It's a hard time to be a saver. The average interest rate for a savings account at a major bank is a measly 0.1 percent, according to Bankrate.com. If you think that's practically nothing, you're wrong. It's worse. If your savings are stashed in one of those accounts, you're actually losing money to inflation, which is running at a 1.5 percent annual rate. Given those dismal numbers, what do you do with your savings?
NPR's senior business editor Uri Berliner sets out to find out in Dollar for Dollar, a weekly series that explains how various investments work. He'll take $5,000 from his personal savings and explore the options, from stocks to real estate to buying consumer goods in bulk to acquiring art.
While Uri decides what do with his money, he won't offer financial advice or make recommendations. Instead, each story will peel away the jargon and complexity of investing with concrete, real-life examples. If you've ever wondered what dividends do, how fees affect returns in mutual funds, or what a real estate investment trust is, you'll find these stories useful. Dollar for Dollar segments air each week, beginning Monday, May 20, on Morning Edition on witf FM.
Sad Savings - Monday, May 20
It's a hard time to be a saver. The return on a savings account doesn't even keep up with inflation. That's led many savers to wonder what they should do with their money. NPR's Uri Berliner takes $5,000 out of his own personal savings and explores various investment opportunities.
Bulk Buying - Week of May 27
As part of his investing adventure, NPR's Uri Berliner tries his hand at bulk buying. The idea: stock up on goods now that you know you'll need later. It's a hedge against inflation, but figuring out what to buy -- and how much -- isn't so easy.
Cheap Funds - Week of June 3
Investing in the stock market can be a daunting experience. There are so many stocks, so many funds to choose from, and none of us knows for certain which ones will rise in the future. As NPR's Uri Berliner reports, what we can control are the fees we pay for the equities we buy.
Buying Art - Week of June 10
The Internet makes collecting and even investing in art accessible to all. NPR's Uri Berliner pays $450 for a painting he's only seen online by an artist he's never heard of. Is it an investment or simply a painting he's happy to have hanging on the wall? Does the answer matter?
Real Estate Investing - Week of June 17
The simplest way to invest in real estate is through a REIT, or real estate investment trust. It's how many Americans include real estate in their retirement accounts. REITs generate income for investors by leasing the commercial properties they own and manage. As NPR's Uri Berliner reports, what counts as "real estate" in a REIT keeps expanding.
Support for WITF is provided by:
Support for witf is provided by: