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From the Department of Interior:

Here they come… welcome the first bison calves of 2014 to the National Bison Range Refuge in Montana! Weighing in at 40-50 pounds, these wee ones will stay red for a few months before turning brown. By the time we see them at the annual roundup in October, most will weigh between 250-350 pounds.

Photo: USFWS

Starting a New Job? The Secret to Saving Money at Work

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By Katie Bryan, America Saves Communications Director

I have never been a particularly good saver. I wasn’t the child who stashed away babysitting money or saved money I received as gifts. But a series of important (and lucky) decisions has helped me build my savings since I started my first job.

When I started my first full-time job my employer took the time to sit down with me and explain how their retirement plan worked and how I could easily sign up for it. She also explained that they would match my savings, dollar for dollar, on the first 5 percent that I put in from my paycheck. If I didn’t put any money in the plan, I would be missing out on the free matching funds. It made the decision to open the account easy. Now years later that fund has grown to more than I ever could have imagined when I opened it.

You too can begin to build wealth at work through these simple strategies:

Start Small. Think Big.

If you are starting your first job, or just starting to save, starting small is a great way to begin to save. Whether it’s 5 percent of your paycheck or $25 a week, those small savings will add up over time. If you can save even more that’s great! For example, if you save only $50 a month (earning 2 percent interest compounded monthly) you will have over $36,000 in 40 years.

If you need some additional motivation to save take the America Saves pledge, where you can choose a savings goal, create a plan to reach it, and receive tips and advice.

Automate Your Savings

Once you decide how much to save, set up an automatic savings plan. Your employer can help you set up direct deposit and you can choose to have the amount you want to save put directly into a savings or share account before you get your paycheck. This is the best way to save because once you make the decision to do so, it just happens without having to think about it.

Participate in Workplace Retirement Plans

You can also save automatically through a work-sponsored retirement plan or through a Roth IRA if your work doesn’t have a plan. Check to see if you work offers any matching funds and make sure you save enough to take full advantage.

Gradually Increase Your Contributions

This strategy works well no matter how much you are saving. Each year take a look at how much you are saving and slowly increase that amount. A great time to make these changes is at the end of the year or during tax time. This works especially well if you expect to receive a pay increase, a cost of living increase, or a tax refund.

Implement these simple strategies for saving at work and watch the savings grow.

America Saves, a campaign managed by the nonprofit Consumer Federation of America, seeks to motivate, encourage, and support low- to moderate-income households to save money, reduce debt, and build wealth. Learn more at americasaves.org

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From the Bureau of Land Management:

The blood moon as viewed along the American Wild and Scenic River in California, one of the few urban rivers in the U.S. to have a wild and scenic designation. The river flows from the Sierra crest to downtown Sacramento.  The BLM manages segments of the North and South forks of the river which are popular for whitewater boating and gold panning.  BLM photo.
Plan your visit: http://www.blm.gov/ca/st/en/fo/folsom/nfamerican.html

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From the Bureau of Land Management:

The blood moon as viewed along the American Wild and Scenic River in California, one of the few urban rivers in the U.S. to have a wild and scenic designation. The river flows from the Sierra crest to downtown Sacramento.  The BLM manages segments of the North and South forks of the river which are popular for whitewater boating and gold panning.  BLM photo.

Plan your visit: http://www.blm.gov/ca/st/en/fo/folsom/nfamerican.html

Tips for Teens: Saving and Managing Your Own Money

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By FDIC

As a teen, you start taking more responsibility for handling money and choosing how you want to save or use it. Here are a few ideas to help make your decisions easier…and better:

  • Consider a part-time or summer job. A job can provide you with additional money as well as new skills, and connections to people who may be helpful after you graduate.

  • Open a savings account and put money in it for specific goals. Get in the habit of putting at least 10 percent of any gifts or earnings in a savings account right away. Saving a certain percentage of your income before you’re tempted to spend it is what financial advisors call “paying yourself first.”

  • If you’re ready for a checking account, choose one carefully. Many banks offer accounts geared to teens or other students that require less money to open and charge lower fees than their other accounts.

  • Once you have a bank account, keep a close eye on it. Watch your balance the best way you can. For example, keep receipts and record expenses so you don’t spend more money than you have in your account and run the risk of overdraft costs.

  • Understand that borrowing money comes with costs and responsibilities. When you borrow money, you generally will repay the money monthly and pay interest. Always compare offers to borrow money based on the Annual Percentage Rate (APR). The lower the APR, the less you will pay in interest.

Get more tips on managing getting started with money management from the FDIC.

WATCH: Where does your money go each month? A simple budget might help you understand: