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The Barrientos sisters erased a $182K debt in 18 months. ABC News(DALLAS) -- The Barrientos sisters from Dallas, Texas, were a close-knit family confronting a major problem.

The four sisters, all within four years of each other in age, had a combined income of $106,00 but a combined debt of $182,000, ballooned by student loans, car payments and credit cards.

“It was a bit embarrassing to admit that, oh, I have so much debt and I can’t really make a dent in it,” Damaris Barrientos said of her personal debt. “In my case, I had stopped making payments because I couldn’t keep up.”

Instead of cowering to the debt, the four sisters came up with a novel way to pay it off, by banding together and attacking it as a team.

“Their loan became our loan,” Noemi Barrientos told ABC News. “And it was no longer your debt, it was our debt.”

The first step the sisters made was to move into together and become roommates again, saving $400 per month.

Next, the sisters deposited their individual paychecks to a joint account and held weekly “sister meetings” where they gave each other an allowance of $75 each every two weeks for spending money.

The sisters spread that $75 out by sharing entrees when they went out to eat and shopping for clothes at thrift stores.

They also got rid of cable TV -- a savings of $174 per month, or $2,088 per year -– and combined their car insurance policies to save $191 per month, or $2,292 per year.

The Barrientos' plan for attacking their debt was to pay off their credit card debt first and their student loans last.

Within one month, every one of the sisters’ credit cards were paid in full and, within six months, the sisters had also paid off their car loans.

The four sisters’ student loans were paid off 18 months after they started, making them debt-free.

The sisters say it was their joint approach that allowed them to move so quickly.

“In no way we would've gotten done with our payments in the next 10 to 15 years and definitely no way we would have done it in 18 months,” said Ana Barrientos-McBride.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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inbj/iStock Editorial/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Online auction website eBay launched 20 years ago Thursday -- and in the past two decades has shaped the way people buy and sell everything from cars and clothes to a vast selection of collectibles.

With more than 25 million sellers and 157 million active buyers, eBay has impacted consumers in 190 countries.

Here's a look at some of the key moments that have helped eBay achieve success and staying power 20 years later:

The First Sale

After a busy Labor Day weekend of coding, Pierre Omidyar launched AuctionWeb -- which would later change its name to eBay. The site had a stated goal of "bringing together buyers and sellers in an honest and open marketplace."

AuctionWeb's first sale was a broken laser pointer Omidyar posted on his site. It sold to a laser pointer collector for $14.83.

Sales Spike

One year after AuctionWeb went into business, it had already helped facilitate $7.2 million in sales. That same year, Omidyar quit his day job to focus full-time on his new venture, bringing in his first employee and later hiring Jeff Skoll to serve as president.

Beanie Baby Bonanza

The year was 1997 and Beanie Babies were the must-have collectible. Around $500 million worth of the cuddly animals made by Ty Warner were sold on eBay, accounting for what eBay said was more than six percent of the auction site's volume.

Seller Feedback

Sticking with the ideal of creating the most "honest and open marketplace," AuctionWeb introduces seller feedback in 1997. Later that year, the company re-names itself as eBay.

Going Public

The company celebrated its initial public offering in September of 1998, with shares trading on NASDAQ under the symbol EBAY.

Global Expansion

The company began expansion in 1999 with new sites in Germany, Australia and the United Kingdom.

Own Your Own Business

Launching in June 2001, eBay Stores allowed anyone to set up their own digital storefront for a few dollars a month.


The company purchased digital payments solution PayPal in 2002. A decade later the service would have a total payment volume exceeding $60 billion. PayPal was spun off into an independent company in July 2015.


eBay acquired StubHub, an online marketplace for entertainment events including sporting events, concerts and theater in 2007.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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Spencer Platt/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Stocks rebounded Wednesday morning despite continued volatility from global financial markets.

Shortly after the opening bell, the Dow Jones Industrial Average increased about 1.2 percent to about 16,226, while the S&P 500 had a partial comeback, up about 1.1 percent. The NASDAQ composite moved higher about 1.3 percent.

Earlier Wednesday, the Shanghai Composite Index closed 0.2 percent lower at about 3,160, the last day of trading before the market closes for a two-day holiday celebrating the 70th anniversary of Japan's defeat in World War II.

