Monday, February 11, 2013

How Much Fruits/Veggies Cost

Here is a really interesting chart about how much Americans pay for fruits and vegetables.  I found this article on National Geographic and they used research from the USDA in this colorful chart.  They looked at the differences in cost per serving vs cost per pound and fresh fruits/veggies vs frozen vs canned vs dried vs juice.  These obviously seem cheap since they are on a serving level and I'm sure we all have different expectations of how many servings we actually eat for a given meal.  But it shows that fruits and vegetables are not that pricey.  Apparently, the most bang for your buck lies in green beans and watermelons.  What would be even more interesting if they had a chart for costs per nutritional value if there was some metric to use for that.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Merchant Credit Card Fees

I have several posts lauding the benefits of credit cards for consumers, especially those with no annual fees and reward programs.  Assuming that you treat your card like cash and only spend enough to pay off your monthly bill when it comes out, there is only positive benefits: you get a 1-5% cash reward on all your spending, you delay your payment for a month which allows you to earn interest (albeit small in the current environment), you decrease the risks with carry cash like losing it or getting it stolen, and you establish/improve a credit history for future use with other loans.  However, credit card companies still need to make money.  Thankfully (in some aspects), not all of us are as careful with our spending and those who miss their payments or spend more than they can afford will be paying these banks and credit card companies high interest rates.  However, if in some magical world the majority of people were to become more responsible with their credit cards and paid all their bills on time, the only source of revenue for companies on these cards will be from fees merchants pay to accept them.  And even that is slowly going away.