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Provocative clothing and too many tattoos and piercings (and bad breath) can sink your chances.

By Karen Datko Dec 8, 2009 11:41AM

This post comes from Jim Wang at partner blog Bargaineering.


This article is part of Bargaineering Career Week 2009, a weeklong series focused on your career -- how to find a job, how to tailor your resume, how to find  job opportunities, and how to nail the interview.


First impressions count. No matter what people say or want to believe, people will judge you based on the way you look, what you’re wearing, and how you present yourself. That’s why it’s critically important to dress properly for a job interview.

Interviews are hard enough to get as it is. You don’t want your chances to be hurt simply because you’re wearing the wrong clothes.


If you're mad at your bank, but hate the hassle of switching, read (and watch) this story. It's easier than you think.

By Stacy Johnson Dec 7, 2009 4:57PM

When the relationship started, you were happy enough. But over the years, everything’s soured. Exchanges that used to be pleasant now turn into battles. You wish you could just walk away. But the trauma of moving on is too much to take. So you grit your teeth and try to endure just one more day.


It’s not your spouse I’m talking about: It’s your bank.


Just say no to companies that are jacking up rates and raising fees.

By Teresa Mears Dec 7, 2009 3:54PM

Suze Orman has a message for credit card companies that are jacking up interest rates, raising fees and otherwise treating their customers badly: Bye-bye.


We don’t need you. We’re going to pay cash.


On her Saturday night show on CNBC, she asked viewers to join her in a Back to Cash movement. “Let’s go back to the good old days,’’ she said. “Let’s go back to the times when you literally paid cash for everything. That’s right. Cash. Stop using your credit cards altogether.”


Is it ever necessary for the packaging to dwarf the food inside?

By Karen Datko Dec 7, 2009 2:04PM

Does it annoy you when you open a box of some kind of food -- fish sticks, say, or a rice concoction -- and find the box only half full?


Consumer Reports examined nine products suggested by readers and, in each case, the actual weight of the contents was accurately displayed but the package contained a disappointing amount.

Federal law prohibits companies from using packaging to mislead consumers, but “slack fill,” as it’s called, “is allowed if it keeps a product from breaking, if the package does double-duty (as a dispenser, or a tray, for example) to accommodate machinery on the assembly line, or to discourage theft in the store,” our partner site says.


Add these 5 sites to your arsenal for finding the best travel deals.

By Karen Datko Dec 7, 2009 9:59AM

This post comes from Adam Baker, a staff writer at partner blog Get Rich Slowly.


When booking airfare online, most people think of the popular online aggregation sites. You know the ones: They have the fancy commercials, catchy jingles, and washed-up celebrity pitchmen. While those sites aren’t inherently bad, there are a few well-documented problems with relying solely on these larger engines:


If you can't afford your health insurance premiums, here are some options.

By Karen Datko Dec 4, 2009 8:47PM

The economic stimulus package passed early this year included a subsidy to help laid-off workers pay for COBRA -- a continuation of the health care coverage they used to have through their workplace.


This week, the nine-month subsidy ran out for the first group of unemployed people who qualified. This is bad news. Paying for COBRA without government help will be a challenge -- an impossibility even -- for many folks.


The argument that winning = ruin is a fraud.

By Karen Datko Dec 4, 2009 6:51PM

This guest post comes from Frank Curmudgeon at Bad Money Advice.


There is a pretty obvious reason why buying lottery tickets is a bad idea. You will lose money. The odds are usually just awful. Casino gambling is, in comparison, a comparatively sound investment.


And, of course, casino gambling is not a wise thing to do with your savings. You would have to be off the deep end of "positive thinking" to believe anything other than it is, for some, an amusing way to waste money.


That objection to gambling, and lotteries, is today so pervasive that we have all but forgotten another traditional objection. A hundred years ago, at least as common as the argument that you would probably lose was the one that you might win.


With millions of foreclosures looming, only 1,711 homeowners have negotiated a deal.

By Teresa Mears Dec 4, 2009 6:20PM

The Obama administration this week said it planned to use a new weapon to persuade lenders to modify more troubled mortgages: shame.


Treasury Department officials plan to increase the pressure on the 71 companies participating in the government’s $75 billion effort to stem the foreclosure crisis, starting by sending three-person "SWAT teams" to monitor the eight largest companies' progress.


The goal is to increase the number of temporary mortgage modifications that become permanent.  As of September, more than 650,000 borrowers had received temporary modifications but only 1,711 had seen a permanent modification.

In contrast, one of eight U.S. mortgages is in foreclosure or in default, noted a Congressional Oversight Panel charged with evaluating the administration’s efforts to stem the foreclosure crisis. That panel raised serious questions about whether the Home Affordable Mortgage Program (HAMP) would make a dent in the 10 million to 12 million foreclosures it estimates could be the result of the current crisis.


"It increasingly appears that HAMP is targeted at the housing crisis as it existed six months ago, rather than as it exists right now," the panel wrote.



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