In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review July 9, 2014 / 11 Tammuz, 5774

Secret scores you need to know about

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | That numerical expression otherwise known as the credit score is the absolute authority of your creditworthiness, right? Consumers seem to think so. Consumer Reports Money Adviser notes that every year we spend more than $1 billion to buy them, along with our credit reports.

But the FICO scores and others we can buy have less value than advertised. They're not the same ones creditors actually use to make decisions about extending a loan or credit card to you.

Here's another reason you shouldn't waste your money on artificial credit scores: Car dealers, cellular service providers, credit card issuers, insurers, retailers, and other businesses rate you up, down and sideways using a whole slew of other scores.

And guess what? "The consumer has no way to proactively get these other scores, and there's generally no obligation for businesses to share them," says John Ulzheimer, a consumer credit expert at CreditSesame.com.

Last November, FICO, the company that invented its eponymous ratings in 1958, began letting customers of two lenders see the actual scores used to grant them credit. But the other behind-the-scenes scores remain secret.

Your legal safeguards may be near nil, but you can still protect yourself by knowing how businesses, data brokers and credit bureaus use your credit report and other information to keep tabs on you. Consumer Reports Money Adviser offers this rundown of some of the scores that are being used behind your back.

FICO Revenue Scores assess your likelihood of generating income on a credit card by using it a lot. Industry-specific credit scores focus on how well you handle specific kinds of debt obligations.

For example, the Equifax TIP Automotive Score cross-tabulates bad credit risk with a shopper's true in-market propensity to actually buy, on a scale of 1 to 10, and also prompts dealers to push certain car models over others.

Deposit account scores are used when you open a checking account. Banks, which are still in the habit of authorizing account overdrafts so they can levy outrageous penalty fees, use ChexSystems QualiFile Scores to determine the likelihood that a customer will bounce checks (without the bank's blessing) in the next year and which "bad" customers are worth keeping for an added "lift" from higher-fee "second-chance" accounts.

And there are more: Good customer or bad customer scores measure your profit and loss potential, while FICO Bankruptcy Scores aim to tip off lenders that you'll still go bust despite your good payment history. FICO Transaction Scores monitor your credit card activity and look for money trouble behavior, such as taking out a series of cash advances.


Although you can't buy these scores, you should be able to see at least some of them if their use results in an "adverse action" that causes you to be denied credit or pay a price higher than you would otherwise. Consumer Reports Money Adviser suggests the following:

  • Be on the lookout for those adverse actions, including being denied wireless or another utility service, being charged a higher-than-market rate for an auto loan or having your credit line reduced or cut off.

  • Ask the business or lender if the action is the result of scoring. If it was, ask to see the score. If not, ask how it made the decision.

  • Although there is debate over whether such things as a billed-later cellular or utility account or checking services qualify as credit under the Fair Credit Reporting Act, Consumer Reports Money Adviser believes that's why businesses score you, so you should be entitled to see the number. If you don't get it, file a complaint with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau at consumerfinance.gov/complaint.

  • To keep your secret back-office FICO scores in shape, that company advises you to pay all of your bills on time, every time; get revolving credit balances below 30 percent of your available credit line; and open new credit accounts only when necessary.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.


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