What to Do With Graduation Money

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Posted on 06/02/2011

Years of exams, pop quizzes and study halls are about to finally pay off for millions of graduates who will walk across the stage, retrieve their diploma and bask in a few seconds of glory. For those who receive gifts of cash from family and friends, here are ways to make sure that newfound fortune isn’t quite as fleeting.


Save - A recent study shows that one out of two Americans would struggle to come up with $2,000 in an emergency. Maybe it’s because they never learned in school that cars will break down, air conditioners will stop blowing cold air and bones can break. Graduates can prove their smarts by socking a bunch of that graduation cash away in savings.


Invest - Financial advisors say that if a 22-year-old grad were to put just $100 away in a retirement account now they’d have almost $3,000 by their golden years. A thousand dollars now can equal as much as $28,000 in 40 years. Now that’s not enough to pay for retirement, but it shows just how valuable it can be to start investing at a young age.


Pay Expenses - If you’re a high school graduate with plans on higher education, use some of the money to offset the cost of tuition, books or housing. Experts say every buck you save in student loan debt now will save you two dollars down the road. Paying your expenses now is like doubling the value of your money.


Buy Tools - Just about everyone needs tools to succeed. Whether you’re moving on to college or entering the real world, think about something you can buy that will boost your earning potential or make you more likely to succeed. This may be an upgraded laptop or a new power suit. Be smart about what you spend graduation gift money on because you may not receive another windfall like it in a while.


By Alison Storm


Bluefly coupon - New grads can get some slick designer threads for their work wardrobes for less! New customers can save $15 on orders of $100 or more with coupon code AFF15 through 06/30/2011.


Florsheim coupon - Hey, guys! Use some of that grad cash to get some snazzy new shoes for your first job! Save an extra 10% on clearance items with coupon code CLEARANCE10 through 06/30/2011.

* Hot deals expire quickly. This deal may no longer be valid.

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