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Highest Echelon

A personal finance blog. Paying for my University, life and eventually achieving financial freedom.

Prosper.com: I'm the 20th best!

Thursday, June 07, 2007

For the longest time I was trapped in between 40th and 50th place in terms of Return On Investment at Prosper.com. This morning my rank jumped up to 20th place out of 18,224! (Yes, some lenders even have a negative ROI.)

I currently have an awesome Return on Investment of 21.96%. I can thank the loan that I closed at 28% with a B credit rating.

While I'm having a great deal of luck and fun at Prosper, it's important to remember that I could loose everything if A) Prosper goes under (the money is not FDIC insured) or B) if everyone decides to stop making payments (I have yet to have anyone miss a payment for more than 15 days).

Good luck and happy bidding. (Remember it only takes $50 to bid.)



posted by johnwilkx, 12:00 PM | link | 3 comments |

Zecco.com. New $0 minimum to open account.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

I just checked the Zecco.com website and it seems they've dropped the minimum opening amount for accounts from $2500 to $0.

(from their FAQ)

What is the minimum amount required to open an account?
Zip, nada: there's no minimum deposit required to open an account. Margin accounts require $2,000 minimum.


posted by johnwilkx, 12:27 PM | link | 0 comments |

Prosper.com. I'm #8427!

Friday, June 01, 2007

I just checked my Prosper.com stats on Eric's Credit Community. I've made it to Lender Rank #8427!

With an estimated 21.31% ROI, I'm also showing up as being the 44th best member in terms of Return on Investment.

Absolutely all my loans are current and I haven't had any "less than 15 days late" in months.

I'm at a point where Prosper.com is getting more and more fun every day! My original goal was to fund 25 loans with $50 each for a total of $1250 (I would then receive roughly $50 every month in payments which would then be used to fund more loans, it's a $50 minimum per loan).

My new goal is to loan out $5000! I would then be receiving roughly $200 in payments per month and would turn right around and reinvest that into 4 new loans. I've also decided to take full advantage of the standing order feature to automate the whole process. I find that standing orders can sift through borrowers more quickly and efficiently than I can. Also I then don't have to worry about being an emotional investor. I'm sometimes compelled to bid on loans where borrowers are unemployed and may lose their houses due to foreclosures and don't have a prayer of being able to pay back the loan. My standing orders pass right over those.

Happy bidding.



posted by johnwilkx, 8:56 AM | link | 2 comments |

New free samples at Walmart.com

Check out the new free samples at the Walmart site. Out of all the free samples sites that I use, Walmart.com is probably the best. No annoying follow up questions and I can register for an item in under a minute. It does take a while to ship, so I usually forget what I ordered. But that just makes it an even better surprise when it finally arrives.



posted by johnwilkx, 8:50 AM | link | 0 comments |

Bill Clinton and George Bush Sr. speak at The University of New Hampshire

Monday, May 21, 2007

Part 1

Part 2

I also really liked Steve Job's speech.


posted by johnwilkx, 8:38 AM | link | 0 comments |

The cost of school books is killing me!

Friday, May 04, 2007

If you've read some of my recent posts you'll know that I am now the proud owner of an Associates Degree in Business Administration (pending 2-4 weeks mail delivery). What you don't know is that I've doubled up on classes so I can finish my Bachelors even faster.

I am currently taking the equivalent of 8 classes, that's the absolute maximum number of classes allowed by my University. In order to even qualify for this I had to pay off all outstanding debt (ouch!), needed a GPA of 3.0 or better (no problem since my last term's GPA was 3.89), and then I needed to meet with the Dean. After reviewing my records and interviewing me, her exact words were, "I see no reason why you shouldn't take that many classes."

Now I have a bunch of 0% introductory APR credit cards that I'm currently living off of. I make the monthly payments and just let the remaining balance roll over until about a month before the 0% introductory period ends. In other words, I have plenty of imaginary money. (I keep a little slider bar on the top right of my page that shows how much credit limit I have and what my goal is.)

The only problem is: The cost of school books is killing me!

It feels like the second a new book comes out, the whole University switches to the newest edition. And those damn things update like every 2 - 3 years and cost around $100 each, used!

I already use a combination of using the school bookstore, buying online from half.com, amazon.com, and eBay. I even send out emails to all the teachers kindly requesting that I be allowed to borrow one of their books (they usually get sent 5 books by the publishers to do with as they please).

If I sound mad now, wait half an hour. I'm off to buy some school books!!! grrrr!!!

What are some ways you cut down on school books?


posted by johnwilkx, 7:18 AM | link | 5 comments |

Prosper.com. Here's what I'm bidding on this week.

C credit grade $8,000.00 @ 24.95%.
C credit grade $20,000.00 @ 27.50%.
C credit grade $25,000.00 @ 24.50%.
C credit grade $7,500.00 @ 27.50% This listing will close as soon as the requested amount is funded.

Looking at my past trend it does really seem like I enjoy that C credit grade.


posted by johnwilkx, 7:05 AM | link | 0 comments |

People-to-people lending. It's an old idea that's new again.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Learn more about how people-to-people lending works at Prosper.com.


posted by johnwilkx, 7:34 PM | link | 0 comments |

Prosper.com: Here's how to check how much money your fellow bloggers have invested.

Prosper.com has funded over $58,000,000 in loans and has over a quarter million users!

Have you ever wondered how much money your fellow PF bloggers have invested on Prosper.com? Have you ever wondered how your diversification stacks up to others? Or maybe you are worried about how safe Prosper is and want to see if others are loosing money due to delinquent loans.

Eric's Credit Community is a great place for answers. You can check lender, borrower stats, and group stats. You can even look up your own rank to see how you stack up to other investors.

If you know someone's username (let's say your favorite PF blogger) you can even compare how much they have invested, where it's invested, and if any loans are delinquent.


posted by johnwilkx, 6:11 PM | link | 0 comments |

The iPhone. It's everything except a phone.

Monday, April 30, 2007


posted by johnwilkx, 9:24 PM | link | 0 comments |

Burgers and college, both 50% done!

Saturday, April 28, 2007

I woke up at 3am today to work on my final in my Social Environment in Business class. I got an A on the final and an A in the class.

This was the last class to get my Associates Degree in Business Administration.

Time for fast food and a nap.


posted by johnwilkx, 6:43 AM | link | 1 comments |

Where do you go for free samples?

Friday, April 27, 2007

This post is more of a reminder to myself than to anyone else that I need more free samples! I want to be able to go on a short vacation and have available samples of soap, shampoo, toothpaste, deodorant, lip balm, and self tanner (why not).

I was just looking at a few blogs to see if I could round up websites that offer free samples that don't require too much of my personal information. I already look at Walmart's free sample page a few times per week, but that's just not enough. I found startsampling on Mymoneyblog, which looks promising.

Where do you go for free samples and free stuff?

I've added Freecyclefinder to the list.
Walmart's free sample page


posted by johnwilkx, 10:22 AM | link | 1 comments |

I'm the 9029th biggest lender on Prosper.com

Thursday, April 26, 2007

With an original investment of $850, I'm the 9029th biggest lender on Prosper.com. That's 17 loans funded at $50 each. By next week I expect to be ranked in the low 8000s.

I'll aim for the low 7000s for mid next month.



posted by johnwilkx, 8:33 PM | link | 2 comments |

Guy posts his real phone number on YouTube, gets 5,000 calls. Includes interview on CNN.

posted by johnwilkx, 12:29 PM | link | 0 comments |

Check this Prosper loan out. AA credit rating at 22%.

If you invest in Prosper.com, consider bidding on this: AA credit rating, $25,000 at 22%.

Bid on my listing at Prosper, people-to-people lending


posted by johnwilkx, 12:03 PM | link | 0 comments |

Is 298463% debt to income ratio too much for a loan? On Prosper.com, No Problem!

I just found this listing on Prosper.com. Salvimex714 wants to borrow $4000 at 29% APR. He has a credit rating of AA (the best Prosper has to offer). What's stopping me from bidding besides the fact that he's unemployed, has no income, no endorsements, and a scary picture? The 298463% Debt to Income Ratio!


posted by johnwilkx, 10:27 AM | link | 2 comments |

Just Took My Law Exam

Monday, November 27, 2006

I just took my law exam. This was a test that required days and days of reading and preparation. It was one hell of a test. About 80% of the questions were in this format:

Long overworded question
A. Possible trick answer.
B. An even better possible trick answer.
C. An even better possible trick answer.
D. Non of the above.


