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Welcome to the 123rd Carnival of Personal Finance (The Boo! edition). October is a scary month. Not only is it home to All Hallows’ Eve, it is also home to some of the scariest stock market crashes in our history. For this edition of the CoPF, I’ll trace the history of some of the largest single-day market plunges that occurred in the month of October. To comfort us during these frightening times, I’ve also included some beautiful photographs taken by a good friend of mine (and used by his express permission). The pictures will help remind us that while money management is important, there are some things in life that money just can’t buy. So with that, let’s get on with the carnival. Each submission is organized by category, and I’ll begin with my selection of the best articles of the week.

Editor’s Picks

My Impulse Buy Savings Plan (@ Caustic Musings): “One of my unspoken personal vows to myself this year (call it an early New Year’s resolution) was to stop buying so much crap on impulse.”

How China Could Crash the US Dollar on a Whim (@ Currency Trading): “This article will go beyond forex reserves and discuss several other facets of China’s economy. From US house prices to global commodity prices, from interest rates to inflation rates, we will explore how China could cripple the US economy, both willfully and unintentionally, if so desired.”

Use Halloween to Teach Kids Money Lessons (@ Grad Money Matters): “How can one thing mean two totally different things to different people? Take Halloween treats for example. Kids are delighted by it. Parents, not so much. Candies filled with high fructose corn syrup and food coloring, and kids that are hyper-active with so much sugar intake that they literally bounce off the walls. It’s every parent’s nightmare and the perfect scary ending to the Halloween holiday! But here’s a trick that will sound more like a treat – this unsavory situation can easily be turned into a money lesson for kids!”

36 Important Money Saving Tips (@ Frugal Journey): “Over the past year, I’ve written 100’s of money saving tips, on a wide range of topics. Today, I’ve gathered all my favorites into one source. Now, the best of the best, is available right at your fingertips.”

Change Your Child’s Genetics By Giving Up The BMW (@ The Happy Rock): “We recently talked about financially changing your family tree as financial motivation, but for those of us needed some more convincing here is evidence that our decisions about money go much deeper than just dollars and cents.”

List of money related forums and discussion boards (@ Might Bargain Hunter): “Discussion boards are a great resource and a good place to exchange ideas with like-minded people or, at least, people with interests similar to yours. Anyway, I hope you find this list of money-related forums useful; maybe you’ll find a new favorite.”

the myth of the parent that NEEDS to work (@ brip blap): “Many couples claim to be “forced” to work two jobs to make ends meet, but is it really “making ends meet” when you don’t live a frugal lifestyle?”

I’m Responsible For One Of The Worst Interviews Ever (@ A Penny Closer): “After a few months at my new job an old work acquaintance (let’s call him David) contacted me to see how I was doing. I explained that I liked the new position with this smaller company and he asked if I could get him an interview.” And that’s when the trouble began.

October 27, 1997: The night before, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index plummeted 6%. The losses spread to European exchanges, which fell about 2%. The U.S. markets dropped from the opening bell. At 2:36 PM, trading was halted for 30 minutes when the DOW dropped 350 points, triggering its first trading curb. When trading resumed, the markets continued their free fall, and the second trading curb closed the markets for the day at 3:35 PM. Described as a “mini-crash,” the Dow had plummeted 554.26 points, or 7.18%.


Personal Finance

Why Do We Read and Follow Money Tips But Never Become Rich (@ MoneyNing): “You are your own enemy! Hopefully the more you read about how humans work the more you stay out of your own way!”

Ten Tips to Prepare for Getting Married (@ Watch My Money Maker): “People preparing to get married should take some steps to make sure their finances are not a distraction from newlywed bliss.”

My ‘Success’ Story (@ Canadian Dream: Free at 45): “This post is just a story of how I started out with a net worth of -$80,000 and turned it around to +$200,000 in 7.5 years.”

When She Makes More Than He (@ Barbara Stanny): “I am submitting a blog post I did in response to Jean Chatsky’s article on women earning more than men.”

My Cousin’s Birthday – I got the Present (@ Single Guy Money): “I got him a birthday card with a $25 gift certificate. He also got me a card. At the end of the dinner, he presented me with the card. Inside was a “Thank You” card and a copy of his savings account statement. He has managed to save up a total of $1000!!!”

