Category: Research

Question of the Day: What's the probability of an American coming up with $2,000 in case of an unexpected need in February 2020?

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Mar 17, 2020
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Question of the Day, Savings, Research
With talk of federal stimulus which including a $1,000 to every adult over the age of 18, this question collected from survey data in February measures the level of financial fragility pre-Coronavirus slowdown.  Answer: 71.6% Questions: What types of unexpected needs might cost $2,000? How do you think that most adults would manage $1,000 check from the U.S. Government at this time? What’s the best way to prepare for an unexpected expense?  How do you think this percentage...

Question of the Day [Updated]: What percent of tax returns are audited by the I.R.S.?

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Mar 10, 2020
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Question of the Day, Taxes, Research
Questions: Why do you think the percentage of returns that get audited is so low? Explain your reasoning. Why do you think that taxpayers are so afraid of being audited? Is their fear warranted? Do you think that low audit rates can contribute to more taxpayers "cheating" on their tax returns? 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. Behind the numbers (Accounting Today) Most taxpayers envision Internal Revenue...

QoD: What percent of the cost to drive a new car is the fuel cost?

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Mar 08, 2020
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Question of the Day, Budgeting, Research
Answer: 19% Questions: The largest cost element above is depreciation. Why do you think that a new car depreciates (or loses value) over time?  Changing the number of miles you drive will reduce your fuel cost. Will it change any of the other costs listed above? Insurance estimates are based on someone with 6 years of driving experience. Do you think the cost of insurance would be lower or higher for a teen just getting their license?  Here's that answer in earlier QoD.  The...

Question of the Day [Updated]: What is the average fee to take money out of a non-network ATM?

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Mar 04, 2020
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Checking Accounts, Question of the Day, Research
Answer: $4.72 This charge includes: Your bank’s fee AND Fee charged by ATM owner Questions: Did it surprise you that the charge includes TWO different charges? Why or why not? Did you know that there is a charge for taking cash out of an out-of-network ATM? Do you think most people who use ATMs that are out-of-network are aware of this charge? Why do you think there is a charge to use an ATM that is out-of-network? Click here for the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that...

Chart of the Week: How have historical events affected the Dow over the past 120 years?

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Mar 03, 2020
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Investing, Chart of the Week, Research, Stocks
With the stock market last week undergoing its worst week since 2008, it's instructive to take the long view, the very long view. Here's a chart of the Dow Jones over the past 120 with historical events superimposed on the chart.    Questions: What historical event required the longest recovery time for the Dow Jones Industrial Average?  What historical event caused the last big drop in the stock market (before last week's decline)?  Find 2-3 historical events on the chart...

What data do Google and Facebook have on you? (Updated)

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Feb 28, 2020
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Research, Article
A reporter for the Guardian digs in to discover what personal data Google and Facebook are collecting on you. He describes the reaction many people will have to this: "Want to freak yourself out?" Here's just a sampling of what he discovered Google had on him: Location tracking Search history Advertisement profile  Apps you use Youtube history Data that can fill millions of Word documents The article provides links so you can discover what information is currently stored about you. You...

Question of the Day: Fill in the blanks. ______ % of Gen Z (18-24 year olds) have on average _______ credit cards with a median balance (amount they owe)  of _________.

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Feb 26, 2020
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Question of the Day, Credit Cards, Research
Answer: 33% of Gen Z (18-24 year olds) have on average 1.51 credit cards with a median balance (amount they owe) of $606.  Questions: What is the first word that comes to mind when you hear "credit card?" When do you think you will get a credit card?  If you have one already, when did you get it? How do you use it?  What do you think are some of the pros/cons of credit cards?  Click here for the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in...

Question of the Day: What percent of active credit card accounts carried a balance in 2019?

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Feb 17, 2020
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Credit Cards, Question of the Day, Research
Answer: Questions: Why do you think that such a high percentage of people carry a credit card balance and pay interest rates over 20%?  When did you/do you hope to get a credit card? If you have one, what do you use it for?  What strategies can you use to prevent overspending on your credit card and paying lots of money in interest?  Click here for the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom. Behind the numbers (Comparecards.com...

