Keeping Your New Years Resolutions On Track - Tips to Start the New Year Out Right (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


Many people capitalize on the New Year, making it a time to create resolutions aimed at improving themselves and their current situations. Given these difficult economic times, it is more important than ever to be mindful of your finances, and it’s likely that many resolutions this year revolved around this very topic. Here are a few tips to make the most of your financially-focused resolutions:

Tax Season Has Come and Gone – Five Tips to Ensure April’s Showers Bring May Dollars (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


Now that the deadline for filing tax returns has passed, the flurry of tax season is behind us. Whether your tax return turned out just the way you’d hoped (maybe you’re getting a healthy refund) or you ended up with an unpleasant surprise (perhaps finding out that you owe more money than you’d planned), the season is behind us and it’s time to look toward our financial futures.

The end of tax season is also marked by the start of warm weather, getting many people in the mood for spring cleaning. As we’re doing yard work, cleaning out the closets and opening up swimming pools, there’s no time like the present to also do some “spring cleaning” for your finances.

The True Value of Money – Assessing How Much Money Is Really Worth To You (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


Those of us that invest a great deal of time managing our finances may think we know the answer to the question “how much is money worth?” While it’s a complex topic, we think we have a straightforward, quantitative, clear-cut answer which involves exchange rates and currencies and inflation and the passing of time. We pull out our calculators and let the numbers do the talking.

But there’s another way to look at how much money is worth that doesn’t involve numbers or currency conversions. I’m speaking here about the qualitative side of the coin and where finance fits into your value system and life goals.

To Owe or Not to Owe? Tax is the Question… (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


As tax season continues, and the deadline for filing taxes approaches, many people are finding out where their finances for last year netted out. While some people are getting the pleasant news that they’re getting a refund back and can plan accordingly, others are coming to the realization that they may owe a (potentially large) sum of money.

If the results revealed by your tax return come as a surprise to you it may put you in an uncomfortable financial situation, particularly if you owe money. We’ve often said on 22Dollars.com that no plan is a plan to fail, and it seems that this saying holds true in this case as well. Rather than scrambling to find a fast financial fix, it’s certainly going to be better for you both in the long and short run to do whatever you can to plan ahead for this type of expense.

Sayings Worth Saving - Our Favorite Finance Quotes and Words of Wisdom (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


When it comes to money, everyone has something to say. Each person has an opinion, and these individual opinions can vary widely. From those that believe in high stakes investing to those that do not believe in investing at all, the things people say about finance can be quite different. But the bottom line is that everyone has something to say.

At the same time, finance can be one of the most difficult things to discuss, because it’s a very personal topic that links many of the things that make us who we are: our values, our emotions, our pride, our status, and how we make our living. However, throughout history many people have found a way to capture their sentiments about finance in ways that can help us all express our varied opinions on money, and have helped us learn a thing or two about this complex topic.

The Bright Side of Tax Season – Seven Ideas For What to Do With Your 2007 Tax Refund (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


As the deadline for completing 2007 tax returns approaches, more and more people are filing returns each and every day. While many people are filing the old fashion way through the mail, others are taking advantage of the free IRS efile method online. Once the headaches of making sure all your information is accurate and all your paperwork has been submitted, you should know in advance if you can expect a tax refund this year.

As with any income, it’s a good idea to think about what you’re going to do in advance and make a plan for how you will use it. We always quote the saying that “no plan is a plan to fail,” and it seems true that many of the worst financial decisions are those made compulsively. Since tax refunds are getting turned around more quickly than ever these days, take the time in between when you file and when you receive your refund to really think about what you’ll do with the money you get back.

6 Essential Tips for Tax Season – Advice For The Best Ways To Get Through Tax Season Safely (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


As I’m sure the readers of 22Dollars are aware, tax season is in full swing. By now, we all should have received the necessary paperwork from our employers, banks and other investment institutions and can get to work on our tax returns if we haven’t already.

It seems like each year there are more and more options for individuals looking to prepare their tax returns, and it can be difficult to know who to trust. Lately the news has been filled with stories about tax-related scams to watch out for and everywhere you look there are advertisements offering “worry free” solutions.

So with the April 15 deadline looming, here are a few simple tips to keep in mind as you’re preparing your taxes:

My WORST Financial Mistake of the 2007 Calendar Year Was... (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


As 2007 draws to a close, lets take a moment to reflect on what we have learned by highlighting our mistakes. We all make them, there are no exceptions to that rule. The only variable here is how big of a mistake was it.

I'll start. My biggest financial mistake of 2007 was going against my good friend David Gordon's advice and jumping into the options market without adequate knowledge or experience. Instead of sticking with my bread and butter of stock trading (short and long term), I wanted to test my luck in the options market. To my shock, I have never seen so much money lost so quickly from my portfolio. While I did have a couple triple digit percentage winners, I also had a couple options expire to the worthless state.

Want to Know How to Turn $12,000 into $2 Million? Timothy Sykes Demonstrates (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


If you’re a fan of Wall Street Warriors or stay on top of the financial publishing scene, you’ve probably seen and heard Timothy Sykes’ name pretty frequently these days. Timothy’s recently released book, An American Hedge Fund: How I Made $2 Million as a Stock Operator and Created a Hedge Fund, details the true story of how he turned the $12,415 he received for his Bar Mitzvah into $1.65 million in just three years and all before he turned 26. Timothy sent 22Dollars.com a copy of his book (check out the fourth page to see our review!) and recently provided us with a behind-the-scenes look at the man, the myth and the market. Make sure to check out Timothy’s responses below and grab a copy of his book if you haven’t already!

Top 5 Smart Spending Tips for Students - How to Make Ends Meet in College (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


Over summer vacation many students work hard at jobs they may or may not like, earning money to help them get through the school year. This is perhaps especially true for college students who, away from home for the first time, are just getting their feet wet with managing their expenses (of which there are many) on a shoe-string budget.

As college students are settling into the fall semester, many are probably realizing how quickly the money they earned over the summer can go. When you’re a full-time student it can be difficult to find ways to earn enough money to cover your expenses during the school year. As a result, it’s vital that college students are smart about how they spend their money and maintain a strict budget.

Morgan Stanley's Jim Merkley Welcomes 22Dollars to Oak Hill Country Club (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


This weekend I had the pleasure of meeting and sharing a round of golf with Jim Merkley from Morgan Stanley. Mr. Merkley comes from an impressive background that includes being named one of Business Journal’s Top 40 Under 40 for 2005! What is even more impressive is the time and effort Jim puts back into the community. Like Jim, the team here at 22Dollars believes in the importance of giving back to help out those in need. It was because of our recent donation to the Arc of Monroe Foundation that we came in contact with Jim and he was kind enough to offer a round of golf at the home of the 85th PGA Championship - Oak Hill Country Club (East course). A course that has been continually recognized as one of America’s top 20 golf courses.

Cove Atlantis All-Suite Resort Grand Opening - Nassau, Paradise Island Bahamas (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


As an entrepreneur myself (BlueEye Design Co.), I am always interested in hearing other success stories and business venture ideas that have been made into reality. The team at 22Dollars recently returned from a week long trip to Nassau, Paradise Island in the Bahamas. We wanted to take a moment to talk about our experience and the grand opening of The Cove Atlantis - the newest branch of the Atlantis megaplex resort that caters to the ultra wealthy. After all, what is the point of investing if you can not have fun with the money you make right? So this was our chance to get away from the north country and see the once in a lifetime event.

For those of you not familiar with the Atlantis resort, it is a legendary and lavish property on Paradise Island, near Nassau in the Bahamas and just a hop from Florida. The property dominates the island’s real estate and is a major contributor to the island’s economy, employing some 6,000 residents. Sol Kerzner (Kerzner International Chairman) built the celebrity magnet that boasts a Royal Tower bridge suite that will run you a cool $25,000 a night. Even if you do have the cash however, you will have to wait till the year 2011 when the next free available week for the suite is open.

Viscious Cycle: Don’t Make Enough Money to Invest, but Need to Invest to Make More Money (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


How many of you don’t think you have enough money to start investing? Living paycheck to paycheck and keeping track of where every penny goes, you have enough trouble making ends meet from day to day, much less putting money away for a rainy day. Many of us that are just starting out, or perhaps starting over, might read this blog to get investment ideas for the future. Not seeing how investments can fit into our tight budgets in the present, we think all the advice we hear is for someone else, or for us to file away for “someday.”

While those of us that live on a shoestring budget are wise to be cautious, the truth is that we should not allow this caution to stunt our growth. Everyone has the potential to invest in their futures – we just may need to take different approaches.

Please Welcome the Newest Writer to 22Dollars - Chandni Kripalani - Private Equity Specialist (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


It is our pleasure to introduce all our readers to our newest writer, Chandni Kripalani.

Chandni brings extensive experience in the private equity space. She hails from a background of mutual fund advisory, investment advisory and private equity transaction research. She has worked with asset management companies the likes of DSP Merrill Lynch Fund Managers and as a wealth manager at Citibank where she provided investment advisory to high net worth clients on mutual funds and life insurance.

We are very happy and excited to have her on board and look forward to learning from her expertise and experience in the field.

Why Are You Not Rich Yet? The Poor, Middle & Upper Class Definition of the word "Asset" (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


I recently received an email from an individual (who will remain nameless) that wanted to know why it was they felt like they would never get ahead financially. A feeling of being stuck in the rat race of life, struggling to never get ahead in the end. My answer to his question was simple and it paralleled the ideologies expressed by Robert T. Kiyosaki in the book “Rich Dad, Poor Dad”. The answer is one that is not readily taught in our school systems. Before I give you the answer to why you aren’t rich yet, let me first ask you a couple questions and see if you can’t figure it out yourself.

Class Characteristics – Could You Survive in a Different Economic Class? (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


One of our recent posts discussed a researcher’s view on the differences between economic classes. The researcher stated that the upper, lower and middle classes live their lives based on the past, present and future, respectively. What this researcher was getting at is that there are a number of differences in classes aside from the job titles and bank statements typical of the group’s members.

We typically consider nationality, religious views and geographic location to be the main factors which determine a person’s culture. We consider ourselves to be “Americans” so we celebrate the traditional holidays and eat the customary foods. But what role does economic class play in our culture?

Book Review: Freakonomics – Unexpected Comparisons Make Readers Think Twice (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


Which is more dangerous, a gun or a swimming pool? What do schoolteachers and sumo wrestlers have in common? Why do drug dealers still live with their moms? How much do parents really matter? What kind of impact did Roe v. Wade have on violent crime?
– Freakonomics

These questions and more are posed in Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner’s “Freakonomics” a book which uses seemingly unthinkable comparisons to examine the economics which make up our everyday lives. It was these questions that interested me in the book, and caused me to check it out recently to find out exactly what conclusions the writers could draw based on such questions.

Rich Dad, Poor Dad – How Does Our Upbringing Impact Our Financial Choices? (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment

Several weeks ago we raffled off a copy of Robert T. Kiyosaki’s book “Rich Dad, Poor Dad.” In his book, Kiyosaki discusses how upper class parents raise their children differently from those with low socio-economic status. His topics of discussion range from the development of value systems, to the intricacies of when and how to discuss money, to what kids learn from their parents in terms of investing.


This book reminded me of a seminar I attended a few years back which focussed on how wealth and economic status impact how we live our lives. Part of the presentation focused on the common characteristics associated with each economic class. While much of the researcher’s data could be considered stereotypical assumptions, the conclusions presented provide an interesting look at the mindset of a cross-section of our society.

Personal Finance For Dummies, 5th Edition by Eric Tyson (Author) Complete Finance Guidebook (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


It's that time again. Time for 22Dollars to give away another financial book. This time we have decided on something more friendly and light hearted than Rich Dad, Poor Dad (author: Robert T. Kiyosaki) from last month. This time around the book we are giving away is titled Personal Finance For Dummies, 5th Edition (author: Eric Tyson).

Tyson has a solid writing style and makes for a surprisingly easy read. Financial concepts many would find complex are explained in straight forward terms and are easily comprehended. Perhaps the best financial principle this book teaches is how to recognize when people giving you advice have a conflict of interest. Unless you yourself are a financial professional, don't pay someone to handle your money or give you financial advice without first reading this book. They may not really have your best interests in mind.

22Dollars in Search of Financial Blogger for Hire - Come and Join Us! (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


Today we are excited to announce that we will be looking for one additional blogger to write for 22Dollars. We (Katherine and Chad) are looking for an individual that is financially savvy with solid writing skills. 22Dollars is all about quality (not quantity) of posts and thus we will only require one article a week from the writer (with the option to write more if you choose). The articles to be written should be about general financial advice and general market overviews. We are not looking for the next Jim Cramer, but will not limit you from writing from writing about specific sectors and opportunities you like. In other words, we don't need someone to post every day about three or four stocks that went up or have momentum. Infact, we don't need you to post about specific stocks at all. The position will pay a few dollars per post. If you are interested and think you have what it takes please take a moment to contact us via our contact form. We appreciate your time and look forward to hearing from you!

Kind regards,
Katherine & Chad

Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays to All As We Usher in the New Year and a Fresh Start (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


It is time to take a brief moment to pause from our blogging explorations to wish all of our readers a very Happy Holidays. Remember that is not how much money you make, but rather what you do with it that really matters. Money can not buy you TRUE happiness and now is the time of year to reflect on what is really important in life. I leave you with this quote from Mr. Charles Dickens.

I have always thought of Christmas time, when it has come round, as a good time; a kind, forgiving, charitable time; the only time I know of, in the long calendar of the year, when men and women seem by one consent to open their shut-up hearts freely, and to think of people below them as if they really were fellow passengers to the grave, and not another race of creatures bound on other journeys.

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and to all a goodnight.

The Rich Dad, Poor Dad Year End Christmas Holiday Giveway. Thank You 22Readers! (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


As 2006 comes to a close, we here at 22Dollars.com want to take this opportunity to thank all our readers for making the site what it is today. We have received countless emails from readers scattered near and far expressing their kind words with respect to the site. We hope you enjoy the site and continue to read and find different ways to save and make money in 2007.

As a token of our appreciation, we wanted to give something back to our readers. What we settled on this year for the 22Dollars Holiday Bonus gift was one of the most inspiring and influential books I have ever read on the differences in the way each social-economic class approaches business, money and life. The book is titled Rich Dad, Poor Dad written by Robert T. Kiyosaki and Sharon Lechter. A book about what the rich teach their kids about money that the poor and middle class do not. A BRAND NEW copy of Rich Dad, Poor Dad will be given away to one lucky reader of 22Dollars to be drawn at random this coming Friday (Dec. 22nd).

Get Your Holiday Shopping Done Early to Avoid Overspending this Christmas Season (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


Believe it or not, Christmas is only two weeks away. This leaves only 14 more shopping days until the big day, and the stress level of the general public (aka those of us that don’t have our Christmas shopping done yet) is reaching its annual high. With stores offering sales shoppers “can’t” refuse, malls being overcrowded this time of year, and individuals rushing to finish their shopping on time, it is certain that many people will fall victim to compulsive shopping.

The Cost of Christmas Goes Up - Investors Understand Finances on their Own Terms (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


I saw an interesting article last week relating to the costs associated with the holiday season. We all know the traditional twelve days of Christmas song. Well each year, economists calculate just how much all the items discussed in that song would cost if you were to buy them, to serve as a sort of measuring stick to compare one year to another.

And just how much would the twelve days of Christmas cost this year? Economists calculated that all the items would cost $18,920.59, up 3.1% from 2005. Here is the full list of results from the last two years:

Black Friday is Almost Here - Consumers Get Ready for the Biggest Shopping Day of the Year (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


That's right friends, the official start of the holiday shopping season is right around the corner. For years the day after Thanksgiving has been known as a day when retailers offer the best deals of the year and shoppers flood into malls across the country to take advantage of the low prices.

While shoppers are bound to leave stores this Friday feeling satisfied with the fact that they took advantage of the great sales, one has to wonder who benefits more stores or shoppers. The fact that these sales start at 6 a.m. (or earlier), last for a very limited time (usually just a few hours), involve large crowds and limited quantities as well as an abundance of holiday decorations, Black Friday serves to create an atmosphere that thrives on impulse buys. Sure shoppers are paying less for the newest electronic goods and latest fashions, but this savings is offset by the high pressure environment that inevitably accompanies Black Friday.

What Everybody Ought to Know About the True Benefits of a College Degree (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


The benefits of a college degree today mean much more than some spare change in your pocket when you do finally land a job. According to a recent article over at Yahoo, this little piece of paper equates to extra spending power to the tune of $23,000/year.

How much is a bachelor's degree worth? About $23,000 a year, the government said in a report released Thursday.

That is the average gap in earnings between adults with bachelor's degrees and those with high school diplomas, according to data from the Census Bureau.

College graduates made an average of $51,554 in 2004, the most recent figures available, compared with $28,645 for adults with a high school diploma. High school dropouts earned an average of $19,169 and those with advanced college degrees made an average of $78,093.

I would agree these numbers are probably fairly accurate, but do not demonstrate the fact that the true value of a college degree spans much farther than $23,000/year. Here is what I think.

Welcome Friends to the New 22Dollars.com - Your Feedback is Encouraged. (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


Welcome friends to the new 22. I just wanted to thank you for your patience while we have been very busy upgrading the entire site (as you can clearly see). As you will notice at the top, there are now tabs to provide easy navigation to the three new areas of the site. The new areas of the site include the credo, Club22 and the contact page.

CREDO: Our mission statement. Created because of the enormous feedback I received asking and I quote "What is 22Dollars and how do I join". I wanted it to be more than just a simple "about us" page - I wanted to capture why this site was created and why it is a great resource for our visitors to use daily now. It also serves as a reminder to our commitment to always be improving on the site and providing our readers with the best possible experience.

22Changes to Serve Growing Reader Base of Savvy Investors - The New 22 is Coming! (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment

Over the past couple days the team at 22Dollars.com has been very busy working and we apologize for the lack of recent posts. What have we been working on you ask? Well not financial analysis, but rather a total site-wide face-lift. Here are just some of the changes you can look forward to:

1.) Total site optimization with respect to coding, images, scripts and all other files to improve download times by over 400%!

2.) Transfer of the site over to the secure and extra speedy hosting of Media Temple's new (gs) Grid-Server platform.

3.) New tabbed browsing for navigation.

4.) Cleaner fonts for easier reading onscreen (I was a usability/human-computer interaction major in college so this kind of stuff is important to me!)

5.) The addition of 3 new pages: Contact, Credo and Club22...

6.) A new design that reflects the color you might think of when talking about making money... care to take a guess?


All in all, we are extremely excited and pleased with the how the transition is going thus far. We hope to launch the new site within the next month depending on several factors still up in the air. We hope that everyone will enjoy the new site and we look forward to hearing your feedback on it pending the official launch. Take care.

16 Must-Read Financial Blog Sites by Kiplinger’s Magazine & 22Dollars Top 10 Financial Blogs (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


Today I returned home from a much needed vacation. I was lucky enough to get away to a place called "The Homestead". Founded in 1766 (10-years before our country was even founded and slightly before my time), the Homestead sits deep in the mountains of Hot Springs, Virginia. It is a breath-taking 5 star estate that offers an amazing array of activities, food and history. The trip was just fabulous and I got a chance to play the 48th ranked golf course in the world called "The Cascades", which is owned by the Homestead. It was just under $250/person to step out onto the course and an extra $40 for the caddie but worth every penny. Anyways, it was a great time and I am glad to be back. Now that I am back, I wanted to write a post about other financial webstops that both Kiplinger's magazine and myself find very helpful.

A Moment of Silence in Remembrance of Those Who Lost Their Lives on September 11, 2001 (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


On Monday, September 11, 2006, The NASDAQ Stock Market will observe a moment of silence from 10:29 to 10:30 a.m., ET, in remembrance of those who lost their lives on September 11, 2001.

We invite market participants and readers of 22Dollars to join NASDAQ in this silent remembrance. Since trading will not be halted during this time, NASDAQ requests that market participants use their best judgment and sensitivity in regards to trading during the moment of silence.

God bless all the innocent lost on this tragic day as we remember those heroes who risked their lives without hesitation to protect the very foundation this nation was built on. Our prayers are with you.

Hurricane Katrina - Knowledge is Power, but is that Enough? (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


When Chad asked me to write a post for his blog, I wasn’t sure that I would have much to say that might interest his target audience. Not being a frequent (or at all knowledgeable) investor, I was not sure how I could shed some light on the topic of finance for a group of people that already knows more than I. That is, not until I looked at the bigger picture. We are at the one year anniversary of when Hurricane Katrina struck our country. The impact of this event is so significant that it has touched us all in some way shape or form, and unfortunately much of the context in which this event occurred revolves around simple dollars and cents – the very topic of this blog.

I say that Katrina struck our country instead of New Orleans specifically, because in truth while the hurricane’s initial geographic location was NOLA, its effects have reached every state, city and person in the nation. From the impact on friends and family to the new neighbors that may have fled to your town to the money that has been (and still needs to be) spent on rebuilding, each person is aware of the situation and has been impacted – even if they weren’t residents of the “Big Easy” a year ago.

Yahoo Finance Badges - Add Stock Tickers, Charts, and News Headlines Directly To Your Web Site (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment

This is a real demonstration of the new Yahoo Finance Badge. This is a great solution for those individuals who run a financial website/blog and are looking to add stock tickers, charts, and news headlines with minimal technical expertise needed.

