Monthly Archives: April 2016

Millennial Blog Wrap: Savings tips & bargains for broke millennials

empty wallet - woman with no money in purse shopping. Female shopper in clothes store upset crying as she is out of money. Funny image of mixed race Caucasian / Asian woman.Hub Staff

If you’re a millennial who has been having some trouble in the savings department, this new post from Broke Millennial might be worth the read. In it, our heroine talks about a simple way for young people to actively save their money: by putting it into multiple accounts with fun nick-names (although, admittedly, her names are pretty run-of-the-mill).

It’s a fun idea though: it’s simple, people can personalize their account names, and it would be a helpful way for us millennials to visualize exactly what we have stored for each aspect of our lives.

Downsize and travel

A guest post on Making Sense of Cents about downsizing and living a traveling life describes a small family’s life-changing 15-month long travel experience. After they returned to the United States, they decided to take action to make their dream life a reality. It sounds like they’ve still got a lot to do to achieve their dreams, but they’re making passive income by renting out their large bungalow, and are downsizing by selling one item of value per week online. As a seasoned traveller (who is currently living in a space smaller than my parents’ closet at home), I wholeheartedly support this family’s dream of living minimally and experiencing as much of the world as they can. This post reminds us that if you have the desire to change your life and live more frugally, it can be done!

Millennial call to action

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Life Insurance after Retirement

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Lorne Marr

By Lorne Marr

Special to the Financial Independence Hub

After serving your workplace for years and decades, it’s that time of your life when you can retire in peace and enjoy your retirement years to the fullest. However, does that mean you should ditch your life insurance policy? Think closely before scrapping your life insurance.

Many individuals might think life insurance is required only when they are young, have a family to support and need to pay off their debts. The very first question that comes to their mind is usually “Why do I need a life insurance policy in my retirement?”

Retirement and Insurance

Firstly, you need to know that life insurance is not about you. People buy life insurance in order to protect and secure the future of their loved ones and whoever depends on the insured’s income. It is there to give your family a future that is financially sound and stable.

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FWB TV: The Free Lunch that is Index Investing

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Author Lars Kroijer

It’s been said that diversification is the investing equivalent of a free lunch, since it allows you to manage your risk while getting higher returns.

 The good news is that according to research, index funds and other passively managed investments like ETFs (Exchange traded funds) have diversification built in.
Yes, we’ve heard of people who were able to buy the right individual stock or sector at the right time, but they are few and far between. You can learn more about the free lunch of indexing by viewing the latest FWB video by clicking on this title: There is such thing as a free lunch and it’s called index investing.
Indexing beats picking individual stocks or sectors
The video, which runs three-and-a-half minutes, points out that using index funds to diversify equity exposure around the world is easier and more effective than attempting to pick individual stocks or even identifying promising industries.
And while it’s possible to buy the entire world’s stock market through a single fund, investors shouldn’t take that for granted. As investment author Lars Kroijer relates, 40 or 50 years ago you would have been hard pressed to be able to buy into most markets outside North America, Europe or Japan.

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Why it’s hard to do nothing in the stock market

Aman Raina

By Aman Raina, Sage Investors

Special to the Financial Independence Hub

In every pullback in the stock market, every one of us faces an epic battle with our emotions.  Our emotions are often telling us to do something … anything to minimize the damage that is occurring to our stock portfolios.

Here’s the thing. It’s perfectly normal. As humans, we’re wired for it.

Whenever we encounter periods of stress and adversity, we are wired to search, process, and identify solutions to remedy the problem immediately.  Sitting on are hands and doing nothing doesn’t seem to make it to the top of our list.

Here’s an example that I recently faced. One night my family was at my sister-in-law’s place hanging out. Later in the evening my wife and I received what looked like a long distance call so we both thought it was spam because we didn’t know anyone from where the area code came from.

We moved along.  About a half-hour later I was checking my phone and I saw a number flash up from our home alarm service. Uh-oh. I thought something happened. Ironically I was just at the house to get some PJ’s for the kids and I came back to my sister-in-law’s house when I saw the message. I thought, “did I leave the door unlocked? Did the door blow open and someone ran in ?”

The need to do something … a real-life example

I had a variety of emotions go through me and all of them were involving panic. I told my wife, who then proceeded to ask me if I left the door open or if I activated the alarm. All these questions meant nothing to me at that moment because potentially someone could be in my house trashing it. I was asking my wife what should we do because clearly I didn’t have my wits with me.

We needed to do something. So we called the alarm company and indeed the alarm went off and police were being dispatched. I bolted back in the car and drove like a crazy guy back to the house. I got there. Nothing. The door was closed and locked. I opened the door and inside I could see these balloons from my son’s birthday party float around the house. It must have tripped the motion detector. We were able to cancel the dispatch to the police. All good.

What happened here? I incurred a stressful, emotional moment and instead of staying calm (like my wife), I was jumping around looking to do something because in a way I was feeling helpless and not in control of the situation. This happens to us constantly in investing. When the markets or a specific stock or ETF falls, we feel we have to do something. Sell some of it. Sell it all. We need something to go down to help us regain our security.

Investment coaches can install balance

The reality is times of market stress are times to fully reinforce and execute your investment ideology and investment plan. Instead of feeling woe on the 500-point drop in the Dow Jones Industrials, we need to take control of the situation by not “trading” but instead should be reviewing our Investment Ideology to reinforce the values and criteria we need to implement to make better decisions and we need to clinically and thoughtfully execute our investment plan.  Investment coaches are great at instilling this balance and discipline. This concept of being reactive versus proactive is a nemesis to us all.

Another reality is that market pullbacks are the worst time to start running around the house with scissors in your hand. We will most likely make a panicked decision that will often put our portfolio on a worst footing in the long term.  This tension is engrained in us and it is so hard to overcome for each and every one of us, yours truly included.

So the next time the stocks in your portfolio are falling collectively and meaningfully (It will happen. Count on it), try to resist that pressure to have to do something immediately. Now I premise this with the exception that if a stock of a company is undergoing a negative Game Changer Moment, and the fundamentals of the business model have truly been impaired then you need to take action to preserve your savings.  Just do the homework and due diligence.

Aman Raina, MBA is an Investment Coach and founder of Sage Investors, an independent practice specializing in investment coaching and portfolio analysis services. This blog was originally published on his website on March 21st  and is reproduced  here with permission. 


Book Review: Ernie Zelinski’s Look Ma, Life’s Easy is a primer on Success

ZelnskicoverErnie Zelinski is a successful Edmonton-based author who has sold more than 900,000 books in 29 countries around the world. He has just published his latest book, titled Look Ma, Life’s Easy, which passes on his secrets for success, primarily to the millennial generation. .

Zelinski is best known for writing The Joy of Not Working and How to Retire Happy, Wild And Free, both of which sold hundreds of thousands of copies.

The new book takes a pseudo-fictional approach like the one famously used by David Chilton in The Wealthy Barber (or less famously, in my own Findependence Day!).

Zelinski’s subtitle is “How Ordinary People Attain Extraordinary Success and Remarkable Prosperity.” The story revolves around two characters, a young adult named Sheldon and his soon-to-be mentor Brock, described as a successful middle-aged man.

The Easy Rule of Life

Over the 200-plus pages of the book Brock imparts to Sheldon his secret of success, which he calls The Easy Rule of Life.

This is the main takeaway, which has a certain amount of paradox in it: Continue Reading…