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: Can you name ONE of the three most frequent ways that consumers, under age 25, establish credit?

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Feb 06, 2019
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Question of the Day, Credit Cards, Paying for College, Student Loans, Credit Reports
Answer: Credit Card (35.6%) Student Loan (19.9%) Retail Credit Card (13.7%) Questions: Why do you think that credit cards tend to be the entry point for establishing credit for so many consumers?  Almost no one in any age group establish their credit for the first time by taking out a mortgage. Why do you think that is true?  How do you think that you will establish credit?  Here's the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your...

Question of the Day: What is most cited reason people give for not having a bank account?

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Feb 05, 2019
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Question of the Day, Checking Accounts, Savings, Research
Answer: Do not have enough money to keep in account Cited = named as a reason for not having an account Main = percent of respondents that listed the reason as the main reason for not having an account. Questions: What's the minimum amount you think you need to have a bank account?  Do you think it’s important to have a bank account? Explain. The number 2 item cited for not having a bank is "don't trust banks." What do you think leads to this distrust? Respondents also indicated...

Chart of the Week: Who's the largest employer in your state?

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Feb 05, 2019
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Chart of the Week, Employment, Career
From Visual Capitalist comes a state-by-state analysis of the largest public and private employers. Can you guess which private sector employer dominates the grayed out section on this map? Click on the map to get the answer:  Questions (after watching 2:55 video): Who is the largest employer in your state?  The largest employers by state are typically in what industries? Of those industries, which do you think have the highest paying jobs?  Do you think the largest employers by...

Question of the Day: Is more money stolen through hacks of cryptocurrency (e.g., bitcoin) accounts or bank robberies?

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Feb 04, 2019
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Question of the Day, Checking Accounts, Identity Theft
Answer: Hacks of cryptocurrency accounts Crypto; In the first half of 2018 alone, over $1 billion was stolen from crypto accounts. Typically not protected or insured by a third party. Bank robberies: About $2 million is stolen a year from bank robberies 4,000 bank robberies average $4,000 per theft for $16 million but 86% are solved so only 14% or about $2.0 million is lost.  Note that these thefts are covered by bank insurance policies so no loss to accountholders.  Questions What...

Just One Resource - INTERACTIVE: Shady Sam

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Feb 04, 2019
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Just One Resource, Interactive, Math, Behavioral Finance, Student Loans, Mortgages, Financial Scams
    In this weekly blog post, the Curriculum team will highlight Just One Resource from our NGPF collection that maybe doesn't get the attention it deserves. Use it this week or bookmark it for later.  [The Resource]  INTERACTIVE: Shady Sam The Gist: Students play loan shark in this engaging game where they see loans from the perspective of a lender as they try to maximize their profits.  The Best Parts: Students decide between three loan options for...

Question of the Day: What's the average cost of a 30 second Super Bowl ad?

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Feb 03, 2019
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Question of the Day, Advertising
Answer: Over $5 million Thanks to Beth Tallman from reminding me about the opportunity to use the Super Bowl to bring advertising into the classroom.  Questions: How would you describe the trend in the chart showing how the price of a 30 second ad has changed? In an era where streaming services like Netflix and Hulu are increasingly replacing cable TV, why do you think that the Super Bowl continues to be so valuable for advertisers?  Why do you companies spend so much to advertise on...

Interactive Monday: Spam Slam Scam

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Feb 03, 2019
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Interactive, Identity Theft
This week's interactive comes courtesy of the Federal Trade Commission (thanks to the teacher at Salt Lake City FinCamp who share this with us): It's a quick three question game that will teach your students:  Steps you should take if you receive spam How to avoid being scammed if you receive spam Applying critical thinking to determine the types of messages that are spam One additional extension might be to have students highlight one example of spam that they have received in the last...

NGPF Podcast: Tim Talks To Chegg President and CEO Dan Rosensweig

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Feb 01, 2019
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Podcasts, Paying for College, Entrepreneurship
From PC Magazine to CNET to Yahoo to Guitar Hero to Chegg, Dan Rosensweig has had a fascinating front-row seat in seeing (and sometimes driving) the paradigm shifts in tech as it has evolved from the PC to the Internet to the cloud. In this wide-ranging and fast-paced conversation, Dan shares his thinking behind leaving Guitar Hero to join a then simple textbook rental company (Saying ‘hey I am the CEO of guitar hero’ then going to say ‘i rent textbooks’... you can...

FinCap Friday: The $17 Million Pizza

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Jan 31, 2019
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FinCap Fridays, Investing, Current Events
In this FinCap Friday, we highlight one of the most speculative investments available today. Some wonder whether investment is even an appropriate term for it, while others call it the "greatest scam in history." It may not be the talk of the town that it was late in 2017 but it still has its fans who believe it is the currency of the future. Play this FinCap Friday and find out why one pizza buyer might be suffering from some indigestion.   If you're short on time, try...

Question of the Day: Which savings strategy is most effective: a) Saving $5/day b) Saving $35/week or c) Saving $150 per month?

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Jan 30, 2019
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Behavioral Finance, Question of the Day, Savings
Answer: Saving $5/day. Questions Do you think that setting goals is important when it comes to saving money? Why or why not? Why do you think setting the $5/day goal was more effective than the others?  Have you ever set a savings goal? If so, what was it and did you accomplish it? If not, what savings goal would you set?  Here's the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom. Behind the numbers (from Business Insider): ...

Question of the Day: How do most Americans pay their bills: online, automatic, or other (by phone/by mail/in-person)?

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Jan 29, 2019
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Payment Types, Question of the Day, Checking Accounts, Research
Answer: Other (In person, by mail or by phone) Questions: Why do you think such a large percent of people still pay bills using these "old school" ways?  Do you know how your parents/guardians pay their bills?  What might be one risk with setting up your credit card bill to be paid automatically from your checking account?  The mean number of bills paid per consumer is 21. How do you think people keep track of all of these bills so they don't miss one?  Here's...

Chart of The Week: Consumer Debt

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Jan 29, 2019
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Chart of the Week
Questions:  What's the overall trend with consumer debt since 2003?  Which loan type has grown the fastest since 2003?  Estimate percentages for each of the three loan types. In other words, what percentage of overall consumer debt is auto loans, student loans and credit card debt What additional data points would you need to know in order to assess how stressed consumers are with debt payments?   ...

Question of the Day: Which country had the highest household savings rate in 2017: U.S., Korea or Switzerland?

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Jan 28, 2019
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Question of the Day, Savings, Economics
Answer: Switzerland Top 5 in OECD Countries in 2017: Switzerland 18.7% Sweden 15.9% Luxembourg 14.3% Germany 9.9% Korea 8.9% Curious about the U.S.? It had a household savings rate of 3.4% in 2017.  Questions: Why do you think that some countries have persistently higher savings rates than other countries? Name at least two reasons.  Why do you think the savings rate in the U.S. is so low when compared to these other developed economies?  What are ideas you have to boost your...

Question of the Day: What will your credit score be after your first six months of making on-time payments?

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Jan 27, 2019
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Credit Reports, Credit Scores, Question of the Day
Answer: About 500  Students often wonder if you start high (850) and go down or start low (300) and go up. The answer is that you start with no score and only after 3-6 months will you receive a score.  Questions: Why do you think the score is so low after 6 months?  Imagine you are lending money to a stranger and they were making monthly payments to you to pay off that debt. How long into a 5 year loan would you feel comfortable that they were going to pay you back in...

Interactive Monday: What are the opportunity industries in your community?

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Jan 27, 2019
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Interactive, Career
This Brookings research provides students with information about the quality of job opportunities in the 100 largest metro areas. With this interactive, students select a metro area and immediately get a read on the job market in that area. When these interactives allow students to understand their community better, we know it will engage them.  Here's Durham-Chapel Hill, NC as an example: As you can see the chart is color-coded based on four job categories: Promising jobs defined as...