Is there a simple way to reduce credit card fraud?

Credit card fraud is a major problem, which costs billions each year.  Banks and credit card issuers have tried a number of ways to reduce the fraud.  Recent examples are the rollout of cards with computer chips.  Cards with chips are more secure for in-person transactions.  Unfortunately, chipped cards are no more secure than older cards without a chip for remote transactions, such as paying for something over the phone or buying something on the Internet. Continue reading

Is it Better to Pay off the Mortgage or Save for Retirement?

I was listening to a financial radio show where listeners call in their questions.  A man called in with a frequently asked question; “my wife and I have a 30 year mortgage at 3.5%, we have a little bit of extra money now and were wondering if we should pay down the mortgage faster or put the money into our retirement accounts?”  The financial expert gave the standard advice and said “fund the retirement accounts.”  He then gave a detailed explanation why funding a retirement account was much better.  Unlike most callers this one had some guts and told the expert he was not convinced and then hung up.  The caller’s negative reaction got me thinking; is the standard advice wrong?

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