A Core Tenet of Personal Finance: Shopping Around

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is a relatively new Independent Agency of the United States government which concentrates on... well... consumer financial protection.  Admittedly, their mandate is a bit up in the air right now, but they have made waves and headlines with a number of fines handed out to financial firms. They also, like … [Read more...]

Why Should You Track Your Savings Rate?

In our recent articles, we've been talking about the topic of savings rates.  Left unanswered, exactly, is why you should even bother with calculating an exact savings rate - isn't just a vague idea enough? As you can probably expect, our answer is a flat 'no'.  Although an exact to two decimal point savings rate is overkill for most purposes, … [Read more...]

Savings Rate Calculator

This page has a step by step savings rate calculator, which will help you easily compute your savings rate to compare to your own benchmarks, to future savings goals, and to the results of others.  By following the steps in the calculator, you'll have a normalized rate for both a strict savings rate - that is through your purchases and accumulation … [Read more...]

How to Calculate Your Savings Percentage

This article will detail how we calculate our savings rate so you can emulate our methods.  We will show you savings calculations using a strict method which only includes the accumulation of assets, as well as the more typical method which also includes paydowns of debt.  All our methods are after tax, also known as "net savings".  All our methods … [Read more...]

How Much Did You Save in 2014? (Part 2)

With my colleague PK writing about his 2014 savings rate, I thought that I would chime in as well. Using a loose definition of savings, where principal pay down of debt is included in the numerator, I have an after-tax savings rate of 53.42%. Without including principal paydown of debt, my strict savings rate would be 31.76%. A Note on … [Read more...]

Prize-Linked Savings

One of the major plights for low-income citizens of the U.S. is the state lottery. The poor are more likely to play the lottery and this portion of society is known for their very low savings rates, due to most of their income being taken up by mandatory spending. Recently (well, in 2009) there has been an innovation in encouraging those with the … [Read more...]

How Much Did You Save in 2014?

Every year we like to post a couple articles directed inwards - we like to show, at least a few times a year, how we're actually doing with the whole Personal Finance thing.  By sharing our annual savings rate and our investment performance in the actively managed part of our portfolio, we hope it allows you readers to judge if we're worth that … [Read more...]

The DQYDJ Weekender, 4/4/2015

We haven't done a Weekender for a while and we skipped April Fools' Day, so Cameron suggested we post this: And happy Easter to all of our Christian readers! Links We Liked! Is it the inequality or is the the immobility?  Let Tyler Cowen convince you over at the New York Times. At a Wealth of Common Sense, Warren Buffett's performance … [Read more...]

Pay Down Debt or Invest the Cash?

Over much of the internet, it is encouraged to pay down your high interest debt before investing in a Roth IRA or putting money into a 401(k) above the employer match. The difficulty has always been in defining what, exactly, high interest means. The true break-even solution is when the returns you make on your investment is equal to the … [Read more...]

Payday Lending and its Economics

Spurred by a recent article, I wanted to touch on a particular industry that we have discussed previously here at DQYDJ: payday lending. Traditionally, this industry (estimated $46 BB sizing from the article) has skirted some of the other unsecured lending regulations (like credit cards) by restructuring the terms of the agreement to not … [Read more...]