Tough economic times have tested the vast majority of Americans - and that includes celebrities. Lately there have been several high profile individuals from the worlds of sports, entertainment, and the arts who have seen their financial woes hit the front pages. A money meltdown is right up there with death and divorce as one of life's most stressful experiences. So let me say straight up that my intent in highlighting these experiences is not to poke fun or make light of their situations. Rather it is to help others by highlighting common financial pitfall that all of us (myself included) can learn from.
- NBA Star Antoine Walker - Broke & In Big Trouble: During a successful career spanning 12 years, Antoine earned over110 million. Now it's gone. At age 33, Antoine has creditors chasing after him and is facing felony check fraud charges. Much has been made of his bling (the cars, watches, entourage). However, he was also by many accounts extremely generous with friends, family and those in need. Antoine's problem was that he spent as if his peak earnings years would repeat every year. He's not alone. Many people with variable incomes (commission-based sales people, entrepreneurs, etc.) fall into this trap. What we all can learn is if you have a volatile income stream, you should spend based on your average, or even trough, earnings to avoid a cash crunch when leaner times appear.