Helen Zhao, CNBC

Helen Zhao


Los Angeles, CA, United States

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Past articles by Helen:

This stay-at-home mom turned a pandemic child care hack into a start-up that’s raised $3.6 million

June Care is a start-up that matches parents seeking child care with fellow parents who can host kids in their home. It's been called "the Uber of child care." → Read More

High schools, scrambling to prep Gen Z for the real world, are teaching students to make and manage money

You've got to be savvy at making money and managing risk to succeed in today's world, experts say. Here's how schools are scrambling to better prepare Gen Z. → Read More

This happiness expert spent years as a digital nomad. Here's why she picked Lisbon to build her ‘happiest life’

Happiness expert Aliénor Salmon moved to Lisbon, Portugal, in 2020. She says it's a city where she can afford to put her happiness first. → Read More

How a professional muralist went from foster care to earning $160,000/year: 'No. 1, I’m a businessperson'

The Bay Area Muralist Hayley Ferreira has earned $160,000 so far in 2021. She attributes her success as an artist to her business savvy. → Read More

'A cool destination to just start over': Burned-out millennials are flocking to Portugal

The number of foreign citizens living in Portugal is at an all-time high, and the number of Americans residing there is at its highest level in over a decade. → Read More

Getting paid for traveling: Nurses embracing van life bank up to $20,000 a month

Meg and Ty DeWitt are travel nurses who work at hospitals around the country. They took up van life in 2019, allowing them to save up to $20,000 a month. → Read More

Millennial in Atlanta quits $180,000 job, moves to Lisbon: 'You get a lot of bang for your buck here'

Sharolyn Wynter saved $100,000 for a two-year career break. After traveling to 40 countries, she settled in Lisbon, Portugal, and lives on up to $2,500/month. → Read More

Parenthood 'might as well be a luxury': More millennials, Gen Zers are opting not to have kids

Births in the U.S. have fallen every year since 2007, except 2014. Many potential parents cite finances as a major reason they're choosing not to have kids. → Read More

I think schools failed millennials when it comes to real-world money education. Here's how they're prepping Gen Z for success

Millennials largely didn't learn about money in school. Here's how the financial literacy gap affected us and how high schools are setting up Gen Z for success. → Read More

40-year-old quit a 6-figure job during the pandemic: Now he's using real estate to build 'generational wealth'

During the pandemic, Salman Siddiqui quit his six-figure job in consulting to focus full time on building real estate from the ground up. → Read More

Teen cookie entrepreneurs in Texas made over $12,000 and donated $8,300 to Covid relief

Alice Huang, 16, and Sarah Zeng, 17, started a cookie business, Dough Re Mi, in quarantine. They've earned over $12,000 and donated over $8,300 to Covid relief. → Read More

'We were able to negotiate $15,000 off': How students saved thousands on college tuition

Families have had more leverage when negotiating college tuition during the pandemic, as enrollment declined and parents lost jobs and income. → Read More

Young investors have gone from 'risk averse' to 'the opposite extreme,' expert says: Here's the better way

Many young retail investors who started buying stocks in 2020 are taking on too much risk, experts say. Here’s what most beginning investors should be doing. → Read More

We tried $450 caviar to see if it's worth the money

Caviar is known as the black gold of gastronomy. Sturgeon caviar can cost hundreds of dollars an ounce. Sturgeon are a prehistoric fish that can live to be over 100 years old, grow to 28 feet in length and weigh more than 4,500 pounds. We tried some of the most expensive caviar in the world, costing $450 an ounce, to find out if it's worth the money. → Read More

Cities in the South and Midwest are paying people to move in: Here's how it's going

Several cities in the U.S. are paying remote workers to move there now that remote work has taken off during the pandemic. Here's why that plan is working. → Read More

How Impossible Foods turned a plant-based burger into a $4 billion brand

An Impossible burger tastes and bleeds like meat, but it's made out of plants. The burger wasn't created for vegans or vegetarians. Impossible Foods, valued at about $4 billion, is trying to win over all the meat-lovers of the world. The company is looking to replace the estimated $1.4 trillion global animal meat industry due to its contributions to climate change. Here's how the company turned… → Read More

Why Americans pay up to $1,400 for Spanish ham

The most prestigious and expensive ham in the world hails from Spain and it's called jamon Iberico de bellota, or acorn-fed Iberico ham. One leg of it, weighing between 13 to 17 pounds, can cost up to $4,500. The most expensive jamon iberico de bellota available in the U.S. costs $1,400. The ham is a product of Iberico pigs, a rare breed found mostly in Spain. We tried it to find out why… → Read More

How Yeti built a billion dollar cooler brand

Analysts say that when Yeti went public in 2018, investors were initially skeptical consumers would shell out $200 to $1,300 on a cooler. But for the right cooler, it turns out many people would. Yeti brought in about $914 million in 2019 by turning a mundane commoditized item into a status symbol. Here's how Yeti reinvented coolers and drinkware, and turned conventionally cheap and bland… → Read More

How Crocs turned a widely mocked clog into a billion-dollar brand

People who love to hate Crocs had cause to celebrate in 2008, when investors were writing the company off as a passing fad. Crocs lost over $185 million that year. The stock plunged to just over $1 a share. But over the next decade, Crocs sold 700 million pairs of shoes. The clogs have have been strutting down runways at fashion shows. Limited edition Crocs are selling for $1,000 on the resale… → Read More

A single truffle can cost up to $3,800 — are they worth the money?

There is something intoxicating about the smell of truffles. In fact, the potent smell is a major part of why truffles are so expensive. In 2019, someone paid over $130,000 for just over two pounds of white truffles. Science explains the reactions to the scent. Because they grow below ground, they have to find a way "to entice us," says truffle scientist Paul Thomas. Consuming truffles,… → Read More