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Personal Finance

FILE - In this May 5, 2014 file photo, Microsoft co-founder and Berkshire Hathaway board member Bill Gates speaks during an interview with Liz Claman on the Fox Business Network in Omaha, Neb. Forbes on Monday, March 2, 2015 said that Gates's net worth rose to $79.2 billion in 2015 from $76 billion last year. That put him at the top of the magazine's list of the world's billionaires for the second consecutive year. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik, File)

Bill Gates again tops Forbes list of billionaires with $79.2B

Monday, March 2, 2015

NEW YORK — The world’s richest person got even richer this year. And a basketball superstar-turned-owner made the list for the first time. Forbes said Monday that Bill Gates’s net worth rose to $79.2 billion in 2015 from $76 billion last year. That put him at the top of the magazine’s list of the world’s billionaires for the second consecutive …

Who says business and pleasure don’t mix? Not these family business owners

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Running a family-owned business has rewards — and also challenges — unique to businesses owned by members of the same family, say those in the field. The most notorious local example of a family business gone awry is the Market Basket debacle of last summer, when a long-simmering dispute over ownership and bad …

Many considerations for consumers in hiring a financial adviser

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

When it comes time to seek professional advice to help with your financial goals, such as saving for college tuition or retirement or handling an estate plan, finding the right financial planner takes work. It’s the job of financial planners, advisers or consultants to understand your needs, goals, assets and willingness to take …

Financial stress may hit your brain and wallet

Thursday, August 29, 2013

WASHINGTON — Being short on cash may make you a bit slower in the brain, a new study suggests. People worrying about having enough money to pay their bills tend to lose temporarily the equivalent of 13 IQ points, scientists found when they gave intelligence tests to shoppers …

Conspicuous Consumer: Beware of free checks in mail

Sunday, August 11, 2013

PICKY AND CHOOSY: Cleaning my refrigerator usually prompts some unsettling questions … What, exactly, is the food that now sports a furry white coat? What am I going to do with that half bag of spinach that has …

Survey: Brighter US economic outlook boosts hiring

Monday, July 22, 2013

WASHINGTON — Companies are increasingly confident the economy will grow at a modest pace over the next year and are hiring more, according to a survey of business economists. Nearly one-third of the economists surveyed by the National …

Four in 10 US homes have mom as top earner

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

WASHINGTON — A record number of American women are now the sole or primary breadwinners in their families, a sign of the rising influence of working mothers, a new study finds. Mothers now keep finances afloat in 40 percent of households with children, up from just 11 percent …

Counseling available for homeowners at risk of foreclosure

Sunday, February 17, 2013

NORTHAMPTON — The Valley Community Development Corporation is currently offering free, one-on-one counseling for homeowners in Hampshire County who feel that they are at risk of foreclosure or need help with financial management. The counseling, which is confidential, is designed to help homeowners understand the options available to …

‘Economic root canal’ — personal bankruptcy primer

Sunday, February 3, 2013

NORTHAMPTON — Personal bankruptcy filings continued to decline statewide last year after peaking in 2010, a trend some say signals an improved economy. Other bankruptcy experts paint a more cautious picture and say many Valley residents face significant …

Saving Makes ‘Cents’ program instills values in youngsters 

Sunday, February 3, 2013

HADLEY — In five years, when she plans to visit China as an eighth-grader, Aine Doherty says she will have enough money saved up to enjoy her visit to the Pacific Rim. Fellow third-grader Odin Moore says he …

Smith program helps kickstart entrepreneurs, aid women’s financial independence

Thursday, January 31, 2013

NORTHAMPTON ­— On a chilly January morning, Smith College students gathered for an interterm course listen to Kate Hammond, associate director of the college’s Center for Women and Financial Independence, recount her days as an intern at General …

Paying estimated taxes critical for those who are self-employed

Sunday, February 3, 2013

WASHINGTON — Some people work for themselves because they like the autonomy. Others have been unable to find full-time, regular jobs and have had to settle for contract work for a specific project or period of time. And still others have retired but have been brought back as …

Special tax provisions for members of military

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Katie Hanson is a military spouse; her husband, Lt. Cmdr. Marc Hanson, is on active duty in the Navy. He has Florida as his home of record, even though he is based at Naval Air Station North Island, …