Reading List for January 10-12

Jan 10, 2020
Employment, Economics, Investing, Paying for College

Your (Financial) Health

  • If you only have time to read one of these articles this week, make it this eye-opening piece from the Atlantic that digs into a research paper by economics from the St. Louis Fed on the college wealth premium—different from the income premium. (St. Louis Fed)
  • And then find a few minutes for this important read on how mental health issues can severely mpact your financial health. (Business Insider)



  • Is the Fed running out of tools to deal with a downturn, should it come? Former Fed chief Ben Bernanke, on a panel at the annual ASSA meeting last weekend, suggests the answer is no. (Reuters)
  • The jobs report for December was below expectations, and included downward revisions to previous months. But here is an interesting tidbit: employers now employ more women than men for the first time since 2010! NPR
  • The minimum wage increased in many states effective the first of January this year. Rising minimum wages are helping to drive up the earnings faster for the lowest earners. (NYT)



  • I’ve seem several opinion pieces in the last week from subscription services expressing concern about the huge increase in index fund investment. Here is an interesting look at what is happening to corporate control (shareholder voting) in this index-fund world. (BBN Times)
  • Forty percent of listed stocks are losing money, yet the market indices keep reaching new highs. (WSJ-subscription)


Paying for College

  • Virginia now offers free community college, but goes one better on other states: it will help you with some basic living expenses as well. (Inside Higher Ed)
  • The dangers of social media: apparently rumors were spreading that filling out a FAFSA would get you drafted. (It won’t.) USA Today nips this one in the bud.


Financial Literacy

  • North Carolina made room for its high school personal finance requirement by reducing the American History requirement from two classes to one. (Blue Ridge Now)
  • It will come as no surprise to personal finance educators that the result of a recent National Financial Educators’ Council survey shows Americans lost a lot of money in 2019 as a result of financial illiteracy. (PRNewswire)


Post Holiday suggestions

  • What to do if you used your credit card to finance your gift list: (NYT)
  • How to make sure kids don't waste their holiday cash: (CNBC)

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.