Reading List for June 21-23

Jun 21, 2019
Cryptocurrencies, Advocacy, Financial Literacy, Economics, Investing, Employment, Paying for College, Insurance

Happy Summer! It is officially here! And here is a list covering a wide range of topics for your reading pleasure this weekend.


Financial Literacy

  • The US Treasury (specifically, the Financial Literacy and Education Commission) is calling for colleges and universities to require financial literacy classes. Looks like $1.5 trillion in student debt has some folks worried. (CNBC)  Here is the actual report.
  • Does it help your students to hear about sports stars ultimately making better financial decisions? Here is the story of ex-Pacer Troy Murphy, and how he now advises the “newly rich.” (IndyStar)
  • Speaking of stars, Will Smith has invested in an App to help kids learn about money and finance called "Step." (Black Enterprise)



  • Find out where North Carolina is in the legislative process to make Personal Finance a required stand-alone class. The bill has passed the senate and is moving back to the house, despite objections by many social studies teachers. (News Observer)


  • Facebook, as part of the Libra partnership, announced plans for the cryptocurrency (stablecoin, to be exact) Libra. For an introduction, try this NPR article/audio. To learn more about it, check out yesterday’s blog on NGPF.
  • While we are on the subject of cryptocurrency, here is an interesting piece from the UK explaining the “evils” of bitcoin. (Tribune Magazine)


  • The Fed announces it will hold interest rate steady and will watch data closely to determine if a rate cut is needed in the future. In response, the market soared (S&P 500 hits a record high) and bond prices rose sending yields below 2% at one point. (CNBC)
  • For a deeper dive into the US labor market, Ed Yardini’s blog examines whether dropping employment numbers may have more to do with a shortage of workers than trade issues.


  • SLACK’s IPO involved listed directly on the NASDAQ and was a big success, (NYT) joining other successful B2B IPOs, like ZOOM back in April. (NYT)

 Insurance and Taxes 

  • Knowledge@Wharton published an article explaining how high deductible health insurance plans are growing in popularity and save corporations money, but unless they are matched with a (corporate funded) HSAs, lower-income and less healthy people are much worse off despite lower premiums.
  • Speaking of HSAs, the IRS announces minor adjustments to Health Savings Accounts for next year. (SHRM)

Paying for College 

  • Debt forgiveness is a hot political topic these days, but this Inside Higher Ed article provides a collection of objective commentary on the underlying issues behind past and proposed policies. 


  • Here is a longer, thought provoking piece on education’s role (or not) in the growing inequality in the US from The Atlantic. Regardless of your view, there is a lot of data included in this piece that might make you think a bit harder about the topic.


  • Ed Sheeran seems to have mastered making money on tour and keeping fans happy by actively combating scalpers, charging lower prices, and surprising fans with front row upgrades!). Admittedly, he plays more concerts than other performers, but he is on track to have the highest grossing tour of all time. (WSJ)


About the Author

Beth Tallman

Beth Tallman entered the working world armed with an M.B.A. in finance and thoroughly enjoyed her first career working in manufacturing and telecommunications, including a stint overseas. She took advantage of an involuntary separation to try teaching high school math, something she had always dreamed of doing. When fate stepped in once again, Beth jumped on the opportunity to combine her passion for numbers, money, and education to develop curriculum and teach personal finance at Oberlin College. Beth now spends her time writing on personal finance and financial education, conducting student workshops, and developing finance curricula and educational content. She is also the Treasurer of Ohio Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy.