Category: Purchase Decisions

Question of the Day: Excluding rent or mortgage payments, what is the most expensive monthly bill paid by households?

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Jun 01, 2020
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Question of the Day, Budgeting, Purchase Decisions
Answer: Auto loans Click here for the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom.  Questions This research focused on bills that are paid by households. What other major costs would show up in a typical household budget?  4 of the 9 monthly bills have this word in them. What is it?  Which billing category above do you think families may be looking to reduce now? ------------------------ A great way to end the year is with our Salary-Based...

Question of the Day: What grocery item saw the sharpest price increase in April 2020: Eggs, Fruits and Veggies or Meats?

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May 31, 2020
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Purchase Decisions, Question of the Day, Budgeting
Answer: Eggs Questions: What normally is the cause of higher prices on grocery items? Why do you think prices rose so quickly in April?  How do you think consumers react when prices of certain grocery items go up? Do they stop buying them, buy less or still buy the same amount or more? Do you anticipate these prices to continue to increase in the month ahead? Why or why not?  Click here for the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom....

Question of the Day: What's the most impactful purchase you have made recently for under $10?

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Apr 20, 2020
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Question of the Day, Purchase Decisions, Behavioral Finance, Budgeting
Answers will vary.  Hat tip to Tim Ferris who asks this question of his podcast guests. Here’s a sampling of what a few celebrities said were the best thing they bought under $100: The right backpack $4 to park near a beautiful lake to take a swim Good, plain, no-lined Moleskine notebook A book for my son which we read together Shirt that says “I can do all things” Questions: Was your purchase a “thing” or an experience? What made this so impactful to you?...

Chart of the Week: Spending patterns in age of pandemic

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Apr 13, 2020
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Purchase Decisions, Chart of the Week
Questions: The data above is as of April 1st. What do you think the trends have been since that date for the various spending categories? Why do you think that groceries saw a spike and then a sharp drop?  Which of the spending categories do you think will bounce back first? From NY Times:  The coronavirus has profoundly altered daily life in America, ushering in sweeping upheavals to the U.S. economy. Among the most immediate effects of the crisis? Radical changes to how people...

Question of the Day: For each of these mobile apps, indicate whether they have been positively or negatively impacted by the coronavirus

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Apr 06, 2020
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Question of the Day, Purchase Decisions
Health and Fitness Apps Travel app downloads Grocery delivery apps Music app downloads Answers:  Health and Fitness Apps: Positive Travel app downloads: Negative Grocery delivery apps: Positive Music app downloads: Slightly negative Questions: What apps have you recently downloaded while you and your family have been "sheltering in place?" What apps are you using more frequently? Do you think the increased popularity of these apps will continue after the coronavirus has passed? ...

Question of the Day: What grocery items have seen the largest increase in sales when compared to last year?

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Apr 01, 2020
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Question of the Day, Purchase Decisions, Current Events
Answer: Questions: Which of these items has your family been buying this month?  How would you categorize these ten items into different groups? How do you think the popularity of these items has affected their price? Do you think the cost has gone up or down?  Click here for the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom. Behind the numbers (Time): Nielsen’s data shows that last week, Americans bought an unusually large amount of...

Question of the Day [Updated]: What's the average monthly payment for a new car purchased in 2019?

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Mar 18, 2020
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Question of the Day, Credit Reports, Purchase Decisions
Answer: $554 Questions: When do you expect to buy your first car? Will you buy new or used? Explain your answer. Do you think that $554/month for a car payment is reasonable? Why or why not? What is the trend in monthly payments for new cars over the last five years? Click here for the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom. Behind the numbers (Credit Karma):  Recent data indicates that new-car prices have gone up — by 2.3% from March...

QoD: What are the most popular "tricks" that shopping websites use to get us to buy more?

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Feb 19, 2020
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Behavioral Finance, Question of the Day, Purchase Decisions
Answer:  Questions: Which of the following tactics have you seen on websites?  Which of the top three "tricks" has the greatest impact on your behavior? Why?  Running out of the product..only 3 left in stock Flash sale only available for the next hour A celebrity you follow loves this product too... Why do you think these tactics are so effective?  Click here for the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom. Behind the numbers...

Chart of the Week: Largest Advertisers in the U.S.

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Feb 04, 2020
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Advertising, Chart of the Week, Purchase Decisions
Hat tip for Kareem for highlighting this chart.  You might know think advertising is a big market. This chart shows you exactly how big it is and breaks it out by sector.  Question: What are the reasons that companies advertise?  Which company's ads do you tend to see most frequently from the list above? Where do you see their ads (physical world, TV, digital world) Which three companies spend the most on advertising? What types of products do each of them sell (may require some...

Question of the Day: Researchers have found five ways that spending money can make us happy. Can you name two of them?

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Jan 26, 2020
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Question of the Day, Behavioral Finance, Purchase Decisions, Budgeting
Hat tip to Nick Maggiulli of Dollars and Data blog for highlighting this research from .  Answer: Buying experiences Treating yourself (on occasion) Buying extra time Paying upfront (i.e. all-inclusive vacations) Spending on others Questions:  What are ways that you spend money that bring happiness to you? Do they fit into any of these five categories?  Why do you think that researchers found that "buying experiences" might create more happiness than buying "things?"...

Teach The Triangle: Making Purchase Decisions

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Jan 21, 2020
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Purchase Decisions, Chart of the Week, Behavioral Finance
Hat tip to Erica Pavlik of Neuqua Valley High School who reached out and suggested we curate resources to help "Teach the Triangle," an instructional idea created by her principal, Lance Fuhrer. Here's how she explained this concept:  "It is like your data crunch but taken a step farther. It collects three types of data (image, article & graph) on a similar topic and ask students one question: What can you infer from this?" We thought we would give it a go. Here are three resources...

QoD: Every 12 months that a car loan is extended costs an owner about __________ in extra finance charges.

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Jan 06, 2020
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Purchase Decisions, Question of the Day, Compound Interest
Answer: $1,000 Questions: Which would you prefer: a 4 year car loan with $400/monthly payment or a 6 year loan with $300/monthly payment? Why?   Why do you think that most car buyers focus on the monthly payment instead of the overall interest cost when they take out an auto loan?  Complete these sentences: The longer the term of an auto loan, the higher/lower (circle one) the interest cost (assuming it's not a 0% APR loan). The longer/shorter (circle one) the term of an auto...

Interactive Monday: Streaming Services

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Jan 05, 2020
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Interactive, Budgeting, Purchase Decisions, Activities
Hat tip to Kareem for uncovering this CNN interactive to assist those overwhelmed by choice when it comes to streaming services.  The interactive starts with a helpful flow chart showing where fave series like Friends, Parks and Rec and Seinfeld are moving to.  It then lists 8 of the leading streaming services (e.g., HBO Max, Netflix, Apple TV+) with details on what to expect from the service as well as popular movies/shows that will appear. Here's the details on Disney+:  A few...

Question of the Day: _____ out of 3 Americans are limiting their spending each month

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Dec 15, 2019
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Behavioral Finance, Question of the Day, Budgeting, Podcasts, Purchase Decisions
 Answer: 2 out of 3 (66%) Here are the reasons they gave for limiting spending: Questions: Have you ever felt like you needed to limit your spending? Why? What do you think are the main reasons your peers would give for following a budget or limiting their spending? What do you think is a better saving strategy? Wait until the end of the month and save what’s left over Set aside your saving at the beginning of the month and spend whatever is left over after saving Do you...

QoD: Can you name three of the most popular items on wish lists this holiday season?

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Dec 04, 2019
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Question of the Day, Budgeting, Purchase Decisions, Behavioral Finance
Answer: Other fun facts:  Average consumer expects to spend $1,048 82% of 18-24 year olds plan to purchase for friends 56% of shoppers say they will shop online -------- Questions: What are the top items on your wish list?  Have you created a budget for your holiday spending? Why do you think it's so difficult for people to keep to their holiday budgets?  What is the best gift under $20 that you have ever received? that you have ever given? What types of gifts do you think...