TEST Welcome to this edition of the new Globe and Mail Personal Finance Reader. I'm Rob Carrick, personal finance columnist at The Globe, and each week I compile a list of articles, blog postings and websites that represent the best of what the online world has to offer on money-related subjects.
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For this week, the Reader looks at mortgages, credit cards, the state of the stock markets and an online personal finance clinic that represents an interesting new direction in financial advice.
Not even off the presses: a sneak peak into Saturday's Globe and Mail
Portfolio Strategy I track down some stocks that investing gurus like Warren Buffett, Peter Lynch and Benjamin Graham might pick in today's market.
Financial Facelift After splitting with her husband of 30 years, this woman in Halifax is aiming to save for a reasonable retirement while funding her child's post-secondary education
Me & My Money This teacher is becoming a more active investor after being disappointed with advisers' choices.
What The Charts Say Technical analysis suggests building supply giant Home Depot is set to rise .
Must reads from around the web
Credit Crunch This article from the New York Times Magazine is the best thing I've yet read on how Americans got themselves into the economic mess they're in. It's a personal account by Times economics reporter Edmund Andrews on how he came to rack up a pile of debt and default on his mortgage. Brave, brilliant writing by Mr. Andrews, who starts by saying he should have known better.
Struggling to make sense of how surging stock markets can co-exist with so much skepticism about the prospects for stocks? The Kirk Report will only add to your confusion. Day by day, it offers a long list of links to articles and blog posts on the markets, stocks, economics and really important stuff like how to grill a better burger.
Pick A Number Three-year mortgages are a "nice combination of risk and reward," while four-year mortgages are "the ugly baby that no one wants." As usual, the Canadian Mortgage Trends blog gives you mortgage insights you'll never hear from your banker.
Give Us Credit The costs of using a credit card in Canada are far less hidden than in other countries, the Matador Life website tells us in an article comparing card culture around the world.
Don't Give Us Credit With graduation season almost at hand for post-secondary students, it's worth taking a look at a posting on a new blog from the big U.S. investment firm Vanguard about the plight of indebted university grads. Scary factoid: the average American university student has run up more than $3,170 (U.S.) in credit card debt.
Ask An Expert The people behind three money blogs - Canadian Capitalist, The Moneygardener and Triaging My Way To Financial Success - are holding an online personal finance clinic for readers. Send in your questions by May 31 to firstname.lastname@example.org. These bloggers aren't passing themselves off as advisers, just informed observers who can offer an opinion.
Nasty ETFs A new investor advocacy group called Foundation for Advancement of Investor Rights (FAIR) has singled out leveraged exchange-traded funds for not doing a good enough job disclosing their risks to investors. The Thicken My Wallet blog explains the ins and outs of these increasingly popular ETFs. Here's the FAIR report on leveraged ETFs (PDF).
That's all for this week
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