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R.I.A. Federal Credit Union

 

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  • Understanding Trends in the Stock Market
    Bulls and bears can be considered the unofficial mascots of the stock market. They represent the upward and downward movements of the stock market over a period of time and have even come to describe investor behavior (optimistic investors are said to be bullish, while investors with a pessimistic outlook are said to be bearish). In a field typically known for its confusing financial terminology and often uninspired language, the bull and bear symbols really stand out—and this is especially true in Lower Manhattan.
  • Earning Money Online: What’s Your Time Worth?
    It’s hard to ignore the appeal of making real money online—after all, we live in a world where bloggers land book and movie deals, where top YouTubers are multimillionaires and where celebrities collect thousands of dollars in exchange for a single sponsored tweet.
  • The Effect of Time on Investing
    Investing can seem like a very risky, complex and fast-moving process. With endless combinations of investment vehicles to choose from, it can be difficult to take your first step as an investor—especially with the knowledge that all investments carry the risk of losing some or all of your money. So why bother?
  • Attitudes Towards Insurance
    Insurance coverage can be tricky to shop for, because it requires making specific financial decisions about some hazy and unpredictable concepts. Depending on the type of insurance you’re looking into, you might find yourself pondering some downright uncomfortable questions.
  • How to Counter the Effects of Inflation
    When most people think of inflation, their response is usually similar to when they see a vintage advertisement: reminiscing about the cheaper prices of the past (15 cents for a burger? Awesome!) while simultaneously feeling some resentment towards today’s ever-rising prices. Generally, inflation is seen as a frustrating "financial fact of life" that passively affects everyone as price levels climb and as the dollar’s purchasing power decreases over time.
  • The Challenges of Choosing a Career
    "When I grow up, I want to be a ___________." Depending on who you are, filling in the blank above can be an exciting, troubling or outright confusing task. If you happen to be a kindergartner, filling in the blank is awesome, because at that age, dinosaur and superhero are both perfectly viable career options. If you happen to be in high school, filling in the blank can be motivating because it takes all your talents and interests and captures them in a single goal that you can pursue through high school and past graduation day. If you happen to be an adult, filling in the blank can be a little bit terrifying because that could mean you’re now a grown-up (regardless of whether or not you feel like one) and here you are, still secretly looking for ideas.
  • Keep or Toss: How Long Should I Hang Onto My Financial Documents?
    Every year, it’s nice to do a bit of "financial spring cleaning" and de-clutter your filing cabinet, your desk drawers, and the various hiding places where miscellaneous scraps of paper tend to accumulate and multiply. Read on to find out what you should be saving, and what’s OK to shred.
  • Four Questions to Ask Yourself Before Signing a Mortgage
    Asking the right questions is an important part of every financial decision you make, and home ownership is no exception. If you’ve been thinking about buying a place, preliminary research will turn up a long checklist of questions for you to ask at every part of the process. There are questions for your financial institution, questions for your mortgage broker and questions for your real estate agent. But what about the questions you should be asking yourself?
  • Saving on Groceries - Break up With the Big Brands
    Picture this scenario: you’re steering your shopping cart through the sliding doors of the supermarket, shopping list in hand. As you walk the aisles, there’s a strategy you can use to save an average of 33% on your entire purchase. It doesn’t require any coupon cutting or signing up for rewards cards. And the best part? You still get every single item on your list. The secret? Buying private-label products instead of brand-name products.
  • It Pays to Start Saving Early
    In case you haven’t heard, compound interest is the best. You may remember it as an equation you had to memorize for math class, but it’s so much more than that. It’s the concept that powers all sorts of savings and investment products and, over time, allows you to turn your money into, well, more money!
  • To Lease or To Finance: That is the Question!
    When it comes to buying a new car, you have three options: purchasing it with cash, purchasing it through a loan (also known as financing) or leasing it. For most shoppers, the decision comes down to buying or leasing.
  • Finding the Loan That's Right for You
    Loans help finance some of our biggest goals in life. They can provide access to possibilities that we can’t afford upfront—possibilities like going to school, buying a home or starting a business (to name just a few).
