Regulator Seeks Greater Oversight of Auto Financing

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau wants to extend its oversight to large nonbank auto-finance companies to make sure they are not discriminating against consumers. The CFPB announced today its proposed rule to expand its supervision to these companies, which would include the finance arms of auto manufacturers. “Nonbank auto-finance companies extend hundreds of billions of dollars in credit to American consumers, yet they have never been supervised at the federal level,” CFPB Director Richard Cordray said in a statement. “Today’s proposal …

Cost of Retiree Dental Plans May Give You a Toothache

Boomers retiring without dental benefits, and Medicare recipients who don’t have a Medicare Advantage plan, may be surprised and dismayed by the latest study on the cost of dental coverage. Consumers paid an average $382 annual premium for a stand-alone dental plan through a government exchange this year, and that didn’t include deductibles and copays, according to the analysis of dental plans on the federal exchange by the website HealthPocket, which compares health plans. Deductibles averaged about $500 a year …

Rx for Happy Retirement: Staying Healthy

Staying healthy and how to pay for it are the top concerns for boomers and retirees, a study has found. An overwhelming majority of retirees (81 percent) said that good health is the single most important factor for a happy retirement; financial security, by comparison, ranked a distant second (58 percent), the study found. >>  7 Things to Do in Your Bedroom That Can Save Your Life Boomers said that not being able to pay for health care expenses in retirement was their biggest fear, regardless of their …

Unpaid Student Loans May Impoverish Older Americans

Though a small percentage of older Americans carry student loans, those who do are incurring this debt faster, have a higher default rate and, as a result, can find themselves living in poverty in retirement, according to a new report from the U.S. Government Accountability Office. While older citizens are more burdened by mortgages, auto loans and credit-card debt, student loans among this age group are a growing concern. And unlike young borrowers who have many working years ahead of them to repay, older …

Upcycling: Everything Old Is New Again

I always find it interesting when something that’s been around for generations is rediscovered and gains new levels of popularity simply because it has a new name. That’s the case with “upcycling.” It’s the practice of taking would-be throwaway items and, rather than just recycling them back into raw materials, transforming them into something new and different, something more “upscale” than the original. As far as I can tell, the word “upcycle” was coined only about 20 years ago (apparently in Germany), …

Frank Abagnale: Hackers Can Get Your Info in 15 Seconds

Frank Abagnale, former master check forger, has some sobering advice for the rest of us: Hackers likely already have your identity records. He says hackers can steal your identity in 15 seconds or less. Abagnale, who lectures on forgery, embezzlement and secure documents, spoke to attendees today at the AARP Ideas@50+ conference underway in San Diego. Among his other revelations: Children make better victims than adults because thieves can use their stolen identity for a longer time. The privacy button on …