Investing. The word alone connotes stocks and bonds. Diversification is the sister term associated with investing. Subtract your age from 100 to figure out how much of an allocation in bonds you should own. Why do we need to have bonds? And what makes bonds a necessary portfolio companion? While trying to understand portfolio allocation a little bit better, I came up with the following five points.
Bonds are fairly simple to understand, they’re loans with a specific duration. They pay interest at stated dates. There’s an issue date and a maturity date. The issue date is the beginning of the loan and the maturity date is when the principal is paid back to the investor. Therefore, unlike stocks that you own forever, bonds are a temporary loan to the issuer.
Janesville is an account of the economic adjustments that occurred subsequent to the closing of the local Janesville, Wisconsin, GM plant. The book documents the shakeout of the newly-unemployed individuals that relied on their financial livelihood from the assembly plant. To earn their living and raise their families, generations of workers banked on GM employment as a default. When GM closed down the Janesville assembly plant, it disrupted the economic environment, leaving GM workers, and workers of supporting businesses, without employment.
Today is as good as any day for making financial changes, but maybe today’s not the day. Are you truly ready to change? What’s stopping you?
Instead of thinking about all the reasons why not, take the pressure out of the equation and, well, try.
When I took my Dale Carnegie class, each session involved standing in the front of the room and speaking for approximately three minutes. The most compelling presentations had a beginning, middle, and end. What I didn’t know was that this started in the first session. I thought we would have a warm-up session, not jump right in. I felt sick to my stomach and barely managed to get through. Continue reading “Making Financial Change”
When it comes to your financial knowledge, stop pretending that you don’t know what you’re doing. There are more resources than ever. If you’re a book lover, read a few on personal finance. If you’re a net surfer, start Googling up on financial terms.
Answer the following questions and take a few minutes to research anything that you don’t know. Don’t be afraid, we all have an area that we need to focus on. These items are off the beaten path, and from what I’ve seen, points that cause confusion. Some are Yes/No or True/False, while others are thought questions.
I’m all about sharing knowledge. I learn something new every day and never stop reading.
True or False: I have a progressive career plan that will increase my earnings within the next five years.
The last time I improved my work skills was ______________.
What I’ve accomplished during 2017 inspires me to keep it rolling. I pulled off some difficult projects at work and earned a top evaluation rating and raise. I finished an 18-credit certificate in Web Programming. I started this blog. Learning WordPress on my own and customizing the blog page was a challenge, but the struggle stretched my skillset. Blogging isn’t just about writing. It’s learning about social media, like Facebook, Pinterest, affiliate marketing, guest posting, and commenting on other blogs. My professional development wasn’t ignored. I conducted two financial planning workshops and presented at the IRS Practice and Procedures conference with the New York State Society of CPAs.
I didn’t focus on being financially independent until about three years ago. I had an idea what my net worth was, but wasn’t fully clear on the exact number. The lack of a plan made it a nebulous target.
In my 20s at the start of my career, retirement seemed so far away. I relied heavily on my accounting career to give me financial security. After all, I chose the career knowing that I’d always have a job. Consequently, every ounce of my energy went into working. There were summers that I never saw the light of day. I never knew when I was getting home and I made many sacrifices. Believe it or not, it was exciting and I enjoyed it. I latched onto an upward trajectory of promotions and raises. When I had full autonomy over my position, I liked being relied upon and the responsibilities that went with it.
If you’re a small business owner, congratulations. You’re your own boss and no one tells you what to do, create, or produce. That’s the upside. The downside is that you’re in charge of everything, and that means everything. Sometimes you get what you ask for.
In addition to your main talent, you need to be talented at these other activities as well.
Take some time out to focus your attention on these very important elements. Get help if you can’t handle it.
Get organized. This is the key to any financial activity. Maintaining good records for accounting and tax purposes is essential not only for tax purposes but also for banking purposes. Being organized lends credibility to your activity. Make sure you can identify the sources of your income, reasons for expenses, and documents related to purchases of business property. Even if you’re not an accountant, you can keep separate folders for each type of expense. Drop receipts right into the folder and organize them later. That’s something that anyone can handle.
Prepare financial statements on a regular basis. When you need to apply for a loan, the bank will ask for them.