Financial

  • Eliminate Your Debt Without Changing Your Lifestyle US News - Sat, Sep 19, 2015 12:35 AM NZST

    When you are in debt, it can be very overwhelming. Often the pressures of debt can motivate you to make a plan to pay it off sooner than if you just made the minimum payments required by your lender. I ...

  • Reverse mortgage cheat sheet Bankrate.com - Fri, Sep 18, 2015 10:00 PM NZST

    The basics: A reverse mortgage is a type of home loan that lets you convert a portion of the equity in your home into cash. The requirements: Age: You must be 62 or older. Living status: The home has to ...

  • I lost my job. What should I do with my 401(k)? Bankrate.com - Fri, Sep 18, 2015 10:00 PM NZST

    Dear Dr. Don, I lost my job 3 months ago, and I'm wondering what will happen to my 401(k). My employer has a policy of fully matching an employee's 401(k) contributions. Do they still have to match my ...

  • Can car title co-signer trade car separately? Bankrate.com - Fri, Sep 18, 2015 10:00 PM NZST

    Dear Driving for Dollars, My 20-year-old son wants to buy a brand-new car. He has a perfectly good used car right now that has my name and his on the car title. He told me he is going to go to a dealer ...

  • Investors may become owner occupiers AAP - Fri, Sep 18, 2015 4:54 PM NZST

    Tougher lending conditions may prompt some property investors to instead become owner occupiers, the central bank boss predicts. Reserve Bank of Australia governor Glenn Stevens says regulatory measures to curb growth in investment home loans are doing their job. "I predict that we will now see a number of people who used to call themselves investors are going to call themselves owner occupiers because the relative pricing has changed," Mr Stevens told a federal parliamentary committee on Friday.

  • Refugee crisis reignites EU budget debate AAP - Fri, Sep 18, 2015 1:12 PM NZST

    The soaring costs of handling the unprecedented influx of refugees into Europe have opened up new fault lines within the EU in its never-ending debate about the bloc's budget rules. In the past, Germany, as the self-appointed arbiter of fiscal rectitude, has tended to find itself pitted against countries such as France and Italy in the constant tug-of-war over spending targets. "It is not fair if those member states that are particularly humane and take on the task and cost of looking after the asylum-seekers are punished by Brussels for excessive spending," Vienna's finance minister Hans-Joerg Schelling said.

  • New rules impacting investor loans: RBA AAP - Fri, Sep 18, 2015 1:06 PM NZST

    Some property investors may become owner occupiers as regulatory measures to curb growth in investment lending have an impact, the Reserve Bank of Australia says. RBA governor Glenn Stevens says the evidence is that the measures are doing their job, adding that it is not about controlling house prices but rather ensuring there are prudent lending standards. Mr Stevens said the flow of new lending to investors is not continuing to increase the way it was, and the rate of growth will gradually come back to the regulator's 10 per cent `speed limit' on investor lending growth.

  • US will raise rates soon: RBA's Stevens AAP - Fri, Sep 18, 2015 12:43 PM NZST
    US will raise rates soon: RBA's Stevens

    The Reserve Bank boss is confident that the US central bank will raise its interest rate before Christmas. The Federal Reserve on Friday kept its interest rate unchanged amid worries about the slowdown in China and its impact on the US economy. RBA governor Glenn Stevens said when the Fed does make its first rate hike in nine years it will be the most anticipated interest rate move he's ever seen.

  • RBA to talk up economic outlook AAP - Fri, Sep 18, 2015 9:30 AM NZST
    RBA to talk up economic outlook

    Reserve Bank governor Glenn Stevens will come to Canberra with a positive slant on the economic outlook when he faces politicians for his six-monthly grilling. The US central bank will have concluded its crucial two-day meeting just hours before Mr Stevens fronts the House of Representatives economics committee for the three-hour hearing on Friday morning.

  • To Encourage Crowdfunding, Change the Definition of an Investment Company Entrepreneur - Fri, Sep 18, 2015 3:15 AM NZST
    To Encourage Crowdfunding, Change the Definition of an Investment Company

    Equity crowdfunding is hampered by regulations designed to curb stock-market abuse.

  • 5 Ways to Make Retirement Planning Easier US News - Fri, Sep 18, 2015 2:13 AM NZST
    5 Ways to Make Retirement Planning Easier

    Developing a retirement plan will allow you to one day walk away from your job and have complete control over your time. Here are five ways to simplify the retirement planning process. You get to decide how much of your salary you put in a retirement account every year.

