Retirement can bring a refreshing feeling for many people looking forward to that time when they can take things easy, visit places, explore new horizons and savor life without the former daily challenges and anxieties. But preparing for such lifestyle change requires more than merely looking forward to enjoying your care-free days. Getting financially ready is the other half of the story. That is because ending your working life does not mean ending your financial life!

Why You Should Plan for the Future

Although fulfilling your dream to visit Europe on a cruising trip can be a wonderful goal, new retirees must first evaluate their financial status for essential needs in the future. For those who may still be active, healthy and independent today, remember that your medical needs will eventually change and you must consider how to address the expenses related with the healthcare needs, particularly for long-term medical care. Doing so will assure you to fully enjoy your retirement life.

Financial Advice and Tips for Seniors

While it is hard to determine the exact amount needed to ensure the required retirement lifestyle you envision and also cover all the accompanying costs, these financial tips will help seniors safeguard their assets adequately:

  • Prepare and plan for the long haul. A Wells-Fargo survey showed that in recent years, only a third of Americans made a financial plan for their retirement. Having no plan will tend to erode all your savings a few years into your retirement. And as pointed out above, preparing for the health changes is crucial aspect to consider since it is highly possible that long-term medical care will arise.
  • Seek help from a good financial advisor. It is always wise to seek professional help in managing your money. Also get advice from relatives, although a qualified and experienced financial advisor will assure you of making effective decisions with regard to your investments and savings.
  • Beware of scams victimizing seniors. Seniors, unfortunately, are common targets of financial scammers; 1 out of 5 seniors Americans having been targeted by such scams, according to surveys. Read up on how scammers do it, especially on those get-rich-easy schemes to fleece people dry.
  • Cover yourself against inflation. In time, prices eventually go up, bring down the worth of your hard-earned money. Know how you can shelter yourself from the effects of inflation to safeguard your assets and assure your future financial security.
  • Do not depend on Social Security. Social Security benefits alone will not suffice to secure for yourself a comfortable, financially-stable retirement. Moreover, it will not cover long-term health care expenses. It is best to seek additional retirement funds, especially with uncertainties in the government regulations with regard to Social Security.
  • Keep your portfolio updated. Certain health and lifestyle changes will impact on your present portfolio; so keep your portfolio updated. Although it is hard to predict future long-term medical expenses exactly, protect yourself by maintaining a realistic view of any future needs due to health changes.
  • Preparing and planning for your retirement life through these valuable financial hacks for seniors will assure a fulfilling, financially-sound retirement, allowing you to savor all the goals you have set out to achieve!

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    Reaching your 30s is like being at the crossroads of life – when you think more seriously about important goals in life , whether personal or financial. While some decisions can be postponed, such as career moves, getting married or having children, some vital financial decisions cannot be delayed without long-term adverse effects.

    Certain financial decisions can produce slow but big impact on your future life. To secure your financial well-being and to achieve your objectives , such decisions must be made at the proper time. Consider these seven principal financial guidelines when you are in your 30s.

    1. Set up an emergency fund

    Anyone who receives a paycheck must set up an emergency fund, in case you stopped receiving one and have to pay your bills. What if your car suddenly broke down? Do you have the extra money for repairs? A contingency fund will allow you to go on with your life as usual without getting into debt or getting disoriented.

    You can begin by putting away enough money for three months’ worth of your personal expenses and slowly increase your emergency fund to incorporate six months’ worth of your expenses. No matter how small it might be, if you have such limited budget, build that emergency fund. For instance, set aside an hour’s worth of your salary per workday after you receive your weekly check and work up to two hours’ worth of wages per workday whenever you can afford it. In case that is not viable, set aside $50 each week ($200 per month) and build it up to $75 weekly or more when you are capable. Avail of automatic transfers from your check to your savings account to make regular deposits into your fund.

    2. Create a payment strategy

    Once you reach 30, resolve to establish a sound foundation for a secure future and begin by paying off your debt. There are good and there are bad debts. School loans and home mortgages are good and necessary at times; however, high-interest credit-card debts or personal debts can cause so many problems. Deal with both kinds with dispatch.