A report in China on Tuesday said manufacturing in that country fell to a three-year low last month, moving U.S. stocks lower. American investors fear that an economic slowdown in China will affect business activity at home.

Meanwhile, a possible increase in U.S. interest rates keeps other investors jittery. At the closing bell on Tuesday in the U.S., the Dow Jones Industrial Average, NASDAQ and S&P 500 all ended the day in the red, with the Dow briefly dropping more than 500 points and closing down about 2.8 percent at the end of trading in New York.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Though Burger King's offer of a "burger war ceasefire" for Peace Day was spurned by McDonald's last week, the company still plans to go through with a joint burger project to mark the occasion.

In a YouTube video posted last week, Burger King offered the one-day truce to mark "Peace Day," proposing a McWhopper pop-up store halfway between the two companies' headquarters, in Atlanta. "Let's end the beef...with beef," the video said.

But while the response from McDonald's CEO Steve Easterbrook praised the idea, he said that he felt the two brands "could do something bigger to make a difference."

Burger King, however, posted to its Tumblr page on Tuesday, saying that since the McDonald's rejection, the company had "received a significant number of unexpected responses from other restaurants, large and small, each expressing an appetite for peace and enthusiasm to help spread the Peace One Day message."

As a result, Burger King plans to team up on a pop-up restaurant with Denny's, Wayback Burgers, Krystal and Giraffas, each of whom made individual proposals to Burger King.

Burger King's proposal? "Create a burger that combines a key ingredient from each of our signature sandwiches," called the Peace Day Burger.

Denny's has signed on to Burger King's plan, it said in a post to Twitter, a sentiment echoed by Wayback Burgers.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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Photo by Evelyn Hockstein/For The Washington Post via Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- A California district court on Tuesday certified a class action lawsuit against Uber made up of some of the company's California drivers.

In the ruling, the court said that all UberBlack, UberX and UberSUV drivers who either signed up to drive for the company before 2014, or who had opted out of Uber's arbitration clause, could be part of the class action suit. In his 68-page decision, Judge Edward Chen set the stage for a high profile legal battle between the company and its drivers.

The drivers sought certain benefits, such as compensation for gas and other work expenses, health insurance, and workers compensation.

In a post to its website, Uber said it estimates that fewer than 15,000 drivers would qualify for the class, and that that figure could fall even further.

Uber also says it "will likely still appeal because partners use Uber on their own terms, and there really is no typical driver."

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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Apple's iOS 9 is pictured. Apple(NEW YORK) -- While all eyes may be on the potential new iPhones and other hardware to be unveiled next Wednesday at Apple's special event, it's also possible users will find out when they can get their hands on hotly anticipated operating system updates.

The star of Apple's event is widely expected to be the new iPhone 6S -- but if history is any indicator, Apple fans should be able to expect some news on when they can download the public versions of three new operating system updates that were shown off at the company's Worldwide Developer's Conference in June.

Here's a quick cheat sheet about what to expect when it comes to iOS 9, OS X "El Capitan" and watchOS 2.

iOS 9

Intelligence is the driving force in iOS 9, which will include an even smarter and more proactive Siri capable of picking up context throughout your day. The digital personal assistant fields more than one billion requests per week, according to Apple, and will be ready for plenty more work with iOS 9.

With the new update, Siri will be able to pull up results for requests such as "Show me photos from Utah last August" and "Remind me to grab my coffee off the roof of my car when I get in."

Siri will also know to pull up music when headphones are plugged in or start an audio book a user has been listening to when they're in their car, among a slew of other context-based features.

OS X 'El Capitan'

The latest version of Apple's Mac operating system, OS X "El Capitan," has a special focus on enhancing performance for power users.

Among the new features are the ability to work across tabs in Mail, pin most visited websites in Safari and work simultaneously in windows positioned side by side. Spotlight will also be able to understand natural language, making it easier for users to find everything from files to weather and sports scores.

watchOS 2

Among the new capabilities are photo faces, including time lapses of city scenes, the ability to see a different photo every time a user glances at their wrist and nightstand mode, turning a charging watch into an alarm clock.

A time travel feature will also let users turn their crown to leap forward and backward in time to see their schedules. Siri will also respond to a voice command to start counting a workout, without a user having to touch their Apple Watch.

Many apps on the watch can run natively with the update, meaning users can expect quicker load times and even more possibilities for how they can be used.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Following more bad news from China, U.S. stocks had another bad day as investors remain jittery over a slowdown in the world's second-largest economy.

On Tuesday, the Shanghai Composite Index closed down Tuesday 1.2 percent. American investors fear that an economic slowdown in China will affect U.S. exports to that nation.

The Dow Jones Industrial average, Nasdaq and S&P 500 all ended the day in the red. The Dow briefly dropped more than 500 points and closed down about 2.8 percent, or 469 points at the end of trading in New York. The S&P 500 fell about 2.7 percent and the Nasdaq closed down nearly 3 percent.

A report in China said manufacturing in that country fell to a three-year low last month.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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Credit: Google(MOUTNAIN VIEW, Calif.) -- A new era calls for a new logo.

As Google restructures under a new holding company called Alphabet, the search giant announced Tuesday its logo is getting a slight makeover -- beginning with a new typeface called "Product Sans" which is designed to look like the fonts seen in school books.

"The Google logo has always had a simple, friendly, and approachable style. We wanted to retain these qualities by combining the mathematical purity of geometric forms with the childlike simplicity of schoolbook letter printing," Google's design team wrote in a blog today explaining the rationale behind the changes.

While the new design includes the same blue, red, yellow and green letters that have been used throughout Google's history, the shades have been slightly tweaked and the e at the end of Google remains tilted -- a nod to the company's sometimes unconventional ideas.

This marks the sixth time Google has changed its logo in the company's 17-year history.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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Joe Raedle/Getty(DENVER) -- Chipotle is expanding its delivery partnerships by targeting the sought-after college market, specifically, more than 100 campuses by next spring.

The Denver-based Chipotle Mexican Grill announced that it will deliver to 40 college campuses this fall with the delivery company Tapingo. In addition to the cost of your burrito or whatever Chipotle food product, the delivery price ranges from $1.99 to $4.99 depending on the market, according to Tapingo.

Chipotle already offers delivery to some cities through partnerships with Postmates, in large cities like New York, and Order Up, in smaller markets such as Columbia, Missouri. Postmates, based in San Francisco, charges customers a delivery fee that's as much as $5 and up, plus a service fee, depending on the neighborhood. Order Up charges similar fees.

To order Chipotle food in Nashville, Tennessee, it will cost you a $4.99 delivery fee, plus a 99-cent processing fee, according to Order Up's website. Order Up, based in Baltimore, is owned by Groupon.

The terms of Chipotle's partnerships with Tapingo, Order Up and Postmates are not disclosed.

Tapingo, based in San Francisco, says that its company user base is mostly Millennials and Gen Zs.
“Tapingo has become the buy button for students and we are excited to expand into surrounding areas,” Daniel Almog, Tapingo CEO, said in a statement. “Our network of students is hungry for Chipotle, and we’re excited to deliver it quickly and at a very reasonable delivery cost.”

Here are the college campuses where Chipotle is currently delivering:

  • Arizona State University
  • California State University Chico
  • Louisiana State University
  • University of Arizona
  • University of Southern California
  • Northern Arizona University

Here are the campuses where students can order Chipotle, starting this fall:

  • California State University - Fullerton
  • California State University Northridge
  • Carnegie Melon University
  • Case Western Reserve University
  • Cleveland State University
  • College of the Holy Cross
  • Columbia University
  • Eastern Michigan University
  • Emory University
  • Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Georgia State University
  • Johns Hopkins University
  • Loyola Marymount University
  • Loyola University Maryland
  • Michigan State University
  • New York University
  • North Carolina State University
  • Ohio State University
  • Pennsylvania State University
  • Rutgers University
  • San Jose State University
  • Santa Clara University
  • Towson University
  • Trinity College
  • University of Arkansas
  • University of California Los Angeles
  • University of Georgia
  • University of Louisville
  • University of Maryland
  • University of Miami
  • University of Michigan
  • University of Oklahoma
  • University of Oregon Eugene
  • University of Pittsburgh
  • University of the Pacific
  • University of Utah

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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Credit: McDonalds(OAK BROOK, Ill.) -- McDonald's has set a date for when its customers can begin ordering breakfast at any time of day.

