By Jill Weinberger and Joseph O' Dell, CNBC.com
Athletes and celebrities depend on their physical prowess and appearance to earn their livelihoods, and some will go to great lengths to secure it. Though the practice may seem outrageous to many, these stars have shelled out big money for insurance policies on the assets that have been benchmarks of their success: their bodies.
Taking out a policy on a body part, although rare, has been around for decades. During the 1920s, silent film clown Ben Turpin, who was known for his crossed eyes, took an insurance policy out if his eyes were to ever become uncrossed, TIME magazine reported. From their legs to the hair on their head and everything in between, the rich and famous are seeking to protect their money makers, and sometimes to gain a little publicity as well.
And who exactly is penning these policies? UK-based Lloyd's of London, has become known for providing some of the most famous celebrity body part policies. The company
Blog Posts by CNBC
By Jill Weinberger and Joseph O' Dell, CNBC.comRead More »from Celebrity Insured Body Parts
By Ellen Lee, CNBC.com
"People are willing to spend money on their dog and their dog's care because they're as close to a member of your family [as you can get]." - Mitch Marrow, Owner, Spot Experience
Mitch Marrow walks his dog in front of Spot Experience.Drafted by the Carolina Panthers after an Ivy League education, Mitch Marrow had planned on a career playing in the National Football League.
But a serious back injury cut short his dream. Now, after more than a decade on Wall Street managing hedge funds, Marrow is hoping to score big in an unlikely enterprise, an high-end doggy day care business in New York.
Marrow, a University of Pennsylvania graduate, opened the Spot Experience earlier this year, offering a combination of day care, overnight boarding, training, grooming, retail and even dental care for the city's many dog lovers.
With dogs substituting as children in many families, Spot taps into an industry that is growing despite the flailing economy. Owners spent an estimated $51 billion this year on their pets, upRead More »from High-end doggy daycare: no downsizing for Fido
By Rajeshni Naidu-Ghelani, CNBC.comRead More »from Countries with the Most Holidays
Countries With the Best Holiday Entitlements
It's that time of year again, when workers go on leave, businesses shut down and the general work-life balance scale dips toward "social." But employees in some countries have it especially good, with generous government-mandated holiday entitlements.
With that in mind, we've put together a list of the top 10 countries with the highest number of mandated paid holidays per year, according to a 62-country report "Worldwide Benefit and Employment Guidelines" released by the human resources consulting firm Mercer.
The rankings are based on the minimum mandated holidays an employee is entitled to per year, not counting national holidays. (In cases where countries have the same number of statutory holidays we sorted them alphabetically.)
Some of the results may surprise you and some of the benefits may make you envious. Check out which countries give their workers the most time off each year.
See the full
By Colleen Kane, CNBC.comRead More »from Celebrity Real Estate Woes of 2011
Live like a celebrity
Some celebrities, like "Malcolm in the Middle" star Frankie Muniz and the cast of "Friends" seem to be constantly buying and selling properties. But famous or not, it's not so easy for everyone to sell.
It could be the market and the economy. Maybe specific properties have specific reasons they aren't selling: staging issues, odd choice of décor, massive size or perhaps outrageous cost.
Or maybe there's a glut of luxury homes mostly in the L.A. area that are too similar-so many of them are Spanish, vaguely Mediterranean in style, in a gated community, decorated in neutrals, with pool, spa, home theater, fitness room, wine cellar, guest house and so forth.
Other celebrity real estate headaches this year include a lawsuit-entangled property involving water damage.
Here's a look at 5 palaces on the market, with photos provided by Trulia.com.
See the full slideshow of 10 Celebrity Real Estate Woes
Hilary DuffHilary Duff
Location: Toluca Lake,
By CNBC.comRead More »from 7 holiday scams to avoid
Mail ScamsThe festive season should be a time of celebration - so you obviously don't want to spoil it by falling victim to holiday scams. Busy, high-spending times are precisely the opportunity crooks look for to try to trick you out of your money or steal your identity.
According to Scambusters.org, many holiday scams are variations of tricks you may encounter at any time of the year. Here, we highlight the seven most common areas where they're likely to strike, with the most frequent trick in each group and a list of other seasonal scams to watch out for.
See the slideshow: 7 Holiday Scams to Watch Out For
1. Internet Shopping Scams
By far the fastest-growing online holiday scam is the setting up of bogus websites offering just about everything you could want for Christmas, especially those hard-to-find gifts at fantastic bargain prices.
You do a search for a gift you're planning to buy and suddenly you find it far cheaper than you had imagined. The website sales page looks
By Colleen Kane, CNBC.comRead More »from Busiest Cities for the Holidays
Despite continuing economic troubles, more Americans are planning to travel this holiday season. According to a new report from AAA, an anticipated 42.5 million will be traveling 50 miles or more, which is 4 percent more than last year.
Palm Springs, CaliforniaTo find out where the greatest numbers of those Americans will be traveling, Bert Sperling of Sperling's Best Places looked at airline flight statistics from last year. The resulting top 10 busiest cities are those that have the highest percentage of flights during the holidays. However, the list was not determined just by looking at raw numbers. Sperling's team arrived at a list of the 100 largest airline destinations, counting only those flights that ended in each particular city so as not to include transfers.
See the Slideshow: Busiest Cities for the Holidays
"The large number of Florida cities in the top spots likely points to holiday travel to visit elderly parents who have retired to that state," Sperling remarked.
Suze Orman, CNBC.comBy Read More »from 7 deadly financial sins
Suze Orman's 7 Deadly Financial Sins
People are always asking me for advice on what to do with their money. But if you really want to get ahead financially, the smarter question is what you shouldn't do with your money.
1. Borrowing From Your 401(k)
For starters, the money you take out of a traditional 401(k) is pre-tax, but when you pay it back it will be with money you already have paid tax on. Then, years down the line, when you withdraw the money in retirement you'll owe tax again. I think paying tax once is plenty.
You also lose out on the compounding of that money. Just think about folks who pulled money out of their 401(k) in late 2008 and early 2009: That's money that wasn't invested when the stock market staged its epic rally beginning in March 2009. Lastly, there's the risk that if you are laid off, or just choose to switch jobs, you typically must repay the loan within a few months. Fail to do that and the loan is treated like an early
- CNBC | Shine Food – Thu, Dec 15, 2011 2:26 PM EST
By Lisa Flam, CNBC.comRead More »from Cupcake Killer: How Cake Pops Became the Next Big Trend
"The cupcake pop sent [people] over the edge. People just kept emailing me. ... It inspired me to want to keep challenging myself." - Angie Dudley, aka Bakerella
Angie Dudley, aka Bakerella.By day, Angie Dudley is a mild-mannered graphic designer who lives near Atlanta. In her off hours, she's Bakerella, cake-pop maker, blogger, and culinary star to home bakers around the world.
As Bakerella, Dudley started a mini-revolution in baking after one of her cake-on-a-stick creations went viral and she was invited on Martha Stewart's TV show in April 2008.
Now, about four years after Dudley first wrote about how to combine cake crumbs and frosting into petite treats, her blog gets nearly 3.8 million page views a month and she's a New York Times best-selling cookbook author.
And the bite-sized morsels of cake and frosting, for which she is often credited with popularizing, have inspired at least one cake-pop-making appliance, the Babycakes cake-pop maker. It's expected to be a popular gift for
- CNBC | Fashion – Thu, Dec 15, 2011 10:35 AM EST
By Courtney Reagan, CNBC.comRead More »from Retailer Seeks Hit with 'Dragon Tattoo' Clothing Line
"The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" has been a blockbuster book for Swedish author Stieg Larsson that's sold more than 60 million copies in 48 countries worldwide.
The Girl With the Dragon TattooSony now hopes its motion picture based on the book will be a global blockbuster as well when it's in theaters Dec. 21.
But can fictional character Lisbeth Salander sell clothes? Swedish specialty retailer Hennes & Maurtiz (H&M) is banking on it.
According to the International Licensing Industry Merchandisers' Association (LIMA), licensed products are a $180 billion a year retail market, and "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" film costume designer Trish Summerville is adding her "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" inspired clothing to the mix.
H&M and Summerville have partnered to design and sell the exclusive - and limited - collection, available for purchase starting today in 100 H&M stores around the world and in some markets through the retailers' website.
The collection features 30 pieces of
By Bianca Schlotterbeck, CNBC.comRead More »from 12 'Secondary Lines' of Luxury Fashion Houses
Luxe Fashion for Less
This holiday season, with uncertainty prevailing in the global economy, shoppers may be searching for cheaper alternatives to the high-end fashion houses, while still wanting to retain a feel for their favorite brands.
Luxury fashion houses are tapping into this sentiment through less expensive, secondary lines that allow them to reach out to a younger consumer, without compromising their reputation. The "main line" or "first line," which establishes the brand, is usually much pricier than the second line or even third line. Often the second line will contain many similarities to the main collection, but be produced in a different country and overseen by a different designer.
Luxury retailers are also continuing the trend of collaborating with more affordable stores, offering a taste of their brand to a wider consumer segment.
See the full slideshow: 12 'Secondary Lines' of Luxury Fashion Houses
Pierre BalmainPierre Balmain