    Your best approach is to pay off debts with the highest interest rate before others. Hence, prioritizing a credit-card debt that charges 22% interest rate would save you more of your money’s value than clearing a home mortgage loan that charges only 4%. Seek the assistance of a debt management expert to determine the most efficient way to resolve your debt issues.

    3. Begin or Keep maxing out your 401(k)

    It is far better to max out your 401(k) or other retirement plans than your credit cards. Your age is the ideal time.

    Contribute as much money as you can afford to your employer-sponsored retirement plan. In case you still cannot pay the maximum contribution limit, at least contribute enough to benefit your employer’s matching contribution, if you are allowed. That is free money you should use. In case your company offers no retirement plan, acquire a regular IRA or Roth IRA account. An IRA allows you to contribute a maximum of $5,500 in a year.

    For self-employed individuals who cannot avail of a employer-sponsored retirement package, set up your own. There are common alternatives you can choose from, such as the self-directed Solo 401(k) for owner-exclusive enterprises or the self-employed, SEP IRA or SIMPLE IRA plan. For such plans, here are the yearly contribution limits:

    Solo 401(k): Maximum of $53,000 for 2016, including catch-up contributions of $6,000 for individuals above 50 years old.

    SEP IRA: Maximum of $53,000, or 25% of compensation.

    SIMPLE IRA: Maximum of $12,500, including catch-up contributions of $3,000 for individuals above 50, if allowed.

    4. Go investing now

    Being in your 30s is your best asset; investing now is also to your advantage. Take the case of two actual investors. Steve began investing $1,000 monthly at 30 until he reached 40. Although he stopped investing, he did not take out his investment and left it to grow until he retired at 60. Bob, at 40, began investing $1,000 month until he reached 60.

    At a 5% average rate-of-return compounded yearly, Steve earned $154,992 after 10 years. Because he kept his money invested, he eventually earned $411,240 at 60. On the other hand, Bob got $407,460 under similar investment terms. The power of compounded interest worked to Steve’s advantage. You see, compound interest allows your return to be augmented to your principal every year, making your money grow more rapidly, unlike simple interest rate which uses the original principal invested to produce a constant yearly return.

    For novice investors who have only limited grasp of the investment world, opt for passive investing, applying approaches that utilize the general fluctuations of the market instead of projecting the sectors or assets which will perform well. You can do this by investing in mutual funds or exchange-traded funds which are tied to a broad-market index. For individuals in their 30s, starting with ETFs is the most advisable due to their affordable fees and transaction costs.

    5. Determine the proper investment method for you

    In case you have not encountered asset allocation, now is the time to learn it. Asset allocation involves choosing the appropriate distribution of various investment kinds (or asset classes) to suit your portfolio with your risk tolerance level, target investment schedule and financial objectives. Certain investments, such as stocks, involve greater risk although they provide bigger returns compared to such instruments as bonds. Hence, for a highly aggressive investment approach, build a portfolio that has more stock exposure; and for a less risky approach, gear up to more bond exposure.

    You future wealth will depend greatly on your asset allocation. A very conservative portfolio might provide a nest egg that is insufficient, while a risky allocation could bring bigger returns; but it might cause you to worry when the market goes haywire. Your best option is to ask the advice of a financial professional on which investment approach suits your needs, objectives and risk capacity.

    6. Opt for diversified investments

    One vital part of creating a portfolio is diversification of your investments. Thus, if you have stock investments, diversify your equity holdings by investing stocks from firms that are different in sizes (whether large, medium and small capitalization stocks), classifications (whether value or growth stocks) and locations in the world. With a diverse assortment of investments in hand, you can distribute your risk and mitigate the effects of volatility.

    Likewise, consider other investment choices that will provide greater portfolio diversification to withstand stock market volatility. The objective is to augment investments that have no tendency to move along the direction of the stock market and brings significant long-term returns. Alternative investments that are commonly popular among investors are real estate, precious metals, private stock, life settlements and private debt placement. Nevertheless, be reminded that alternative investments involve serious study; so do the homework, find how these investments perform, before jumping in.

