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Old 04-14-2017, 02:28 PM   #41
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Back in the 70s when I was in HS these subjects were taught for a whole semester. We even went through the 1040 forms and simulated our own businesses for a few weeks. Public High School, not some business course for braniac teenagers. I can't imagine anyone not knowing how to do this.

Is this not curriculum today? I know Charles J Givens always said Americans were financially illiterate, but was he exaggerating? Or not?

_B
I graduated in 1979. I never had any class that dealt with tax forms or check writing, never mind an entire semester. Not even one day, one lesson.

Then again, my school was in Texas...

Edited to add: many, many years later, I *did* take a class about check-writing. I believe it was called something like "Hot Checks: Felony/Repeat Offenders"

(true story)
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Old 04-15-2017, 11:25 AM   #42
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Simple, not easy as I often say. I used to tell my employees (who made well above average wages) time and time again, you have to live below your means if you ever want to reach financial independence and retire - whether you make $40K/yr or $400K/yr. But I was usually met with 'we don't want to learn about investing, just tell us what stocks to buy that'll make us rich' or 'yeah, easy for you to say since you make more than we do.' They never could grasp it's not how much you make as much as how much you keep...
Yes I was one of the "get-rich-quick" crowd and followed many hot tips. My salary was doubling every 5 years for the first 25 years so I was focused on my work.
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This is a remarkable observation. I don't know if it's generally true, but I do know a person who takes pride in his IQ, yet has lived on a shoestring all his life and has been deeply in debt for decades.
IQ often works against wealth-building because they think they can outsmart others to their detriment.
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While this may not be the best investment advice, putting money in a CD will do a lot more for your retirement than blowing it on beer or speedboats or vacations in Vegas.
Early in my working life, these and other extravagances were what motivated me. Make more, enjoy more!
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Does anyone know why the author is planning on buying a condo in Canada as part of his retirement plan. I googled him and it doesn't look like he is originally from Canada.
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In my view, it has nothing to do with IQ. Rather, it all comes down to whether you can pass the marshmallow test or not.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stanfo...low_experiment
Yes I found religion when I was moved 2000 miles and had 2 250K homes and a bridge loan for $400k. I maxed out all my credit cards and cashed in retirement plans and became delinquent of our bills to the limit until the first home sold. After that bad experience, I vowed to pay cash for everything!

After that, LBYM seemed to be the best solution! Plus whenever someone in my workplace was promoting some investment, I seriously looked at taking the other side and sometime made out extremely well.
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I believe it was called something like "Hot Checks: Felony/Repeat Offenders"
Wow some practical education!
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Old 04-15-2017, 11:56 AM   #43
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Pretty much what we do. [mod edit]
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Old 04-15-2017, 12:52 PM   #44
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I can do math. Good at sums. P&L's,balance sheets, cash flow statements and margins are not strangers to me. I understand the difference between red ink, black ink, depreciation, and retained earnings.

If you understand math, numbers, margins etc. it goes a long way toward living within your means and avoiding debt-especially consumer debt. Leads to value based purchases at the right time for the right price. Allows one to push the boat out and splurge once in a while without much thought to the expense.
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Old 04-15-2017, 02:42 PM   #45
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Apparently, at least by the definition in the article, I am good with money and I live in one of the highest credit-score states.

I wasn't always good with money, but I have always lived in this state.

My second home (where we plan to retire to) is in a lower credit-score state. I still expect to be good with money when that time comes, though.

I'm not sure I found that article very thought-provoking. And I struggled to find anything contrarian about it. Did I miss something?
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Old 04-16-2017, 01:28 PM   #46
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Knowing how to use and interpret spreadsheets was a forced learning that I did while working which has paid big dividends since planning retirement and tracking progress. As a sales guy, I hated such stuff so they put me in a job where all my direct reports used them.
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Old 04-16-2017, 01:40 PM   #47
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How about this as one sentence defining good with money:
Knowing the price of an item, not the monthly payment.
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Old 04-16-2017, 01:49 PM   #48
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How about this as one sentence defining good with money:
Knowing the price of an item, not the monthly payment.
That reminds me of the time DW brought a friend home from school when she was taking classes. I had recently bought a motorcycle and she asked what the payments were. I said "No payments, I wrote a check" and she looked surprised that anyone could do that.

One SIL, OTOH, will buy a new car whenever she can trade the old one in and keep the payments nearly the same. I doubt there will ever be a day in her life when she is not making car payments.
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Old 04-16-2017, 03:41 PM   #49
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Good to see me and my fellow Texans are number one!
Wow! Well DH and I will look good to creditors around here then!
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Old 04-16-2017, 04:05 PM   #50
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Without question the two most useful classes I had in high school were typing and a class in personal finance.
Typing was valuable for me too.

Never had a personal finance class, but I took many "Engineering Economy" courses in college. The same equations are used whether it's buying a piece of equipment on the plant floor or an investment. The other thing is that I was in the "Cost Engineering" department for a manufacturer, and I also did stint in the Finance department. So I lived and breathed spreadsheets at work.

All that being said, I still think I would have "passed" the marshmallow test, and that that is the more important factor.
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Old 04-17-2017, 02:02 PM   #51
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Am I good with money?

I guess I am good enough, to be able to retire early despite leaving megacorp early to pursue some business ventures that went belly up, while people in my pay grade were still working last I knew.

