About the Author

Tim Ranzetta

Tim's saving habits started at seven when a neighbor with a broken hip gave him a dog walking job. Her recovery, which took almost a year, resulted in Tim getting to know the bank tellers quite well (and accumulating a savings account balance of over $300!). His recent entrepreneurial adventures have included driving a shredding truck, analyzing executive compensation packages for Fortune 500 companies and helping families make better college financing decisions. After volunteering in 2010 to create and teach a personal finance program at Eastside College Prep in East Palo Alto, Tim saw firsthand the impact of an engaging and activity-based curriculum, which inspired him to start a new non-profit, Next Gen Personal Finance.

Author: Tim Ranzetta

Question of the Day: What are the items that the highest percentage of people prefer to purchase online rather than in a physical store?

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Dec 18, 2018
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Question of the Day, Budgeting, Behavioral Finance
Answer: Books, music, movies and video games From Statista:  Questions: Which of the items in the chart above do you prefer to purchase online vs. in-store? Why do you like to purchase some things in a store instead of online?  Why do you think that only 1/4 of people prefer to buy their groceries online rather than in a store? How do think these percentages will change in 5 years? Why?  Here's the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in...

In This Month's Edition of "If it sounds too good to be true..."

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Dec 18, 2018
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Advertising
Brought to you by Robinhood: My inbox filling up last Thursday with the news that Robinhood, the no-fee broker, was now offering a savings and checking account earning 3.0%. Well, it wasn't really offering a checking and savings account, at least not yet. You could give them your email address and you would presumably be notified when these accounts were available. A quick scan of depositaccounts.com leads to the discovery that the best savings and checking products (the 1%ers) were...

Question of the Day: Where does more holiday fraud happen: online or in physical stores?

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Dec 17, 2018
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Question of the Day, Identity Theft, Financial Scams, Budgeting
Answer: It's a tie, Online and in-store channels were hit equally.  Questions: Did the results surprise you? Explain. What are ways that online shoppers can have their identity stolen? Do you know anyone who has been a victim? Name at least three ways that you can protect yourself from identity theft.  Here's the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom. Behind the numbers (from PaymentsSource): Mobile and e-commerce sales are...

Question of the Day: What tech company do people trust the least with their personal information?

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Dec 16, 2018
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Question of the Day, Identity Theft
Answer: Facebook Questions: Why do you think that consumers place so little trust in Facebook protecting their information? Did any story over the last year stand out in your mind?  Are you more or less worried about the protection of your online personal information compared to a year ago? Explain. Describe how you have changed your behavior online as more information comes out about how companies are using your personal information. Would you ever not do business with a company if you...

Interactive Monday: How Much Will You Pay Over Your Lifetime In Banking Fees?

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Dec 16, 2018
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Interactive, Checking Accounts, Research
It's easy to lose track when you are getting nickeled and dimed every month with a non-network ATM fee here or a monthly maintenance fee there or even that dreaded overdraft fee. Have you ever pondered that depressing thought of what that might amount to over a lifetime? This interactive from NerdWallet does that very analysis, by calculating the bank expenses one would pay over a lifetime based on a certain set of assumptions about the cost of various fees and the number of occurrences. ...

Question of the Day: What was the most searched "What Is...?" on Google this year?

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Dec 16, 2018
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Question of the Day, Investing, Cryptocurrencies, Current Events
Answer: Bitcoin Questions: Bitcoin was once worth almost $20,000 and now it's hovering around $4,000. Any ideas on why the price has declined so much? Do you know anyone who has invested in bitcoin?  Investors use the term "popping the bubble" in describing an asset that rises quickly and then drops sharply. Why do you think investors get so excited about certain assets like bitcoin while the bubble is inflating?   Here's the ready-to-go slides for this Question of...

NGPF Podcast: Tim Talks To Enterprising Educator Nick Murja of Palo Duro High School (Amarillo, TX)

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Dec 14, 2018
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Podcasts, Teaching Strategies, Tips for Teachers, Credit Cards
Nick Murja’s odyssey to achieving a debt-free life started when a sudden epiphany led him to change the way he viewed money. He doubled down and saved, invested wisely, and even started his own handful of side hustles in order to reach his goal. He publicly announced his progress towards his goal which engaged his students even more! Now this Palo Duro High School teacher is on another mission: teaching his students the financial lessons he wished he knew when he was their age. Enjoy!...

