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Mortgage Plan Review, E-Commerce Booming, and Candidates Take on Social Security

2008 is going to be a big year for the Money Guy Show. Several active Money Guy listeners have stepped up to help take the show to the next level. The details are not to the point that I am ready to share, but prepare yourself for a big upgrade in 2008.

Today’s show pretty much fell into my lap because of all the dramatic current events that are impacting the world of personal finance and the financial markets. Many of you have asked me to provide more input on current financial events, and if you are one of those listeners you will get more than your fill with this show.

Let’s jump into this week’s topics of discussion:

Battle Lines Form Over Mortgage Plan by Michael M. Phillips, Serena Ng, and John D. McKinnon with the Wall Street Journal (click here for the link, but understand that unless you subscribe to the site you will not get the entire article). I think what the administration is doing has good intentions, but I do worry about the unintended consequences of the government getting involved with the poor decisions of individuals and banks.

Who Qualifies for Help, And What Qualifies as Subprime? by Ruth Wilson from the Wall Street Journal (click here for the link, but it has the same limitations as the previous article).

If you are looking for a reason as to why the government has taken such an interest in the Subprime mess then check out the article that Ruth Simon from the Wall Street Journal did at the end of November titled, "Rising Rates to Worsen Subprime Mess" (click here for link). Since some of you may not subscribe to the Wall Street Journal… I will let you in on the amazing little tidbit that most of the defaulted home loans are currently due to loose lending practices of banks (to people who could not afford to pay for the loans). The tidal wave of variable loans resetting to higher rates has not even hit its stride yet (2008 will have over $362 billion (with a “B”) worth of adjustable-rate subprime mortgages adjusting to higher rates).

How about a little bit of good news?!

Retail Holiday E-Commerce Spending Reaches $14 Billion, Up 17 Percent Versus Last Year (click here for link)

Ok for the last article that I cover in today’s show I want to make sure that I do not lose any listeners or readers, so bear with a brief disclaimer. I do not want the Money Guy show to be a political show. I want it to focus on what is best for your personal finances, but sometimes political items need to be covered because they directly impact your wallet. 2008 is going to be an election year, so I wanted to share what each of the leading Presidential Candidates take was on Social Security reform. I did not slant my analysis toward any one party or candidate. I based my entire discussion on the article from by Jeanne Sahadi titled, “The 3rd Rail: Candidates Take on Social Security.

I do not say it enough, but thank you for being such an active listening audience. Without your emails, iTunes feedback, and consistent support this show could not have grown as much as it has over the last two years. Please keep up the great work of letting your friends and family know about our show.

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