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Jill On Money: Student loans — Past and present

Business / Jill On Money /

Welcome to the 2024 college acceptance season, which has befuddled and elated students and their families.

Normally, this is the time of year when I remind you that financial aid packages are not always what they seem to be.

Families often confuse loans, which must be repaid with interest — and grants, which is essentially FREE money.

This ...Read more

Jill On Money: Last minute tax tips

Business / Jill On Money /

There are usually two types of people who wait until the bitter end before the April 15 tax deadline to file their returns: Those who owe money to the government and the folks who are flat-out procrastinators.

Whichever camp you fall into, let’s go!

The quickest and most efficient way to file is to use IRS e-file, which is available to all ...Read more

Jill On Money: What to do with your tax refund

Business / Jill On Money /

Tens of millions of Americans have already received tax refunds – and millions more will cash checks before tax season is over.

While recipients are usually happy that they have extra money, a tax refund is a lousy deal. Instead of thinking about the money as a windfall, Buzz-Kill Jill is here to tell you that you just made an interest-free ...Read more

Jill On Money: Financial cleanup — What to keep and what to shred

Business / Jill On Money /

You have changed your clocks, filed your taxes and March Madness has begun, which means that spring is upon us. The season could prompt a cleanup of the house, preparing the garden, or putting away the heavy parkas.

For me, this time of year is an opportunity to clean out the physical and electronic financial clutter in life, and to attend to ...Read more

Jill On Money: Will real estate commissions settlement impact home prices?

Business / Jill On Money /

There has been seismic action in the real estate market – and it has nothing to do with bidding wars.

On March 15, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) announced a settlement to end an antitrust lawsuit. The organization will pay $418 million in damages and agreed to blow up its decades-long practice on commissions paid to brokers.

The...Read more

Jill On Money: Is the labor market turning and are we measuring inflation correctly?

Business / Jill On Money /

The economy continues to add jobs and defy expectations.

In February, there were 275,000 new jobs, but the two previous months were revised lower, by 167,000. That means that the originally reported robust results in December and January look a little less strong than previously thought.

Still, average monthly job creation has been about 250,...Read more

Jill On Money: Stop the scam!

Business / Jill On Money /

Scams have been in our vernacular for hundreds of years. From confidence ploys (Charles Ponzi and Bernie Madoff) to the modern day telemarketing and advance fee schemes, the preponderance of crooks seeking to separate you from your money is dizzying.

The sheer volume and sophistication of these shady con artists has prompted the Social Security...Read more

Jill On Money: Stock market milestones

Business / Jill On Money /

With U.S. stock market indexes reaching new highs and round-number milestones, it is time for a refresher on the differences among them.

Although these measurements have become a quick way to gauge what’s going on in markets, they are by no means the whole story. And of course, your investments may or may not track the path of stock indexes, ...Read more

Jill On Money: Financial interdependence

Business / Jill On Money /

When I field questions about parents helping their adult children financially, there is ambivalence from both sides.

The older generation often feels like they have no choice, but also are dismayed that despite their best efforts, their kids can’t swing it on their own.

Meanwhile many adult children feel shame that they can’t fully support...Read more

Jill On Money: Super Bowl sweethearts

Business / Jill On Money /

Sometimes it’s tough to write about personal finance and make it fresh, but the intersection of a high-profile relationship as Valentine’s Day rapidly approaches, is just the ticket!

In fact, when Taylor Swift kissed boyfriend Travis Kelce to celebrate the Kansas City Chiefs’ victory in the AFC championship game, my mind wandered and I ...Read more

Jill On Money: January jobs jump

Business / Jill On Money /

Astounding! Awesome! Boffo!

Take your pick... contrary to the negative headlines and worries about the economy, the January employment report crushed it.

The economy produced 353,000 jobs to start the year, about two times the expected result. The unemployment rate remained at 3.7 percent and importantly, average annual wages were up by 4.5%, ...Read more

Jill On Money: Tax season opens

Business / Jill On Money /

Taxpayers, start your engines! The tax season officially opened January 29 and the IRS expects more than 128 million individual tax returns to be filed. To mark the event, here are some important facts:

For most taxpayers, the deadline to file their personal federal tax return, pay any tax owed or request an extension to file is Monday, April ...Read more

Jill On Money: Consumers and investors feel better

Business / Jill On Money /

A funny thing happened on the way to 2024: Consumers feel better!

The University of Michigan consumer sentiment index jumped 13 percent in January from December to reach its highest level since July 2021.

The reading follows a sharp increase in December and cumulatively sentiment has climbed 29%, the largest two-month increase since 1991.

...Read more

 

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