The Tale of a Misguided High School Weakling

I wasn’t much skinnier than most 15 year olds, but I felt like the smallest kid in the world.

I hated feeling skinny. Part of it had to do with the fact that many of my friends were athletes--strong, agile, and muscular. I was none of these things. And so I committed to making a change.

I bought muscle building magazines, created exercise routines, became a member of World’s Gym...and oh yeah, the protein powder. I bought a GINORMOUS tub of protein powder. Which is really where this short story begins.

I can’t help but draw some life lessons from this experience. And like many of life’s lessons, they can apply to our financial lives too. The same goes for my oversized tub of protein powder and the misguided dream of no longer being a high school weakling.

Is Gold a Good Investment?

Much has been said about the value of investing in precious metals, and to many investors, no metal holds more “weight” than gold.

In August of 1971, President Richard Nixon set off a figurative “gold rush” when he ended the gold standard, or the ability to convert paper money directly into gold. The U.S. moved to a fiat currency system. The government now simply prints paper money--which has no literal value--and its citizens rely on it as a trusted source of payment.

But despite our paper money system, the “gold rush” has continued into the present day. Why does gold continue to be an appealing investment, decades after the U.S. gold standard? Is gold really a good investment?

How Distributions Work in Retirement (And How They Can Hurt You!)

When I started my career in financial advising, I was clearly getting into a fairly complex business. It’s not so much because of the nature of investing and finances in and of themselves, but rather the regulation and rules that dictate what you can or must do, when, and how often.

Few things can be more complicated than taking money from your retirement account. The rules can be very particular and breaking them can be extremely costly.

Following is an explanation of some of the fundamental retirement distribution rules you should be aware of as you think about taking money from your 401(k) or IRA.

Where Do Your Kids Fit In Your Financial Plans?

When Eleanor joined our family, we had a lot of financial things to consider. How will having a child impact our budget? Which expenses would increase or be new? (Some answers: food, health insurance, and diapers, diapers, diapers).

In my planning mind the bigger question was how were our financial priorities changing? Kellie and I started thinking about saving for Eleanor’s schooling through a college savings plan. But did saving for Eleanor’s college trump or impede our other financial priorities?

Regardless of what stage your family is in (growing, maturing, or empty-nesting) it’s important to think about the financial implications of these different stages even if they feel far down life’s road.

Doing so can help you anticipate the changes that will inevitably come and make better financial preparations for the future.