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The Globe and Mail personal finance team wants to know how you’re coping with high food prices.

The overall inflation rate has edged lower in recent months, but food inflation is still a big problem. In December, food prices jumped 10.1 per cent on a year-over-year basis while the overall inflation rate was 6.3 per cent.

This newsletter has presented a lot of ideas for cutting back on food costs, including apps that highlight what’s on sale, price matching, meal planning, buying house brands instead of name brands and considering frozen or canned veggies and fruit instead of fresh.

Now, we’d like you to help us understand the adjustments you’re making to afford food at both grocery stores and restaurants. Please take this short survey or, if you prefer, send a comment to Globe and Mail personal finance editor Roma Luciw at

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Rob’s personal finance reading list

Are you throwing your reward points away?

The answer could be yes if you’re using credit card reward points to buy merchandise. Travel is almost always the best way to use points.

Can a bank take money from my account?

If you default on various types of debt at a bank where you have a chequing or savings account, the bank can take money out of the account. It’s called the right of offset, a credit counselling agency says in an article that includes tips on how to avoid this outcome.

Three ETFs for the long-term investor

An expert at the independent investing research company Morningstar Canada highlights three exchange-traded funds suitable as portfolio building blocks for long-term investing.

The toxic side of fun money

Fun money is a term sometimes used to describe speculative investments you make outside your main accounts for retirement saving and other long-term goals. A financial adviser explains here why fun money can be a danger to your financial well-being.

Ask Rob

Q: Do you know of anyone offering the Tax Free First Home Savings Account, self-directed or otherwise?

A: The FHSA should be available widely in April. Expect virtually all investment dealers and advisers to offer them.

Do you have a question for me? Send it my way. Sorry I can't answer every one personally. Questions and answers are edited for length and clarity.

Today’s financial tool

A review of the costs associated with high interest savings exchange-traded funds, which are an increasingly popular way to earn a decent rate of return on money you want to park in a secure spot.

The Money-Free Zone

For a reminder of the pleasures of listening to a good indie band, check out the new Yo La Tengo song Aselestine. Autumn Sweater might be this band’s best known song. I also like the ultra-catchy Tom Courtenay a lot.

From the Twitterverse

Someone asks, “What is one product under $250 that has impacted your life the most?” Fascinating responses.

In case you missed these Globe and Mail personal finance-related stories

More Rob Carrick and money coverage

Subscribe to Stress Test on Apple podcasts or Spotify. For more money stories, follow me on Instagram and Twitter, and join the discussion on my Facebook page. Millennial readers, join our Gen Y Money Facebook group.

Even more coverage from Rob Carrick: