Five of the best money podcasts

Finance doesn't always make the most interesting conversation topic. These great money podcasts find a way to keep it entertaining and informational.

LM Otero/AP/File
In this Sept. 24, 2013 photo, freshly-cut stacks of $100 bills make their way down the line at the Bureau of Engraving and Printing Western Currency Facility in Fort Worth, Texas.

Have trouble sticking to a budget? Can't afford to pay a high-priced financial advisor to set you straight? Podcasts are not just for comedians and true crime — listen to these five money podcasts to help you whip your finances into shape:

1. You Need a Budget

This may not come as a surprise to you, but most Americans are living paycheck-to-paycheck. You Need a Budget is all about helping listeners slowly get out of debt and start making every dollar count. Making a budget is key, and not only does the podcast give you great advice, but the creator also made a software system for budgeting that anyone can use. Whether you choose to use their software or not, using YNAB as a motivational tool is very useful. Listening to other families making financial progress might inspire you to reexamine your own budget.

Good for: Practical everyday budgeting advice and motivation.

2. Planet Money

It's great to learn how to manage your personal finances, but do you ever wonder why things are the way they are? To fully, truly understand why college costs so much, why our clothes come from Bangladesh, or why certain trends prevail in the modern economy, listen to Planet Money. Think of it as This American Life for your finances. With fascinating stories from a global perspective, the charismatic reporters at Planet Moneymanage to make unwieldy, abstract economic theories fun and easy to understand.

Good for: Economics lessons and entertainment.

3. Money With Farnoosh Torabi

The wise and sharp Farnoosh Torabi is both a great financial adviser and a great interviewer. She also does specific advice episodes, such as a recent one in which she invited an expert to answer a listener's question on how to save for a baby. If you're diving in for the first time, you're in luck: this podcast is on five times a week, so there's a lot of back catalog. It might be hard to catch up, so scroll through and pick the episodes most relevant to you.

Good for: Specific life planning and financial advice and recommendations to other financial gurus.

4. Stacking Benjamins

Joe, the host of Stacking Benjamins, is a former financial planner. This helps considerably, because he does a great job of interviewing subjects who have gotten out of debt or have managed to build wealth. When you're not in the 1%, it sure seems really hard to do either of those, but listening to this podcast shows you that with careful planning and taking consistent baby steps, you can break the paycheck cycle, too.

Good for: Personal finance stories and practical money advice.

5. Marketplace

Are you a nerd for up-to-date financial intel? Marketplace is a great public radio podcast covering the major finance and business news of the day. Hear everything from stock ticker news, to announcements from big brands, to reports about housing and credit. Host Kai Ryssdal also brings experts onto the show for interviews. Also good is the lighter Marketplace Weekend podcast — perfect for listening while gardening on a lazy Sunday.

Good for: Finance and business news and investment advice from experts.

This article first appeared at Nerd Wallet.

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