    7. Saving for college education

    Start saving for college costs when your first child arrives. Although that may seem too early to start, with college education getting more expensive, you protect yourself and your family from many future problems the earlier you begin saving and investing for this important expense. A tax-friendly plan, such as a 529 college savings plan, can produce the required money to support your child’s expenses in college. Take the long-term perspective; consider implementing a more aggressive investment approach for the plan.

    Visualize the far future

    “Setting objectives is the initial step in making the invisible visible,” says Tony Robbins, entrepreneur, author and inspirational speaker. This is especially true for financial planning. Creating a financial plan requires seeing far into the vast horizon — that is, you’re the long--term personal and financial objectives — to discover the most suitable strategy to pursue in the present.

    Although at time you do not feel you have control over your financial life, you actually do more than you think. The secret is in making well-informed decisions and acting promptly in order to prepare the way to financial stability and to reach your aspirations.



    How would you like to get rid of your debts? Who would not, especially if you have a very limited budget? Many get frustrated when they have to let go of their precious money only to make loan payments. Money merely passes their hands, leaving them nothing to spend or even save. And much of the money paid often goes towards paying high-interest payments.

    In spite of all that, you are better off paying just a small amount instead of not paying anything at all. But if you have no emergency fund, have a difficult time getting by and cannot sustain bills, then it is time to face the issues frontally. For those who have some money, by all means, pay off your debt. For those with limited budget, follow these five ways to do away with debt:

    1. Make a plan for paying off a debt

    Making a monthly budget

    If you have a very limited budget, you need to make a plan for paying off a debt. Begin by listing down all the people you owe money to and how much you owe each, then add up to find out exactly how much debt you have. Arrange your list according to order of importance, considering the amount you owe, the interest rate and the terms of the loan.

    Now you can calculate the amount you are capable of paying monthly. Use Bankrate’s debt pay-down calculator for this purpose. Knowing how much you can pay, determine how you will distribute the total figure to every loan. Prioritizing a high interest loan for full payment may be beneficial; however, a loan that is not due and demandable any time soon (like a school tuition loan) should be considered for later payment so you can initially pay off other loans.

    One other vital consideration if you have a large debt is to meet your lenders and negotiate a repayment plan which may lower your payments or secure more advantageous loan terms.

    2. Go for automatic payments

    With a small budget, you may think a negligible payment will not amount to anything. Nevertheless, any small amount is better than nothing. Avail of automatic deductions in order to avoid falling into the habit of giving so many excuses to default on your loan payments.

    You have to take into account any amount of money that is automatically deducted regularly each month from your bank account when you do your budgeting. You can then avoid overspending or paying penalties by the spending that money that has been allotted to pay off a debt. Stick to the plan once you have gone automatic.

    Automatic deductions can be an effective way of paying bills; however, NOLO recommends that you inspect for errors in your accounts. In case late automatic deduction occurs or a payment is not made by the bank (or the bank keeps deducting even if you have told the bank to stop doing so), you might encounter problems. It is very important to check your account regualrly.

    3. Reduce Expenses

    Although it follows without saying, with a small budget, you cannot hope to pay off a debt if you do not find ways to reduce your expenses. Otherwise, it will take you forever to eliminate your debt. Evaluate your monthly expenses and find out where you can implement some changes. Decreasing or eliminating some of your expenses will free some money for paying off your debt. If so, you could be cooking meals at home instead of eating out at restaurants, watching regular TV shows and not cable shows or jogging around the neighborhood instead of doing the treadmill at the gym.

    In case your budget will not allow you at all to cut expenses, you may have to bite the bullet in order to get out of debt more rapidly — cut off some expenses for the sole purpose of paying off your debt. Even a small act as making your own bread or yogurt at home, instead of buying them, will go a long way to help you on this goal.

    4. Revamp your spending pattern

    This approach may seem to be the same as the previous; however, it is not. Getting into debt rarely, if ever, arises from an accident. Having a home mortgage or an education loan is a given for most people, being legitimate needs that they are. But sometime in the past, you must have made some decisions that brought you to where you are now. As such, you might have to evaluate your spending habits and resolve to get out of debt as soon as you can.

