Friday’s need-to-know money news

Today’s top story: Money moves to help you feel more in control. Also in the news: How to renegotiate your bills to save money, ways for renters to cope in the financial crisis, and how to protect yourself before your federal student loan servicer changes.

Feeling Out of Control? These Money Moves Could Help
Regain control by revising spending, boosting savings and focusing on daily actions instead of long-term outcomes.

How to Renegotiate Your Bills to Save Money

Renters at Risk: Ways to Cope in the Financial Crisis

Protect Yourself Before Your Federal Student Loan Servicer Changes

Wednesday’s need-to-know money news

Today’s top story: What a payroll tax deferral may mean for your paycheck and taxes. Also in the news: 4 ways to end your car lease early, what to do if losing your job means losing life insurance, and don’t skip these estate planning moves during the pandemic.

What a Payroll Tax Deferral May Mean for Your Paycheck and Taxes
Things to keep in mind.

4 Ways to End Your Car Lease Early
You can transfer your lease, sell to a dealer or take out a loan to buy the car and then sell it yourself.

What to do if losing your job means losing life insurance
Consider your needs.

Don’t Skip These Estate Planning Moves During Coronavirus
Important moves to consider right now.

Feel out of control? These money moves can help

Behavioral economist Dan Ariely and his colleagues at Duke University’s Center for Advanced Hindsight have a pact. Every week, the group of 50 people picks one small business in Durham, North Carolina, and each person spends $100 there.

A one-time $5,000 infusion wouldn’t make a difference to Amazon, Costco or any other large retailer, but it could be enough to keep a local business afloat, Ariely says. Taking this action helps the group feel that they’re making a difference when so much of the world seems out of control.

“This is, to a large degree, a crisis of Main Street,” says Ariely, the bestselling author of books including “Predictably Irrational.” “We’re taking a retailer and we’re saying, ‘We’re giving you a little bit of breathing room.’”

In my latest for the Associated Press, how to wrest back control from the unpredictability of the pandemic.

Friday’s need-to-know money news

Today’s top story: Can you have too much credit? Also in the news: How to safely move during a pandemic, what personal finance apps should be doing to better serve older people, and how to avoid paying a penalty if you missed the tax filing deadline.

Can You Have Too Much Credit?
Credit scoring formulas don’t punish people for having too many credit accounts, but too much debt can hurt scores.

How to Move Safely During a Pandemic
Keeping yourself and your stuff safe.

This is what personal finance apps should be doing to better serve older people
What a survey revealed about the apps.

How to Avoid Paying a Penalty If You Missed the Tax Filing Deadline
You could qualify for a first-time penalty abatement.

Thursday’s need-to-know money news

Today’s top story: Can you have too much credit? Also in the news: 5 things to know about gold’s record breaking run, the Equal Opportunity Act and its effect on women’s finances, and negotiating with your landlord during COVID-19.

Can You Have Too Much Credit?
Credit scoring formulas don’t punish people for having too many credit accounts, but too much debt can hurt scores.

5 Things to Know About Gold’s Record-Breaking Run
As COVID-19 concerns continue to rattle markets, investors are turning to one of the world’s oldest currencies.

Women and credit: In the 1970s, the Equal Credit Opportunity Act became law— a key step in financial freedom for women
The law barred shady credit practices including lender discrimination based on race, sex, age, nationality or marital status.

Negotiate With Your Landlord During COVID-19
Be upfront and honest.

Tuesday’s need-to-know money news

Today’s top story: What to do when your $600 weekly unemployment check expires. Also in the news: Which hotels have handled COVID-19 the best, how COVID-19 is changing the way families save for college costs, and the U.S. Mint asks for help getting coins back in circulation.

What to Do When Your $600 Weekly Unemployment Check Expires
The $600 pandemic assistance ends this week.

Which Hotels Have Handled COVID-19 the Best?
Grading hotel brands on their health and social distancing policies, along with their flexibility on bookings.

How COVID-19 Is Changing the Way Families Save for College Costs
Shifting priorities.

U.S. Mint asks for help getting coins back in circulation
The Mint wants your couch change.

Friday’s need-to-know money news

Today’s top story: How to tell if that ‘contact tracer’ is really a scammer. Also in the news: Don’t wait to refinance these student loans, why you should aim for 1% credit utilization, and the $600 unemployment boost is likely ending. Here’s how you can access cash now.

Is That ‘Contact Tracer’ Really a Scammer? How to Tell
How to keep yourself.

Don’t Wait to Refinance These Student Loans
You could save money on your private loans.

Why You Should Aim for 1% Credit Utilization
The lower the better.

The $600 unemployment boost is likely ending. Here’s how you can access cash now
Barring an extension from Congress, the boost will end this week.

Friday’s need-to-know money news

Today’s top story: Financial lessons we’ve learned while staying at home. Also in the news: 6 ways your investments can fund racial justice, how to organize important documents simply and safely, and see if you qualify for public service loan forgiveness with this tool.

Financial Lessons We’ve Learned While Staying at Home
Emergency funds are critical.

6 Ways Your Investments Can Fund Racial Justice
Putting your portfolio to work.

How to organize important documents simply and safely
What to keep and for how long.

See if You Qualify for Public Service Loan Forgiveness With This Tool
The criteria is strict.

Wednesday’s need-to-know money news

Today’s top story: Get your finances ready to refi your student loans. Also in the news: Watching out for COVID-19 student loan relief scams, complaints against financial institutions rise during the pandemic, and a beginner’s guide to employee stock plans.

Get Your Finances Ready to Refi Student Loans
You probably shouldn’t refinance most student loans until after Sept. 30. But you can get ready right now.

Don’t fall for COVID-19 student loan relief scams
Scammers are still working during the pandemic.

In the Pandemic, Complaints Against Financial Institutions Rise
Complaints are up over 31%.

A Beginner’s Guide to Employee Stock Plans
important basics you should know.

Tuesday’s need-to-know money news

Today’s top story: How the pandemic alters Americans’ financial habits. Also in the news: Navigating LGBTQ financial challenges, a July 15th tax extension reminder, and Americans are heading back to the stores.

Survey: How the Pandemic Alters Americans’ Financial Habits
Nearly 70% of Americans have been dealing with a negative impact to their finances.

Q&A With Debt Free Guys: Navigating LGBTQ Financial Challenges
Happy Pride!

If You Request a Tax Extension, You Still Have to Pay by July 15
You must file AND pay.

Americans appear ready to shop again
Back to the stores.