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Ask Carmen: How to find a financial planner

Jan 10, 2014
Dawn in Albany, New York learns about about how to organize and manage her multiple retirement funds.
Posted In: ask carmen, Retirement, retirement planning

Burning bridges while going viral: What are your rights when you lose a job?

Jan 9, 2014
There's a recent trend of (former) employees quitting jobs and putting up videos and comments on social media criticizing their employer. How many weeks of pay would you give up to be able to say what you want to about your job and not worry about burning a bridge?
Posted In: ask carmen, quitting your job, Unemployment, worker rights, labor rights

Lightning Round: Credit cards, how to improve your FICO and more

Jan 7, 2014
For the start of 2014, we're tackling all of your questions about credit cards.
Posted In: ask carmen, lightning round, Credit Cards, credit score, FICO
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Question: Getting off on the right foot in a high-income field

Submitted by crh210 | Jan 05,2014

I am a 27 year old attorney, single with no kids. I currently work for the Government, but next fall I will begin a job with a private law firm in Washington, D.C. I like being a lawyer and think that I will probably enjoy working for a private firm, but I am acutely aware that the private firm world can be quite stressful. I have my doubts about whether this high-income but high-stress field is something I will want to stay with for a long time. This in conjunction with the ever-present threat of being laid off for economic reasons (which still happens with some frequency in private firms) makes me want to shore up my financial situation, save a great deal, and avoid the golden handcuffs for at least a few years while I figure out how permanent the job will be.

I have about $150,000 in debt -- $15K is a car loan, and the rest is student loan debt. Interest rates on the student loans range from between 6-8.9%. I have no credit card debt. My current salary is about $80,000, but next year it will more than double, plus a $50,000 starting bonus based on my prior experience. The only luxury I want to fund in the foreseeable future is a multi-week vacation to Europe between jobs, which I have not planned in any detail yet.

What should I focus on as I move into this higher-income job, keeping in mind that I may not find the money to be worth other sacrifices? My gut feeling is that I should pay off my student loans with haste, but what other strategies should I be looking into?

2014 Resolutions: Melissa and Joshua

Jan 3, 2014
In 2014, Marketplace Money will be following a few listeners and help them succeed in their financial New Year's resolutions. Melissa and Joshua live in Portland, Ore...
Posted In: ask carmen, 2014 resolutions

2014 Resolutions: Nina

Jan 3, 2014
Nina in Oakland, Calif., is gearing up for retirement ... ideally abroad in Latin America or Asia. Carmen suggests some tips so she can get ready well in advance.
Posted In: ask carmen, 2014 resolutions

2014 Resolutions: Eric

Jan 2, 2014
In 2014, Marketplace Money will be following a few listeners and help them succeed in their financial New Year's resolutions. Eric is a soon-to-be college graduate ...
Posted In: 2014 resolutions, ask carmen

2014 Resolutions: Destie

Dec 31, 2013
In Bath, Maine, Destie and her family are in solid financial shape, but they have big budget leaks they can't account for and want to get on top of them in 2014.
Posted In: ask carmen, 2014 resolutions

New Year, new money

Dec 30, 2013
A list of the things that trip up our New Year's resolutions.
Posted In: New Year's resolutions
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Question: How do I start investing my savings?

Submitted by unsure what to do with savings | Dec 28,2013

I am a mid-twenties PhD student graduating this year with about $60,000 in a money market account and no debt. Since the money is making almost no interest, I am looking for ideas for ways to invest it or otherwise save it. However, because I have been a graduate student, I also have no retirement account yet. What is this best thing to do with these savings I have been accumulating? Although I will be graduating soon, I have a job for at least the following year, so my income should be steady and even increase from $25,000/year currently to around $50,000/year.

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Stories and reports related to the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen, Denmark, from Dec. 7-18.