Amy Fontinelle

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  1. If I don't have any kids and want to leave all of my worldly ...
    Personal Finance

    If I don't have any kids and want to leave all of my worldly ...

    A 1993 law, Section 2-907 of the Uniform Probate Code, changed the treatment of a deceased individual's pet from that of a piece of property to an entity that requires care. As a result, it is possible ...
  2. I want to invest my emergency fund to earn interest. What ...

    I want to invest my emergency fund to earn interest. What ...

    When considering where to put your emergency money, a key consideration is making sure you'll be able to access the money quickly, easily and without penalty, when you need it. Financial professionals ...
  3. What is the Dodd-Frank Act? How does it affect me?

    What is the Dodd-Frank Act? How does it affect me?

    The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act is a massive piece of financial reform legislation passed by the Obama administration in 2010 as a response to the financial crisis of 2008. ...
  4. Funds From Operations (FFO) To Total Debt Ratio

    Funds From Operations (FFO) To Total Debt Ratio

    A leverage ratio that a credit rating agency or an investor can use to evaluate a company’s financial risk. FFO to total debt is a metric comparing earnings from net operating income plus depreciation, ...
  5. Qualified Mortgage

    Qualified Mortgage

    A mortgage in which the lender has analyzed the borrower's ability to repay based on income, assets and debts; has not allowed the borrower to take on monthly debt payments in excess of 43% of pre-tax ...
  6. Bond Yields: Current Yield And YTM
    Bonds & Fixed Income

    Bond Yields: Current Yield And YTM

    A bond's current yield, also called "bond yield," is the interest it pays annually divided by the bond's price. A stock's current yield, also called "dividend yield," is the sum of its annual dividends ...
  7. Bubblecovery


    A condition in which the economy appears to be coming back from a recession, but may actually be entering an asset bubble masquerading as a recovery because of the ease of obtaining inexpensive loans to ...
  8. What Is Collateral?
    Credit & Loans

    What Is Collateral?

    Collateral is property or other assets that a borrower offers a lender to secure a loan. If the borrower stops making the promised loan payments, the lender can seize the collateral to recoup its losses.
  9. Cash Accounting

    Cash Accounting

    An accounting method where receipts are recorded during the period they are received, and expenses are recorded in the period in which they are actually paid.
  10. Cash Flow From Operating Activities (CFO)

    Cash Flow From Operating Activities (CFO)

    An accounting item indicating the cash a company brings in from ongoing, regular business activities. Cash flow from operating activities does not include long-term capital or investment costs. It can ...
  11. Articles Of Incorporation

    Articles Of Incorporation

    A set of documents filed with a government body to legally document the creation of a corporation. Also referred to as the "corporate charter."
  12. Ticker Tape

    Ticker Tape

    A computerized device that relays financial information to investors around the world, including the stock symbol, the latest price and the volume on securities as they are traded.
  13. Deed Of Surrender

    Deed Of Surrender

    A legal document that transfers property ownership for a specified time period, provided certain conditions are met. This allows someone to relinquish his/her claims on a particular property to the individual ...
  14. Operating Activities

    Operating Activities

    A company's typical daily processes that generate income. Operating activities are those that pertain to a company's core business activities, such as manufacturing, distributing, marketing and selling ...
  15. Constant Dollar

    Constant Dollar

    An adjusted value of currency used to compare dollar values from one period to another. Due to inflation, the purchasing power of the dollar changes over time, so in order to compare dollar values from ...
  16. Money Market Fund

    Money Market Fund

    An investment fund that holds the objective to earn interest for shareholders while maintaining a net asset value (NAV) of $1 per share. Mutual funds, brokerage firms and banks offer these funds. Portfolios ...
  17. Economic Value

    Economic Value

    The worth of a good or service as determined by people's preferences and the tradeoffs they choose to make given their scarce resources, or the value the market places on an item. Economic value is represented ...
  18. Shotgun Wedding

    Shotgun Wedding

    A forced union of two companies or two jurisdictions that otherwise would not choose to merge. A government can cause a shotgun wedding between two companies to prevent a shock to the economy, or between ...
  19. Double Declining Balance Depreciation Method

    Double Declining Balance Depreciation Method

    One of two common methods a business uses to account for the expense of a long-lived asset. The double declining balance depreciation method is an accelerated depreciation method that counts 20% of the ...
  20. Ugly Duckling Stock

    Ugly Duckling Stock

    A share of ownership in a company that is underperforming but has the potential to significantly improve. Ugly duckling stocks can be thought of as down, but not out. These stocks might be considered speculative ...
  21. Investment Bank - IB

    Investment Bank - IB

    A financial intermediary that performs a variety of services. These include underwriting, acting as an intermediary between a securities issuer and the investing public, facilitating mergers and other ...
  22. Days Payable Outstanding - DPO

    Days Payable Outstanding - DPO

    A company's average payable period. Calculated as: ending accounts payable / (cost of sales/number of days).
  23. Discounting With The Discount Rate
    Investing Basics

    Discounting With The Discount Rate

    The discount rate is the interest rate you need to earn on a given amount of money today to end up with a given amount of money in the future. Let's say you need $1,000 one year from now to go on vacation. ...
  24. Provident Fund

    Provident Fund

    A compulsory, government-managed retirement savings scheme used in India, Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, Mexico and other countries that is similar to the United States' Social Security program. A provident ...
  25. Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP)

    Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP)

