In the immortal words of Hank Williams Jr. “All my rowdy friends are here for Monday night (finance).” No professional sports? No problem! Here are three great personal finance articles to read to help cheer you up.
It’s hard to consume any media lately without being bombarded by news of COVID-19 also called the novel coronavirus. In many ways, it seems like society is crumbling in front of us on TV; the grocery stores are struggling to stock food and the government is enacting strict social distancing measures. These are extreme measures that many of us have never experienced before. As a result, many people are experiencing uncertainty and anxiety. What will the future look like? Will we ever be okay again? This article does a great job of presenting healthy ways to process these feelings.
Whenever I’m faced with a choice and I’m unsure of the outcome, I consult those that have come before me for their expertise. Today, when I wanted to know how COVID-19 might impact the world, my approach didn’t change. To the history tomes I went, and the history tomes did not disappoint. ~WeWantGuac
Darcy, of WeWantGuac.com, is a student of history. She subscribes to a theory called “constructivism” which says that history often shapes futures. Darcy points out that our collective response to the coronavirus is based upon lessons learned over centuries of the human race fighting viruses. We can therefore also predict the economic response based upon previous pandemics. Darcy looks at the economic consequences of the black death for inspiration as to what might happen with the future economy. (Unfortunately, she didn’t include pictures of plague doctors). She provides a list of six probably outcomes from COVID-19. Some positive, such as a higher likelihood of jobs providing more teleworking options in the future, and some negative (inflation).
Finding extra ways to earn money is a positive response to the uncertain times in which we are currently living. Beyond social distancing, there is little we can do to stop the spread of COVID-19. Furthermore, there is nothing we can do to change its impact on the global economy. But by finding little extra ways to make money, you can make your own financial situation a little bit better, and in doing so, add peace and security into your life. This article by the Financial Wolves lists 36 different apps that can help you earn money.
Do you want to use your phone to earn some money on the go? We all do. Fortunately, there are plenty of apps to make money out there. ~Financial Wolves
There are a lot of variety in the ways to earn money through the different apps. Some, like Rakuten (formerly eBates) pay you for sharing your shopping data with them. Other apps help you sell items you no longer need. While many years ago Ebay and Craigslist were the only game in town, today there are specialized apps for niche markets. Finally other apps on the list can be classified as apps that enable the gig-economy (think Fiverr). Finally, although it was not on the list, if you have Aetna insurance, you can use the Attain app to earn cash back for completing healthy actions. You can read more about that here.
Have you heard a rumor of a possible stimulus check to help the economy during the COVID-19 outbreak? Curious what it might look like? In this article, Jim Wang, of WalletHacks succinctly summarizes what is known about the potential stimulus check.
The proposed 2020 stimulus check is going to be larger than the 2001 or 2008 initiatives. Congress is working out the final details of who qualifies and how much the check will be. These checks are part of a larger $1.2 trillion stimulus package. ~Jim Wang
Jim begins the article by summarizing previous stimulus checks issued by the government in 2001, and 2008 to boost the economy. In those cases, the checks were issued to people who had filed a tax return in the previous year. Therefore, Jim hypothesizes that a similar process will occur with this stimulus package. The most recent proposal issues a benefit of up to $1,200 per adult and $500 per child in the family. However, the size of the benefit depends upon your previous tax return. The benefit begins to be phased out at high incomes (over $75,000 for single, $150,000 for married, filing jointly) and may be less for adults whose income resulted in little or no tax liability in the previous year. While nothing is for certain yet, this article was informative in understanding what may happen in the near future.