I’ve been on holidays since December 12th and the break has been fantastic, giving me a chance to relax with family and recharge my batteries.  Unfortunately, the holiday has come to an end and it’s back to work on Monday.  I hope you all enjoyed some time off at Christmas and New Year’s as well.

We’ve tinkered with the posting format here for 2015 and so you can expect to see new articles published on Monday’s, Wednesday’s, and Friday’s, in addition to a Weekend Reading update on, you guessed it, the weekend.  It amounts to one more article every week, so enjoy the extra content!

This week’s recap:

Every year I enter a stock picking competition over at the Financial Uproar blog. Each contestant submits four stocks at the beginning of the year and the winner gets to gloat in the comments section.

Last year, my picks of Canadian Oil Sands, Agrium, Teck Resources, and (I can’t remember the fourth one) were bad enough to put me in last place with a -15.6% return for the year.  Well done, Robb!

On Monday I posted my annual net worth review and was happy to be closing in on $400,000.

On Wednesday, Marie shared her thoughts on some of the more interesting news and events of 2014.

And on Friday I wrote about an easy way to save money this year – by reviewing your annual and monthly subscriptions.

Over on my Rewards Cards Canada blog I looked at what made headlines in the credit card and loyalty program space in 2014 – including Aeroplan’s move to TD and Costco breaking up with Amex and partnering with MasterCard.

Weekend Reading:

Uncomfortable seats, endless fees – here’s why airlines want to make you suffer.

Dan Bortolotti shows why even so called expert predictions are useless in the folly of forecasts.

Downtown Josh Brown looked back at investing in 2014 – the year that nothing worked.

Dan Solin offers his 100% accurate financial predictions for 2015.  My favourite is that, “more investors will realize that what correlates most closely with higher expected returns is low cost.”

This entrepreneur started his own business at 21 and just six years later is already pondering retirement.

Episode 25 of the Because Money podcast dealt with budgeting – what is a budget good for, how to keep a budget, and why many people give up on budgets.

Even Santa Claus thinks we need to save more for retirement.

A fascinating read in The Economist about the baseball-card bubble – how a children’s hobby turned into a classic financial mania.

This post looks at the richest people by century, from William the Conqueror to … Muammar Gaddafi?

With life expectancy continuing to rise, the Financial Independence Hub explores the possibility of a 40-year retirement.

Dan Wesley looks back at his first home purchase and suggests some potential pitfalls for new buyers to avoid.

A question we get often – where’s the best place to park short-term savings – is answered perfectly here by MoneySense columnist Bruce Sellery.

Norm Rothery says that adding a low-fee balanced fund is a wise resolution for the new year.

Have a great weekend, everyone!

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