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Book Recommendations for Young Dreamers
Old 11-28-2007, 07:28 PM   #1
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Book Recommendations for Young Dreamers

So I'm on the road on business (AGAIN! ), eating dinner, and the young (late teens/early 20s) waitress asks me about the book I'm reading. Well, it's Your Money Or Your Life by Dominguez and Robin. So I talk about the book a bit, and she says that she's in debt, has been since she graduated high school, holds down two jobs (second one is at Wal-Mart), and owes $10k on her truck. I tell her that she owes twice as much on her truck as my truck is worth! So we talk about personal finance a bit, how it's not taught in high school or college. I recommend that she check out of the library and read the following books:


1. The Automatic Millionare by Daid Bach.

Now, I have criticisms of this book. I think it's overly simplistic. I question some of his examples. I think it's overly optimistic in some areas. I think it has too much rah-rah and hype.

BUT!

It's the best practical book I've read so far that can get folks off top dead center and moving in the right direction. I heartily recommend it as a first primer on personal finance and wish I'd been given a copy when graduating from college.


2. Your Money Or Your Life by Joe Dominguez and Vicki Robin.

I have criticisms of this book as well; particularly the the SAVE THE PLANET!!! emphasis. I also don't agree with their assertion that personal inflation is non-existent. I REALLY don't recommend their investing advice.

But it's the best book I've read so far that gets you thinking about integrating money with the rest of your life and values. It has good, practical steps to follow.

I recommend these two books to all Young Dreamers.
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Old 11-28-2007, 07:53 PM   #2
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I liked the book The Automatic Millionaire because it is so simplistic. When you are dealing with someone like the waitress in your example, you have to set the hook before their eyes glaze over. This book is Mickey Mouse enough to set a young person on the right path. Later, there are plenty of resources to fine tune investing.
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Old 11-28-2007, 07:58 PM   #3
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Here is a thread started over at the Bogleheads Forum on good book recommendations.
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Old 11-28-2007, 08:05 PM   #4
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EarlyRetiree1978,

Good thread!

Hmm, perhaps we can come up with a progression of books, from Young Dreamer to Respected Elder?
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Old 11-28-2007, 10:48 PM   #5
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...Later, there are plenty of resources to fine tune investing.
TickTock describes a woman starting out who needs a book that covers the basics, i.e. "how to handle your money now that you are out on your own". Books that focus on getting to a positive net worth and that give advice on budgeting, handling major expenses and dealing with financial setbacks.

A subscription to Consumer Reports belongs in that category. Page after page shows product A is as good as product B but available at half the price. Becoming aware of the "game" of consumer marketing has both psychological and practical benefits in establishing a LBYM lifestyle.

Somewhere in a middle-tier category of "making savings and investment choices", my Young Dreamer recommendation is The Only Investment Guide You'll Ever Need by Andrew Tobias.

I read it in my 20's, when I was a young newlywed just a couple of years out of college. It wasn't very long and the humor kept me interested. Most important to the young and naive Harry was the abundant advice on avoiding speculative investment fads. (Getting rich on gold futures was that era's hot tip, as I recall.)

Twenty years later, I now realize that book made a real difference in my life. Until then, I had seen all of the respected elders going to the occasional company retirement planning seminars but I had ignored the opportunity, thinking retirement planning was something that wouldn't apply to me for another decade or two. Wiser and motivated thanks to Mr. Tobias, l signed up for the Megacorp 401k plan shortly after I finished reading the Guide.
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Old 11-28-2007, 11:08 PM   #6
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Dave Ramseys Total Money Makeover is great stuff for a beginner easy to read easy to follow and once the debt is gone and the cash flow is rolling you can start fine tuning the investing plan.
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Old 11-29-2007, 12:41 AM   #7
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Good investment book for all ages---The Battle for Investment Survival by Loeb.

Investing really is a battle for survival, and this book has good advice on how to fight that battle. Oldie but a classic.
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Old 11-29-2007, 12:32 PM   #8
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Your Money or Your Life is excellent.

A couple of other recommendations:

(1) Getting Rich In America: Eight Simple Rules for Building a Fortune - And a Satisfying Life, by Dwight R. Lee and Richard B. McKenzie; and

(2) The Wealthy Barber: The Common Sense Guide to Successful Financial Planning, by David Chilton.

None of the above books is perfect, but all three contain lots of decent advice and are not intimidating for novice savers / investors.
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Old 11-29-2007, 12:38 PM   #9
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Here is a thread started over at the Bogleheads Forum on good book recommendations.
See also Bogleheads :: View topic - Book recommendation for mid-twenty year old, and Bogleheads :: View topic - What Is The Worst Investment Book Ever Written?.
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Old 11-29-2007, 04:04 PM   #10
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Hijack and Rant

Quote:
Originally Posted by Htown Harry View Post
.....................
A subscription to Consumer Reports belongs in that category. Page after page shows product A is as good as product B but available at half the price. Becoming aware of the "game" of consumer marketing has both psychological and practical benefits in establishing a LBYM lifestyle.................
I've subscribed to Consumer Reports for about 30 years and lately they seem to have become much more consumption and profit oriented. The products evaluated seem more upscale than I would feel comfortable buying, from luxury cars to stainless steel built in refrigerators. Even their correspondence has a gimmicky tone to it - advertisements disguised as overdue bills, etc. And there is a constant drum beat to pay for additional services, newsletters, web access.

Back to regular programing
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Old 11-29-2007, 04:31 PM   #11
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Wow Travelover, I was about to post the same thing. Here's an excerpt of a letter I wrote Consumer Reports (in curmudgeon mode):

...As a pro-consumer organization, you should hold yourself to a higher standard. Here are three examples of things that I'm sure Consumer Reports would disapprove of if they were practiced by other companies:

1. False and Misleading Junk Mail


I've enclosed an example of a misleading piece I received from Consumer Reports recently. Note that it is made to look like a check. The speckled pattern on the back and fold-and-tear format is intended only to make the recipient think he/she is receiving a rebate or other check. Your company is lying, something Consumer Reports should not do. The words "THANK YOU" and "AUTHORIZATION ENCLOSED" on the front are purposefully misleading.

2. Spam


You must know what email spam is, and how harmful it is to consumers. I've received six spam emails from CR such as the enclosed, despite asking to taken off your lists.

3. You Make it Hard to Contact CR


Ever since you put up your web site you've intentionally made it inconvenient to contact your company. There's no "Contact Us" page. Apparently you want it to make it more difficult for someone to contact you so that you don't have to deal with complaints or suggestions from your customers. Would you condone that practice in organizations that you monitor?

Surely you can understand my confusion over how a noble organization such as Consumer's Union could take part in such underhanded practices. These tactics are at least as bad as those you display in your "Selling It" features.


As for a book for young dreamers: The Motley Fool Investment Guide for Teens isn't 'bad.
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Old 11-30-2007, 12:40 AM   #12
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Quote:
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Your Money or Your Life is excellent.

A couple of other recommendations:

(1) Getting Rich In America: Eight Simple Rules for Building a Fortune - And a Satisfying Life, by Dwight R. Lee and Richard B. McKenzie; and

(2) The Wealthy Barber: The Common Sense Guide to Successful Financial Planning, by David Chilton.

None of the above books is perfect, but all three contain lots of decent advice and are not intimidating for novice savers / investors.
The Wealthy Barber is a good one I recommend too.
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Old 11-30-2007, 12:45 AM   #13
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Useless thread. There was no agreement as to worst investment book ever written.
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Old 11-30-2007, 09:30 AM   #14
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I've read good reviews of The complete Idiot's Guide to Personal finance in your 20s and 30s, but haven't read it myself.

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Old 12-01-2007, 07:01 PM   #15
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Another good book is Getting a Life by Blix and Heitmiller. It is a kind of sequel to Your Time or Your Life by Dominguez and Robins, and it tells the stories fo several folk who lived the way Dominguez preached.

Quite interesting, actually.
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Old 12-01-2007, 10:01 PM   #16
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I read "The wealthy barber" in my 30's. Gave my kids copies. Now I am
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Old 12-01-2007, 10:03 PM   #17
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(They're working on it, with variable results.)
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Old 12-01-2007, 10:26 PM   #18
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Somewhere in a middle-tier category of "making savings and investment choices", my Young Dreamer recommendation is The Only Investment Guide You'll Ever Need by Andrew Tobias.

I read it in my 20's, when I was a young newlywed just a couple of years out of college. It wasn't very long and the humor kept me interested. Most important to the young and naive Harry was the abundant advice on avoiding speculative investment fads. (Getting rich on gold futures was that era's hot tip, as I recall.)
I'll second that choice! It was an easy read, and laid things out pretty plain and simple. My only regret was that I read it AFTER I read most of the rest of the investment books out there. Had I read it first, I would have skipped a LOT (MOST) of the other books!
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Old 12-04-2007, 06:46 AM   #19
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Useless thread. There was no agreement as to worst investment book ever written.
Hmmm ... consensus as the criterion for usefulness.

By that definition, the vast majority of threads on this board (or any other) are quite "useless".
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Old 12-04-2007, 11:25 AM   #20
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Hmmm ... consensus as the criterion for usefulness.

By that definition, the vast majority of threads on this board (or any other) are quite "useless".
Touche. I withdraw my "useless" comment.
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