Weekly wrap: Eternal Money Truths; millionaire bloggers; perils of early retirement

Young business woman is saving money for the company

On Wednesday, the Financial Post ran the first of seven articles by me that we’re calling The 7 Eternal Truths of Personal Finance: Eternal Truth #1: Live Within Your Means.

The second instalment ran today (Saturday): Eternal Truth # 2: Pay Yourself First.

Some of the background and rationale for the series ran earlier this week here at the Hub. I believe the series will run online and in the paper once or twice a week over the summer. Each episode is accompanied by a one-minute video.

Note that this is being housed under the Post’s “Young Money” category, which makes sense because the need to live within your means is especially apt for millennials and younger folk.

Meanwhile, on a related topic, the Globe & Mail Friday ran on update on a national strategy for financial literacy unveiled this week, titled Count Me In, Canada. The piece is titled To Bridge the Knowledge Gap, Financial LIeracy is a Two-Way Street.

Watch out, Economist warns

The cover story on the latest issue of The Economist, out mid Thursday, warns readers to Watch Out: The World is Not Ready for the Next Recession. But its briefing on the American economy in the same issue is more upbeat: Better Than It Looks.

Millionaire bloggers

As outlined by the Globe’s Rob Carrick, the Million Dollar Journey blog got a nice boost this week in Forbes magazine: How One Couple Climbed Out of Debt and Became Millionaires in their 30s. Note that the blog’s slogan is “Wealth Building Through Frugal Living and Investing.”

I might note that the Young Money series, the Financial Independence Hub and my  financial novel, Findependence Dayall agree frugal living is an essential foundation for building wealth. The book describes something I call “guerrilla frugality” and of course the first of the Hub’s six blog categories is aimed at millennials: Debt & Frugality.

As the character Didi says in the book , “You can’t climb the Tower of Wealth while you’re still mired in the basement of Debt.”

Speaking of which, the physical U.S. edition of Findependence Day will soon be available in American libraries, and through two large global distributors: Ingram Book Co. and Baker & Taylor.

Is Early Retirement a bad idea?

Anyone who reads the Hub’s Aging & Longevity section will know that, far from encouraging Early Retirement, we think we should be planning to work longer. As I’ve written elsewhere, 40 years is a long time to go without a paycheque. The Retire by 40 blog recently ran a post titled Is Early Retirement a Terrible Idea? As you might expect from a blog advocating retiring by 40, the writer is skeptical about financial advisors who “help” clients retire by 65, noting that from the perspective of building assets under management, such advisors have a bias to later retirement for clients.

Still, there’s some good food for thought in the blog, including a reminder that its mission is Financial Independence. Just to be clear, personally I believe Early Retirement is NOT a good idea but the earlier you reach Financial Independence, the better. Again, you have to go back to the distinction the Hub always makes between Financial Independence and Retirement. You could say we stand for Early Financial Independence, but Late Retirement.

Further to the Longevity theme, here’s a reminder that I’ll be in Niagara Falls Monday to deliver the keynote address at the National Elder Planning Issues Conference. The topic is “Longevity Changes Everything.”

My latest column for Motley Fool Canada is now online. As the Hub did shortly after the last federal budget, it looks at the lower RRIF withdrawal limits for seniors. And my monthly ETF column for the Financial Post ran on June 9th and can be found here, running under the headline How to navigate the brave new world beyond plain-vanilla ETFs.


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