I would highly recommend this option if you don’t have the time, knowledge or money to pay for other services or enough web knowledge to utilize other financial API’s or RSS Feeds out there. This also could work for individuals looking to always run a current portfolio list on their site. The best thing of all, is that the service is free and supported by Blogger (BlogSpot), TypePad, Movable Type, WordPress and DiaryLand. If you are interested, you can learn more about the Yahoo Finance Badge here.

On a side note, congrats to all those who shorted Sears over the last couple days. It has since filled the gap nicely as per my prior prediction. I will be updating that post soon along with another stock chart pattern recognition series article to further explain what exactly it was that I saw here and why this was “easy money”.

Alternative Investment Idea: Watches. Tag Heuer, Rolex or Microsoft Smart Watches? (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


Every now and again I like to talk about alternative investment ideas. Every thing we purchase is an investment. From our house to our car to more luxurious and symbolic items such as watches and wedding rings. Even the food we eat is an investment into our health and in some cases, the people we date are an investment, just ask Anna Nicole. Well today, I wanted to talk about watches. The Professional Golf Watch from Tag Heuer designed by Tiger Woods is my current favorite. It retails for a cool $1,000.

Warren Buffett & Chad Lapa Have Something in Common - Both Enjoy Helping By Giving to Charity (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


Granted my donations might not be on the same level as Mr. Buffett’s, but nonetheless I take a sense of pride in giving back to charities that touch close to home and that I support deeply. The majority of my donations come in the form of participating in golf tournaments, private donations and the United Way Foundation. This year I will play in several golf tournaments that give back to the community and local charities. I also donate a portion of every paycheck to the United Way to help out on a more global scale. Two of the golf tournaments that I will be participating in this year include the Joseph D. Helmuth Foundation Tournament (Philadelphia, PA) and the Tim Milgate Charity Tournament (Rochester, NY).

22Dollars Selected to be Part of the 9Rules Network - Hooray Networks! (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


Some of you may have noticed the new icon to the right, representing the 9rules network, that recently appeared on my site. Well today I am proud to announce the acceptance of 22Dollars into the 9Rules network. For those of you who are unfamiliar with the network, they would describe themselves as:

A community of the best weblogs in the world on a variety of topics. We started 9rules to give passionate writers more exposure and to help readers find great blogs on their favorite subjects. It’s difficult to find sites worth returning to, so 9rules brings together the very best of the independent web all under one roof.

Update: Check out my offical 9Rules introduction here.

Market Jitters Provide Opportunity for Comedic Relief - Humorous Signs (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


Market jitters? Let me try and clear up some of the confusion in the market right now for you incase this past week is making you feel a little bit uncomfortable on the inside. This week has not been very pretty but don't despair my friends. Generally after a couple of larger point losses in the market, as we have seen this past week, you start to see the institutional buyers jumping back into some of the better stocks. It is a bit of a snap back approach but it gives investors a chance to profit when these stocks rejuvenate their previous trends. Unless a stocks trend was broken to the downside, buying back into a stock on a pullback is considered a tested approach for investors. I do not see this as a correction (10% decline, we are only at ~4% right now) but merely as a pullback that will continue its bullish run soon.

If this little bit of advice still is not enough to lift your sprits, then take a moment to check out the more humorous side of 22Dollars. I recently received an email from a friend in Philly showing pictures of some very funny, real life signs. These are a must see, so check them out and let me know what you think!

BankRate Financial Test For High School Students Might Surprise You (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


Our friends over at theBeanCounter Blog recently commented on a financial test that was given to over five thousand students located around the country. This same test can be found at one of the most trusted bank sites the Internet has to offer in Bankrate.com. The test is short and sweet, consisting of only twelve multiple-choice questions. If you would like to see how you fair on this high school financial test then you can visit BankRate and give it your best shot!

BankRate High School Quiz

On a side note, I strongly support MORE stress on financial responsibility in our high schools (and earlier). Too many people these days often times find themselves in such a financial mess that it messes up their life (and sometimes other people’s lives) for a long period of time. I can personally only remember one class in high school that was even remotely close to teaching me how to handle my money responsibly. I am glad to see tests like this and would love to see finance hold a more predominant presence in our school systems. Stop letting people learn how to handle their money the hard way.

Good luck with the quiz and let me know how you do.

