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Monday, November 17, 2014
Everyone has financial priorities. Which one comes first is usually decided by how urgent the need is. The Enterprises TV show examines the top financial priorities for Americans.
What comes first: saving for retirement, paying off debt, paying regular monthly bills or starting a college fund? For many Americans, paying off debt is a top priority. Twelve million adults have a credit file. A recent Bankrate survey found that most people consider paying bills or staying current as their first financial priority. More than one-fifth of those surveyed said paying down debt is a top priority. This is a reflection of the times for most
as people struggle to get on top of their financial house.
Enterprises TV shares that Americans also have a hard time saving. Only 17% rated saving as a top financial priority, and in fact, the percentage of those who claim its importance goes down a point or two in recent years. As Americans continue to work harder and longer for a living, many feel the need to spend some of their hard-earned money to enjoyable endeavors. The survey also reveals that people’s concerns about job security and their overall financial situation is more favorable this year than it was last year. And that’s good news.
at 6:35 AM
Wednesday, November 12, 2014
Contracts for services are often laden with terminology that most consumers ignore. Additionally, employment contracts are more common and can also be chock full of terms the basic worker may choose to skip over. The Enterprises TV show reviews why consumers should read contracts before signing them.
Standard clauses written in contracts include automatic renewal language, early termination penalties, liability waivers, arbitration waivers and agreement to not ask for commission. Consumers usually skip over these parts of legal agreements in order to get the service they want or a job they need. But it pays read everything in a contract before signing it.
Credit monitoring services always have an automatic renewal clause written in the statements customers sign before the service starts. In some cases, one cannot get the monitoring without taking the automatic renewal. Write the date of the renewal down and cancel the service via email or regular mail before it comes up.
Early termination fees are another standard clause included in service contracts. Most often, it is found in wireless provider contracts. Again, it may not be possible to get the service without agreeing to this. However, read the entire contract and pay attention for language that has to with service. If the service is not as promised, the customer may be able to cancel without too much of a penalty.
The Enterprises TV show notes that liability waivers are usually included in the paperwork at locations where someone could get hurt. The waiver protects the business or organization from being sued if a consumer is injured on site. There is no way around this one.
Arbitration waivers prohibit a consumer from suing a company or organization for any reason. Some waivers also state that if legal action is taken, the costs will be incurred by the suing party.
Always be sure to read the entire contract, service or legal agreement before signing or initializing any part of it. Refuse to be rushed into signing a contract. Go to a quiet space, take time to read the contract and sign only if needed. Your name is on it and it is binding until the term period ends.
at 5:45 AM
Monday, November 10, 2014
All the positive news about lower unemployment and a growing economy is not helping the average American feel better about spending. The Enterprises TV show explains why consumers are not freely spending as retailers had hoped.
One reason people do not feel confident to spend more is that wages are not keeping up with inflation. Wages barely budged last month only rising 3 cents and are rising at an annual rate of 2 percent, just barely ahead of inflation. Economists expect wages to grow but consumers don’t believe it. The American worker, at the very least, should be getting a cost of living increase.
The recession battered retirement accounts and hurt those soon to retire. The recession also reduced wealth overall. However, this does not seem to have hurt those who are in the one percent.
The gap in wealth inequality in
America has widened and deepened.
There is a huge gap between those who are in the top one percent and those near
the bottom. The working class is working harder and longer with no real wage
gains to help them pay off debt and loans and afford food.
Enterprises TV sees more minimum wage jobs than professional jobs. The rise in the number of professionals working at minimum wage jobs and the number of low-wage jobs grows and grows. This does nothing to compel or inspire the consumer to spend. All of these reasons could be why there are early Black Friday shopping sales and why retailers hope for a better spending season than last year.
at 6:08 AM
Wednesday, November 5, 2014
A recent study found that people suffer from some brain loss when they work for more than a decade on differing shifts. Despite this news, the Enterprises TV show highlights the benefits of working the afternoon and night shifts.
