Financial Cookie Jar

Let's walk down the road of financial freedom together.

Changes to TANF Benefits

by FinanceCookies - February 6th, 2012

The benefit program, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, allows low-income families with cash assistance. This cash is usually accessed through a transfer card that can be used as a debit card. The cash from the program is meant to be used on necessities, such as food and rent.

Unfortunately, a media report found that these cards are being used in liquor stores, clubs, casinos and even cruise ships.

A new bill passed legislation that requires states to ban the ability to access government benefits at strip clubs, liquor stores and casinos.

“This legislation stops waste, fraud, and abuse within the welfare program,” said Rep. Charles Boustany, Jr., a Louisiana Republican. “It protects the public interest by ensuring money meant to help Americans get back on their feet is used for that very purpose.”

Some are saying that it is not fair to leave those with these cards to search high and low for an ATM. If the closest ATM is in a liquor store, some people say that they should be able to use it.

Unemployment

by FinanceCookies - January 27th, 2012

The Labor Department released some encouraging news this week. Apparently, the number of people that are filing for first time unemployment has been progressing in a downward trend, even though there was a spike this week.

The week of January 21st had 377,000 people filing for first-time unemployment benefits. This is a 21,000 person increase from the week before.

“A clear increase this week was in the cards,” Ian Shepherdson, chief U.S. economist with High Frequency Economics said in a note to clients. “What counts, though, is the trend, not individual weekly observations. And the trend is clearly downward.”

Throughout the worst times of this recession Unemployment Offices in the United States were filing as many as 659,000 individual’s paperwork for first-time unemployment benefits in a week.

Although we are making progress, there are still millions of Americans that remain jobless.

5 Potential Holiday Financial Fiascos

by FinanceCookies - December 7th, 2011
  1. When you are hosting a party, you want to make sure that you are smart about letting people leave when they are intoxicated.  43 states have passed laws that hold the host liable for the damage that a drunken guest causes if they leave the party intoxicated.
  2. Make sure that you have the liability insurance that you need for those that hurt themselves on the icy paths or other weather-stricken parts of your property. Keep your property lighted and make sure that you are shoveling your walk ways this winter season.
  3. Do not be too glutenous this holiday season.  If you are going to spend the holiday season overeating and over drinking you may end up paying for it in health insurance bills.  Gaining too much weight can be very detrimental to your health and your wallet.
  4. Your holiday decorations can be very dangerous as well.  When you buy a Christmas tree you have to make sure that you are wise about keeping it watered and away from any potential fire starting agents.
  5. Be careful about locking up your home and protecting the gifts that are inside of your home.  When you have presents laid out under the tree you may be the perfect target for a burglary.