Steadfast FinancesSteadfast Finances - Banking
30 April 2012

Staying in the Black with the Bank

 Personal Finance         No comments

When you are riddled with debt and struggling to pay it down dramatically month to month, maintaining a positive balance in the checking account can be difficult at times. You find yourself overpaying on a credit card only to overdraw your bank account a week or two later. However, there are a few easy ways that you can better many your expenses so that you can pay down your debt in the amounts that you want, without overspending and putting your bank account in the red.

22 April 2011

Shutting Down My Lending Club Investments

In a decision I consider nearly as bad as the “New Coke” experience, Lending Club has decided to limit the questions an investor can ask potential borrowers. The resulting policy only allows investors to ask a limited series of pre-approved questions. For me, this is unacceptable. The primary reason for the change in transparency was [...]

3 March 2011

Tracking Performance of Lending Club Investment Returns

After posting my Lending Club investment strategy and returns for over a year now, I thought today was as good as any to post a quick summary and track my net annual return volatility. Summary Outperforming Lending Club’s benchmark index of 9.7% by ~4.5%. Loan payments generate ~$250/month of cash for reinvestment. Defaults: 2 loans [...]

28 February 2011

Michael Lewis on GPS: A Remarkable Return to ‘Normalcy’

 Financial Crisis         No comments

Well said by Michael Lewis on Fareed Zakaria’s GPS… If you had told me in early 2009 that all these big Wall Street firms would be back even bigger and paying big bonuses and essentially socializing their losses but their gains privatized and that the American people put up with it — that’s the incredible [...]

17 February 2011

MERS Fallout: 50% of All Mortgages in U.S. Now in Question

The Mortgage Electronic Registration System, known as “MERS”, fallout just keeps getting better. In recent months legal challenges have arisen regarding alleged inadequacies and improprieties in the foreclosure process including allegations of insufficient or incorrect supporting documentation and challenges to the legal capacity of parties right to foreclose. Consistent with the Membership Rules there will [...]

12 February 2011

Michael Lewis: California’s Debt Crisis is Topic of Next Article

One would have thought Michael Lewis’ The Big Short would be the pinnacle of financial post-mortem exams. But his latest masterpiece on Ireland’s financial house of cards poignantly summarizes the “Perfect Storm” effect of behavioral economics: unregulated financial markets, greed for making money trumps fear of losing money, and good old fashioned herd psychology. Most [...]

8 February 2011

Why I Don’t Use Web or Mobile Personal Finance Software

With the rise of web based and mobile financial tools, I’ve been something of a late adopter. Actually, I’m more of a “no” adopter. Sure, I trade a few stocks online or I’ll purchase a few gifts using a one time use only credit card number, but other than that, my trust in placing all [...]

7 February 2011

My First Lending Club Loan Default

They say you always remember your first more than the others… So yes, after 1 1/2 to 2 years as a Lending Club investor, I finally got hit with my first default where a small $24 loss took my pretty little 15.64% NAR out behind the woodshed to a tune of 0.86%. A 14.78% NAR [...]

27 January 2011

Soldiers Returning Home to Foreclosure

 Real Estate         3 comments

How’s this for the ultimate sad country song: Go to war. Bank forecloses on your home. Bank sells it to someone else. Wife leaves you. Lose your kids. Can’t get a job. Find out you’re disabled. Classy move right? More from the NYT article: Typically, banks respond quickly to public reports of errors affecting military [...]

24 January 2011

Take a Guess Who is Paying Fannie & Freddie’s Legal Fees

Only in America! Not only did taxpayers bail out Fannie and Freddie and overpay (still overpaying) the executives, but we’re also paying their legal bills. Kinda like paying the Captain of the Titantic an overly generous salary for ramming the iceberg, rescuing him from certain death, then paying his legal bills after the families of [...]

19 January 2011

Bridging the “Trust Deficit” in U.S. Real Estate

 Banking,Real Estate         No comments

I found the use of the phrase “trust deficit” in U.S. real estate amusing since it’s a euphemistic way of saying “no one wants to buy an asset that may decline in future value“. Hello? Double dip in real estate anyone? You’ve [FHA Commissioner David Stevens] talked a lot at this confidence about the lack [...]

17 January 2011

Financial Reformation: Banks, Brokers & Middlemen No More?

In an older post that made the rounds with the entrepreneurial and innovation crowd, I touched upon the idea that the Internet is making middlemen obsolete. This isn’t a novel concept, but if you’re in a business where you’re acting as an intermediary – a centralized position where you purposely keep your customers away from [...]

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