After testing all-day breakfast menus in limited markets in the U.S., McDonald's announced it will offer Egg McMuffins and other morning items starting Oct. 6 throughout the day at its more than 14,300 restaurants across the nation.

The company began tweeting Tuesday about its new initiative, using the hashtag #AllDayBreakfast. Many customers have long-asked McDonald's to offer its breakfast items, such as hotcakes and McGriddle sandwiches, later in the day. At most of McDonald's restaurants, breakfast food items are no longer available around 10:30 a.m. or 11 a.m.

Lisa McComb, a spokeswoman for McDonald's, said the company's operators and operator leadership voted for nationwide all-day breakfast.

The all-day breakfast menu includes hash browns, fruit and maple oatmeal, fruit and yogurt parfait, sausage burritos and more.

"While restaurants serve All Day Breakfast, our rest-of-day core menu items will stay intact, such as the Big Mac, Quarter Pounder with Cheese, McNuggets, Fries, etc. but regions can determine what, if any, menu items need removing based on local customer preferences," McComb said in a statement.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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Tim Boyle/Getty Images(CHICAGO) — Danny Chasteen thought he hit the jackpot when he won $250,000 in the Illinois lottery this summer. But a delay in the state's budget is also delaying his payoff and dampening his celebratory mood.

"Wait a minute. I won this fair and square," Chasteen, 56, of LaSalle County, said. "I bought a ticket and scratched it off. I don’t get it."

That's because until the budget is approved, the state comptroller can't pay lottery winners with prize money higher than $25,000, state lottery officials said.

"If it was me owing the state money, but I don’t have the budget together, they would take me to court and get my money," Chasteen said.

Illinois lawmakers have failed to meet their budget deadline of July 1, as Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner has battled the Democrat-run legislature. Meanwhile, the Illinois State Museum, subsidized child care and other social services are on the chopping block.

When Chasteen, a manufacturing foreman, learned he won the state lottery's Cool Cash scratch-off game on July 20, he said he was told he would receive the winnings in four to six weeks. But last week, he received a call from lottery officials saying otherwise.

"They said, 'We cannot pay you out because the state don’t have a budget,'" said Chasteen, who was hoping to pay off his bills with his lottery winnings.

Last Friday, he took out a $3,000 loan to help pay off his bills and those of his girlfriend. Chasteen said he hasn't spent more money than he usually does since learning he won the lottery. But he said he wouldn't have taken out the loan if he had received the lottery prize money, as first reported by ABC station WLS in Chicago.

Lottery officials say the prize money exists, but they legally can't dole it out.

“Due to the ongoing budget situation in Springfield, some lottery winner payments have been delayed," a statement from the state lottery read. "All winners will be paid in full as soon as the Lottery and the Illinois Comptroller have the legislative authority to do so."

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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Photo by Bennett Raglin/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Marissa Mayer is expecting identical twin girls!

The Yahoo CEO, 40, shared the happy news on her Tumblr Tuesday, writing that the "twins part was quite a surprise, because I have no family history of twins or any other predisposing factors."

Mayer said she is due in December and it appears she won't be taking full advantage of Yahoo's parental leave policy.

"Since my pregnancy has been healthy and uncomplicated and since this is a unique time in Yahoo’s transformation, I plan to approach the pregnancy and delivery as I did with my son three years ago, taking limited time away and working throughout," she wrote.

Mayer was back to work soon after she gave birth to her son in 2012, the same year she took over as Yahoo's CEO.

"I've shared the news and my plans with Yahoo’s Board of Directors and my executive team, and they are incredibly supportive and happy for me," she said. "I want to thank them for all of their encouragement as well as their offers of help and continued support."

The announcement of her pregnancy comes as Yahoo prepares to spin off its stake in Chinese e-commerce site Alibaba into a new entity called Aabaco Holdings. The move is expected to close in the fourth quarter of this year.

While Mayer's quick maternity leave drew some criticism that she was setting an unrealistic example for many women, she later followed up by extending Yahoo's parental leave, offering mothers up to 16 weeks of paid maternity leave, which also applies to adoption, foster child placement and surrogacy, and eight paid weeks for fathers.

