‘Tis the Season: Shoring up for the impending winter shopping spree

As the weather gets progressively cooler there’s a bit of a bite in the air, and Fall truly begins to settle in. For many of us, this means it’s time to start hauling out our cold weather gear, deciding what we’ll use and slowly layering it into our daily choices of clothes. This also means of course, that the holiday shopping season is beginning. The one rule prevailing over all is managing to keep your head above water and getting the best presents possible while doing so. Here are a few rules for treating your holiday budget like your retirement, and for making sure that you’re addressing both appropriately.

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Parents, Teach Your Kids to be Financially Literate

Financial Literacy among young Americans has been a focus of the Jump$tart Coalition since its inception in 1995. The coalition consists of 49 affiliate state organizations. Jump$tart’s mission is improving the financial smarts of students. Each state can choose their own method of accomplishing the mission; some require high-school students to take a personal finance class before graduation, some incorporate fundamentals into existing course work and others make personal finance education available as an elective. With all the great work you’d think that students would fare better than the most recent Coalition’s 2008 survey. The results show that financial literacy of high school students has fallen to its lowest levels ever with a score of just 48.3 percent (http://bit.ly/cB8qGb). On the brighter side, college graduate scores are improving, averaging 64.8 but a majority of students do not graduate and are therefore not counted in this average. You may be asking yourself, so what’s the problem?

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American Currency Part 2: How Money Leaves Circulation

Beginning this October, the new design of the $100 bill (http://usat.ly/11PJPTy) will be put into circulation by the Federal Reserve. The new bill has multiple layers of security to help combat counterfeiters. But with approximately $1.2 trillion in circulation as of July 10, 2013 (http://1.usa.gov/m4CQG0), and more entering October 8th, we started to wonder what happens to the older bills with styles that are ready to retire into history and ones that just can’t physically carry on anymore.

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