Aug 20, 2021

Reading List for August 20-22


  • Retail sales dropped more than expected in July. (CNBC) But there are signs that back to school shopping for 2021 has rebounded, and may help August numbers. (
  • Goldman Sachs economists have cut back their third quarter GDP projections due to the resurgence of Covid/Delta variant. (Reuters)
  • 2020 was the year of the entrepreneur. Startups jumped 24% over the previous year according to Census data. (NYT)
  • Here is this week’s data-heavy suggestion. A Data Scientist from the St. Louis Fed published statistics on the increase in asset values during the current “K-shaped” recovery, breaking it down by asset class and demographic/race.
  • Here is an interesting (and interactive) opinion piece from the NYT with lots of graphs indicating inflation fears may be overblown, according to the authors.



  • FOMO appears to be driving people to spend $765 more per month (over $1000 more per month for GenZ and Millennials!) this year over last, according to research by MassMutual. (BusinessWire)
  • The Food Stamp program just got a reboot, with updated nutrition standard and a permanent increase in benefits. (NYT)



  • I found this one a bit scary: one third of investors claim to trade while drunk. Definitely not a strategy I’d recommend to students. (401KSpecialistmag)
  • The 10-year Treasury note indicates how investors feel about the economy. (NYT)



  • If you have been tracking the story of the Poly Network hack, here is the latest—the hacker has been offered a security job. (CNBC)
  • The Crypto/Blockchain sector is the new hot field, with both jobs and job seekers growing. (HiringLab)


Credit cards

  • As more and more credit cards are equipped with chips that enable you to tap to pay, MasterCard is doing away with the magnetic strips. (The Verge)


Student Loans

  • The government just announced they plan to discharge $5.8 Billion in debt for over 300,000 permanently and severely disabled borrowers who can no longer work, and make it easier for others who end up in this situation going forward by matching with Social Security records, eliminating the application process and three years of income monitoring. (NPR) 



  • Humble Dollar has some really great advice for married couples on choices to make now to prepare for when one spouse (inevitably) dies.



  • Here is a recording of the Powell Town Hall with students and teachers on Aug 17. (YouTube)

About the Author

Beth Tallman

Beth Tallman entered the working world armed with an MBA 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, conducts student workshops, and develops finance curricula and educational content. She is also the Treasurer of Ohio Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy.

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