    The consequence, therefore, is becoming more responsible in paying off a need, such as a home mortgage, by giving up some wants -- for example, buying a more expensive car. Limit your credit card expenses if you have an existing debt, that is, wait till you pay off a debt before spending even more and increasing your debt. It is no longer a matter of being a conscientious spender or an impulsive spender, but deciding to be debt-free by not spending any more using your card.

    5. Seek assistance

    Feeling frustrated or overwhelmed by your debt? Get the help of a credit counseling agency to guide you how to get out of the slump. Check out the National Foundation for Credit Counseling to help you begin the process of recovery. Getting free advice or for a minimal cost may just be the answer to your present financial issues, teaching you how to handle your money and also how you can come up with a strategy.

    How about borrowing money to pay out a loan? There are some benefits to doing that. Having several various loans may allow you to consolidate them. But be careful of the interest rate and the devil-in-the- details of a new loan you plan to acquire. In particular, an unsecured short-term loan should be avoided as it is quite risky. Consider seeking the help of relatives for help to pay off your debts at zero or minimal interest rates, as long as you can agree on the payment terms.

    The burden is upon you to make these tips work to help you in your situation. Remember, a limited budget is not an obstacle to paying off debts, although it can be quite challenging. Take the challenge now!



    New Year’s resolutions are seldom mere overreaching wishes in that people make their lists without having a definite plan on how to achieve their goals.

    How do you plan on paying your debt? How will you exactly go about losing excess weight? How do you specifically attain a fulfilling and abundant life?

    When it comes to personal money matters, we would like to present a workable plan to address a common problem which many people fail to solve for lack of professional help. We asked severalpersonal finance experts to show us how to maintain or obtain good credit in 2017.

    Heather Battison, a vice-president at TransUnion, a major credit bureau, says, “I believe it’s vital for consumers to realize it requires a definite process. “It’s actually about developing the right practice,” she adds. “Begin at the start of each year. Then incorporate it into your daily routine and your weekly schedule.”

    Take these suggestions as your chart to achieving the obvious and even the obscure ways to your credit success.

    Take responsibility on your debt

    Financial well-being begins with responsibility. Always pay your credit statements as well as other bills promptly.

    Your credit score is computed based on your payment track record, about 35 % of your score. Paying late can greatly affect your credit standing.

    “Aside from paying a charge for late payment, not paying your bill within 30 days will cause credit reporting agencies to be informed and such record will be filed for at least 7 years,” according to Katie Ross, manager of education and development at the American Consumer Credit Counseling in Auburndale, Massachusetts.

    Paying promptly, however, is not sufficient. To enhance your financial well-being, you must speed up your debt payments by paying above the required minimum dues.

    Paying only the minimum results in paying more interest, particularly if the Federal Reserve raises interest rates several times, as predictions for 2017 seem to suggest.

    The best strategy for such an ominous event is to slowly increase your payments within the year.

    “Welcome the new year as your challenge to set a strict debt control by raising your monthly payments,” suggests Bruce McClary, vice president of public relations and external affairs at the National Foundation for Credit Counseling. “Accelerating debt payment can bring hundreds of dollars or even more in savings, based on the size of the debt and the fee structure.”

    Review your accounts and credit reports

    Regularly review your credit accounts for any possible credit card scams and to find out your total expenses and debts, Battison states. Report right away to your credit card company any charges that you did not make.

    Use your smartphone to set notices to alert you when your credit card is used. This will tell you whenever an unauthorized charge has been made.

    Also check your credit reports regularly for any signs of fraud in your accounts. Is there a credit account you have not opened? If so, someone could have opened one by using your personal information.

    What to do? You can stop criminals from using your name and your personal information by freezing your credit.

    Avoid these 3 things to safeguard your good credit

    1. Do not take out a cash advance. With interest rates on cash advances from 10 to 15 %, you end up paying higher rates compared to ordinary expenses, Ross says. There are also fees for processing a cash advance. Although a cash advance may not adversely affect your credit, piling up debts just might. Use your savings for any additional cash needs.