Really hard to understand question with lots of unnecessarily difficult to understand long words

I did alright on the multiple choice and I hope the essay questions bring my grade up.
posted by johnwilkx, 11:52 AM | link | 4 comments |

Funded 1 More Loan on Prosper.com

Friday, November 10, 2006

I finally funded 1 more loan on Prosper.com

posted by johnwilkx, 9:04 AM | link | 2 comments |

Walmart Perscription Plan - Full List

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Walmart Rolls Out a New Perscription Plan (Repost from) Sunday, September 24, 2006

Last week Walmart announced a new program that will offer consumers $4 prescriptions for generic drugs.

Here's a full list of the drugs offered thanks to The Big Picture.

posted by johnwilkx, 11:05 AM | link | 0 comments |

Did You Vote? Britney Spears Probably Didn't

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

It's November 7th. And in an attempt to outstage others once again, Britney Spears files a petition for divorce from Kevin Federline. Normally I don't really care, but I feel they could have held on to those news for 1 more day. It seems more like a diversionary tactic aimed at drawing attention away from the vote than anything else. Where have all the voters gone?
posted by johnwilkx, 7:10 PM | link | 4 comments |

Happy Halloween Week

It seems like once Halloween is over the stores immediately shift right into the Christmas shopping season. So in the spirit of frugality and in an effort to not spend anything on presents for a few more days, Happy Halloween Week.

I'll put some pictures from Salem Massachusetts up when I get them back from my artist.
posted by johnwilkx, 6:54 PM | link | 0 comments |

Festival of Frugality is Up

The Festival of Frugality is up at No Credit Needed.
posted by johnwilkx, 3:26 PM | link | 0 comments |

Prosper Update: 1 Person Late (<15d)

When I checked my Prosper.com account late last night I expected to see all 13 of my active loans to be Current. Was I ever shocked to see that 1 loan was Late (<15d). This is the first time I had seen this, but it means that this person's repayment is late by more than 1 day but less than 15 days.

I didn't want to be bothered by something like this too much so I simply sent an inter-Prosper mail saying:

Please make every effort to make the payment on this loan.

And I left it at that.

This morning I delved a little farther. At the origination of the loan, this person had 1 current delinquency, 10 past delinquencies, only 3 lines of credit, and wasn't a member of any group. Shame on me!

Credit grade: C
Now delinquent: 1
Delinquencies in last 7y: 10
Public records in last 10y: 2
First recorded credit line: Jul-1990
Total credit lines: 3
Inquiries in last 6 months: 0

Debt/Income: 4%

This was one of my first loans so I still didn't know what I was doing. I have since increased my standards. I now no longer lend unless the person is a member of a group and has significantly less delinquencies. The good part about the loan is that it is a C credit rating at 22.90%.

Later this morning I got an email back from this person.

Payment was made yesterday. Sorry, I changed jobs and my first payday fell on the 2nd of the month. I am in Iraq working so there shouldn't be any more problems. It just took a while to get my first paycheck. Thought I had it covered.
[Name withheld]
I confirmed his payment by looking under loan details. There is a small
† next to today's date.
† = in transit.

principal balance
Nov-07-2006† 307336 $1.93 - $0.03 - $0.00 = $1.90 $0.00 + $1.44 + $0.46 - $0.03 - $0.00 = $1.87 $48.36
Sep-21-2006 222981 $1.93 - $0.00 - $0.00 = $1.93 $0.00 + $0.75 + $1.18 - $0.02 - $0.00 = $1.92 $48.82

From what I can tell there is a $0.03 NSF charge that he also has to pay. But it seems like it may go to Prosper not me.
posted by johnwilkx, 10:10 AM | link | 2 comments |

RaidenX: A Great Remake of a Great Classic

Monday, November 06, 2006

RaidenX is a remake of the classic Raiden IIS series. I vaguely remember playing something similar to this on an arcade system. Now I can play on the computer for free. What a world we live in.

I only died once on normal.
posted by johnwilkx, 11:40 AM | link | 0 comments |

The Carnivals Are Up!

posted by johnwilkx, 8:54 AM | link | 0 comments |