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iStock/Thinkstock(MARTINEZ, Calif.) — Shawna Behrens of Martinez, California, is a stay-at-home mom who says she’s making a killing on used clothing.

“Last month I had $18,000 in sales,” Behrens told ABC News.

Behrens finds items at local consignment stores, garage sales and eBay and then posts them to an app called Poshmark.

“It was so easy,” Behrens said. “You can download that app in 60 seconds along with posting something in 60 seconds.”

“If the price is right, I’ve sold stuff in 20 minutes,” she said.

Poshmark -- along with other apps like Tradesy and ThredFlip -- offers a thoroughly social way to build and sell. Followers “favorite” your closet, comment on your shoes and attend virtual purse parties.

“You get to set the price, as well as, you know, the worth of your item, you can convey that to your customers,” Behrens said. “You can say, ‘Hey, this is how it fits. This is what I wear it with.’”

Behrens is not alone in saying she makes thousands of dollars by selling clothes online.

The online consignment industry is growing fast. Poshmark users upload over $2 million worth of items every day from their phones.

That is the equivalent of an entire department store of clothing being listed and sold each week all on one app.

Behrens says there are specific strategies for becoming a power-seller. Be Social. – “You can have live-time chats with women,” she said. “You guys can text right back and forth and it just really makes sales a lot easier and quicker.”

Be a Brand. – “I think I’m selling stuff that I would actually wear,” Behrens said.

Invest in Styling. Buy a mannequin and use it to create looks, Behrens recommends.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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InterestingLight/iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- A study conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety found that highway speed cameras have "led to long-term changes in driver behavior and substantial reductions in deaths and injuries" in at least one community near Washington, D.C.

Speed cameras were introduced in 2007 in Montgomery County, Maryland, the study notes. As of 2014, the area had 56 fixed cameras, 30 portable cameras and six mobile speed vans. Six months after the installation of the first cameras, the proportion of drivers traveling more than 10 miles per hour over the speed limit had dipped, according to the IIHS.

Further, the study found, after seven years, the program continues to work. IIHS says cameras have reduced the likelihood of a driver exceeding the speed limit by over 10 miles per hour by 59 percent compared to similar roads in nearby counties without speed cameras.

The camera program is also credited with a 19 percent reduction in the likelihood of crashes involving a fatality or incapacitating injury.

"We hope this research will help energize the discussion around speed," IIHS President Adrian Lund said in a statement. "We're all accustomed to seeing posted limits ignored, but it's a mistake to think nothing can be done about it."

The study also argues that speed corridors, in which enforcement is focused on long stretches of road rather than precise locations, are even more effective. "Speed-camera corridors force drivers to watch their speed for the length of the road, instead of slamming on the brakes at a specific location and then speeding up again," IIHS Senior Vice President for Research Anne McCartt said.

Interestingly, the study also found that cameras are only effective in altering drivers' behavior if the drivers are aware that they are there. More than three-quarters of drivers in Montgomery County reported reducing their speed due to the speed camera program.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Login information for as many as 225,000 Apple accounts may have been stolen using a sophisticated malware called KeyRaider that targets jailbroken devices -- those that have hardware restrictions removed and are no longer protected by Apple.

Cyber security company Palo Alto Networks, working alongside Chinese technology group WeipTech, published research detailing the breach, which apparently allows hackers to download apps using the person's account to remotely lock a device and hold it for ransom.

"We believe this to be the largest known Apple account theft caused by malware," researcher Claud Xiao wrote.

The malware appears to have been spread by being built into jailbreak tweaks, which are software additions not evaluated by Apple, Xiao said. The tweaks have been downloaded more than 20,000 times, leading researchers to believe at least that many people are taking advantage of the 225,000 stolen account credentials.

Some people have reported unusual purchasing history in their App Store accounts while others have had their devices locked for ransom, according to researchers.

Apple advises users to not jailbreak their devices due to security issues.

"Jailbreaking your device eliminates security layers designed to protect your personal information and your iOS device," Apple's support website explains. "With this security removed from your iOS device, hackers may steal your personal information, damage your device, attack your network, or introduce malware, spyware or viruses."

Palo Alto Networks said it provided the stolen account information to Apple on Aug. 26. It was also noted that researchers were only able to recover half of the stolen account information before the hacker fixed the vulnerability.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.





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