for questions related to understanding basic concepts in finance or certain terms in a particular context

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11
votes
3answers
1k views

What is the difference between a stock and a bond?

I am just learning about finances (only 14 years old) and have heard about Stocks and Bonds and I would like to know the difference between these two things and wonder why would I invest in one or the ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

Italy BTP vs. German Bund spread. Care to explain?

I hear a lot of chatting about BTP/Bund spread recently. I am not familiar with this concept. Could you explain what it is and what it means, in layman's terms?
7
votes
6answers
854 views

Ongoing things to do and read to improve knowledge of finance?

In this forum, there are a lot of people whose primary job is programming. And yet they are very knowledgeable on a lot of financial topics. Can you please share what you do/read on a regular basis ...
18
votes
7answers
2k views

Where to start with personal finance?

I am married with kids and starting to look hard at savings for retirement, buying a house and sending my kid to college (still a LONG way away). However, I am completely new to the world of finance ...
6
votes
3answers
809 views

What is the true value, i.e. advantages or benefits, of building up equity in your home?

I am a relatively new home owner, having purchased my first home in October 2009. It was a $315,000 home, purchased with a 5% no-cost loan with I believe 12% down payment. I think the total financed ...
10
votes
4answers
593 views

How to learn about doing technical analysis? Any suggested programs or tools that teach it?

I've been going through the OIC Education Courses recommended by @jaydles in another question about learning options. I'm about halfway through, I've learned a lot about how the stock market works ...
4
votes
2answers
161 views

How can I determine if leaving a lower paying, tax advantaged, job for a higher paying one makes sense financially?

I'm not exactly sure how to go about calculating this problem. I'm a Canadian (Alberta) working in a ministry position at a church. My credentials qualify me for clergy housing, and I make just shy ...
6
votes
3answers
3k views

When inflation is mentioned over a period of more than one year, is it typically reported as a compound annual growth rate?

When we say "inflation has remained steady at 2% for the past 5 years", is that typically taken to mean 2% compounded annually for each of those years, or something else?
3
votes
2answers
7k views

What is the difference between a bond and a debenture?

What's the difference between a bond and a debenture? Are they simply different words used to mean the same thing? (e.g. debenture sounds more business-like than bond).
8
votes
6answers
644 views

Does reading financial statements (quarterly or annual reports) really help investing?

Will learning how to read financial statements really give investors a significant edge? From your experience, is it worth the time to pick up this tool? Edit: Thanks for all the feed back guys. I ...
25
votes
9answers
2k views

Which practice to keep finances after getting married: joint, or separate?

My wife and I have been keeping our finances separate for a long time. Some of my friends just put everything in a big pot. We each have our own pot, but then we have a common pot where we put all ...
5
votes
5answers
1k views

Which secured credit cards start building your credit history right away?

I spoke with 3 banks this morning and they all said that for the time I was on the secured card, they would not report me to the credit unions and companies. They would just keep the score internal to ...
4
votes
3answers
474 views

Recommended finance & economy book/blog for a Software Engineer?

I'm fresh graduate from CS field, and having little bit knowledge of finance and economy. Could anyone suggest this which you think more suits me. Thanks!
0
votes
3answers
531 views

How do I determine future balance owed on a mortgage based on amortization?

A family buys a house worth 326000.They pay 110 000 down and then take out a 5-year mortgage for the balance at j2 = 6.5% to be amortized over 20 years. Payments will be paid monthly. Determine the ...
9
votes
6answers
341 views

Is it a good idea to teach children that work is linearly related to income?

It seems to me that, if you want to teach children at an early age about the benefits of careful personal finance, and other fun concepts (like an intuitive understanding of compound interest), paying ...
3
votes
1answer
55 views

what is the likely reason that the bank have a different year end than the other companies

what is the likely reason that the bank have a different year end than the other companies
112
votes
16answers
8k views

How smart is it to really be 100% debt free?

For the last 2 years, I have been trying hard to be debt free without affecting my personal cash flow. I am by no means a rich person, but I have a decent salary. I still have debt, specifically ...
4
votes
16answers
513 views

What one bit of financial advice do you wish you could've given yourself five years ago?

Suppose you could travel back five years and give yourself one bit of financial advice, anything except stock tips. What would it be?
67
votes
10answers
8k views

Why does gold have value?

I'm curious about why is there so much financial interest and news coverage about gold. It's hard to do things like buy food or pay the rent with gold, but I can do this with cash. Gold doesn't yield ...
3
votes
2answers
95 views

Stocks and bonds have yields, but what is a yield?

I often read about yield such as in this article from Kiplinger, but I have not been able to find a good description of what a yield is. What is it, and why would I care as a novice investor?
2
votes
4answers
269 views

What is a Master Limited Partnership (MLP) & how is it different from plain stock?

I came across a reference to a "Master Limited Partnership" in a news article recently. I understand they are exchange-listed investments like individual stocks. But, what exactly are Master Limited ...
18
votes
3answers
3k views

What is a trust? What are the different types of trusts?

What is a trust? What are the different types of trusts? Are some better than others? What are the different roles involved in a trust?
15
votes
6answers
3k views

Can you explain “time value of money” and “compound interest” and provide examples of each?

Can you explain the time value of money concept, including present value and future value? How does compound interest work? Why is compound interest a powerful concept when it comes to borrowing, ...
7
votes
3answers
3k views

Foreclosure process: What happens when a bank forecloses on a home?

I know it is a long complicated process, but what is the high level overview of what a bank does when it forecloses on a house? Beyond credit getting hurt, what else? Where does the bank get it's ...
5
votes
5answers
108 views

Spring cleaning for your finances? Is there any activity that should be done annually, with respect to your money?

In order to maintain the health of your finances, do you do any particular activity on an annual basis that you would recommend that might benefit others? Say, a "spring cleaning" of some sort?
5
votes
1answer
99 views

How to Transition From Employee to Employer?

I know Making the transition from employee to employer requires financial stability, a good business plan, self-confidence and a lot of discipline. But i am looking for some instructions/tips from ...
7
votes
5answers
496 views

Are personal finance / money management classes taught in high school, anywhere?

It sure seems like something that would be a valuable life skill, akin to Home Ec (or even more important!)... Where I'm from (Peel Region in Ontario Canada), it isn't part of the curriculum.
19
votes
9answers
2k views

What is the difference between “good debt” vs. “bad debt”?

This other question about home renovations makes reference to the concept of "good debt." Could somebody explain the concepts of good debt vs. bad debt, providing examples of each? Are there cases ...
18
votes
9answers
859 views

What are the best strategies to give pocket money or an allowance to children?

What are the best strategies to give pocket money or allowance to a child especially if you would like to teach them something through this, e.g. saving?
17
votes
3answers
2k views

What is the meaning of “short selling” or “going short” a stock?

Can someone please explain the meaning of 'shorting' a stock with an example?
7
votes
2answers
3k views

What does market cap (or market capitalization) mean?

When I look at my Google finance page, and I look at a company, lets say Citigroup for example, and I see that the market cap is 83.45 billion, what does that mean? Does that mean Stock Price X ...
8
votes
3answers
385 views

At what age should I begin discussing money - saving, spending, investing - with my child / children?

In addition, when should I open a savings account at our bank for my kids; and give them accountability over it?
7
votes
7answers
620 views

What are good games to play to teach young children about saving money?

I've heard that giving allowance is one approach to develop an understanding of money management. What other ways are available to teach kids about the benefits of savings?
3
votes
3answers
138 views

Are quarterly earnings released first via a press release on the investor website, via conference call, or does it vary by company?

Are quarterly earnings released first via a press release on the investor website, via conference call, or does it vary by company?
11
votes
2answers
3k views

What is “financial literacy” and how does one become “financially literate”?

How does one become "Financially Literate"? Also, on a side question; what does "Financially Literate" even mean?