Getting on the road to financial success (@ One Snarky Chica with Issues): “That was when I started realizing that I need to be better with money. Up until that point I was living life in the now and thinking that I would worry about retirement if I lived that long.”

Car Buying Tips To Help with Your Holiday Season Car Purchase (@ Askpatty): “Many people know that no two drivers are the same, which is why we decided to get down to the fundamentals of shopping for a new car. We all have needs and getting help along the way will save us lots of effort and make us better educated buyers.”

Life Insurance, How Much Is Enough? (@ The Road 2 Riches): “Life Insurance may be taboo to talk about because no one wants to talk about their mortality, but Life Insurance is something everyone definitely needs.”

Playing Along at Home (@ Insure Blog): “It’s Open Enrollment time again, and lots of folks are wrestling with health insurance choices. InsureBlog’s Henry Stern tells about his own family’s decision-making process, as they’re going through it now, too.”

Major Lack In Financial Education (@ The Financial Blogger): “This is an open letter to all governments. I am addressing this situation to all countries because I think it does not matter if you live in the USA or in Japan, our constant need for money is one of our biggest common points.”

My Personal Finance ‘Success Story’ (@ Finance and Fat): “I wrote this for the Get Rich Slowly writing project. [H]owever, I thought it turned out to be a pretty inspirational post, and I think it can help someone else who is getting started at getting out of debt.”

Live On Less Income – Give Yourself a Voluntary Paycut (@ Cash Money Life): “This article is about spending less than you earn, so you can have a financial buffer which you can use to pay down debt, invest, or be prepared for the worst.”

October 5, 1932: The Dow dropped “just” 5.09 points, closing at 66.07 for a percentage decline of 7.15%. 1932 was the close of the worst bear market in history. From 1930 to 1932, the market shed almost 90% of its value.



To stay long or not to stay long? (@ The Wild Investor): “This articles looks at the dilemmas I face when trying to day trade rather then long trade, and, in turn, I share characteristics of each type of trader.”

Tax FREE Money Market Mutual Funds! (@ Fire Finance): “Among the available choices we would like to highlight three muni funds (short term) because of their good reputation, high yield and most importantly their low expense ratios. We have considered mostly the short term muni funds.”

Starting a Small-Cap Position in my Dividend Portfolio (@ The Dividend Guy): “Over the past couple of weeks I have been investigating whether small-cap stocks have a place in my dividend portfolio and how I should actually get small-cap exposure into my dividend portfolio.”

Risk Assessment from The Wealthy Janitor (@ Rather-Be-Shopping): “Investing in stocks, by nature, carries with it more risk than investing in bonds. When I started investing in my retirement account, I remember asking my friend, “the wealthy janitor”, should I invest my money more in stocks or bonds?”

The Stock Market Crash of 1987 (@ Fundmastery): “It has been 20 years since that memorable day when the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell over 22%.”

Company Stock: Don’t Put All Your Eggs in this Basket (@ No Paper Money): “If your current cash flow (salary) is controlled by Company A, why would you rely on Company A to provide your retirement income (401K) as well?”

Active Value Investing (@ Fat Pitch Financials): “A review of the new book, Active Value Investing, by Vitaliy N. Katsenelson.”

How Much Does $20 A Week Amount To Over Time? (@ My Two Dollars): “I know a lot of people think that they cannot afford to save money because they have too many bills or don’t make enough money every week to actually put anything aside. But for those of you in this situation, I wanted to point out how even $20 a week can add up over a long time.”

13 Great Ways to Invest in Oil Without Buying Barrels (@ Stock Trading To Go): “Today oil futures hit a record high above $88 a barrel. Whether you like it or not oil prices are on the rise, and how far they go up is anyone’s guess. If you are one the many bulls, then you may want to get invested.”

Roth or Traditional IRA For Our Children? (@ My Wealth Builder): “Is it better for my daughter to use a Roth, where withdrawals are tax free, or a Traditional IRA, where contributions are tax deductible, for retirement savings? The answer is, “It depends” on whether one’s retirement tax rate is higher, lower or equal to one’s tax rate during time one is contributing.”

Eastern Europe emerging stock markets (@ StockWeb): “Is is good time to pick cheaper Indian stocks (ADRs)? Or good time to exit? Here you have major Indian ADRs traded on US markets.”

