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Kamie Zaracki, CEO of BetterInvesting, says she’s frequently asked what she thinks about people putting their extra cash into 401(k) plans.The expectation might be that Zaracki would be anti-401(k) and pro-individual stock picking. The Madison Heights, Mich.,-based BetterInvesting, after all, dates back to 1951 and built a network of investment clubs across the country by …

The government came close to bumping into its debt ceiling, but was saved by a last-minute deal to avert a default. Even so, perhaps consumers should consider if they’re edging closer to the brink, too, when it comes to their own finances.Bickering is definitely a clue that you’ve got money trouble. Are you fighting over who gets to pay for dinner? Maybe who should get stu…

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Browsing the meat section at the supermarket, labels abound for organic meat, kosher meat and meat raised without antibiotics or hormones.They’re almost guaranteed to carry a higher price tag, but it’s not always obvious what the labels even mean. It may be that you wouldn’t pay extra if you knew what the terms signified.The Food Safety and Inspection Service, a division o…

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Toni Beth Rosenberg did not think much of it when United Healthcare sent a nurse practitioner to her Boca Raton home as part of a new preventive care program.The nurse practitioner noticed swelling in her legs and discovered Rosenberg has dangerously high blood pressure. She recommended the 68-year-old see a doctor. He diagnosed Rosenberg with a painful condition than can …

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If you own a MacBook laptop or a Mac desktop computer, then Apple’s decision to make OS X Mavericks available as a free download may have you itching to upgrade.What’s not to like about free, right?And there are certainly some nice goodies that would make this a worthwhile update. There’s a fresh, new look along with potentially longer battery life. And along with new feat…

Nobody likes to get sick on the road.Feeling poorly when you’re away from home means problems trying to access medicine when you may be away from your luggage, unpredictable language barriers at the local pharmacy and more. Factor in long travel days and limited time to enjoy yourself once you get where you’re going, and the prospect becomes even more miserable.Here is a h…

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The Internet has made the world a frugal person’s paradise. Not only have direct-to-consumer merchants brought prices down everywhere, but there is an embarrassment of riches when it comes to websites that can help you save money in other ways.Whether they’re corralling online coupons, watching out for abuses against consumers or giving you cash back when you shop online, …

My grandfather shoveled driveways for a penny apiece at an age when most kids today are still figuring out how to tie their shoes. As a teenager, he gave most of his earnings to his parents and saved every cent left over. He didn’t allow himself to buy a single Fudgsicle until he had saved $100 – and that man loved Fudgsicles.If you know someone who grew up during the Grea…

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WASHINGTON – As the guests filed into Kathy Korman Frey’s home in the District of Columbia on Saturday afternoon for the first Hot Mommas Project “Super Bowl of Mentors” global watch party, she handed each a blue notecard and asked them to rate – on a scale of 1 to 10 – how confident they were feeling.They had come to hear stories about women around the world who, much lik…

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CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Back in the late 1980s, when Maura Mazzocca was a human resources administrator with a Boston-area firm, a blind man showed up to apply for a job. Today, she remembers the encounter ruefully.“What I kept thinking about was, ‘How can this man work in a manufacturing company?’ ” Mazzocca recalled, saying she looked past his abilities and saw only his disab…

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WAWARSING – Tables were still in their places in the sprawling dining hall. Chairs were arranged in the Stardust Room nightclub. All the other trappings were in place: pool, ski mountain, tennis courts, covered ice arena.The only thing missing on a tour last week of the Nevele was people.The grandfather of Borscht Belt hotels in the southern Catskills, the Nevele today – w…

The Jacobs family needs your help.You see, the wealthiest family in the Buffalo Niagara region — and the 193rd richest in the entire country with a net worth of $2.8 billion, according to Forbes magazine – wants to build a signature headquarters on Delaware Avenue for its $2.6 billion hospitality business that would replace its current home office, now located a little mor…

CAMBRIA• Lockport Road, Kristen A. Cercone; Todd R. Daigler to Robert Pepperday; Catherine Kell, $137,800.HARTLAND• Bishop Road, Kenneth O. Bess; Joseph E. Donaldson to Daniel Donaldson, $14,720.LEWISTON Highest price: $362,500 Average price: $180,575 Median price: $140,950 Number of Sales: 8• Cayuga St. & Niagara St., Edith Penale; Ralph J. Penale to Christina Elia; Rich…

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When Rebecca Markillie of ITM Power in Sheffield, England, attends trade shows to promote her company’s ambitious plan to build hydrogen fueling stations for cars in Britain, she sometimes must calm skittish consumers. “You get people saying, ‘Oh, no: hydrogen. That is dangerous,’ ” she said. “And you go, ‘Well, why do you say that?’ And straightaway, the only knowledge of…

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SAN FRANCISCO – Twitter has gone visual.The social network, which has been built around 140-character snippets of text since its founding in 2006, has added photo and video previews to the feed of items that users see when they log onto the service from the Web or mobile applications. In the past, Twitter users had to click on a link to see a photo or video.The change, whi…