Question of the Day: What are the top five jobs that 15 year olds expect to be doing by the age of 30?

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Feb 16, 2020
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Question of the Day, Career, Research
Answer: Source: PISA study with responses from 600,000 15-year old students from 79 countries.  Questions: What job do you hope to be doing when you are 30 years old?  Which jobs listed above have the greatest difference between boys and girls?  Which do boys choose more girls?  Which do girls choose more than boys? Can you explain these differences?  Why do you think the top choices worldwide haven't changed much over the past 18 years since the last survey? ...

Question of the Day: How do 18-29 year old Americans spend their free time?

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Feb 03, 2020
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Question of the Day, Budgeting, Research, Current Events
Courtesy of Morning Brew (great daily newsletter to keep you in the loop with the world of finance!) Chose activity that Americans did more often in the past year: Go to a library // go to a movie theater Visit a casino // visit a museum Attend a live music or theatrical event // attend a live sporting event  Visit a zoo // visit an amusement or theme park Answer: Going to a library Visiting a casino Attending a live music or theatrical event Visiting an amusement or theme park...

QoD: What can save you the most when it comes to auto insurance: 1) Improving credit score 2) Driving a used car 3) Paying for policy in advance?

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Jan 19, 2020
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Question of the Day, Insurance, Research
Answer: Improve credit score by one tier can reduce auto insurance rates by 17% Questions: Why do you think that having a higher credit score (a measure of how you manage credit) would lower your car insurance rates?  Used cars also can help you save on your car insurance. Why do you think insurance companies give you a discount if you drive a used car?  If the average auto insurance policy is $1,502 (much higher for young adults), how much could you save (in $) if you raised your...

QoD [UPDATED]: Excluding home loans, what are the three largest debts for American consumers?

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Jan 13, 2020
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Student Loans, Question of the Day, Credit Cards, Research
Answer:  Student loan - $1.5 trillion Auto loan - $1.32 trillion Credit Card - $0.85 trillion Questions: Which type of credit has grown the fastest from 2004-2019? Why do you think this is the case?  Using the chart, estimate the growth rate (in trillions of dollars) between 2004-19 for student loans, auto loans and credit cards.  What impact did the Great Recession (2008-09) have on debt levels? Do you think people tend to borrow more or less when a recession occurs? ...

QoD: What percent of Americans got a raise in 2019?

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Jan 12, 2020
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Career, Question of the Day, Research
Answer: About 50% Marketplace audio (1:27):  Questions: According to the audio, the last decade was the first that didn't have a __________________. What was the average pay increase across all workers?  While 1/2 of workers may not have received a pay increase, what are other ways that companies may have helped their employees other than raising their pay? What can you do as a worker to increase the chances that you get a pay increase?  Here's the ready-to-go slides for this...

Credit Card QoD: How much does the average household with credit card debt pay in interest cost annually?

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Jan 05, 2020
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Question of the Day, Credit Cards, Research
Holiday shopping can sometimes mean credit card debt, so this question takes a look at the annual interest cost a family pays when they carry a balance on their credit card.  Answer: $1,505 Methodology: Average household credit card debt of $8,707 (WalletHub analysis) multiplied by an average credit card interest rate of 17.30% (creditcards.com) Questions: Why do you think that so many Americans have credit card debt, meaning they don’t pay the full balance on their credit card...

Updated QoD: How much do you need to earn to be considered middle class?

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Dec 17, 2019
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Question of the Day, Budgeting, Research
Answer: Between $41,498 to $123,874 Note: Pew Research methodology assumes middle class = 67% to 200% of median household income Click on the map below to see what your state's median income details are: Questions: Why do you think these figures vary so much state by state? Can you suggest other ways to measure the middle class other than by income? Do you think the size of the middle class has changed over time? Why or why not? Do you think that people earning the same income can...