1. Emergency funds: Risk versus returns

    Emergency funds: Risk versus returns

    After four straight years of short-term interest rates slinking along below 1% -- actually, at less than 0.5% most of that time -- savers have come to regard the term "high yield savings account" as an oxymoron, like jumbo shrimp or political leadership.

    Given that outlook, I understand you might be tempted to invest your emergency stash in something that has a shot at more lucrative returns.

    But while it's easy to see with the benefit of hindsight that you would have done much better owning stocks or bonds, it's quite another thing to know how you would fare in the future.

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