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May 21, 2015

In defense of the courthouse wedding

NEW YORK, May 21 (Reuters) – When Scott Oeth was thinking
about proposing to his girlfriend, Linda Hardin, he knew the
stats. The average wedding costs in 2014, according to popular
website, were a whopping $31,213.

That’s when the Minneapolis financial planner thought, No

Lucky for him, his bride-to-be was thinking exactly the same
thing. So last year the couple arranged for a courthouse
wedding, a celebratory dinner at their favorite steak house,
covered as a gift by his new in-laws, and a backyard BBQ
reception later in the summer for 100 guests.

May 13, 2015

Do-gooders do better with matching gifts

NEW YORK, May 13 (Reuters) – When Nigel Glennie saw the
images coming out of Nepal after the earthquake in late April,
he just had to do something.

When he heard that his company, Cisco Systems Inc,
was offering a dollar-for-dollar match on donations (up to $1
million), he figured his money could do twice as much.

May 7, 2015

What is the economic value of a college major?

NEW YORK (Reuters) – With university tuition and student debt at record highs, many people wonder if it is worth it to go to college.

But according to Georgetown University professor Anthony Carnevale, the truly important issue that will affect a student’s future is picking a major.

Apr 30, 2015

Comedy at work: From menial, low-paid jobs comes laughter

NEW YORK, April 30 (Reuters) – First jobs are not usually
very funny.

In fact they’re often menial, and low-paid, and pretty
degrading. But that’s exactly why some of the country’s top
comedians find such a wealth of comic material there.

For the latest in Reuters’ monthly First Jobs series, we
talked to comedians about the first time they brought home
paychecks. The inevitable lesson: From tragedy comes comedy.

Apr 23, 2015

Make the right call on getting cell phones for kids

By Chris Taylor

NEW YORK(Reuters) – When Dallas mom Jan Valecka’s twins hit that contentious tween age, the rite of passage she dreaded most was a relatively new one: when to get them cell phones.

“They were starting to see all their friends get smartphones and iPads,” says Valecka, a financial planner at her own firm. “They started lobbying hard.”

Apr 16, 2015

Curb your microfinance addiction and still feel good

NEW YORK, April 16 (Reuters) – I was lending money to a
grocery store owner in Mozambique and a cosmetics saleswoman in
Haiti when I realized I was addicted.

I really enjoy microfinance sites like, maybe a
little too much.

If you have $25 to spare, you can lend it to an entrepreneur
halfway across the world and feel like you are making a small
difference. He or she eventually pays you back (hopefully), the
credit goes into your account, and you can start all over again.

Apr 14, 2015

Power vacation in St. Barths the Martha Stewart way

NEW YORK (Reuters) – She may by the undisputed Doyenne of Domesticity, but Martha Stewart also likes to hit the road.

One of the places close to her heart: the exclusive Caribbean enclave of St. Barths, from which she recently returned. Not far from Anguilla, the tiny island is known for its stunning beaches and its enduring popularity with celebs.

Apr 7, 2015

Joy Ride: 4 ways to save money on your bike addiction

NEW YORK, April 7 (Reuters) – If you want to ask Jonathan
Cane what he loves most about cycling, you might have some
trouble catching up with him.

Chances are, the 51-year-old triathlon coach will be
pedaling at 20 miles per hour on his Trek Domane, deep in the
forests of New York’s Harriman State Park or alongside the
cliffs of the New Jersey Palisades.

Apr 1, 2015

How humble first jobs motivated these inspirational speakers

NEW YORK, April 1 (Reuters) – What inspires you?

It’s a simple question that is not always easy to answer.
That’s why there are professional speakers who fill stadiums -
and get paid tens of thousands of dollars – to light a fire in

For more than a year, Reuters has been talking to America’s
greatest achievers, asking about the first jobs that set them on
the path to success.

Mar 27, 2015

The one-page financial plan

NEW YORK, March 27 (Reuters) – Gather round because here is
today’s personal-finance lesson inspired by famed Hollywood
screenwriter William Goldman: Nobody knows anything.

In other words, no one knows where the market is headed. No
one can tell you exactly what financial moves to make. And no
one knows where they are going to be 40 years from now.

    • About Chris

      "Chris Taylor is an award-winning freelance writer in New York City. A former senior writer with SmartMoney, the Wall Street Journal's personal-finance magazine, he has been published in the Financial Times, Bloomberg BusinessWeek,, Fortune, Money, and more. He has won journalism awards from the National Press Club, the Deadline Club, and the National Association of Real Estate Editors. The opinions expressed are his own."
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