22Dollars Goes On Vacation - Next Stop: Paradise (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment

The World's Largest Live Aquarium

Hi everyone. I am back from my much-needed vacation that included a private cruise in Paradise and a wedding in Philly, PA. Everyone had a great time and all would agree this was an "adventure" that I could write a book about. I won't get into details but lets just say we all had a great time. I also wanted to apologize for the lack of posts due to the trip. Well I am back now and wanted to let all my great readers know that I will be back up and posting again soon. On a side note I would like to congratulate Dan and Jodi and wish them all the best. It was great to finally reunite with many of my college friends who still remain my best friends. I have to go unpack now but will get back to everyone shortly! Until then continue reading the rest of this article to enjoy a few more pictures from the trip. Thanks friends :-)

Technical Analysis - Chart Pattern Recognition Series (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


I have had many requests from virtually all my colleagues to further explain what I look for in a stock in terms of technical fundamentals and chart patterns. I am far from an expert in this subject but I do not like seeing many of friends fail to maximize profits (or worse, loose money) because they don't recognize proper stock injection points, the only time I will buy a stock.

I have thus decided to start a stock chart pattern recognition series. In this series I will show you basic stock patterns and how they certain patterns tend to resolve bullish while other patterns will resolve bearishly. Recognizing these before they happen can make you a considerable amount of money.

I will talk about chart patterns such as Double Top/Bottom, Head and Shoulders, Falling/Rising Wedge Triple Top/Bottom, Flag Pennant, Symmetrical, Ascending & Descending Triangles and Price Channels. Oh and did I mention my personal favorite - The Cup and Handle.

Home From Cancun, Mexcio to Nice Upside Surprise - Western Silver (WTZ) and Glamis Gold Ltd. (GLG) (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment


I returned home from a much-needed vacation to Cancun, Mexico late last night and to my joy found my portfolio up very handsomely. The big winner was Western Silver Corp (WTZ), a mining company that I recommended but 3-days before the big news. Western Silver Corp. shares skyrocketed 27.21% that day to finish at $21.60 per share, with above average volume trading.

On Friday, Western Silver and Glamis Gold Ltd. (GLG) announced an agreement whereby Glamis will acquire, through an agreed plan of arrangement, all outstanding shares of Western Silver for a total consideration of approximately $1.0 billion (USD). Under the plan of arrangement, each Western Silver shareholder will receive 0.688 of a Glamis common share and one share in a new exploration and development company ("ExploreCo") for each issued Western Silver share.

Congratulations to all my readers who cashed in on these huge gains.

Checking Out the Brazilian Markets First Hand in Cancun, Mexico (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment

Cancun Mexico - 22Dollars Style

By the time you read this message I will have already left for my nice weeklong getaway to Cancun, Mexico. A great opportunity for me to relax and reflect on what is really important things in life - spending quality time with those you care most about. One of my favorite sayings comes from a professional investor and friend of mine, David. He quotes:

I discovered (finally!) that, despite the ephemeral fame and fortune success can usher in, making money is not the eschaton I had believed it to be. Life is about more than the amount of money we can amass; it is rather the quality and quantity of our relationships we share.

These words very much ring true to me and I believe this very strongly, but nonetheless I am going to be just north of one of the hottest markets in the world, Brazil. My favorite stock from this market comes in the form of the countries largest bank.

Financial Humor for the Holidays (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment

Hope you all have a very Merry Christmas and Happy Holiday season. Here are some financial definitions for you to refresh up on for before the new year starts. Enjoy!

Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment

From all of us here at the Lapa family - we wish you and yours a safe and happy holiday season. Now is a good time to trade out those losers and under-performers of the year (like General Motors (GM) if you own it) and get ready for the New Year. A new year that will consist of a new economic chairman, Ben Bernake, to replace the legendary Greenspan. Bernake is well-qualified candidate with a more flexible attitude when it comes to controlling inflation rates. I would expect the markets to grow at a quicker pace for the duration of his term in office as oppose to the Greenspan era.

22Dollars - Online Edition (Technorati) Technorati | (Del.icio.us) Del.icio.us | (Digg) Digg | (Blinklist) Blinklist | (Comment) Comment

Hi everyone! Well after a long "vacation" from the blogging community - I have finally caved into all the peer pressure and reinstated the fun with a much more focus driven site. This of course does not mean I will not talk about personal stuff, but the main idea behind this new site was to talk about investment ideas, politics and other worldly issues as well travel and business. Geared towards the young professional, this site will be written by successful young professionals who are ambitious and driven to succeed in life.

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