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Fiat money: It has nothing to do with the car

May 22, 2013
Your dollar bill isn't worth the paper it's printed on. Why? Because it's a fiat currency. Sr. Producer Paddy Hirsch explains.
Posted In: Fiat, inflation, Money, dollar bill, currency

Turning public radio on its head

May 6, 2013
Changing the public radio production process by making listeners the focus and subject of the show.

Why inflation can be a good thing

May 1, 2013
"A little bit of inflation is our friend, not our enemy," says Prof. David Blanchflower
Posted In: inflation

529 plans and foreign schools

A listener sent in a video question in response to my interview with Jeremy Hobson on today's Marketplce Morning Report on college savings plans, otherwise known as 529 plans.

 

Essentially, the listener wants to know if you can use a 529 plan to fund tuition at a foreign university.

The answer is, yes you can -- depending on the institution. To qualify, the school needs to be eligible to participate in Title IV federal financial aid programs. Most degree-granting four-year schools, junior and community colleges, and graduate schools will qualify, as will many proprietary and vocational schools.

Check to see if you can use your 529 money at the institution you're interested in by doing a Federal School Code Lookup at Savingforcollege.com. I searched to see if I could use 529 money to send a child to my alma mater. I typed "warwick" into the SCHOOL field, and picked FC for "foreign country" in the drop down box in the STATE field, and voila... I could indeed use money from a California 529 savings plan to send a lucky nice of nephew to the University of Warwick.


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May 1, 2013

How a firm's goodwill is more like soft snow than a hard asset

Mar 29, 2013
Goodwill reads like an afterthought in a company's annual report. But it's often the most important component of a company's operation, as Sr. Producer Paddy Hirsch explains.
Posted In: goodwill

What just happened in Cyprus? An explainer

Mar 25, 2013
The moral of the story of the near collapse of Cyprus' banking system is that when a saving rate looks too good to be true, it probably is.
Posted In: cyprus, bailout, Europe debt crisis

Why a currency war could hurt you

Mar 11, 2013
A currency war sounds weirdly abstract, like a game played by rival politicians -- but it can have devastating effects in the real world. And it’s not all that different from a rivalry of different kind – a hypothetical sibling rivalry.
Posted In: Global Currency War, currency

Can I sell my house? Depends on who you ask

Jan 25, 2013
We’ve been swamped with real estate news this month. But what does it all mean?

Debt ceiling is like a credit card? Think again

Jan 18, 2013
Critics say that raising the debt ceiling is like paying off one credit card with another. But if you dig into it, that analogy is flawed.

How to cut credit card debt

Jan 18, 2013
There are some really simple ways to reduce your credit card debt.
Posted In: undefined

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About this collection

Looking at America's economy following the downgrade of our credit rating and our debt issues.