Weekly Reads: Hospital bills, lattes, and mattresses

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In this week's Weekly Reads: Do you know how much your healthcare costs? What about your lattes? And you better think twice about trusting online mattress reviews - they may be compromised.

Vox The problem is the prices Health insurance is expensive. Why? Because healthcare services are expensive. Why? Good question. Turns out, healthcare pricing is a very opaque process. Why are things priced the way they are? Because, that’s why! Over at Vox, Sarah Kliff takes a deep dive into this mysterious world. And if reading is too much, you can always listen to her new podcast The Impact, the first episode of which is about exactly this topic.

The Financial Diet Lattes Don’t Make You Poor — An Unequal Society Does Want some good personal finance advice? The lattes you’re buying aren’t the reason you don’t have enough saved for retirement. Yes, making your own coffee saves you money, but “the latte factor” is one of the more trite pieces of money advice you can get. Wages are stagnant, social mobility is low, student loan debt is high — those are the things that are actually holding you back. Rachel Suppok dives into this argument over on The Financial Diet, and highlights the things you should really be worrying about — like making systemic change in America — instead of your coffee habits.

Fast Company The War To Sell You A Mattress Is An Internet Nightmare As the proud owner of a Casper mattress and a Casper pillow, and the listener of many podcasts that advertise online mattress retailers, I was very disappointed to hear that in the world of mattress startups, no one is nice, every company is a bully, and everyone sounds like they’re in The Social Network. This Fast Company article shows the shadowy side of selling mattresses, including the gotta-be-illegal practice of just straight up buying review sites when they write slightly unflattering things.

Image: AGCreativeLab