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January 2013

January 31, 2022

Durex launches condom delivery service in Dubai

The Middle East is a land of the most bizarre conveniences.

No, really: there, you can find stuff like a vending machine that spits out gold, or the Pizza Hut pie ringed with mini cheeseburgers.

Though what if you're on a date, say, and you've had your cheeseburger pizza and wooed her with a bit of gold?

You're back in your room and the moment's right but, ah, geez, your pockets are empty. What do you do?

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Divorced? Separated? Would you ever consider getting married again?

Statistics suggest that more second marriages fail than first marriages.

Despite this, many divorced or widowed men and women do remarry, complicating their financial affairs and creating a fluid network of step-relatives, all with their own sets of financial expectations.

As couples get older and their lives more complicated, more of those entering new relationships seem to be choosing to postpone or forgo such formal arrangements for fear of these financial consequences.

And second-time-around Canadians are much more inclined to talk about marriage contracts or prenuptial agreements than they once were.

Are you one of them? Do you know someone who is?  

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January 30, 2022

The great Canadian penny roundup — er, round off

One cent.penny.pennies.Adrian Wyld.The Canadian PressWe won’t be penny pinching anymore — we’ll be nickel and diming it.

The Canadian penny’s days are numbered. On Feb. 4, consumers, businesses, charities and financial institutions are encouraged to start rounding off cash transactions.

That’s the date the Canadian government has set to phase out our penny and the date when the Canadian Mint will no longer be distributing the much loved one-cent piece. The final penny was actually minted last spring.

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Nearly half of grads working jobs they're overqualified for: report

Youth unemployment is bad these days, so much so that we devoted nearly an entire post last week to the insane rate of jobless young people in Spain.

Since the recession hit in 2008 and jobs were wiped out en masse, there has been real talk about long-term consequences for the world's youths. Suddenly, we're not just dealing with a few years of unemployment but serious, definable consequences for young careers stunted at birth.

What's left, then, is a world where colleges and universities keep spitting out kids with no place to put them.

It should come as no surprise that those graduates are being forced into menial work they're far too qualified for.

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Here's why it doesn't really pay to work any more: report

When is it better to earn $29,000 than to earn $69,000? When you’re a single mom living in Pennsylvania, it seems.

Describing what it feels to be the painful reality in America, Tyler Durden, the collective that writes to inflame at Zerohedge, concludes that "for increasingly more it is now more lucrative - in the form of actual disposable income - to sit, do nothing, and collect various welfare entitlements, than to work."

Here's another zinger: New York Times columnist Nicholas D. Kristof recently wrote about families in the Appalachian hill country pulling their kids out of literacy classes since, if they learn to read and write, the parents are likely to lose their monthly stipend for kids with intellectual disabilities.

Durden is actually basing his argument on that of Gary Alexander, Secretary of Public Welfare for Pennsylvania, who published a paper last summer called Welfare’s Failure and the Solution, a scathing indictment of his own state's economic safety net.

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January 29, 2022

Tuition and teens: why saving makes cents

The younger generation has grown up with a confused sense of their own needs and wants. We get a skewed sense of the necessities of life from advertisers who target us to buy, buy, buy. But when is it enough? Has this generation lost the ability to understand the value of a dollar?

As the holes burn deeper into the teenage pocket, the daunting costs of post-secondary tuition are also on the rise. Statistics Canada reveals a dramatic 15 per cent increase in average Canadian tuition fees since just 2008 ($5,581, up from $4,747), with medicine and law-related degree programs peaking well over $10,000 per year.

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Working into retirement becoming a growing trend

The dream of a leisurely retirement may be farther away than you think.

According to a new study by BMO Financial Group, more and more Canadians — 81 per cent to be exact — plan on working during their retirement.

Larry Moser, regional sales manager at Bank of Montreal, says it is a growing trend amongst retirees who feel the need for an additional income going into their retirement years.

“People are living a lot longer today,” explains Moser. “Life expectancy was typically around 72 years old. Now people are living well into their 80s and even 90s and are having to fund their retirement a lot longer than they ever had to [before].”

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Chinese millionaire sells cans of fresh air to offer smog relief

If you haven't been following this China smog story -- and really, guys, let's try to keep up with the Asian urban pollution beat, shall we? -- things have gotten pretty bad in eastern parts of the country.

So thick is the smog, in fact, that airlines have had to cancel flights, prompting China to temporarily shut some of its factories and keep government cars off the road.

Beijing may be worst. According to the Associated Press, the Chinese capital yesterday was a "colourless scene. Street lamps and the outlines of buildings receded into a white haze as pedestrians donned face masks to guard against the caustic air."

Bad as it's gotten, one Chinese entrepreneur thinks he's found the solution: canned air.

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Live coverage: Research In Motion launches the BlackBerry 10

Join us as Research In Motion unveils the new BlackBerry operating system and smartphones. Canadian Press business reporter David Friend will report from New York City and consumer tech reporter Michael Oliveira will file Toronto.

* Find out more about RIM and the new BlackBerry 10 here.

Will Canada mimic U.S. government's student loan forgiveness program?

Recent graduates trapped under a mountain of student loan debt and worrying about interest rates rising in the future may wish they lived across the border.

Under certain circumstances, the U.S. government will forgive the remainder of your federal student loan debt if you work in the public sector or for a registered nonprofit for 10 years and make your payments on time.

The Public Service Loan Forgiveness program is open to indebted students who become police officers, firefighters, emergency medical technicians or public school teachers, for instance.

And they're still not satisfied. Those who haven’t paid off their student loans overwhelmingly want those loans forgiven by their lenders, according to a recent survey released by online research firm, Instant.ly.

In this country, however, you're expected to pay it all back -- unless you're in the medical profession, that is.

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Gordon PowersGordon Powers

A long-time fund company executive, Gordon Powers now heads up the Affinity Group, a financial services consulting firm. Gordon was a personal finance columnist for the Globe & Mail for many years, has taught retirement planning...

Jason BucklandJason Buckland

The modern-day MC Hammer of money, Jason can often be seen spending cash that isn’t his with the efficiency of a Wilt Chamberlain first date. After cutting his teeth as a reporter for the Toronto Sun, he joined the MSN Money team with...