Manage Your Benjamins

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credit scoring
Alternative Credit Scoring Models: Pros and Cons

The next frontier in underwriting is here. Companies are collecting all kinds of data to improve the value of their credit scoring algorithms. The promise is great, but there are reasons for concern as well.

Adam Rust
credit scoring with alternative data sharing
child support being taken from a bank account
worker seeking early access to his paycheck
Save Money on Driving
public policy
Finding the Right Balance with Fintech Innovation

The virtue of fintech starts with its ability to reduce friction. The best innovations solve problems that needed to be fixed. Nonetheless, we need to be very mindful about getting it right.

Adam Rust
fintech data privacy
saving money for retirement
tax filer fills out 1040
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Bank approves person with bad credit for bank account
credit score factors for bank accounts
public policy
Finding the Credit Invisibles

When our system for evaluating the creditworthiness of consumers fails to account for the payment histories of 26 million Americans, we have a systemic problem. It’s time to utilize payment of utility bills and telephone records to bring the credit invisibles into the financial marketplace.

Adam Rust
Credit invisible person who wants to establish a credit score
A comparison of fees and conditions of Direct Express to Varo Money and Waleteros
Young person traveling who needs a US bank account
Clock ticking on early pay without overdraft fees
Employer with no money needs early pay of wages
Immigrant Bank Account SSN or ITIN
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Find a Surcharge-Free ATM
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Cost to Send Money to Mexico from US bank account
Mother and Child with Earned Income Credit
overdraft fee amounts
Legal Process Fees at the Big Banks

You need to pick the right bank account when you leave prison. Make sure your bank won't take advantage of you with lots of fees.

Adam Rust
Probation-related fees
money transfer with a prepaid debit card
tax refund loans
Lowe's Promoting Block Tax Refund Advance Loan

True, a Refund Advance Loan is marketed as free, and technically, it is free. But most people will still pay a fee to access their money. Why is Lowe's involved with RALs in the first place?

Adam Rust
Tax Loan RAL Coupon Lowes
Paying Taxi Cab Driver
Big Data Lending
Financial Stress Under Water
Personal Finance
How to Prevent an Internet Payday Lender from Debiting Your Checking Account

Internet payday loan lenders will ask you to grant them access to your checking account. It is the only way they can collect. If you believe that the lender intends to withdraw funds that you do not owe, then your only option is to close your checking account. Here's what you must do.

Adam Rust
Close checking account from payday lenders
The Day the CFPB Turned its Back on Veterans

In its consent order against Mark Corbett, the CFPB demonstrated how someone could create real harm to our veterans. But when it only applied a penalty of $1, the CFPB failed to do its duty.

Adam Rust
Veteran Saluting Flag
overdraft disclosure
photo check deposit
FDIC Insurance
bank accounts for re-entry from incarceration
Mental health financial stress
prisoner work release
32 Tips to Save Money

Bottom line – the best solution for most people will not be to earn more, but to spend less.

Adam Rust
Saving Nest Egg
fired worker last paycheck
FTC Settles with NetSpend Over Blocked Accounts

A class action lawsuit against NetSpend has been settled. Approximately 430,000 account holders will share $10 million in refunds as a result of a settlement with the FTC.

Adam Rust
NetSpend FTC settlement
check cashing
Paycheck fraud: Stop Payment Fees and Holder in Due Course

If your worker lies about losing a paycheck, it may be a part of a costly scam. If he or she goes ahead and cashes the check, employers might owe a stop payment fee, an insufficient funds fee, and the full face value of the check.

Adam Rust
Worker check fraud
Sole Payroll Card
vault preventing people from getting a bank account
Hispanic couple spending money
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How To Use a Debit Card
Buying Gas with a Prepaid Debit Card

If you attempt to use a prepaid debit card to buy gas at a pump, your card may be declined and your balance may fall to zero. Here's how to avoid that problem.

Adam Rust
Buying gas at the pump
Retiree Debt
Personal Finance
How to Use Prepaid Debit Cards for Envelope Budgeting

I like the envelope system. It works. But it is cash-only. The prepaid debit cards with sub-accounts maintain its best features but give a person the convenience of digital transactions.

Adam Rust
Person using the envelope budgeting system
Woman paying online with a debit card
Small business owner using direct deposit
business owner using direct deposit
Better Design Equals Better Banking

If we want to improve the financial health of lower-income households, we have to understand the value of product design.

Adam Rust
car repair emergency expense
behavioral savings
Credit card fraud
Bank accounts for the visually impaired

Many visually-impaired people live without a bank account. Several technologies have come to market recently which will enhance the ability of these individuals to manage an account.

Adam Rust
Blind person banking