Reviews

We review books that deal with everything from financial independence topics to politics, and anything in between. We may sometimes stray into films and music if there is a “Findependence” angle.

Stocktrades.ca’s author interview on Findependence and Victory Lap Retirement

By Dylan Callahan, Stocktrades.ca

Special to the Financial Independence Hub

We’re constantly reaching out to financial authorities we feel would benefit our audience the most. From Mark Seed, to Xiaolei Liu, to Rob Carrick, we are always looking to compile information and pick the brains of experts in the industry. This is why we were ecstatic to hear that Jon Chevreau was willing to do a little interview with us about his most recent book. (Highlighted link is to original post at Stocktrades.ca)

A little bit about Jon before we start

snippetpicture-150x150Jon has long had our attention here at Stocktrades from his writing at Moneysense and the Financial Post. He is the owner of FinancialIndependenceHub, the author of Findependence Day and the co-author of Victory Lap Retirement, which is what this interview will be about. He was a columnist for the National Post from 1993 to 2012 and was Editor-in-Chief for Moneysense Magazine from 2012 to 2014. If we had to choose some financial authorities on the internet today that we’d follow, Jon would be near the top of the list.

We hope you enjoy this interview, and if you’re interested in purchasing Jon’s book, head on over Victorylapretirement.com to see what it’s all about or purchase it from Amazon here.

WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO WRITE THIS BOOK?

Jon: Co-author Mike Drak approached me with the idea of a book about Retirement/Victory Laps after he encountered my website, the Financial Independence Hub, and my financial novel, Findependence Day. We thought we could marry the two concepts since Findependence gets you to the point you can launch a proper Victory Lap.

COULD YOU BRIEFLY DESCRIBE THESE FOLLOWING TERMS IN YOUR OWN OPINION, OR AS THEY RELATE TO THE BOOK?

What is Findependence?

JonathanChevreauJon: Findependence is simply a contraction of the phrase Financial Independence. And so Findependence Day is the day you achieve financial independence, which we define as the moment when all sources of passive income (pensions, investments, royalties etc.) exceed your monthly expenses nut (rent/mortgage, food, clothing, utilities etc.)

Explain a Victory Lap Retirement?

Jon: Victory Lap Retirement can be described variously as semi-retirement, self-employment, an encore career or launching a creative career (writer, artist, musician) that lets you monetize what was previously a hobby. Normally, the Victory Lap is made possible by first achieving Financial Independence. It differs from traditional full-stop retirement in that you may still be working, albeit not for a single employer.

Rather you have multiple streams of income, some of which may be passive (pensions, investments) and some of which may be active (part-time work, contracts, an online business). This allows you to pursue the inner creative dreams you may have harbored when you were young, and which you may have put aside during the decades you worked in a traditional “Job” and raised a family. In your Victory Lap, you work because you want to, not because you have to (financially speaking).

Lastly what is an Encore Career?

Jon: An Encore Career or Legacy Career is a late-life reinvention of your career, as described by the website encore.org and the book Encore by Marc Freedman. Its subtitle says it all: Finding Work that Matters in the Second Half of Life.

snippetpicture-150x150IN YOUR OPINION, HOW IS A VICTORY LAP RETIREMENT MORE BENEFICIAL THAN THE TRADITIONAL RETIREMENT?

Jon: We think it’s crazy to go from the 100% work mode of traditional salaried employment to 100% non-stop leisure, which is the traditional “full-stop” retirement that often occurs at age 65. By the way, I turn 65 next April and don’t expect to slow down much if at all. I’m in the fourth year of my own Victory Lap and am as productive as ever, and probably in much better physical and mental health.

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Blockchain Revolution, Global Prosperity and Prosperium

What does the Blockchain Revolution have to do with global prosperity and what’s this new cybercurrency called Prosperium?

Let’s start with the bestselling book Blockchain Revolution, by technology guru Don Tapscott and his son Alex, a former investment banker. I recently re-read the book in preparation for a series of blogs I am doing for a cybercurrency start-up called Prosperium (http://www.prosperium.io/). Prosperium promotes and more importantly intends to generate actual community prosperity. This blog you’re now reading is the debut of that series.

My connection with the firm is through a serial entrepreneur and Canadian internet commerce pioneer named Tony Humble, who was the co-founder of Basis 100 (BAS: TSX). I have previously done business with Tony via The Wealthy Boomer magazine and website (which ran from 1999 to 2005) and later my financial novel Findependence Day, which spawned the Financial Independence Hub (where you’re reading this blog.)

We’ll look at Prosperium and its business model specifically in the follow-up blog to this, including interviews with Prosperium’s founder, Doug Coyle (shown in photo near the end of this blog). But let’s focus first on Blockchain Revolution, since the book is as its title implies a revolutionary blueprint for all things fin-tech, including cybercurrencies like the original Bitcoin and everything spawned in its wake, including Canadian-inspired firms like Ethereum and now Prosperium.

