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  • Reaching the middle class is difficult, and staying there is harder.

    Defining Middle Class

    Many people are born into the middle class, but for those born in poverty the lifetime challenge is reaching middle class status.

    The definition of middle class status is a challenge in itself. People in poverty are often described as those surviving on less than US$1.25 (some R17.50) per day. However, that does not imply that middle class simply starts just above this threshold.

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  • A cashless society has been a vision for a long time.

    The Death of Cash...Not So Fast

    Ever since the introduction of computers into the retail banking system in the late 1950s, there has been a vision of a future world where cash is obsolete. The near death of personal cheques, increase in debit and credit card use, and innovations such as PayPal, Square, Apple Pay and Bitcoin, have led us to believe the cashless society is well within our reach.

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  • Savings with government support is an old idea.

    All For One, and Savings For All

    As predicted, the US Federal Reserve has raised interest rates after nearly a decade, which means a slightly better rate of return for savers. Meanwhile in the UK, the Bank of England has kept the benchmark rate at a rock bottom 0.5% for the 81st month in a row. All the while, there are calls from policymakers and politicians for a grand vision for saving. People should take responsibility, the argument goes, for their own welfare.

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  • Australia's superannuation system's level of fairness.

    A Lesson in Fairness for a Retirement Savings System

    Australia is engaged in an ongoing debate about the fairness of the superannuation system. Those on the highest incomes are extracting the greatest and an unfair advantage from tax benefits currently available. This problem of perception is inevitable in a system where contributions come out of our pre-tax income.

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  • Mobile pay is changing the way people pay for goods and services.

    Mobile Payments: The Present and the Future of Transactions

    It is often said that in business, non-progredi est regredi (if you are not moving forward, you are going backward).

    This maxim has never been more relevant than in modern-day America. Technology has grown leaps and bounds and is always evolving. This has resulted in the creation of many innovative solutions for business owners as well.

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  • When Will The $1 Trillion Student Debt Bubble Burst?

    When Will The $1 Trillion Student Debt Bubble Burst?

    Steep rises in the cost of higher education, especially in the US and the UK, have been accompanied by the declining value of degrees, leading some commentators to predict that the student bubble is about to deflate. 

    Quebec’s series of spectacular student strikes against rises in tuition fees is the longest and largest civil action in North American history.  

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  • How to Improve Your Credit Without Using a Credit Card

    How to Improve Your Credit Without Using a Credit Card

    Having a good credit score is very important for your financial future, so if you find out that your credit score is poor, it’s time to make some changes. The key to improving credit is to start making sound financial choices, which means that frivolous spending with a credit card needs to stop.

    Many advisors will advise that a person with poor credit first pay off their credit card balance, but there are also options for those without a credit card.

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  • Coming Soon to a Bank Near You: The End Of Free Consumer Banking

    Coming Soon to a Bank Near You: The End Of Free Consumer Banking

    Many of us are familiar with the basic services that banks provide. In simple, straightforward cases, banks keep our money and pay an interest on it, while providing the convenience of cash withdrawals along their network of ATMs. But are consumers benefitting from their banks, or are they really ripped off by hidden bank charges?

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  • Waking Up From The Nightmare On Wall Street

    Waking Up From The Nightmare On Wall Street

    We, as a collective society, have to shoulder some of the blame for financial crisis as we essentially allowed Wall Street and our policymakers to run the global economy into the ground while we slumbered in blissful ignorance of their misdeeds. But while we have stirred from our slumber, as evident through protests such as Occupy Wall Street, our true awakening will only come when we acquire the knowledge required to fully comprehend the issues.

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  • Women For Change

    Women At Work: Moving Towards Parity

    Earlier this month, the former CEO of Yahoo! was unceremoniously removed by the company board, via a telephone call. Many have questioned and wondered if it had anything to do with the fact that Carol Bartz is a woman; if the termination could have been better handled if Bartz were a male.

    Of course, there are no straightforward answers.

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