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A fast-growing salmon is on track to be the first genetically modified animal sold for human consumption.

By Karen Datko Oct 27, 2010 3:22PM

This post comes from Martha Lynn Craver of partner site


A fast-growing genetically engineered salmon is a good bet for approval by the Food and Drug Administration. It would be the first genetically modified animal sold as food.


Dubbed "Frankenfish" by opponents, the new version of Atlantic salmon was developed by AquaBounty Technologies. It grows almost twice as fast as farm-raised salmon, thanks to one growth hormone gene from a chinook salmon and another from an eel called the ocean pout. The application has been pending before the agency for well over 10 years.


The average 30-year fixed rate is expected to jump above 5% next year, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.

By Money Staff Oct 27, 2010 2:00PM

This post comes from Amy Hoak at partner site MarketWatch.


Mortgage rates may be as low as they'll get -- rates are on course to rise, slowly moving toward 5% by the end of next year, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association's economic forecast, released Tuesday at the group’s annual convention in Atlanta.

The group predicts rates on the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage will average 4.4% in the fourth quarter of 2010, increasing to a 4.7% average in the first quarter of 2011, and climbing to 5.1% by the end of next year. That’s barring any "blockbuster" announcement from the Federal Reserve next month, said Jay Brinkmann, chief economist of the MBA.


The Fed has said it could take more policy actions to stimulate growth, and Brinkmann said that's likely to come in the form of an additional purchase of Treasury securities. But the market has already anticipated that, and the move has already been priced into current rates, he added.


Will scapula meat be an acceptable alternative to actual wing parts? Wing lovers are eager to find out.

By Karen Datko Oct 27, 2010 12:46PM

This post comes from Neema P. Roshania at partner site


Mmm, chicken wings fried and dipped in hot sauce. The tasty morsels are so popular that chicken producers have difficulty keeping up with demand. After all, chickens have only two wings each, with two edible parts per wing.

So-called boneless wings -- small bits of breast meat fried and served with sauce à la wings -- are acceptable substitutes for some folks, but true wing aficionados say they're no replacement for the real thing.

Now comes perhaps a more promising solution to the wing shortage: meat cuts that include the two scapula bones and their surrounding meat and skin.


We sifted through lots of suggestions on the Web to find you our favorites.

By Karen Datko Oct 27, 2010 11:25AM

Halloween is just days away, and you have not the faintest clue about your costume.


Not to worry, even if you don't have much cash. Lots of blogs have inexpensive suggestions, like "85 easy, frugal Halloween costume ideas" from our partner Wise Bread. If adult and edgy appeals to you, there's Coupon Sherpa's "30 trendy Halloween costume ideas for 2010."


But that's just the start. There's a lot to sift through on the interwebs. Some are throwbacks. (If you showed up in jammies and silk robe, with pipe in hand, how many people would guess "Hugh Hefner"? ) Some are silly. ("Wrap yourself in wrapping paper with a tag: 'From: God, To: Women.' What are you? God's gift to women." We think not.)

Since not everyone can be Lady Gaga -- or can they? -- a hugely popular choice this year, we've identified some of our favorite fast and frugal costumes to help you out.


Inexpensive doesn't have to mean boring, especially when bubbles and balloons are involved.

By Karen Datko Oct 27, 2010 10:27AM

This post comes from Craig Ford at partner blog Wise Bread.


My daughter recently turned 5. In case you don't know, birthday parties are a big deal to a 5-year-old.


Our family lives in a Third World country, so we knew we'd have to get creative when it came time to plan our frugal birthday games. In the end, we came up with some great games that the kids absolutely loved.


My wife and I loved the fact that we spent less than $10 on the games.


A report exposes the 'sins' of greenwashing. You might be surprised to hear where real environmentally friendly products are sold.

By Teresa Mears Oct 27, 2010 8:58AM

Do you try to buy "green" products?

According to a new report, many of those products aren't as green as we think they are.


More than 95% of consumer products claiming to be green are committing at least one of the "sins" of greenwashing, including vague claims, no proof for the claims or outright misrepresentation.


If you're looking for products that are truly green, you're more likely to find them at Wal-Mart or Target than at your environmentally correct local boutique.


Myths about the day after Thanksgiving have been exposed. And, no, it's not the biggest shopping day of the year.

By Karen Datko Oct 26, 2010 6:04PM

When you're born without the shopping gene, Black Friday is nothing to get excited about. But, according to a new post at, even if you love to shop, it's not all it's been cracked up to be -- certainly not a reason to fight crowds at 4 in the morning.

In fact, the benefit of camping out is No. 3 on dealnews' list of 15 Black Friday myths that don't match the facts:


When someone you know sets limits on what he eats or how much he spends, that can wear him out and have an effect on you too.

By Karen Datko Oct 26, 2010 4:25PM

This guest post comes from Pop at Pop Economics.


As I wrote recently, I've signed up for a contract with Stickk that penalizes me for not writing regularly. In other words, I've publicized my goal, but also have people following up to make sure I keep it.

What would happen if I didn't have that second part in place?


NYU psychologist Peter Gollwitzer ran an experiment on law students to see how announcing a goal publicly affected how well they accomplished them.


He asked them to rate a series of statements from "definitely yes" to "definitely no" about things like how hard they planned to study. Some of the students anonymously dropped the pronouncements in a box, but others were asked to personally hand it in to the person running the experiment. So, in effect, those who turned it in had simulated publicly announcing that they planned to be awesome students.


As a follow-up, the experimenters asked the students to work on 20 difficult law problems, but told them that they could quit at any time. The ones who had "announced" their goals consistently worked less hard and quit sooner than those who kept them private.


What did that mean?



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