    A medical coverage source for individuals under age 19 whose parents earn too much income to qualify for Medicaid, but not enough to pay for private coverage. Children's Health Insurance Program coverage ...
  26. Why Banks Are Scrambling To Hear Your Complaints
    Personal Finance

    Why Banks Are Scrambling To Hear Your Complaints

    Find out the real reasons why banks are trying to reach angry customers before they file a complaint to the CFPB.
  27. Fixed-Rate Bond

    Fixed-Rate Bond

    A bond that pays the same amount of interest for its entire duration. The benefit of owning a fixed-rate bond is that investors know with certainty how much interest they will earn and for how long. As ...
  28. Yield To Maturity (YTM)

    Yield To Maturity (YTM)

    The rate of return anticipated on a bond if held until the maturity date. YTM is considered a long-term bond yield expressed as an annual rate. The calculation of YTM takes into account the current market ...
  29. Security Interest

    Security Interest

    A legal claim on collateral that has been pledged, usually to obtain a loan. The borrower provides the lender with a security interest on certain securities/assets that can be repossessed if the borrower ...
  30. Mortgage


    A debt instrument, secured by the collateral of specified real estate property, that the borrower is obliged to pay back with a predetermined set of payments. Mortgages are used by individuals and businesses ...
  31. Term To Maturity

    Term To Maturity

    The remaining life of a financial instrument. In bonds, it is the time between when the bond is issued and when it matures (its maturity date), at which time the issuer must redeem the bond by paying the ...
  32. Electronic Communication Network (ECN)

    Electronic Communication Network (ECN)

    An electronic system that attempts to eliminate the role of a third party in executing orders entered by an exchange market maker or an over-the-counter market maker, and permits such orders to be entirely ...
  33. Goldilocks Economy

    Goldilocks Economy

    An economy that is not so hot that it causes inflation, and not so cold that it causes a recession. This term is used to describe the U.S. economy of the mid- to late-1990s - it was "not too hot, not too ...
  34. Floating-Rate Note - FRN

    Floating-Rate Note - FRN

    A note with a variable interest rate. The interest rate is usually adjusted every six months and is tied to a certain money-market index. Also known as a "floater."
  35. Deed Of Reconveyance

    Deed Of Reconveyance

    A document issued by a mortgage holder indicating that the borrower is released from the mortgage debt. The deed of reconveyance transfers the property title back to the borrower. It is most commonly issued ...
  36. Fiscal Policy

    Fiscal Policy

    Government spending policies that influence macroeconomic conditions. These policies affect tax rates, interest rates and government spending in an effort to control the economy.
  37. Financial Planning Association

    Financial Planning Association

    A U.S.-based professional organization formed in the year 2000 that helps members of the public find an ethical, objective, client-focused financial planner. The FPA also educates the public through seminars, ...
  38. National Association of Personal Financial Advisors (NAPFA)

    National Association of Personal Financial Advisors (NAPFA)

    A U.S.-based professional association for professional fee-only financial advisors. Formed in 1983, NAPFA requires its members to adhere to the organization's code of ethics and take an annual fiduciary ...
  39. A Day In The Life Of An Economist

    A Day In The Life Of An Economist

    We've interviewed three economists with very different job descriptions to give you an idea of the many possibilities this career choice offers.
  40. Purple Chip Stock

    Purple Chip Stock

    A term coined by portfolio manager John Schwinghamer to describe a stock that is "the royalty of blue chip stocks," or the highest-quality, lowest-risk of these top-notch stocks. Schwinghamer describes ...
  41. Indentured Servitude

    Indentured Servitude

    The condition of European immigrants to the American colonies who worked for landowners and were considered property. In exchange for four to seven years of indentured servitude, these immigrants' travel, ...
  42. Law Of Diminishing Marginal Productivity

    Law Of Diminishing Marginal Productivity

    An economic principle that states that while increasing one input and keeping other inputs at the same level may initially increase output, further increases in that input will have a limited effect, and ...
  43. A Day In The Life Of An Auditor

    A Day In The Life Of An Auditor

    If you like the idea of examining and attesting to a company's financial performance for a living, a career in auditing might be right for you.
  44. A Day In The Life Of An Actuary

    A Day In The Life Of An Actuary

    We take a look at the typical workday of three actuaries who work for different types of companies and who are at different stages in their careers.
  45. Delinquent Mortgage

    Delinquent Mortgage

    A mortgage for which the borrower has failed to make payments as required in the loan documents. If the borrower can't bring the payments current within a certain time period, the lender may initialize ...
  46. Electronic Commerce - ecommerce

    Electronic Commerce - ecommerce

    A type of business model, or segment of a larger business model, that enables a firm or individual to conduct business over an electronic network, typically the internet. Electronic commerce operates in ...
  47. Trickle-Down Theory

    Trickle-Down Theory

    An economic idea which states that decreasing marginal and capital gains tax rates - especially for corporations, investors and entrepreneurs - can stimulate production in the overall economy. According ...
  48. Capital


    1) Financial assets or the financial value of assets, such as cash; and 2) The factories, machinery and equipment owned by a business.
  49. Due-On-Sale Clause

    Due-On-Sale Clause

    A provision in a mortgage contract that requires the mortgage to be repaid in full upon a sale or conveyance of interest in the property that secures the mortgage. Mortgages with a due-on-sale clause are ...
  50. Lifestyle Inflation

    Lifestyle Inflation

    Increasing your spending when your income goes up. Lifestyle inflation tends to continue each time someone gets a raise, making it perpetually difficult to get out of debt, save for retirement or meet ...
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