  • Can I tap my Roth IRA without paying a penalty? Bankrate.com - Thu, Sep 17, 2015 10:00 PM NZST

    Dear Tax Talk, I am 65 and converted an IRA to a Roth IRA. It was included on my 2010 tax return. What are the Roth IRA withdrawal rules? When can I begin withdrawals from the Roth IRA without paying income ...

  • How do I get out of a co-signed loan? Bankrate.com - Thu, Sep 17, 2015 10:00 PM NZST

    It's unlikely that a lender will release someone with "great" credit from a defaulted loan, especially if that requires the lender to rely on someone else who's unreliable. Please remember that your use of this website is governed by Bankrate's Terms of Use.

  • How can we get protection from a dollar collapse? Bankrate.com - Thu, Sep 17, 2015 10:00 PM NZST

    My wife and I recently purchased a wealth growth plan through our local bank, and it is underwritten by a very good insurance company. It's not clear what "experts" you're listening to, or what financial product you were sold, but few financial institutions likely would survive the kind of economic collapse that would require a new currency to be issued. Most states have guaranty funds to help pay the obligations of financially distressed insurance companies.

  • Where will mortgage rates head next week? Bankrate.com - Thu, Sep 17, 2015 10:00 PM NZST

    Will rates go up, down or remain unchanged? Intro Up 50% Down 40% Unchanged 10% Panel Prediction Up Down Unchanged 50% 40% 10% This week (Sept. 17-23), half of the panelists believe mortgage rates will ...

  • Mortgage rates rise ahead of Fed decision Bankrate.com - Thu, Sep 17, 2015 10:00 PM NZST

    Interest rates on mortgages inched higher this week, just a day before the Federal Reserve's policy-setting committee decides whether the federal funds rate will increase for the first time in nearly a decade. The Fed likely won't announce a rate increase today, says Dick Lee, founder and president of Independent Mortgage in Newton, Massachusetts. "I do see them increasing (the federal funds rate) by the end of the year by anywhere from 0.125% to 0.25%," he says.

  • Is it smart to buy stocks when the market tanks? Bankrate.com - Thu, Sep 17, 2015 10:00 PM NZST

    When stock market prices gyrate, heading in a downward spiral, it can be tempting to abandon the whole retirement savings thing. Stock markets move in cycles -- sometimes they scale mountains and other times they fall off a cliff. The rate at which you save is based on the assumption that you'll get a minimum rate of return that, when combined with your rate of savings, will help you reach your retirement goals.

  • National mortgage rates for Sept. 17, 2015 Bankrate.com - Thu, Sep 17, 2015 10:00 PM NZST

    Interest Rate Roundup Find the best mortgage rates in your area. Mortgages 30-year fixed: 4.06% Average points: 0.23 Mortgage rates barely budged this week, according to Bankrate.com's survey of interest ...

  • Foreign holdings of US Treasury securities drop in July Associated Press - Thu, Sep 17, 2015 8:54 AM NZST
    Foreign holdings of US Treasury securities drop in July

    Foreign holdings of U.S. Treasury securities fell again in July as China, the biggest foreign owner of U.S. government debt, cut back its holdings. The Treasury Department said Wednesday in its monthly ...

  • 5 End-Of-Summer Planning Tips for Boomers US News - Thu, Sep 17, 2015 2:30 AM NZST

    No matter who you are, here are five things you can do to be more prepared for your current or future retirement. Put together your "written" financial plan. The financial plan is the best place to start.

  • Won $9.7 million. Now, where to park it? Bankrate.com - Wed, Sep 16, 2015 10:00 PM NZST

    You're right to be concerned about putting all your money in 1 bank account. In general, the insurance limits are $250,000 per depositor at an institution insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. or the National Credit Union Administration. There is a certificate of deposit available from a network of participating financial institutions called CDARS, or the Certificate of Deposit Account Registry Service.

  • Hockey busy while he waits his fate AAP - Wed, Sep 16, 2015 12:58 PM NZST
    Hockey busy while he waits his fate

    Treasurer Joe Hockey isn't sitting on his hands waiting for Malcolm Turnbull to decide his future. Amid speculation he will be the highest-profile casualty of a ministerial reshuffle the new prime minister will unveil on Monday, Mr Hockey brought to parliament tax-avoidance measures aimed at multinational corporations.

  • The Perils of Short-Term Business Loans Entrepreneur - Wed, Sep 16, 2015 9:00 AM NZST
    The Perils of Short-Term Business Loans

    Sometimes it makes sense to take a loan at brutal interest rates. More often, it's a sign the business is failing and the time has come to cut losses.

  • GE says it may move up to 500 US jobs overseas Associated Press - Wed, Sep 16, 2015 8:33 AM NZST
    GE says it may move up to 500 US jobs overseas

    General Electric Co. said Tuesday that it may move about 500 jobs overseas because Congress did not renew a government program that allows foreign companies to borrow money to buy U.S. products. Authorization ...