October 24, 1929: Known as “Black Thursday,” October 24 marked the beginning of the end. While on a typical day in 1929 four million shares traded hands, on this day a record 12.9 million shares were exchanged. It took stock exchange clerks until 5 AM the next morning to clear all of the transactions. When the dust had settled, the market had dropped 9%. The headline from the Brooklyn Daily Eagle above says it all.


Real Estate

A Quick Method of Evaluating Real Estate Investments (with no translation into Canadian) (@ Two Wise Acres): “A quick way of evaluating real estate investments, although it may (or may not) work in Canada.”

Preparing for a Move (@ Million Dollar Journey): “As we’ve already started our packing, here are some tips that I’ve put together in preparing for the move (mostly in hindsight).”

Why Your Home Will Sell Faster, For More Than the One Next Door (@ Silicon Valley Real Estate Blog): “Every showing is a job interview and by paying attention to what the condition of your home implies to buyers and how readily available the house is to show, you can help your home sell faster and for more than the one next door.”

Homeownership Cost Cliches: Housing Myths Part 10 (@ Home Finance Freedom): “The last article mentioned that counting just 2 factors (inflation and maintenance/repairs) can cancel any supposed real-estate “investment” appreciation but there are many more costs that can turn home ownership into a loss: mortgage interest, taxes/insurance/fees, and opportunity costs of missed investments.”

A Primer on Escrowed Funds (@ Bigger Pockets): “The parties to any residential transaction, including the brokers, should be aware of the rules and responsibilities that surround any deposit monies that are being held in escrow-the laws vary from state to state, so it is imperative that you familiarize yourself with the laws of the state that govern your particular transaction.”

October 28, 1929: The market recovered during its Friday session following Black Thursday. On Monday, however, the bottom fell out. More than 9 million shares were exchanged during a day that saw the market plunge 13%.


Frugality & Money Management

How I Live Without Using Credit Cards – My Simple System For Living On A Budget (@ No Credit Needed): “I spend every dollar, every month, on paper, before the month begins. I use YNAB Personal Budget (affiliate link) system – It’s simple to use and works with my spreadsheet program. I deposit our paychecks into my local bank – and I can move money between my local bank and my online accounts, as needed.”

Frugal ways to have fun without spending a lot on entertainment (@ One Girl’s Quest): “One of the things about being in debt and trying to pay off that debt is getting creative. You do not want to sacrifice things like entertainment and going out but at the same time you really need to put as much money as possible towards some debt pay down.”

Times When We Don’t Keep A Track Of Our Dollars (@ Money, Matter and More Musings): “We don’t always keep a track of our money. Here are a couple of examples in this post.”

Redeeming the Spirit of the Latte Factor (for the frugal) (@ Mrs Micah): “So how can the latte factor possibly be useful to us? It can be encouraging, I think. Here’s how.”

The Positive Side of Limited Closet Space (@ One Frugal Girl): “Lately, I have been enlightened by the Voluntary Simplicity movement. Voluntary simplicity is the act of consciously minimizing the pursuit of consumption in favor of spirituality, health, stress reduction, and conservation. In essence, after reading up on the subject, my goal is to reduce the accumulation of ‘stuff’ in my life.”

Five Words That Sum Up Our Debt Payoff Success (@ Blogging Away Debt): “We’ve been able to pay off a substantial amount of our debt with limited resources. The key to that success boils down to five words.”

Five Money Saving Tips for renting cars (@ My Financial Journey): “My family and I are going to be making a cross country trip next week to attend a wedding and due to the fact that we have a 2 year old and a 3 month old we decided it was probably better to rent a van than cram everyone into my wife’s Accord. I spent days calling around, doing searches on the internet, etc. and in the process think I learned a thing or too that I will share with my readers.”

Cash burns a hole in my pocket (@ plonkee money): “Why is it that I can’t keep hold of cash and do you have any tips that might help me?”

How to Save the Environment, Your Kitchen and Your Pocket Book (@ Quest For Four Pillars): “A blog action day post which tries to analyze the need for extensive renovations when perhaps a smaller makeover makes more sense.”

October 29, 1929: Known as Black Tuesday, October 29 saw the market plunge another 12%. 16.4 million shares exchanged hands on a day that marked the end of The Roaring 20’s and the beginning of The Great Depression.


