Alpha Consumer

September 2009


John Bogle: Why We Have 'Enough'

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John Bogle, the founder of Vanguard, is frustrated not only with the financial world, but also with how many of us seem to focus too much on stuff, and not enough on the more important things in life. In his book Enough, he reflects on his career and life experiences to offer ideas on how to ...

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personal finance

The Cost of Getting Married

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Marriage has long been advocated as a way to counteract poverty, since something about making a lifetime commitment seems to help generate wealth. That's one reason some people advocate public policies that encourage walks down the aisle, from subsidized marriage counseling to tax credits. But ...

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personal finance

The Power of Free Stuff

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Last night, I went to a free yoga class at Lululemon, the popular yoga clothes company. The store near my office offers classes—at no charge—every week. When I got home, my husband asked me if I bought any of the stylish clothes hanging on the racks near the yoga practice room. Of course not, I ...

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personal finance

The Dangers of Free Trial Periods

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Dear Alpha Consumer,

In January, I decided to try out a free offer for facial cream. I've been around the block on 'free offers,' but I thought I was safe because I could cancel the trial period and get a full refund if I didn't like the product.

I received the product on day ...

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TAGS:
personal finance

Do Company Logos Matter to Consumers?

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It might seem like an inconsequential issue, but retailers spend a lot of time (and money) designing their logos in a way that will appeal to consumers. They try to avoid fiascos like the one faced by Tropicana earlier this year when it released new images on orange juice boxes. Consumers ...

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TAGS:
personal finance