Workers who spend eight hours per day working an afternoon or overnight shift learn to shuffle regular activities to suit their schedule. Errands can be run before work and while others are still at the office. Medical appointments can be scheduled with more ease. Grocery shopping can be done in less crowded stores. Banking can be accomplished. While the day shift workforce is commuting home, afternoon workers are already at their desks and night shift workers are preparing for the upcoming work time. Afternoon and night shift workers have less upper management to contend with because most have left for the day. Enterprises TV believes it takes time and practice to get used to these alternative work days and nights. Workers should plan when to go to bed to get eight hours of sleep. Darken the room and if needed, use an eye mask to block out any daylight for a sound rest. Eat a good meal before going to work and then lightly during it. The benefits of shift work are great once one gets used to the schedule.
at 5:32 AM
Friday, October 31, 2014
How does the work day pass so quickly while there are still tasks left on the to-do list? It’s probably because there are regular interruptions and meetings which take up time. The Enterprises TV show offers some time management tips for everyone.
Make a daily to-do list. Put the most important priorities on the top. This is the list for today only. Next, write down the less important tasks to complete for today. Put a date and time frame beside them. Check or cross them off the list when done. If it has to be moved to another day, write an arrow beside it with the day to get it done. If there are heavy tasks which need attention, don’t wait until Thursday or Friday to get started. Start them on Monday and chip away at them. Keep the list visible on the computer or on a paper tablet all day.
Email is a major time thief for many managers. It is often too full of notes which one is copied on. Follow this basic business rule for email: if you are in the To box, you should reply. If you are in the CC box, no reply is needed. Schedule two or three times a day to check email. There’s no need to check it more often than that. Scan through the Inbox and delete spam or any notes which really are not all that important. Flag the notes which need replies and use the date function on most programs to signal when the sender needs to hear from you.
The Enterprises TV show uses these processes to get through each day and find it quite efficient.
at 4:43 AM
Tuesday, October 28, 2014
Many American stores are open on Thanksgiving Day and will even start Black Friday sales on the holiday. While this seems to be a growing retail trend, there are some stores which choose to close on the holiday for one simple reason. The Enterprises TV show shares why some stores stay closed when others are open.
Major stores such as Costco, Publix, Nordstrom and TJ Maxx and its family of stores, and the others listed below will be closed on Thanksgiving Day to give employees the day off to enjoy the holiday with family. There is no better reason to shutter doors than that.
- American Girl
- BJ’s Wholesale Club
- Crate and Barrel
- Homegoods (TJ Maxx family of stores)
- Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Stores
- Marshalls (TJ Maxx family of stores)
- Pier One
- Sierra Trading post
For those of us who dislike the Black Friday sales, we can always give back to the community on Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday. Deals and discounts are impressive on these two after Thanksgiving shopping days. The Enterprises TV show reminds readers to set a holiday budget which should include: gifts, food, entertaining and decorating.
at 8:17 AM
Friday, October 24, 2014
At some point in our lives, someone may give us some financial advice that is not so good. It’s what we do with that advice that defines out financial responsibility. The Enterprises TV show shares some good and bad financial tips.
Credit cards can be a good resource when making travel arrangements and making online purchases. It’s a good idea to have a few. The plastic cards are bad only when we go on a wild shopping spree and don’t pay them off. The best advice we’ve heard is charge only one-third of the credit limit and pay it off every month.
Mad money is a little bit of cash we use for fun purchases and the occasional splurge. Everybody needs to have a little monetary cushion to get that one thing they really want. Never be so strict with a budget that there is no room for a little indulgence.
Retirement may be a long way off for some or right around the corner for others. How much we save for it and have taken out of income depends on how old we are. The best advice we heard is 10 percent is fine for the younger generations, but those in their 40s and 50s need to sock away more.
Owning a home is the American dream. The Enterprises TV show knows that for some people owning a home is just not a good idea. If we’re in a job that is not that secure, buying a home is not such a good idea. If our job is steady, then maybe it is.
Not all financial advice is suited for everybody. Ask someone trusted and the information given will be more suitable for individual needs.
at 5:13 AM