  • 11 Ways Homeowners Can Fund Major Home Improvements US News - Wed, Sep 16, 2015 3:56 AM NZST

    Home improvements can be expensive, which isn't news to most homeowners. If you plan to stay in your home and don't have cash, how can you pay for home improvements? "It depends on the circumstances," says Casey Fleming, author of "The Loan Guide: How to Get the Best Possible Mortgage" and a mortgage professional in the San Francisco Bay Area.

  • Is Your Credit Card Worth the Annual Fee? US News - Wed, Sep 16, 2015 1:35 AM NZST

    Credit cards with annual fees often promise big perks and more rewards per dollar -- but if you're not planning on spending thousands on your credit card, you could end up in the red. Among the 2,202 credit cards NerdWallet examined in its 2015 industry study, the average annual fee was $58. Wondering whether your annual fee card is a keeper?

  • Is the friendly thrift nearing extinction? Bankrate.com - Tue, Sep 15, 2015 10:00 PM NZST

    Anyone who's watched "It's a Wonderful Life" will probably remember the plucky Bailey Bros. Building and Loan Association, which financed hundreds of single-family homes in good old Bedford Falls. The biggest difference between a thrift and a conventional bank is that thrifts are designed to serve U.S. consumers rather than businesses. By law, thrifts must have 65% of their lending portfolio tied up in consumer loans, says Tanya Marsh, professor of law at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

  • I want my car repossessed. Why won't they? Bankrate.com - Tue, Sep 15, 2015 10:00 PM NZST

    Dear Bankruptcy Adviser, I was forced to file Chapter 7 bankruptcy. I agreed to surrender my vehicle. After my Chapter 7 was discharged, I naturally expected my car to be picked up by the lender. It has ...

  • 52-week savings challenge Bankrate.com - Tue, Sep 15, 2015 10:00 PM NZST

    Can you try a new way to save every week for a year? Each week, we will try a new way of saving money and chronicle the journey. Follow our 52-week savings challenge here: Click on a date to see which ...

  • RBA in wait and see mode on rates AAP - Tue, Sep 15, 2015 3:48 PM NZST
    RBA in wait and see mode on rates

    The Reserve Bank appears content to keep its interest rate at a record low for the time being as Australia's non-mining industries begin to show signs of improvement. Minutes from the RBA's September meeting, when the cash rate was kept on hold at 2.0 per cent, noted improvements in hiring intentions in the services sector and that non-mining business investment was expected to pick up.

  • Conservative investments to help you retire Bankrate.com - Mon, Sep 14, 2015 10:00 PM NZST

    Any advice on retirement investing would be appreciated. Your choice of investments will depend on your investment goals, investment horizon, attitude toward risk and need for liquidity. If you're saving for retirement, you should consider a tax-advantaged retirement account such as a Roth or traditional individual retirement account, your company's 401(k), and 403(b) plans.

  • Debunking the biggest myths about Internet banking Bankrate.com - Mon, Sep 14, 2015 10:00 PM NZST

    Is it time to break up with brick-and-mortar banks? We don't need them. Our paychecks are deposited electronically, and we can send, receive and transfer money from our phones. This leaves little reason ...

  • Am I liable for a secret life insurance policy? Bankrate.com - Mon, Sep 14, 2015 10:00 PM NZST

    In 1960, unbeknownst to me, my adoptive stepmother took out a life insurance policy on me when I entered the military, no doubt hoping that I would be killed in action. The insurance company has forwarded a 1099-R form to the IRS insisting that I was the recipient of taxable income, thereby making it appear that I failed to report it. Fact: You don't have to worry about life insurance policy loans and interest because an insurance company will never loan more than the policy's cash value.

  • 3 things to know before you buy your 1st home Bankrate.com - Mon, Sep 14, 2015 10:00 PM NZST

    Another reason doesn't seem to garner as much attention, however: Many young adults simply don't know where to start, according to a Carrington Mortgage Services survey from April. "There's so much information (online) that people become easily overwhelmed," says Rob Chrane, president of Down Payment Resource in Atlanta. A large chunk of buyers don't bother getting preapproved for a home loan, which is a mistake.

  • Eurogroup chief rules out Greek debt deal renegotiation Associated Press - Sun, Sep 13, 2015 2:23 AM NZST
    Eurogroup chief rules out Greek debt deal renegotiation

    The head of the euro currency group of countries has ruled out any renegotiation of the massive loan program meant to save Greece's economy, a week ahead of general elections there. Greeks go to the polls ...