    2. Avoid closing a credit card account. Doing so might impact on your credit utilization ratio, which is the amount of credit that has been extended to you against the amount you utilize. Closing a credit card account decreases the credit that you can access, adversely affecting your credit score. “Another way closing a credit card account can damage your credit is by losing the corresponding track record of the card. Remember that credit works much like trust,” says Steve Repak, a Charlotte, North Carolina-based CFP professional as well as author of “6-Week Money Challenge.” “Credit takes a long time to gain but only a moment to lose. It is more preferable for your credit score to cut up a card from being used than closing the account ouright.”

    3. Never close credit cards with a balance. This is worse than merely closing an existing credit card account. “When you do this, your available credit or credit limit on that account becomes zero, which appears that you have used the maximum limit on that card,” Ross says.

    3 ways to enhance your credit

    1. Get a co-signatory. According to Ross, young adults, in particular, will benefit from this approach. A parent or guardian can serve as co-signatory on a credit card account. “You and your co-signatories share the same responsibility on the loan,” Ross says. “Hence, the loan is also reflected on your co-signatory’s credit reports, affecting your credit positively or negatively depending on how it is used.”

    2. Open a secured credit card. This is especially beneficial to those who have little or no credit, Ross says. “To choose a secured credit card, go for a dependable bank and do not fail to read the entire fine print,” Ross says. “Some credit card issuers charge significantly high interest rates and exorbitant fees, hoping to victimize people with little or no credit.” Likewise, see to it that the card you choose submits reports to all three credit bureaus to establish your good credit reputation.

    3. A gas credit card can be a great help. A gas credit card can show creditors that you can be trusted to regularly pay your debts promptly, Repak says. “After each billing cycle, you need to pay off the balance completely; and remember that keeping a running balance is not necessary to build your credit,” he says. One good motivation for paying a balance fully is that the yearly percentage rate on gas credit cards often is likely to be high.



    Deadly Mistake #7: Trusting “Experts” Too Much

    Every other person has an adverse interest in relation to your wealth. Only you and you alone have no adverse claim on your wealth. Financial institutions handle your money in order to make some money over it. Likewise, investment counselors sell financial products to earn commissions.

    In like manner, the investment publications aim to increase advertising and subscription returns; leading them to observe slanted editorial practices that focus on sensational news rather than substantial information.

    In short, you derive financial recommendations from purveyors whose goals serve their own interests rather than your interests.

    Never trust your wealth to the experts. The best policy is to assume that the financial advice you get is meant to favor someone else other than you.

    Here is Laurence J. Peter’s definition of a true economist: “An economist is an expert who will know tomorrow why the things he predicted yesterday didn’t happen today.”

    To prove the fact that bias always rears its ugly head, just see how the advisor’s bank book is enhanced. Understand the truth that their own view constricts what they see. Everyone has some kind of bias – including you and me.

    Having said that, a lot of good people earnestly seek to find the best perspective based on their limited understanding and irreconcilable information arising from the financial industry.

    Majority of so-called “experts” are as equally confounded by investing as you; and though they appear very confident, they are actually turning a blind eye to the universal wisdom that investing is essentially throwing precious money into the unforeseeable future, hoping it will return to you carrying greater value. Yet returns will almost always be like that – unpredictable as the wind. Even the experts are subject to the caprices of real events.

    Hence, do not make the mistake of taking professional views as facts simply because they bear the appearance of truth or bring with them the authority of a large institution. The fact is, majority of professional advisors were schooled in particular views of discipline and rarely go beyond their scope of learning.

    No single financial truth exists in the world and anyone who comes along with such a claim contradicts himself or herself.

    Remember, many forms and sizes of the complex investment truth exist which so-called experts cannot completely grasp or resolve into one simple truth. A healthy skepticism toward claims of these “experts” is what you need to attain consistent returns to your investments.

    Deadly Mistake #8: Not Avoiding of Low Liquidity

    A liquid investment refers to an investment you can easily convert into cash, while an illiquid investment is one which has constraints to being turned into cash. For instance, U.S. Government Bonds and stocks from large, listed firms are considered liquid; and partnership interests, most real estate investments and thinly-traded stocks are illiquid.

