quicken Replacement?

On Monday I talked about my experiences moving from Quicken to iBank. In short, iBank is a solid option, but it’s not right for me. I’m a bit of a power user when it comes to tracking investments, and the reporting features (and lack of a true portfolio view) were deal killers for me. So… […]


Requiem for a Rip-Off

Not everyone can claim to be financially savvy. But many of us do try to sidestep chump status when it comes to consumer spending. That only makes sense. We want to keep more of our cash. But beyond that, we want to avoid being a sucker for every fast-talking pitchman coming down the pike. I […]


iBank as a Quicken Replacement?

Over the weekend I spent some time migrating my 14+ years of Quicken data from Quicken 2007 to iBank, which was at the top of my list of Quicken alternatives. I’ll be providing lots of details below, but the executive summary is that iBank (currently version 4.2.4) is a great piece of software, though I’m […]


Quicken Mac (or PC) Alternatives

So you’re a Quicken addict (like me), you use a Mac, and now you’re worried about how to keep that addiction rolling when Mac OS X Lion kills Quicken 2007. What to do? We’ve already talked at length about running the windows version in a virtual machine, waiting for Intuit to (hopefully) update or even […]