Reading List for September 27-29

Sep 27, 2019
Paying for College, Advocacy, Economics, Investing, Personal Finance, Insurance, Checking Accounts


  • The Pennsylvania Senate passed a bill that would require students to take a semester-long personal finance class to graduate high school. The bill now moves to the House. The bill proposes that the credit for the class could be applied to social studies, math, business, or family and consumer science graduation requirements. (CBS-Pittsburgh)
  • A survey from Country Financial found that 86% of Americans think financial education should be mandatory. (LowCards)



  • There were several good articles discussing the potential for government issued digital currency this week. What would happen if the Federal Reserve issued digital dollars instead of cash? A few countries are getting ready to do that. (MarketWatch) (WSJ-subscription)



  • In recent months, we have read repeatedly about disappointing IPOs. Peleton is the latest example. This article looks at this trend and what it might mean more broadly about the economy. (NYT)


Checking Accounts

  • I often include articles Theresa Dixon Murray that appear in my local paper because she provides a great explanation of everyday financial issues. This week is another one about the quirks of using your bank’s online bill pay. (Cleveland Plain Dealer)


Managing Credit

  • A personal finance columnist explains the shades of gray one must consider when dealing with debt. This might color your discussion with your students about how aggressively to pay down debt. (USA Today


Paying for College

  • Income Share Agreements (ISAs) aren’t popular yet, but some think this will be the way to privatize the student loan market. Two players are emerging in the ISA arena with very different approaches. (Inside Higher Ed)
  • Digitizing textbooks is causing a major disruption in the (college) textbook business, but publishers that accept this future and adapt can make this a win for all parties—students, faculty, and shareholders. (Wired)
  • Loan forgiveness is a hot topic, particularly given the proposals of some of the presidential candidates. Here is some academic (rigourous, peer-reviewed) research that measures the (positive) impacts of student loan discharge. (Inside Higher Ed3)
  • And here is a second article discussing what is happening at Morehouse College after billionaire Robert Smith paid off the loans of the class of 2019. (Inside Higher Ed4)


Higher Education

  • Inside Higher Ed surveys college admissions directors annually. Here are a few of the results from the 336 who completed the survey. (Inside Higher Ed)
    • A majority of those who answered were very concerned about filling their classes.
    • A large majority believe they are losing potential applicants because of concerns about debt. The figure is over 90 percent for private institutions.
    • A majority (60 percent) of admissions leaders believe that colleges should be able to consider race and ethnicity in admissions decisions, with support strong at private institutions.
    • More than half of colleges in the survey require the SAT or ACT for admissions, and 63 percent said they expect no change 10 years from now. That's a drop from 76 percent last year.
  • More kids across the country are taking the SATs, and the scores are going down.   (Inside Higher Ed2)



  •  The cost of health insurance continues to rise. This chart helps you figure out the value of employer-based healthcare.


  • Younger Americans more likely to go without health insurance.

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.