Five Things I Didn’t Know

In Miami, I recently saw the future of Best Buy, if they do survive. It was in a mall and they called it Best Buy Mobile. The store was about the same size as a typical cell phone store in every mall: Displays down both sides and a counter at the back. All the apple and phone products, ear buds, and the 90% of gadget stuff that fits into your hand. No more 35,000 square feet stores…

Singer Nicki Minaj recently had her social security number hacked and posted online. The rapper’s credit score dropped over 100 points almost immediately with a wave of inquiries into her credit report. Your credit score sets your borrowing interest rates. If you apply for credit at a bunch of places for different things, it’ll drop your score a lot and then your current line of credit or credit card rates may go up as a result.

At least some of the banks aren’t playing the delay game anymore with making online bill payments. They used to take two or three days to forward the money to the company you were paying. But recently I made a payment to Amex one night and had their email confirmation of receipt before 8 AM the next morning. Now if they could just cut down the average two weeks time it takes them to transfer out investments and RRSPs!

Walmart is the world’s largest retailer. When you’re that big, you measure efficiencies in pennies and seconds. I was in the U.S. recently and had my credit card out while the cashier was still ringing up my purchases. She told me to swipe my card. But she hadn’t rung everything through! I didn’t matter. In order to avoid the two or three seconds it takes to make the connection and get the approval on the credit card, their system does the connecting before they have the total amount. When the cashier hits the total button, the system just needs to match the amount without the wait for the swipe and connection. Yes, to Walmart – seconds matter at millions of transactions an hour.

Considering buying an electric car? If so, hold off. I hadn’t considered that a few years ago, there was a huge wave of leases to boost sales. Those leases expire next year so you’ll be able to get an incredibly great deal on a three-year old!

And the best ‘I didn’t know” has to be the stupidity level of some crooks.In Jacksonville, Florida, a crook went into a bank to cash a cheque for $368 billion. Yes – billion! Imagine his surprise when they called the cops, instead of handing him maybe a hundred suitcases of cash…

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