Careers & Business

Lazy Man isn’t Working and it’s Okay – a Reflection by Energi Gal (@ Lazy Man and Money): “When Lazy Man first broke the news that his employer had decided to separate ways with him, I instantaneously began the 5 stages of grief.”

Factoring, another way to get money for your business when banks say no (@ Gaizer): “Factoring is a short-term loan based on the financial strength of your accounts receivable (money owed to you). Factoring is useful when you have to meet your business obligations while you wait for your customers’ payment for the products delivered or services supplied.”

Passed Up for Promotion – Now What? (@ Money and Such): “How should you react if you are passed up for a promotion in favor of a lesser qualified candidate? What if you suspect discrimination? One of my readers faced this situation.”

Some Americans Companies Are Now Going Job Onshoring (@ FILAM Personal Finance): “As you know, some of the services such as call centers, and other secondary services such as programming have been offshored to countries like India, Philippines, China, so that American companies can cut costs- The workforce is cheaper abroad. Companies are now returning these kind of services here in the United States by establishing their Information Technology branch in a town where the standard of living is not high.”

July 1932: Following Black Tuesday, the market continued its steady descent over the next month. It would not be until July 1932, however, that the market would hit bottom at 41 from its high in 1929 of 381. It would take the Dow 22 years to climb back to the high of 1929, giving new meaning to the concept of a long-term investor.


Credit & Debt

5 Tips To Increase Your Credit Score (@ Smart Money Daily): “Many people do not realize how important their credit score is, but in reality, your credit score can have an impact on your job, your housing, and your ability to get credit and loans. Many people are dealing with problems that have caused their scores to drop, and it is not always easy to bring those scores back up. This article presents 5 simple tips.”

Sound the Alarm! (@ Chris Karakas): “This article is in regards to alarming statistics that shows that some in America are not doing well managing their money.”

Credit Card Fraud Prevention Comparison Preview (@ Ask Mr. Credit Card): “I will soon be doing an in-depth study on credit card fraud protection features offered by issuers. But here is a preview of what some of the larger issuers are doing.”

Filing Bankruptcy–An Overview of Steps to Follow (@ A Bankruptcy Lawyer’s Blog): “When it comes to filing bankruptcy, there are certain steps that you need to follow. Let me give you a brief insight into the same.”

The Best Way to Get Out of Debt In My Humble Opinion (@ Rocket Finance): “This is not a paid endorsement and this link to their site will be a surprise to them, but I think that Realistic Financial is a great way to get out of debt.”

I Think Dave Ramsey is a Hypocrite (@ Free Money Finance): “Is Dave Ramsey a hypocrite for railing against credit cards and yet accepting them on his website?”

Online Shopping Made Easy with Credit Cards (@ Doris Goes Shopping): “How many of you have experienced shopping online? Or how many have bought anything online? I began shopping online few years ago, thanks to the convenience of credit cards payment and the improved security payment systems in the Web.”

October 19, 1987: Known as “Black Monday,” the market suffered its worst drop on a percentage basis, falling more than 22%. Loss to investors that day exceeded $500 billion. The cause of Black Monday is still debated, and popular explanations include program trading, over-valuation of the market, and a liquidity crisis. A few months earlier, President Reagan appointed a new Fed Chairman, Alan Greenspan, who tried to calm the markets with the release of the following statement: “The Federal Reserve, consistent with its responsibilities as the nation’s central bank, affirmed today its readiness to serve as a source of liquidity to support the economic and financial system.”


Too Creative to be Categorized

Fair Game (@ Jon Swift): “Living in a free society means having the freedom to go into debt trying to pay for the cost of health care and having the choice to quit your job and take a job you hate because it offers health insurance or to sell your house and move into a homeless shelter to pay for medical costs. People who live in societies that have socialized medicine don’t have these kinds of choices; they have to take the health care the government gives them.”

The Mental Virus That’s Keeping You Broke (@ Inspired Money Maker): “I have discovered a major Mental Virus that got installed in my mind at some point in my life and it’s time to remove it.”

How To Become An Efficient Procrastinator (@ Entrepreneur’s Journey): “Over the past few weeks I implemented a method to help get the most from procrastination. This technique means you still procrastinate, in that you do something that is not exactly what you know you should be doing, but you still get results from your activities rather than waste time on idle tasks.”

