Reading List for February 14-16

Feb 14, 2020
Personal Finance, Savings, Credit Cards, Investing, Economics, Retirement

Happy Valentine’s Day (and Presidents’ weekend)! In recognition of the holiday, I am sharing the first article from Barry Ritholz’ reading list this morning from Behavioral Scientist in case you still need to find that perfect Valentine’s card for the people in your life. Enjoy!


Personal Finance

  • We do what we do to keep future generations from repeating our financial mistakes. According to a recent survey by, 85% of Americans admit to making financial mistakes in the last 10 years.

Worst Financial Mistakes of the Last Decade: Racking up credit card debt (23%), not saving enough for retirement (16%), spending beyond their means (16%), and paying bills late (8%) were American's biggest financial mistakes of the past decade.

  • Here is Jonathan Clements view of the ten money lessons he would have told his younger self if he could turn back time. (HumbleDollar)


Savings (Millennials)

  • Valentine’s Day is a good time to check up on how folks are doing with their New Year’s Resolutions. Results from a CIT Bank Survey conducted by Harris suggest that millennials are leading the pack in terms of sticking to their savings resolutions.
  • Same song, new verse about the “the bank of mom and dad.” Survey by loanDepot says that 77% of millennials/Gen Z expect help from their parents when buying their first home. (PRnewswire)
  • Here are some interesting (but sad) statistics on the Millennial Wealth Gap from the St. Louis Fed.



  • The New York Fed, in its quarterly report on household debt and credit, reported that U.S. Household Debt exceeds $14 Trillion!! Bloomberg highlights the results.

Total U.S. household debt rose by $601 billion in the fourth quarter from a year earlier, or 4.4%, surpassing $14 trillion for the first time, the New York Fed’s quarterly household credit and debt report showed. That’s $1.5 trillion above the previous peak in the third quarter of 2008. Overall household debt is now 26.8% above the second-quarter 2013 trough.

  • The annual increase in household debt for 2019 was the largest since the pre-recession jump in 2007. The New York Fed’s Liberty Street Economics looks at the survey data and focuses on young adult borrowing.



  • Do you need help explaining mergers to your students? The daily newsletter Morning Brew focused on mergers for the week of Valentine’s Day, and included a link to their article offering explaining mergers using a wedding analogy.



I’ve already listed articles from the Regional Federal Reserve banks this week, but here are a couple more with great data and easily digestible analysis:

  • Taxes: the St. Louis Fed issued data on 2018 federal tax revenue and how it was spent. 
  • Demographics: This commentary from the Cleveland Fed, “Is the Middle Class Worse Off Than It Used to Be?” is chock full of great data, graphs, and insights.



  • Here is an article suggesting it may not be the internet that is killing retail malls as is commonly thought. (NYTimes)



  • JPMorgan Chase launched a $75 million program aimed to increase lifelong employment prospects for underserved young people with a $7 million investment in Denver. (Business Wire)



  • The AP reports that retirement accounts hit record highs as workers save more and the stock market booms.

About the Author