catastrophic insurance

coverage for specific catastrophic events such as death, fire, flood, and some medical conditions.

Certificate of Deposit (CD)

a bank deposit that commits you to leave the principal and accumulating earnings for a certain amount of time in order to earn a fixed rate of interest.

certified financial planner

a qualified investment professional who assists individuals and corporations in meeting their long-term financial objectives by analyzing the client's status and setting a program to achieve these goals. They are specialized in tax planning, asset allocation, risk management, retirement and/or estate planning.

checking account

a bank account that allows you to transfer money you've deposited to a payee by writing checks or using a check or debit card to make purchases.

check card

also known as a debit card. A debit card enables the owner to withdraw funds from a checking account. Sometimes this withdrawal takes place immediately.

collection agency

a business that specializes in obtaining payments from debtors who have defaulted on their loans.

compound interest

calculated interest on both principal and previously earned interest.


an agreement to provide goods, services, or money in exchange for future payments with interest by a specific date or according to a specific schedule. The use of someone else's money for a fee.

credit card

a plastic card that authorizes the delivery of goods and services in exchange for future payment with interest, according to a specific schedule.

credit counseling service

an organization that provides debt and money management advice and assistance to people with debt problems.


one who gives credit for money or goods; one to whom a debt is owed.

credit report

an official record of a borrower's credit history, including such information as the amount and type of credit used, outstanding balances, and any delinquencies, bankruptcies, or tax liens.

credit score

a statistical measure of a loan applicant's creditworthiness, which is the likelihood of repayment.

credit union

a state or federally chartered not-for-profit financial cooperative that provides financial services to its member-owners, who have met specific employment, residence, or other eligibility requirements.