Solar energy seems to be reaching a mainstream tipping point worldwide. While solar power currently makes a small contribution to the world’s energy production (accounting for 0.5% of global electricity demand in 2011 according to the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions), the percentages are growing rapidly. Within the U.S., the amount has grown from
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Banks constantly look to gain the loyalty of new customers. One great place for banks to find these ideal, new customers is at colleges, universities and other post-secondary educational institutions. Students Make Easy Targets for Excessive Fees Unfortunately, students do not pay much attention to their finances, especially when it comes to the fine print
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The massive salaries and endorsements of sports stars do not guarantee a comfortable life — evidence suggests the opposite is true for many pro athletes. Sports Illustrated estimated that a staggering 80% of retired NFL players end up broke within the first three years after retirement. Fortune magazine cites research from the National Bureau of
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Celebrities and money management don’t always go together well. From the entertainment field to athletes to reality TV stars, celebrities arrive at their wealth and fame armed with a spectrum of spending habits and financial skills. Some inherently know how to handle their finances, and others hire trusted people to manage their funds for them.
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Antoine Walker had the world by the tail in 1996. He was coming off a NCAA championship season with the Kentucky Wildcats and was chosen by the Boston Celtics as the sixth pick overall in the 1996 draft. Fourteen years later, he declared bankruptcy with assets of $4.28 million and $12.74 million in liabilities. Walker
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You should be enjoying the fruits of your labor in your later years, not worrying about how to pay back debt. Unfortunately, too many seniors find themselves with high levels of debt and uncertainty about their future. If you are in this situation or heading that way, consider these steps to reverse your slide into
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A QTIP in the financial field refers to Qualified Terminable Interest Property, a definition used in forming a special type of trust. QTIPs are properties such as lifetime income interests that qualify for the marital deductions on estate taxes. There are three primary purposes to a QTIP trust: Direction of Assets After Surviving Spouse’s Death
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Tax Freedom Day is the day when our collective income as a nation is enough to pay our collective federal and state taxes for the year. Considered in that respect, all of the income we earn after that point may be considered “tax-free.” Tax Freedom Day is calculated in April of each year using projections
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You may have saved diligently for retirement and managed your money well, but in the end, long-term care costs can derail your plans and quickly exhaust your savings and other assets. According to LongTermCare.gov, average costs for 2010 were $6,235 and $6,965 per month for semi-private and private rooms in nursing homes, respectively. For how
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Dogs bring joy to the lives of their owners almost every day. Occasionally, though, some dogs will injure another person or damage the property of others. These circumstances can cause hefty financial damage to those who do not have proper liability insurance that covers their pets. How to Protect Yourself Financially Insurance can be purchased
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It can be a sobering and painful time when you realize that one of your family members requires some form of senior care. Your choices can seem overwhelming and hard to understand. Home care options are available through home healthcare services, and respite care (adult daycare) options are available for part-time assistance if you are
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The plunging price of oil has been one of the biggest economic stories of the past eight months or so. Falling oil prices impact many sectors of the economy, but oil production (not surprisingly) is the sector that is most directly affected. Investors who own shares of major oil production companies like Exxon-Mobil, British Petroleum
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Tax-loss harvesting is a strategy of strategically selling certain assets at a loss to neutralize capital gains and limit your tax liability. Investors often evaluate their portfolios toward the end of the year to look for opportunities to apply this strategy. How it Works If you have more in losses than you do in capital
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Eike Batista has been on the most extreme financial roller coaster you could ever imagine. Actually, it is doubtful that anyone but Batista could truly understand the financial highs and lows he has experienced over the past few years. Eike, a Brazilian entrepreneur, built an empire of companies that resulted in a net worth of
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Taxes could easily end up comprising a large percentage of your expenses in retirement. Most states have sales taxes, income taxes, property taxes, gas taxes, estate taxes and inheritance taxes just to name a few. It makes sense to consider seriously the taxes each state imposes when deciding where you wish to live in retirement.
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Very few, if any, Americans like our current tax system but there is little agreement on how to change it. The fault lines are usually along the same philosophical arguments. Progressivity – What is the proper definition of “fair share” of taxes? Is it based more on pure percentages, where everyone pays the same percentage
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Peer-to-peer lending, or P2P, has continued to grow in popularity as banks become a less attractive option for smaller businesses or consumers looking for mid-range to lower-level loans. We discussed two of the best-known alternatives for personal loans (Lending Club and Prosper) in a previous article, but let’s take a look at a few of
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What do Silicon Valley and agriculture have in common? Not much, you may think… but agriculture and technology are becoming increasingly intertwined. Tech companies see financial opportunities in agricultural pursuits, farmers see potential cost savings and higher yields through technological improvements, and perhaps world hunger may be reduced as a result. The tech industry is
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It sounds like a great idea – purchase a vacation home in your favorite destination and recoup some of your costs by renting the home out when you are not using it. This can be an excellent choice, but investigate the tax issues that are associated with vacation/rental homes before you purchase. The tax concerns
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Investing in the stock market is an inherently risky endeavor. Throughout history, the major stock indices have risen and fallen sharply over both short and long periods of time, leading some investors to avoid stocks due to their volatility. However, what if you could buy “stock insurance” that would effectively limit your portfolio losses should
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In March of 2014, the IRS made an important decision regarding Bitcoins (including all virtual currencies) and taxes. IRS Notice 2014-21 declared that Bitcoins do not have legal tender status and therefore should be treated as property instead of currency. For those trading in Bitcoins only as investments, this ruling has fairly straightforward effects. Bitcoin
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There have been rough times in the commodity markets, but copper has been hit especially hard. From an early-2011 peak that approached $10,000 per metric ton, copper lost nearly 30% of its value in mid-2011, and after a brief recovery, has slowly dropped to its current price ($2.534 per pound or $5,575 per metric ton
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Tax discussions often focus on the largest payouts, typically the Federal Income Tax and the FICA taxes that are taken out of your paycheck to pay for Social Security and Medicaid (among other things). State and local taxes tend to be afterthoughts, but they shouldn’t be – they can absorb significant amounts of your income.
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If you have had to do battle with an insurance company to settle a straightforward damage claim, you may be surprised to discover some of the odd things that have been covered and paid under an insurance policy. Actually, a few cases are so outrageous you will probably be surprised whether or not you have
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