PODCAST: Why is it so hard to save?

Is saving money a thing of the past?

The U.S. government has announced a $253 million fine against Weatherford, a Swiss oil and gas services company that trades on the New York Stock Exchange. The penalty settles charges by the U.S. government that Weatherford violated the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). 

The signs are everywhere that the holiday season is upon us: Black Friday bargains, Cyber Monday steals, and those "skip a payment" offers from lenders that give consumers a month off from paying credit card bills, car payments, and other debt.Some of them come right out and say that you could use the extra money for holiday shopping. So what's the catch?  

When 40 percent of Americans live paycheck to paycheck, you have to wonder why saving money is so difficult. Marketplace Money’s Carmen Wong Ulrich points to declining wages, but she also says the culture of saving was lost.

About the author

David Brancaccio is the host of Marketplace Morning Report. Follow David on Twitter @DavidBrancaccio

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