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Call them what you will — tightwads, cheapskates, penny pinchers — they’re hot again. Back when more was more, and the Dow was dizzying, skinflints were as endangered as the expense account is today. Now, in an economy where excess is the new tacky, frugal fannies everywhere are having their day.

Neal Templin is a tightwad. Just ask him. He chronicles all the ways he doesn’t part with his money — and all the lessons he’s learned in the process — in a Wall Street Journal column called, appropriately, Cheapskate.

This hour, On Point: Impervious to the impulse buy — and not picking up the check. Confessions of a skinflint.

You can join the conversation. Are you a proud cheapskate? What about the flipside — when is spending the better choice? Tell us what you think.Guests:

Joining us from New York is Neal Templin, personal finance editor of The Wall Street Journal. He writes the Journal’s weekly Cheapskate column.

From Essex County, N.J., is Clarissa Templin, Neal Templin’s wife, the long-suffering spouse of a cheapskate.

And from Philadelphia, we're joined by Scott Rick, a post-doctoral fellow and lecturer at the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School. He's co-author of the paper “Tightwads and Spendthrifts,” examining the emotional and neural underpinnings of spending money.  See also, "Are You a Tightwad or a Spendthrift? And What Does This Mean for Retailers?," an article from Wharton School Publishing on Rick's work, and the spendthrift-tightwad scale he developed with colleagues to measure "individual differences in the pain of paying."

This program aired on February 17, 2009.


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