I attended the original launch of the Tapscotts’ book at the Rotman School on May 5, 2016 and you can find my review at the Financial Post and a subsequent one on the Hub. The FP review ran the day after the launch, and the headline is as good a place to kick off this second look at the book: Bitcoin and Blockchain could be the start of a bigger revolution than the Internet itself.

Don Tapscott (L) and Alex Tapscott (R). Youtube.com

Rather than repeat my points in this limited space I refer readers first to that review and then to my first Hub review of the book, which ran on June 1st, 2016. At the end you can find a link to a half-hour YouTube video produced by ThatChannel.com in which Norman Evans (the Hub’s creative director) and I interviewed both Tapscotts and some others who attended the Rotman launch.

Blockchain promises a quantum leap in global prosperity

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Two notable books to guide your ‘Retirement’ journey

“Books are the bees which carry the quickening pollen from one to another mind.” — James Russell Lowell, poet and author

This week I highlight one of my best recommendations for Retirement. Invest in self-education with some quality reading. The critical factor is how to select just a couple of books.

Investors have a thirst for knowledge about their precious retirement journey. They seek detailed information to assist in navigating the capital accumulation process to achieve retirement. Then comes the desire of making that capital outlast the spending phase.

Walk into any well-stocked bookstore and the retirement section will seem like a maze. There are plenty of titles competing to become permanent occupants of your precious bookshelf space.

My two book selections provide insight and understanding into the design and management of the retirement nest egg. The authors are well known. The books complement one another.

The emphasis is understanding long-term principles, policies and best practices that steer the family’s retirement goals from dreams to realities. Getting fully acquainted with these two books helps craft better decisions about retirement. Something for everyone’s retirement toolbox.

Photo: Kia Meiklejohn

Falling Short: The Coming Retirement Crisis and What To Do About It, by Charles D. Ellis, Alicia H. Munnel, and Andrew D. Eschtruth

This century has clearly shown that we are living longer, health costs are rising and employer pensions are diminishing. That is the big picture applicable to retirees in the USA. However, similar arguments also exist for the Canadian retirement landscape.

The good news is that what is seemingly a dire retirement situation can be easily rectified by implementing a few coordinated steps. This book makes you appreciate the scope of that big picture. Working a little longer, saving a bit more, judicious use of government benefits and being smart about portfolio draws are some of the key answers that deliver.

The message for every retiree is that a successful retirement is about being empowered to look after the personal situation. At age 60, it is not unusual for retirement to last into the 90’s for at least one spouse.

Yes, long term retirement that spans decades is expensive. Sensible and methodical decision making is sound advice for all ages. It renders the scope of the big picture into realistic solutions.

Retired Money: Cashing RRSP to pay off debt is a poor strategy

Should you cash in your RRSP to pay off debt? While some prospective retirees may be tempted to do so, this is one of a score of damaging financial myths, according to insolvency trustee and author Doug Hoyes.

I mention this in my latest MoneySense Retired Money column, which has just been published. You can retrieve it by clicking on the highlighted headline here: The wrong way to pay off Debt.

As I say in the article, Cashing in your RRSP to pay off debt is Myth #9 of 22 common financial misconceptions outlined in Hoyes’ new book, Straight Talk on Your Money (cover shown adjacent: we share a common publisher.)

Hoyes is particularly concerned about senior debt in Canada and how these myths can affect their retirement. Myth #10 often afflicts retired seniors: that Payday Loans are a Short-term Fix for a Temporary Problem.

Seniors racking up debt faster than other age groups

Earlier this week in the Financial Post, columnist Garry Marr reported that Seniors in Canada are racking up debt faster than the rest of the population. Over the past year, senior debt grew by 4.3%, according to a survey published Tuesday by Atlanta-based Equifax Inc. Continue Reading…

Paycheque to paycheque: the fate of half of Canada’s employees

Living paycheque to paycheque? You’re hardly alone. As my latest Financial Post blog reprises today, almost half of Canadian workers (47%) told the Canadian Payroll Association’s 2017 survey that they’d find it hard to meet their financial obligations if their pay cheque were delayed by even a single week.

You can find the full blog by clicking on the highlighted headline here: Nearly half of Canadians would face a financial crunch if paycheque delayed by even a week, survey shows. The  article also appears in the Thursday print edition, page FP5, under the headline Nearly half of Canadians walk financial tightrope.

As I point out at the end of the FP piece, there’s some irony in that the way out of this savings conundrum is to make an effort to save paycheque by paycheque: a strategy the CPA and other financial experts generally term “Pay Yourself First.”

That means using your financial institution’s pre-authorized chequing arrangements (PACs) to automatically divert 10% of net pay into savings the moment a paycheque hits your bank account. Just like income taxes taken off “at source,” the idea is that you won’t miss what you don’t actually receive.

Pay Yourself First

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