That does not mean I cannot be better, as one of the slogans of my former megacorp touted: "Continuous Improvement Process".
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Old 04-18-2017, 08:55 AM   #52
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I would add:
Good at spending was the first skill: Buying what we needed and no more. Sometimes highest quality because we had a discount source and so upgraded to the best for a price under the cheapest. Learned about loss leaders.

then when it was possible

Good at saving: Putting money away and not including in our spending budget. A company stock purchase plan helped with that. I still own a substantial stake even though I sold tranches along the way to avoid debt. I always disliked debt.

Good at investing: This came last and should have been developed earlier but no one recommended it. It has evolved from chasing hot stock tips to maintaining a balanced portfolio.
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Old 04-19-2017, 08:46 AM   #53
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For many years I was very good at earning money and that was it. I would earn more than I could spend in spite of my lack of discipline. When I reached my late 40's, I stated saving. Retired at 55.
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Old 04-19-2017, 01:45 PM   #54
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When people think about the idea of "good with money" they seem to mostly focus on not spending too much, LBYM, paying off high interest debt, diversifying investments, saving for retirement, and such financial hygiene.

A harder (for some of us) type of "good with money" is making sure you spend enough. Not being unnecessarily frugal in a way that impairs your quality of life. Making sure you use your money to buy as much happiness as money can buy. Not being so focused on wealth accumulation and preservation that you fail to use the money for enjoyment. That sort of "good with money" is probably less often discussed, but I guess equally important.
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Old 04-19-2017, 01:47 PM   #55
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When people think about the idea of "good with money" they seem to mostly focus on not spending too much, LBYM, paying off high interest debt, diversifying investments, saving for retirement, and such financial hygiene.

A harder (for some of us) type of "good with money" is making sure you spend enough. Not being unnecessarily frugal in a way that impairs your quality of life. Making sure you use your money to buy as much happiness as money can buy. Not being so focused on wealth accumulation and preservation that you fail to use the money for enjoyment. That sort of "good with money" is probably less often discussed, but I guess equally important.
Well said, agree. Also the idea of "good at making money" will help with some of the other obvious "good with money" traits.
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Old 04-19-2017, 03:07 PM   #56
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When people think about the idea of "good with money" they seem to mostly focus on not spending too much, LBYM, paying off high interest debt, diversifying investments, saving for retirement, and such financial hygiene.

A harder (for some of us) type of "good with money" is making sure you spend enough. Not being unnecessarily frugal in a way that impairs your quality of life. Making sure you use your money to buy as much happiness as money can buy. Not being so focused on wealth accumulation and preservation that you fail to use the money for enjoyment. That sort of "good with money" is probably less often discussed, but I guess equally important.
One condition for when I ERed back in 2008 was that there would be no change to my everyday lifestyle. That is, I would not have to alter my already basic spending patterns. If I felt like going out to eat once in a while, I would not worry about its impact on my budget. If I went on a small spending spree once in a while, I would not worry about its impact on my budget. To do this, I built into my budget a cushion, or surplus, to cover such things, so the worst thing to happen would be the surplus got eaten up once in a while.
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Old 04-19-2017, 07:21 PM   #57
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When people think about the idea of "good with money" they seem to mostly focus on not spending too much, LBYM, paying off high interest debt, diversifying investments, saving for retirement, and such financial hygiene.

A harder (for some of us) type of "good with money" is making sure you spend enough. Not being unnecessarily frugal in a way that impairs your quality of life. Making sure you use your money to buy as much happiness as money can buy. Not being so focused on wealth accumulation and preservation that you fail to use the money for enjoyment. That sort of "good with money" is probably less often discussed, but I guess equally important.
Someone on this forum says one of his favorite pastimes is counting his money and watching it grow...
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Old 04-19-2017, 07:35 PM   #58
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You rang?

Yes, I like to count my money. Actually, Quicken counts it for me. And I make it do that several times a day, as I own a lot of stocks which are fun to watch during trading hours, compared to MFs that you only know about 2 or 3 hours after market close.

But it does not mean that I don't spend it. In between "counting money", I go do some other "stuff". I have been surfin' the Web refining my upcoming 6-week European trip. I only have a few gaps left to fill in, and finally found a hotel in Milan that has just been completely renovated, has free parking, and is close to a Metro station for us to get into town. I even researched the convoluted drive to get from the hotel to the paid parking lot near that Metro station.

Just a bit of rambling to say that while I enjoy "counting" money, I do like to spend it too. I also looked at several trattorias inside Milan for the meals.

Counting money is really fun, particularly if you still have plenty left after you spend some. Heh heh heh...
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Old 04-19-2017, 07:50 PM   #59
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Yes, I like to count my money. ...Counting money is really fun...

I guess that just shows that people have remarkably different ideas of what is fun. Personally, I cannot imagine anything less interesting than counting my money. I would put it pretty much in the same category as unrolling a toilet paper or counting from one to a million. Then again, I also find watching poker or billiards on television boring, and yet other people enjoy those things. So I guess different strokes ...
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Old 04-19-2017, 07:54 PM   #60
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It only takes a few seconds for Quicken to tally it up. As a stock picker, I need to know how my stocks are doing, even though I do not trade every single day.

Yes, I find investing to make money fun, as much fun as spending it. And I find watching spectator sports so boring (anything that involves a round object, or anything that moves fast) I must be paid a lot of money, and I mean a lot of money, to watch a game.
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