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Saturday, December 28, 2013

Theme: Personal Finance

This post is a list of links to articles I have written which discuss personal finance. I would not consider this a personal finance blog, rather I have a few points that I hope may be useful. (This article will be expanded over time.)

Basic Philosophy

I will not give investment advice as that would be inappropriate (and probably in contravention of securities regulations). Instead, I hope to raise points that will allow my readers to make better decisions.

There are two basic ways of approaching personal finance: do-it-yourself, or engage professional advice. Both approaches have advantages as well as important disadvantages. The problem with professional advice is that you still need to understand the risks yourself, and the conflicts of interest your advisor may face. Conversely, your personal finance decisions are extremely important for your long-term interests. If you make a serious error as a result of not understanding the consequences of a decision, and this error is not caught early enough, you may have a hard time recovering.

As a result, some form of hybrid approach seems sensible; you need to understand the basics yourself, but you should discuss your plan with a professional to get some feedback.

Other Sources Of Information

This article is a list of external resources that I find useful. (It will also include my book reviews.)

It's Not What You Earn, It's What You Save

If you are still working, and as long as you avoid disastrous portfolio decisions, the most important topic for personal finance is how much money you save out of your income. And in order to increase savings, you need to cut back spending. However, I feel that articles on how to cut back household expenses are too far afield for this blog, and so I will not cover this topic. However, the sources I link to in my external resources list covers this topic much better than I could.

I discuss this further in my review of the book The Millionaire Next Door

Personal Portfolio Management

Here are a list of my articles that discuss portfolio management concepts. (The list will expand over time.) Some of these points may be applicable for long-term institutional investors, with some change of terminology.

(c) Brian Romanchuk 2013

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