    From experience, an ordinary investor’s primary losses or financial misses will have been substantially due to loss of liquidity. Simply put, the best weapon you can have against investment losses is liquidity, whereas limited liquidity can trap your investment and lead to irrecoverable levels of losses.

    Unless your strategy is to justify acceptance greater risk in order to obtain a potentially large gain, do not commit your investment into a condition of low liquidity. You can do this approach, especially if you put up other means of controlling the risk of loss for your investment.

    Deadly Mistake #9: Not Seeking a Balance between Conservatism and Risk-Taking

    Investing is basically a balancing act between risk and reward; and the more you learn how to handle risk control, the greater you potential for financial growth. Soaring high with tech-stock or new-issue investments and flying low with U.S. Treasury, bonds and C.D.’s alone are two extremes of investing you need to avoid. Aim for a healthy balance to maximize your opportunities to attain long-term wealth.

    While a ship is said to be useless if it remains idle on the dock and not sailing, it will also be senseless if it sails to sea during a terribly dangerous storm. Go ahead and invest daringly if the reward justifies the risk and hold your punches in if you see that the risks warrant staying in the harbor.

    Provide an escape route for each investment in order to safeguard your money when the weather turns for the worse.

    Deadly Mistake #10: Mistaking Brains for a Bull Market

    When the tide rises, all boats rise as well. But when the tide goes out, you can tell which ones remain on dry ground.

    People commit the grievous mistake of thinking that a few good hits acquired through good fortune portends a bull market. As the old English proverb says, “A smooth sea never made a skilled mariner.” Acquiring the real skills of a good investor demands more than mere beginner’s luck; you need to learn how to conserve capital and how to grow during the difficult times.

    You have to be a tried-and-true investor to possess the discipline to manage risk while minimizing your losses. Many people can easily confuse the falsely-interpreted results of one-way markets as the harbinger of a bull market for a whole market cycle.

    Deadly Mistake #11: Confusing Total Revenue with Value Added

    Often, investors make the mistake of gaging investment results based exclusively on the amount of money they made. And that is due to the fact that total return results from the interplay of market return, management skill and strategy return. Not appreciating this fact can lead to wrong conclusions.

    Value-added return is the true determinant of investment skill; and that is measured by comparing total returns with a proper benchmark index for a complete economic cycle. Through this, you separate management skill from market return and strategy or style.

    For instance, a growth stock manager attaining a yearly compound returns of 25% could be a failure or a celebrity based on whether the benchmark growth stock index netted 32% (7% loss of value) or lost 3% (28% added to value) for the same duration.

    The converse may apply as well: Your style or strategy of investing could be innately bull-friendly with regard to where you gain in growing markets but lose terribly in declining markets.

    Overall performance for the entire market cycle in relation to a suitable yardstick determines value added and investment skill.

    Deadly Mistake #12: Focusing Only on Taxes or Expenses

    John Maynard Keynes said it bitingly, thus: “The avoidance of taxes is the only intellectual pursuit that carries any reward.”

    Sadly, many people make the error of never selling an investment due to their desire to avoid to pay taxes or fees. The converse is true as well: You should never ignore the arising tax.

    Taxes and fees comprise only a single factor (transaction costs) you have to face when evaluating how a deal will affect total portfolio performance. You also have to consider other things more important than taxes and expenses, such as asset allocation, risk control, assumed returns and many more.

    Investor’s goal is to enhance returns for all risk tolerance levels; and taxes and fees are just one of the components in the whole process. Whether you need to pay taxes or fees in a transaction will be based on how it will affect the total investment performance taxes and fees.

    To give an actual case, most people thought it crazy to sell an entire investment portfolio in real estate in 2006 while paying a burdensome tax fee on the returns. But in 2009, they realized that the taxes spent were well worth it considering the pains and losses that were prevented.

    Trying to oversimplify the decision-making process merely looking at only a single factor (transaction expenses) could lead to costly mistakes. The key to success in this case is balance.

    Additional Deadly Mistake #13: Looking at Investing as not Being Fun

    Investing without fun is like going to a vacation while counting costs every step of the way and forgetting to enjoy the journey. It is a lifetime endeavor you will carry and endure to the end, so it is necessary to find ways to make the most of the experience.

