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Dollars and Sense

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Thousands of Millionaires Collect Unemployment Benefits — Dollars and Sense

According to a study by the Congressional Research Service, roughly 2,360 millionaires collected unemployment insurance benefits in 2009. The study, titled “Receipt of Unemployment Insurance by Higher-Income Unemployed Workers,” determined that 2 percent of unemployment insurance claims received in 2009 were to millionaires, adding up to nearly $21 million in benefits.

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sears olive garden
Olive Garden / Mario Tama, Getty Images
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Two Major Companies Switch to Health Insurance Allowance — Dollars and Sense

Last week, Sears and Darden Restaurants (Olive Garden, Red Lobster) announced that they were seriously entertaining the idea of doing away with their traditional health insurance programs and opting instead to provide their employees with a heath-coverage allowance.

The two major American companies plan to allow employees to select coverage through an online marketplace, where workers will have the opportunity to browse and purchase various employer-backed health plans.

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Category: Health, Money Tags:
American Express Cardmember Services
Bryan Bedder, Getty Images
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American Express Deceives Customers, Will Issue $85 Million Refund — Dollars and Sense

Have an American Express card that you never leave home without? You can expect a refund.

According to a report by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, American Express will be refunding $85 million to some 250,000 customers due to what officials are calling deceptive practices that include the charging of illegal late fees and discrimination against applicants 35 years old and up.

For nearly a decade, American Express was guilty of committing various infractions against its card owners that cheated customers into believing they were obtaining benefits like sign-up bonuses and improved credit scores that never came to pass.

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Category: News Tags:
college graduates
Lesliebyk, Flickr
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Job Market (Finally) Improving for College Grads — Dollars and Sense

For recent college graduates, the economic downturn and very, very slow recovery of the past few years have been brutal. But things may be looking up.

According to the Job Outlook 2013 survey, employers are on track to hire 13 percent more graduates from the class of 2013 than they did for those who walked away with their degrees in 2012.

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Category: Employment Tags:
overdraft on bank statement
Semicolon-stop, Flickr
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‘Insufficient Funds’ for You, Big Business for Your Bank — Dollars and Sense

Consumer error appears to be greatly benefiting the financial industry, as a new banking report finds that charges to checking accounts caused by insufficient funds generated $31.5 billion last year. That is up from $30.8 million the year before, marking roughly an overall 2 percent increase.

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Category: Money Tags:
Discover
Breakingbusiness, Flickr
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Discover Misleads Cardholders, Will Issue $200 Million Refund — Dollars and Sense

Do you have a Discover card? If so, you can expect to receive a refund.

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Category: Money, News Tags:
ATM withdraw
Kevork Djansezian, Getty Images
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ATM Fees Skyrocket, Again, While Free Checking Disappears — Dollars and Sense

The days of the free checking account are nearing extinction and ATM fees are on the rise, according to the latest financial research from bankrate.com. Those annoying ATM surcharges that consumers incur every time they withdraw cash from a money mover that is not the property of the their bank have risen once again, to an all-time high of $2.50, up 4 percent from last year.

And lest you think we would mislead you by using a term like "skyrocket" in the headline to describe a mere 4 percent increase—there's more ...

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Category: Money, News Tags:
man and woman on a date
Coloredgrey, Flickr
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How Many Men Are Okay Paying for a First Date? — Dollars and Sense

There is something to be said for a young man who, in an attempt to sweep his newfound lady friend off her feet, takes her out for a romantic meal at a nice restaurant, gazes deeply into her eyes, and ... asks if she'd mind picking up half the check.

And that something is: chivalry is dead. Well, almost.

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New Research Reveals Americans Feel Their Jobs Are Safe

There is only one thing worse than having to get up early in the morning to go to work, and that is going to work with the feeling that the bottom of your career is about to fall out from under you.

Fortunately, it appears as if the majority of the population is not worried about something like that happening in their current position.

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Made in the USA
Tom Bihn, Flickr
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Do You Look for the Made in the USA Label When You Buy? Everyone Else Does — Dollars and Sense

You might not think anyone is paying much attention to that “Made in the USA” tag found on product packaging all over the country, but new research suggests that you would be dead wrong. In fact, more than ever before, Americans are using the popular label to guide their purchasing decisions.

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