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Kid blows family’s savings on candy

By Claes Bell, CFA · Bankrate.com
Friday, November 9, 2012
Posted: 4 pm ET

People get annoyed about institutions charging them bank fees to access their own money, but bank accounts do have the underrated benefit of making it impossible for a disturbed child to steal your life savings and use it to buy mass quantities of candy.

That's exactly what happened in Ukraine, where a young boy is in deep trouble with his parents. From the Russian News and Information Agency RIA Novosti:

A 9-year-old boy has emptied his parents' piggy bank, spending almost $4,000 on candy in the Ukrainian city of Konotop, the Ukrainian edition of Russia's Komsomolskaya Pravda daily said Wednesday.

A total of $3,300 and 500 euro (about $600) -- the family's entire savings -- went missing from the stash, which was kept hidden under a sofa.

"The disappearance was first spotted by the father, a shift worker who had just returned home," said Tatyana Kushnerova of the local police department. "He opened the stash and saw that it was empty."

After a brief family row, the son admitted stealing the money, saying he wanted to buy some sweets.

During his autumn vacation, the boy took various sums of money from the stash and converted it into Ukrainian hryvnas with the help of an adult acquaintance. The man, who has been diagnosed with a mental disorder, always received the biggest note for his services.

As the boy was unable to eat all the candy he bought, he shared it with friends.

I get a lot of people in the comments section of this blog and on social media threatening to take out their cash and stuff it under a mattress because of insultingly low interest rates, high bank fees, etc. But while the fact that the kid went and blew all this money on candy is kind of funny, this incident illustrates exactly why keeping large amounts of cash around your home rather than in a checking or savings account is a terrible idea.

To get an idea of how much $4,000 is for a Ukranian family, the gross national income per capita in Ukraine is $3,120 a year compared to $48,450 in the U.S., according to the World Bank. In other words, losing that $4,000 probably felt like what an American family would feel in losing $62,115.

Now, I'm sure the family had some good reasons for keeping the money in cash. Ukraine is experiencing massive inflation of around 10 percent annually right now, so the family was probably keeping its money in hard-currency euros to avoid that.

But whatever reasons that you have for keeping a large amount of cash in your home, it's important to remember that in doing so, you're risking a total loss. After all, when it comes to money, all it takes is one family member or friend who knows about your stash to succumb to temptation for that cash to be gone.

What do you think? Have you ever lost a stash of cash? Did you wish afterward it had been sitting in a bank instead?

Follow me on Twitter: @ClaesBell.

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125 Comments
Quincy
January 03, 2013 at 1:25 pm

The Obama comments are ridiculous! Last time I checked, your president isn't reason why the economy is jacked up!!! Now granted, everything hasn't been done to clean up the economy but look at the mess that was made by the Bush administration. Companies going overseas and their taxes were record lows and the near destruction to Fannie Mae and auto industry!!! Check your facts before you place all of the blame on one person!!!

BTW, that's sad the kid spent his family entire life savings on candy!!!

Leon
January 02, 2013 at 5:14 pm

Had a friend that inherited $25,000.00 and hid it in his cellar. Went to Daytona to the races and when he returned his new wife and stepdaughters had stolen the money !! Then they threw him out and took his house away!! Hows that for a bummer!! Think they were related to our PRES!!!!

Jeff Bottaro
January 01, 2013 at 7:53 pm

This is the most literal form of the expression "sugar Daddy" that I have ever encountered.

Sandra
December 22, 2012 at 2:29 am

Obama found 400 million
He just blew it on a 3 day trip to Hawaii

He says - Jack up their taxes
we need to blow a few....

Ruby
December 17, 2012 at 8:55 pm

Young man that is a lot of money and ur parents were probaly saving that money for a reason and u blew it. If u were my son u would have gotton a spanking of ur life

alisha
December 11, 2012 at 11:33 pm

That kid is awesome!! hey a kid blowing 50K on candy is easier on the family than a kid needing surgery in USA

Clifad
December 06, 2012 at 3:26 pm

On be a groupie keep it movin nigga youown no me

David
December 05, 2012 at 10:01 am

Is his name Obama. He is spending our taxes just as bad.

vanessa
December 05, 2012 at 1:18 am

how can i help that family out...?

Carla
December 04, 2012 at 1:19 am

Daphne, you sound like a very cold, selfish, mean hearted woman. No wonder your daughter doesn't show you respect you or your things. Look at yourself.