Quarterly Financial Performance Update

October 1, 2009 by  
Filed under Financial Planning, Investing

Three quarters of 2009 are in the books. Time to update the Mr. and Mrs. ToughMoneyLove financial performance metrics. I actually review this information at least weekly but no need to bore you with updates that often.  Read more

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Save on Investment Expenses and Losses: Fire Your Financial Planner

If you read a lot of the right things about investing, you will be regularly admonished to minimize your investment expenses.  This includes choosing mutual funds with low expense ratios and finding ways to trade with little or no transaction costs.  In markets where gains are hard to find (like today), controlling these costs is even more important.

Depending on how you interpet and react to survey data, it seems we should add “firing the financial advisor” to the list of investment cost cutting moves. Read more

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My Year End Financial Performance Review

January 5, 2009 by  
Filed under Financial Planning, Investing

Mr. ToughMoneyLove has spent a good part of the past five months being critical of others who use poor judgment in matters of personal finance.  Many of my targets have been politicians, Wall Street investment bankers, and disciples of the almighty credit score.  Depending on your own attitude about these subjects, I may come across as an arrogant know-it-all.  There is no question that I infuse my writing with heavy doses of skepticism and sarcasm.  However, none of my targets have been you personally.  When I write, no offense is intended to any of you and, I hope, none taken.  (There have been a few obnoxious comments left but I use the ultimate weapon on those folks:  I delete their comment.)  Read more

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Good Debt, Bad Debt and Flawed Investment Return Data

August 18, 2008 by  
Filed under Debt and Credit, Investing

I can’t tell you how often I hear or read someone argue that they have “good debt.”   This “good debt”  argument is made to rationalize having a car loan, a HELOC or second mortgage balance, and even credit card debt.  The argument goes something like this:  “The money I have borrowed is being paid back at 6% interest.  Instead of paying it back all at once, I have invested the money in the stock market which historically has an average annual rate of return of 12%.  So I come out way ahead.”  (Yes, 12% is the number I read most often.) Read more

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