Weekend Linkage: Goldman Sachs, Passive Investing, and Txting $

by Jason Unger

Looking for some good summer reading? There’s not much time left before schools start up again, the beaches start to clear out, and football gets into full swing.

This week, Rolling Stone has a massive story on Goldman Sachs, where it claims that the investment bank “has engineered every major market manipulation since the Great Depression – and they’re about to do it again.”

That’s a big charge. A bit from The Great American Bubble Machine:

The bank’s unprecedented reach and power have enabled it to turn all of America into a giant pump-and-dump scam, manipulating whole economic sectors for years at a time, moving the dice game as this or that market collapses, and all the time gorging itself on the unseen costs that are breaking families everywhere ? high gas prices, rising consumer credit rates, half-eaten pension funds, mass layoffs, future taxes to pay off bailouts. All that money that you’re losing, it’s going somewhere, and in both a literal and a figurative sense, Goldman Sachs is where it’s going: The bank is a huge, highly sophisticated engine for converting the useful, deployed wealth of society into the least useful, most wasteful and insoluble substance on Earth ? pure profit for rich individuals.

We’ve talked a ton recently about passive investing and index funds, and Jonathan at My Money Blog shows The Power of Passive Index Fund Investing: An Example. He features a great quote from Vanguard founder John Bogle: “Don?t look for the needle in the haystack. Just buy the haystack.”

A newcomer to the linkage, RabbitFunds offers up Stop Lying, 5 Ways to Stop Overspending. In order to make better buying decisions, Adam offers these 5 suggestions:

  1. Have and stick to a budget.
  2. Set a per purchase spending limit.
  3. Replace bad habits with enjoyable, inexpensive activities.
  4. Make sure that the reason you tell yourself you are making the purchase and the reason you are making the purchase are the same.
  5. Take stock of and enjoy everything that you already have.

Finally, WalletPop describes a new service to send money via text messaging in Keep kids off your back by sending money via text message. Obopay, which actually started in 2006, charges 25 cents to send or receive money, plus 1.5% to add money to your account from a debit or credit card.

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