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How to Protect Your Credit and Online Data From Fraud—A Year After The Equifax Breach

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6 Last-Minute Tax Tips That Could Save You Money in 2017

By John Foley, CFP®

As you’ve no doubt read in the news, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 is about to become law. And while the bill contains over 500 pages of changes to the tax rules for corporations, privately held businesses, and individuals, what you’re probably wondering most is: How will the tax plan affect me?

There are three big changes in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act that will impact most individual taxpayers:

1) New income tax brackets with lower rates for most taxpayers

2) A higher standard deduction—$12,000 for single filers, $24,000 for married filing joint

3) A $10,000 limit on the combined deduction for state and local income and property tax (and that’s the same whether you’re single or married)

While you can’t change the rules, there are things you might be able to do to potentially lower your overall tax burden this year and next, namely, shifting certain deductions into 2017 and certain income into 2018. But the clock is ticking: These provisions are expected to go into effect on January 1, 2018, so December 31 is the last day you can do anything that impacts your 2017 taxes.

Here are a few important actions you could take before the new tax bill kicks in. Ask your tax preparer if they are right for you.

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Cryptocurrency: The SoFi Wealth Perspective

Interest in cryptocurrency, specifically Bitcoin, has taken off like a rocket in the last 30 days, spurred largely by the precipitous spike in Bitcoin’s price. While the interest is driving conversation, we feel there hasn’t been enough advice offered to individual investors of how to both make sense of the cryptocurrency boom and to make a decision on whether buying any is a good idea.

Bitcoin is network software that facilitates the secure exchange of digital tokens–called Bitcoins–among anonymous users of the network, anywhere in the world. This New York Times article explains how it works. Other cryptocurrencies work much the same way.

Cryptocurrencies act in some ways like actual currency and can be used to buy a limited number of things, but they are not created by or backed by any government. The full faith and credit of the US government stands behind the dollar. Bitcoin is not backed by anyone. It is hard to create more of most cryptocurrencies, so the interest in them has created demand that is difficult to match, and this has driven up their prices.

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How the Senate Tax Bill Could Impact College Graduates

It seems like everyone’s talking about the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act these days. Whether you’re refilling your glass at the water cooler or going out with friends for craft beer after work, you’re likely worriedly discussing its impacts—especially if you’re currently a student or recent grad with student loans. That’s because the bill might have a significant effect on the bottom line of those with student debt.

No one likes to pay more in taxes, but if you have vivid memories of how the refund you received because of the student loan interest tax deduction helped you fix your car when it broke down last May, you likely feel passionate about the potential elimination of this deduction.

But are the issues you’re worrying about guaranteed if the bill is passed? Not necessarily. Confused? Here’s some things to know about the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

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Data Suggests Student Loan Stress More Extreme Than You Thought

It’s well documented that student loans are a big source of stress among graduates. For those carrying the 1.34 trillion dollars in student loan debt currently totaled in the U.S., the burden causes strain in ways you might be able to predict—loss of sleep, anxiety—and in some ways that are surprising.

According to a recent SoFi member survey of over 1,200 respondents with student loan debt, the lion’s share of respondents confirmed how student loan stress impacts mental health. Eighty three percent shared that they’ve felt like they couldn’t relax due to the burden of the debt, and a full fifty percent felt that dealing with student loan debt has caused them to feel depressed. Over a third of respondents have reported actually losing sleep due to student loan debt, and a large number noted that it’s caused them to miss out on opportunities to travel, promote self care, and make major life decisions.

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Women Pay Off Refinanced Student Loan Debt Faster Than Men

Data insights provided by the Analytics Team at SoFi

Today’s post is all about how men and women* compare in our student loan refinancing data set. What we found? Both men and women have high student debt loads. (Not a revelation.) Men also get paid more than women on average. (Also not a revelation.)

But here’s what’s interesting: Despite the fact that women have as much student debt and make less money than men, women in the SoFi data set pay their debt off more quickly than men—by nearly 10% (9.3% exactly).

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