Most Entertaining Money Stories of the Week (1/27/17)

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Every week we round up the most entertaining money stories for our weekly newsletter. At the end of the week, we publish them on the site — but if you like the news hot off the press and straight to your inbox, simply sign up for our newsletter. Sometimes we even give stuff away. Like gift cards and cute puppies. Okay, so no puppies, but we have been known to give away some pretty cool swag.

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Anyways, so here's this week's most entertaining money stories.

Gen Y: Millennials that hold a college degree and carry student loan debt make about the same amount of money as young adults with no college degree in 1989. What the what?!

new study from The Young Invincibles compared data on education and earnings of 25-to-34 years old in 1989 vs. 2013. They found a lot of really crazy sh*t — like that we make about 10% less than what the Boomers made at our age. Even though we are more educated.

While a lot of these stats sound straight up psycho it's not all doom and gloom. The study also shows that having a college degree is still better than not (think: higher salaries and more assets), and that while the Boomers had it easier than us, we're still saving more money for retirement than they did.

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Frugality: Could you go an entire year ONLY spending money on absolute necessities? This London woman did in her “No Spend Year” and saved $23,000.

What exactly did she give up? Everything except her bills (mortgage, phone, insurance, etc.), basic toiletries, and $35 a week for food.

Extreme frugality obviously isn't for everyone but like we've said before, reducing your overhead is actually really empowering and alleviates stress. Heck, even Tesla and SpaceX CEO slash casual billionaire Elon Musk did it at one point.

If you're interested in shaving down your expenses, consider cutting out one thing or activity you don't care that much about. Put that money in a savings account and be impressed by your willpower.

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Music: Tidal may have 99 problems but money ain't one. Sprint just acquired 33% of Jay Z's music streaming service for a reported $200 million.

Mr. Carter bought Aspiro (the Swedish tech company that included Tidal) for $56 million back in 2015. This new acquisition will value the company at $600 million (which happens to be just shy of the rapper's personal net worth of $610 million). Can I get a…

But why would Sprint buy into Tidal, especially with speculation that the company has way fewer paying subscribers than they claim?

Two reasons. 1) Tidal's ownership is basically the Holy Grail of music artists a.k.a. great celeb endorsements for Sprint. Rihanna, Coldplay and Jason Aldean all hold a stake in the company. 2) Music streaming is not slowing down (paid music streaming subscriptions surpassed 100 million in December) and Sprint wants in.

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Politics: We all learned a valuable lesson this week. Nothing matters more than the size of your…crowd.

In his first interview post-inauguration, President Trump boasted about having the largest audience in the history of inaugural speeches. That is definitely an “alternative fact” as photos and metro records state otherwise.

But whether you believe in real facts or alternative facts, we can all respect the authenticity of Amazon's best-seller list. Right?

In addition to the ‘Trump bump' the Dow saw this week, the novel “1984” also shot up to the #1 spot on Amazon. In case you forgot about this gem from high school English class, it's a tale by George Orwell of a dystopian society where facts are distorted or suppressed.

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Retail: Speaking of Amazon, the company is now worth more than eight of America's largest retailers combined. From garage to a global market cap of nearly $400 billion, Amazon is the epitome of entrepreneurship in the digital age. And to think it all started with selling books…

So who did the mega-retailer eat for breakfast? Best Buy, Macy's, Target, JCPenney, Nordstrom, Walmart, Kohl's, and Sears.

Amazon's success is largely due to their ability to identify a need in the market at the right time. They've also wisely invested in warehouses (to reduce shipping time) and other digital verticals that complement their empire quite nicely.

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