  • Why is it Called a Credit Union?
    While bank and banking are universally understood and accepted terms, the term credit union is still largely misunderstood and unknown to many. Credit union is an unusual term, isn’t it? Is it just another name for a bank? Is it a credit card company? Do I have to be in a union to join?
  • Investment Strategies for These Low-Interest Times
    Everyone has some idea of what it means to be money smart—however, whether or not you’ve acted on that idea is a different story! There are a few nuggets of financial wisdom in particular that are echoed so many times in articles, blog posts and TV segments that they become clichés, albeit practical ones. Curb your spending. Pay off your debt. Contribute to your savings early and often. Compound interest is your friend. Start saving now and watch your money grow.
  • Be Prepared, Because Life Happens
    An emergency fund is an essential part of your personal finances. Its importance is stressed in almost every personal finance book and budgeting blog, and yet 26% of Americans currently have no emergency fund in place. Of those who do have an emergency fund, up to two-thirds do not have the often-recommended six months’ worth of expenses saved up.
  • Where you Seek Financial Advice Says a Lot About You
    How did you decide where to open your first bank account? Where did you learn to budget or pay bills? If you have a money question now, what do you do? Who do you turn to?
  • Avoiding Predatory Lending
    Like local car dealerships and personal injury law firms, short-term and payday lenders tend to have the most annoying commercials on TV. They’re often tacky and annoying, and tend to air during daytime talk shows or very late at night. Their promises of "fast cash!", "guaranteed approval!" and no "credit check required!" are enough to make you change the channel—and yet, if you ever find yourself in a situation where you need to get your hands on some extra money fast, those commercials might start making sense to you.
  • Foiling Identity Theft
    Identity theft is nothing new, and yet it still manages to cost its victims billions of dollars (yes, that’s billions with a "b") globally each year—not to mention the time and hassle involved in recovering a stolen identity.
  • 5 Ways to Lower the Cost of Tuition Before Considering a Student Loan
    If you’re considering financing your college education with the help of a student loan, the smartest thing you can do for yourself is to only borrow what you truly need. (This advice applies to pretty much all loan products, by the way.) Pursuing post-secondary education should be an exciting time in your life. You’re making decisions and opening up possibilities that will shape your future—a future that is adventurous and fulfilling and that decidedly does not include years and years of crippling debt.
  • Living on your Own
    Living on your own for the first time can be empowering. It means having independence and all the things that come with it. Some of those things—like not having to share a bathroom—are wonderful. Others—like killing spiders yourself—are not so fun. And leading the pack in the not-so-fun category: bills.
  • Comparing Cards - Which one should you use?
    It’s a decision that comes into play for every bill you pay, every tank of gas you buy and every coffee you pick up on the way to class or work. Cash, check or card? Debit, credit or prepaid debit? You make this decision so many times a day that it might seem common and unimportant. After all, different forms of payment are just different ways to access funds, so what difference does it really make if you put your breakfast sandwich on credit instead of debit?
  • Know Your Checking Account
    Checks hold an odd place in our personal finances. In many ways, checks seem like relics from a previous era. We maybe write one or two checks a month (usually for rent or similar bill-paying situations where electronic payment simply isn’t an option). This is vastly different from only a few decades ago, when checks represented more than 85% of all non-cash retail payments.
  • Credit Score Breakdown
    You’ve likely heard about credit scores before (thanks to all those commercials with terrible jingles), but what do you actually know about them? How long have they been around? And what’s the deal with checking them?
  • Good vs. Bad Spending
    When you start looking for financial advice (or any kind of advice, for that matter), experts will share their take on what’s "good" and what’s "bad." In personal finance, there are some classifications that we can all agree on: Debt is bad. Emergency funds are good. Overdrawing your account is bad. Earning interest on your savings is good.
  • Boosting Your Credit Score
    Credit scores are an area of personal finance that seem a lot more mysterious than they actually are. Many people believe that improving them is a matter of trial and error and, as a result, there’s a lot of "credit score advice" floating around that can end up doing more harm than good.
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