Schools in the News (December 2018)

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Dec 14, 2018
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Schools In News
Here's what's been happening with financial education recently at schools across America:  Students at Grand Junction High School (CO) shared their financial savvy with parents, teachers and other students at a FinLit Night (NBC11 News).  Sioux City (IA) Career Academy Personal Finance teacher, Cody Jaminet, describes the "aha moments" that students experience in his class, ""I see it every time I teach this class," he explained. "Kids may feel a bit overwhelmed at first. Then, the...

FinCap Friday: 'Tis the Season of Scammers

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Dec 13, 2018
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Current Events, FinCap Fridays, Financial Scams
Know someone who was a victim of a holiday shopping scam? Millions of packages are expected to be delivered this holiday season by the UPS and scammers are ready to take action! This FinCap Friday will help your students spot some of the common holiday shopping scams and learn a few tips for how to avoid them!  Click the image below to access the full resource: ------------------ New to FinCap Fridays? They are a 5-7 minute resource to bring current events to your classroom in a way...

Before your students step foot on a college campus and visit those banking booths...

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Dec 13, 2018
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Checking Accounts, Current Events, Chart of the Week
...they might want to ask the banker "Are you sharing my fees with the college so every time I overdraw my account...my college benefits?" Here's the data showing the average costs by bank:  From MarketWatch:  During the 2016-2017 academic year, students using college-endorsed debit or prepaid accounts paid $27,600,000 in account fees, according to the report. And students tended to pay more fees when financial institutions paid their colleges to promote the accounts. That could...

Question of the Day: What is the most common pay frequency for workers at private companies?

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Dec 12, 2018
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Question of the Day, Career, Employment, Activity
Answer: Bi-weekly (every other week) Questions: How do you think the frequency of your pay will impact your budget plans?  Which pay frequency would be most beneficial to you as an employee? Why?  Some companies (e.g., Lyft and Uber) offer same-day pay for employees. Do you think that's a good idea? Why or why not?  Here's the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom. Best Day for Payday (9 minute Indicator podcast): ...

Question of the Day: What financial habit do almost 2 out of 3 senior citizens wish they had done more of when they were younger?

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Dec 11, 2018
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Question of the Day, Savings, Research, Behavioral Finance
Answer: Save money Questions: Why do you think so many seniors wished they had saved more? Without savings, what income does a retired senior citizen have to live on?  Are you a good saver? If not, do you have any ideas that can help you become one?  Here's the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom. Behind the numbers (National Bureau of Economic Research): We asked persons aged 60 to 79 whether, if they were given the chance to...

Chart of the Week: State Minimum Wages

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Dec 11, 2018
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Chart of the Week, Career, Employment, Math
Chart courtesy of Statista:  Questions: Why do you think there is such a difference in the minimum wage rates by state?  What is the minimum wage in your state? Is it different in your area?  What do you think determines minimum wage levels in a given market (city, town, county)?  Analyzing this chart, what would you guess the federal minimum wage is? Describe the typical worker that earns the minimum wage (education level, age, experience, type of job, industry)? What do...

Question of the Day: What was the most important consideration in choosing a college major for the Class of 2017?

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Dec 10, 2018
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Question of the Day, Paying for College, Career, Employment
Answer: Availability of jobs Questions: Why do you think that job availability is so important for recent college graduates?  As you consider education beyond high school, what are the factors you will consider in picking a course of study or major?  Do you think the expected career paths match up with the jobs of the future?  Here's the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom. Behind the numbers (from Visual Capitalist) For...

Question of the Day: What percentage of Americans have NOT shopped around for auto insurance for two years or more?

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Dec 09, 2018
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Question of the Day, Insurance, Research, Behavioral Finance
Answer: 48% Questions: What types of items do you shop around for before making the purchase decision? What types of items do you NOT shop around for before purchasing ? Why do you choose not to find other prices for these items? What are ways that you can compare prices for auto insurance policies?  If you were told that you could save $400 a year if you shopped around for auto insurance, would you do it?  Here's the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that...