    Investing can be a burden to a lot of people. They dislike the work of crunching numbers, the confusing terms and processes and the worrying over losing capital. This results into a lackadaisical investing experience.

    If we look as investing as a virtual treasure hunt, which it really is, or as a game of Monopoly, which it simulates, you have the advantage of making the rules yourself and nobody else questioning your decisions. It is both an intellectually exhilarating experience and a potentially profitable opportunity in terms of personal growth and satisfaction.

    “We struggle with the complexities and avoid the simplicities,” observed Norman Vincent Peale of the ironies of life.

    Both attitudes can be beneficial, depending on how you use them. However, one can bring you closer to financial security faster than the other. Choose between having fun and getting frustrated.


    You have seen some valuable steps to avoid falling into the painful and expensive traps along the road to financial success. Growing your money wisely can be both enjoyable and meaningful, while losing it blindly can be both painful and tragic.

    Applying these steps can spell the difference between financial security wealth and destitution. Avoiding the costly mistakes alone can already bring you both savings and benefits.



    There are a dozen vital mistakes any investor must avoid to realize one’s financial stability. All these can be reduced into two general ideas, namely:

    1. The Golden Way – Gaining insight from the investment mistakes of other investors

    2. The Costly Way – Gaining experience and knowledge yourself in the school of hard knocks

    Who would want to choose the more difficult and costly method when you can learn the same things indirectly from others’ mistakes? And the good thing is that you can get those lessons right now! Here are the Deadly Dozen to avoid as an investor:

    Deadly Mistake #1: Diversify, Do not Diworsefy

    Creating a diversified portfolio helps you to manage risk wisely , if done properly. This means adding a new asset that has a different risk level.

    For instance, you can diversify a portfolio consisting of U.S. stocks by inveasting in non-related markets such as gold, gold stocks, bonds, commodities, real estate and other asset types that present low or inverse correlation.

    “Wise men profit more from fools than fools from wise men; for the wise men shun the mistakes of the fools, but fools don’t imitate the successes of the wise.” Cato the Elder put that very wisely. However, not many are wise enough to listen to good advice.

    The mistake is to “diworsefy” by adding other assets that have similar risk profile leading to your investment performance imitating the averages. As an example, augmenting U.S. equity mutual funds to a diversified U.S. stock portfolio is di-worse-ification.

    The objective in diversification is to add uncorrelated and even contrasting sources of revenue. This will minimize portfolio hazards and potentially enhance total benefits when augmented further by effective investment strategies.

    Deadly Mistake #2: Instead of Picking Stocks, Allocate Assets

    Various research investigations seem to reinforce the findings that about 90% or more of the variance in a diversified portfolio’s revenue arise from allocation of assets.

    Unfortunately, majority of people make the error of concentrating 90% of their time and effort on the remaining 10% of gain by picking individual securities. It simply defies reason.

    Robert J. Shiller defines true intelligence for us thus: “The ability to focus attention on important things is a defining characteristic of intelligence.”

    Don’t make the mistake of spending all your time on the decisions that will make little difference in your overall performance.

    Avoid, therefore, imitating so-called failed experts who consistently pick the newest hot stock or the best-performing fund in the market.

    The better alternative is to take enough time protecting your resources by finding the proper allocation to asset types and strategies. This essentially applies Pareto’s Law (the 80-20 rule which expects 80% of your outcomes to arise from 20% of your efforts) to your advantage.

    Deadly Mistake #3: Historical Returns do not Guarantee Similar Performance

    If your financial counselor tells you that the average annual historical returns of 10% from the U.S. stock market (could be 7% or 8% according the exact era and duly adjusted for inflation and dividends) will serve as a dependable guide, doesn’t mean you should expect similar.

    More often than not, the future will be far from the historical mean. Moreover, your average holding time may not be sufficiently long to reproduce average revenues.

    The usual holding period average relative to majority of long-term historical stock revenue evaluations is at least 30 years. And though you may have been an investor for 30 years or more, you may only have less than half of that at most as your average holding time. The collective wisdom of the entire market is much greater than that of the oldest investor in the world.