Talking the Talk with Your Almost Elderly Parents (@ Life Lessons of a Military Wife): “Sooner or later, you will need to have that talk. Follow these steps to buy peace of mind for both you and your parents!”

Assessing whether you should contribute to a political campaign (@ Money & Liberty): “The presidential campaign season is upon us, and that means the media outlets are talking all about campaign financing (and a little bit about the candidates’ issues and platforms). It might even get you thinking about whether or not you should give money to you favorite candidate.”

Green Electronics Guide: how do companies address the e-waste problem? (@ Money and Values): “Greenpeace has put together a consumer guide on how environmentally friendly various electronics companies are. Drawing attention to the serious and growing problem of discarded electronics (e-waste), it ranks the companies based on their use of toxic chemicals and their policies and practice around take-back and recycling of their products.”

John Dingell – Little Man, Big Problems (for Your Wallet) (@ Debt Free): “Rep. John Dingell (D-MI) has unveiled his latest strategy to suck money from your wallet (and mine) in the form of a comprehensive tax increase package that promises to strip away one of the last tax breaks enjoyed by average Americans.”

5 Steps to Greater Financial Happiness (@ Philby’s Finance): “One question we rarely ask ourselves before taking that new, better-paying job, that promotion up the corporate ladder, or volunteering for that project requiring tons of overtime, is ‘Will this extra money make me happier?'”

Top 10 Ways to Waste Your Money on e-Bay (@ Savings Advice): “If you made a splurge this week, don’t be too hard on yourself. You could have purchased one of these things which would have been much worse.”

Most Expensive Colleges (@ Campus Grotto): “The most expensive colleges are just about all in the northeast corner of the United States, being Ivy League type schools or fine liberal art schools in the New York area that boast low student-teacher ratios. Of course, most of these expensive colleges are private, as tuition is usually twice as much at a private school. These rankings are based on 2007-2008 tuition rates.”

December 31, 1987: I thought I’d end on a bright note. Notwithstanding the harrowing losses in October 1987, the market was actually up a few percentage points that year. Jim Cramer, acting on advice from a friend (who later became his wife), timed Black Monday well, withdrawing much of his money from the market before the crash. Unfortunately, he didn’t time the upswing so well and lost out on profits, which only goes to prove the soundness of the observation offered by Jack Bogle, founder of Vanguard: “After nearly 50 years in this business, I do not know anybody who has done it (market timing) successfully and consistently.”

If you enjoyed this edition of the Carnival of Personal Finance, please consider subscribing to The Dough Roller by clicking here. I promise subscribing to The Dough Roller will not increase the chance of another October market crash. Don’t miss next week’s edition of the Carnival of Personal Finance, which will be hosted by Millionaire Mommy Next Door.

Article comments

Mike-TWA says:


A little known fact: the 1987 market crash was attributed by some to the publication of an article in Rolling Stone the day prior declaring “Rap is here to stay”.

Good carnival. Cool pictures.

Patrick says:

Great job hosting – I love the pictures. ­čÖé

I look forward to reading these!

ispf says:

Love the pictures!

Thanks for hosting and including my article in the editor’s pick!

Melissa says:

Wow – great job hosting! I’m honored that my submission made your editor’s list. Thanks!

Brip Blap says:

Thanks for doing such a good job hosting, thanks for including me, and thanks for tagging my article as an editor’s pick!

Flexo says:

Thanks for hosting!

Thanks for including my article and providing a wealth of articles to us all!

hgstern says:

Outstanding job!

Thanks for hosting, and for including our post.

hgstern says:

Outstanding job!

Thank you for hosting, and for including our post!

FIRE Finance says:

What a huge carnival! Thanks for doing such a great job especially the pictures and including our post.
FIRE Finance

Thanks for hosting and including my post DR. You did a great job!

Your post was a graveyard smash. Thank you for hosting my article, “Homeownership Cost Cliches: Housing Myths Part 10.”

mbhunter says:

I’m glad you enjoyed my post, and thanks for the Editor’s Pick mention! Quite an honor!

Millionaire Mommy Next Door says:

Thanks, DR, for doing such a wonderful job of hosting. I enjoyed the photos and frightful stories!

(sorry it took me awhile… hosting the PF carnival this week kept me busy!)

Sebbi says:

thanks for the post. i hope to listen some more.
Best regards from Sebbi

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