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Sallie Mae Survey Shows Families are Paying More for College Educations

by Amie Kabera, age 16

According to Danielle Douglas of The Washington Post, parents are relying more and more on their annual income to pay for their children's college educations.

A survey conducted by national financial company Sallie Mae revealed perhaps surprising results. In 2014, families with children in college spent an average of $24,164 on tuition and books, a 16 percent jump from the previous year and the highest jump since 2010.

Most families of students who participated in the survey--62%--did not borrow money to pay for college in 2015. However, the student survey-takers themselves borrowed nearly three quarters of the total cost for their college education. Seventy-four percent of students surveyed worked through the school year to help cover the costs for college. [read more]

College Textbooks Don't Have to Put You in the Red

by Enjoyiana Nururdin, age 17

Today's average college student spends up to $1,000 a year on textbooks. Most students also cover other expenses such as room, board, phone bill, laundry, and car payments; tuition alone can cost an additional $10,000 to $70,000 a year. So while it can be tempting not to pay for a bunch of glossy pages you may never use again, purchasing a textbook is a smart investment. It's just how you make the purchase that makes all the difference.

A recent study completed by the U.S. Public Interest Research Group showed that seven out of 10 college students “had not purchased a textbook at least once because they found the cost too high.” These students understand that textbooks are an important part of college, but they cite textbooks as too big of a financial burden, especially when already struggling to pay for college on their own.

Even though it may seem like there is no solution to the rising costs of textbooks, there are alternatives to spending nearly $1,000 per year on them. One solution many college students adopt to avoid the cost of textbooks is not to buy them; this is not a smart idea, however. Professors typically assume that by signing up for a class, a student is accepting the fact that he or she will need to purchase a textbook to understand the course's content. Textbooks are needed to complete homework assignments; failure to complete homework results in a lack of understanding and can ultimately cause students to fail a class. Purchasing a textbook may be costly, but not as costly as failing a class and having to re-pay to take the same course again in order to graduate. [read more]

Did You Know the Income Tax Started in Wisconsin?

by Deney Li, age 14

Ever since World War II, all U.S. citizens have been required to pay income taxes. The income tax affects many states including Wisconsin and targets many top-earning businesses. This has led to an expansion of the national tax system over time.

Wisconsin created an individual income tax in 1911, thus becoming the first state to have such a law. There was much argument in the legislature about this tax, which initially required citizens to pay one percent of their annual incomes above $1,000 and six percent on incomes above $12,000. The Wisconsin tax did not affect many people at the time, however, because most did not make the $1,000 cut and were therefore “tax exempt.” But, the tax was still protested against by big businesses, who saw it as a money leech. Some businesses even threatened to leave the state.

The federal government soon caught on to the income tax idea. In 1913, the U.S. Congress levied a national income tax that affected less than 10 percent of the American population at the time. The tax eventually expanded due to the nation's financial needs during World War II. [read more]

Adolescentes pueden obtener tarjetas recargables, con la supervisión de sus padres

por Mariana Gómez, 16 años

Las tarjetas de crédito son difíciles de obtener. Por eso es importante que se usen responsablemente para no quedar en deudas.

TD Go es una tarjeta de prepago recargable creada especialmente para los jóvenes. La tarjeta se puede usar como si fuera una tarjeta de crédito o de débito, excepto que es más fácil de obtener. Los padres pueden abrir una cuenta y meter dinero en las tarjetas TD Go por el Internet usando una tarjeta de débito o de crédito. Los padres también pueden supervisar por Internet los gastos que sus hijos acumulan usando la tarjeta. Se puede recibir notificaciones cada vez que se use.

Cuando se saca una tarjeta de crédito, es importante poner atención sobre cualquier cambio que pueda afectar a la cuenta. También es importante pagar la cantidad que se debe completamente, y a tiempo. Si no se puede pagar lo que se debe al final del mes, es importante pagar tan siquiera la mitad de lo que se debe para que el interés no duplique el costo. Al contrario, las tarjetas TD Go no acumulan interés porque son de prepago. [read more]

Recent Financial Literacy Articles

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According to Danielle Douglas of The Washington Post, parents are relying more and more on their annual income to pay for their children's college educations. [read more...]
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Las tarjetas de crédito son difíciles de obtener. Por eso es importante que se usen responsablemente para no quedar en deudas. TD Go es una tarjeta de prepago recargable creada especialmente para los jóvenes. La tarjeta se puede usar como si fuera una tarjeta de crédito o de débito, excepto que es más fácil de obtener. Los padres pueden abrir una cuenta y meter dinero en las tarjetas TD Go por el Internet usando una tarjeta de débito o de crédito. Los padres también pueden supervisar por Internet los gastos que sus hijos acumulan usando la tarjeta. Se puede recibir notificaciones cada vez que se use. [read more...]
Today's average college student spends up to $1,000 a year on textbooks. Most students also cover other expenses such as room, board, phone bill, laundry, and car payments; tuition alone can cost an additional $10,000 to $70,000 a year. So while it can be tempting not to pay for a bunch of glossy pages you may never use again, purchasing a textbook is a smart investment. It's just how you make the purchase that makes all the difference. [read more...]
Ever since World War II, all U.S. citizens have been required to pay income taxes. The income tax affects many states including Wisconsin and targets many top-earning businesses. This has led to an expansion of the national tax system over time. [read more...]
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