What is a savings bond?

United States Savings Bonds were first introduced in 1935 as a way to encourage “broad public participation in government financing.” Issued by the Department of the Treasury, Savings Bonds are less susceptible to market conditions and are backed by the full faith and credit of the U.S. Government.

Savings Bonds have been popular as birthday and graduation gifts ever since they were introduced. They can also be used toward financing education, supplemental retirement income and other special events. Unlike other securities, minors may hold U.S. Savings Bonds in their own name. Continue reading

The Community Corps — join us this summer

As you may know, “Community Corps” is just one of the ways that we demonstrate that our priorities are located right here in the communities we serve. Community Corps volunteers are our employees, families and friends, neighbors and customers, helping to enhance the quality of life in the communities where we live and work. The hunt is on for summer volunteers!

Volunteers Joan & Susan making a difference at the recent blood drive

Volunteers Joan & Susan making a difference at the recent blood drive

You may have noticed our signature red and white t-shirts at our blood drive, held on June 1, or as hosts at Reaching Out Now, Inc. We saw a great number of our friends at the Family Fun Festival and Community Food Drive on Saturday, May 19. But the work doesn’t stop with the change in seasons, we’ve got community focused summer plans!

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Summer is here! Get outside and fly a kite (or take a walk, or sail a boat!)

Summer is here and you know what that means. If you have youngsters, it won’t be long until you start hearing the “I’m bored” lament. You might even start agreeing!

It’s not too late to make summer plans and there’s no need to travel far and wide or spend a fortune. There are a wealth of things to see and do in our own backyard.

Why not start your planning by visiting tourism websites featuring attractions in Calvert, Charles , King George and St. Mary’s counties? You’ll find hundreds of activities, special events, and sightseeing and entertainment guides, as well as lodging, dining and shopping suggestions. Continue reading

Why do I need a mission statement?

If you’re in business, here are a few questions for you.

Why does your business exist? What is your reason for being, your overall goal, your purpose, your mission? What does your company do, and for whom? What are your beliefs and values?

Are these questions answered in your mission statement? In fact, do you even have a mission statement? Do you know what a mission statement should say and convey? Continue reading

Is it a scam? Be on the lookout online.

You or someone you know may have already been the intended target of Internet fraud. There are many scams to look out for, for example:

  • You received an email sent by someone posing as a Nigerian government official, asking you to place a large sum of money into an overseas bank account, with the promise of a big financial payoff in return.
  • You received an otherwise enticing email full of spelling and grammatical errors, or a notice from a source you recognized (or not) asking you to click a link and update or verify your personal information.
  • You were contacted about a relative in trouble and needing you to wire cash immediately.
  • You received an invitation to become a secret shopper — only after providing your personal information and paying an application fee.
  • You received an email from the FBI instructing you to click on a link to provide answers to their questions.

If any of these things have happened, you were one click away from giving your information to an Internet scammer. With Internet scams growing exponentially, it’s wise to keep track of new threats, before clicking a suspicious link. The FBI describes many of the latest scams and offers tips to avoiding them here.

The Federal Trade Commission even has a microsite with specific scam warnings and advice for parents, kids and small businesses. Check them out!

Save these links and refer to them the next time you receive a questionable email. And remember if an offer seems too good to be true, it probably is. And never provide confidential information in email.

 

 

Financial education shouldn’t end when the school year does.

Your children may be on vacation, but their financial education shouldn’t be! Summertime can be a great time to keep the wheels of learning turning. Here are a few ideas:

• Join the Green Team™! Saving money is made fun in our Kids’ Club Green Team. Members learn to save with a special passbook to record their savings. There are membership cards and free gifts too!

• Encourage them to earn extra money for things they want to do or buy. Add to their allowance with extra chores like washing the car, working in the yard, or helping vacationing neighbors by collecting their mail and newspapers while they are away. Continue reading

Going on vacation? Protect your identity while you’re away!

Identity theft can happen any time, but you could be an easier target when away from home. Don’t let your guard down!

Here are three quick tips to keep you — and your identity — safe while you are away.

• Check in with your bank

Let your financial institution and credit card company know you’ll be traveling, and where, so they can keep a close fraud watch on your card activity. This heightened monitoring can stop fraudulent activity before it starts and minimize any damage. Continue reading