    Remember that most of your savings are expected to be accumulated late in your professional career and put to actual use during your retirement. It is rare for anyone to start investing at 30 years old with a sizeable amount and retiring at 60 years old on that investment to produce a 30-year holding period. That happens only in our dreams.

    The reality presents a less than desirable picture of variability in predicted returns compared to long-term average indications. In short, average returns are statistical improbabilities. Nassim Taleb, author of “Fooled by Randomness,” says that the average return on the Dow Jones Industrial Average for the period 1900 to 2002 was 7.2%. During the 103-year period, there were but 5 years with returns from 5% and 10%. Apparently, the so-called “average” is just not common.

    “A reasonable probability is the only certainty,” said E.W. Howe.

    Lastly, long-term averages may not bear any real significance to your present investment circumstances since today’s investment climate or situation is far from being typical.

    For instance, not many investors are aware that the holding period revenues for their stocks are correlated inversely to the initial valuations of the holding duration.

    That means, if stock valuations are greater than average at the start of your investing period, you stand to obtain 7-15 year revenues below the average.

    On the other hand, If stock valuations are below average when you begin investing, you can fairly expect 7-15 year revenues above the average.

    Ultimately then, all the good heard about long-term probabilities and average returns may actually have nothing to do with the results you will obtain.

    Avoid making the mistake of using historical average revenues to create your investment plan, no matter how long your holding period may be.

    Obviously, investing is not that simple and straightforward; otherwise, many would have been successful. Remember; do not use historical returns as basis for building a portfolio.

    Deadly Mistake #4: Investing Minus a Plan

    Some people spending more time planning their vacation than planning their financial security.

    Many studies show that individuals who meticulously write down an investment plan has more chances to leave their contemporaries behind, not by a few percentage steps but by big leaps.

    Build up your financial future by producing a balanced plan grounded on solid statistical projections; because a baseless plan is guessing or gambling not investing.

    Various investment approaches utilize Expectancy Investing guidelines; and all of them must be implemented with great discipline for many years to guarantee ultimate success.

    This requires to never “invest” (that is, gamble) on hot tips, rumors, stories, guessing, foretelling performance or expecting the market to go up.

    You need a plan founded on well-researched constructive expectancy; all of the above methods are devoid of any semblance of a proper plan even though many often apply them.

    Your financial well-being requires a better alternative. As John Lennon once said, “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.”

    Deadly Mistake #5: Not Investing in Your Financial Education

    Learn comes before earning. Improving yourself intellectually means investing in your future financial security.

    Investing done right is both an art and a science. For that reason, you must avoid swallowing half-truths and oversimplifying, thus, neglecting the nuances of the investing process.

    Investing can be considered an art as it involves using deep human emotions even though we often try to present ourselves as rational-thinking beings. In reality, many of our decisions are greatly influenced by our moods, values, communal psychology, fears, passions and desires. Still, we continue to delude ourselves that we use pure logic in making investment decisions.

    Will Durant said something which covers this masquerade: “Education is a progressive discovery of our own ignorance.”

    Nevertheless, investing can be seen as a science for it demands an effective method founded on proven scientific concepts, such as asset allocation, diversification, correlation, valuation, probability and others.

    To succeed in investing on a long-term basis, we need to balance the two. You need to focus on improving yourself and your decision-making capability as also you enhance your expertise in investment strategy. was conceived precisely to improve your financial IQ and thereby help you create lasting wealth.

    Nothing is more financially risky than an investor making decisions worth a million dollars but possessing a financial intelligence worth only a thousand dollars.

    Like in most things in life, a little financial knowledge can truly be a dangerous thing; but a lot of knowledge can bring lots of benefits.

    Investing to improve your financial intelligence will bring a lifetime of benefits.

    Deadly Mistake #6: Failing to Match Investment Style with Your Personal Objectives

    People often make the foolish mistake of aiming for success by leaning their ladder of investment against the wrong wall.

    Although there is no hard-and-fast rule to attain financial success, there will be one correct answer that will be suited to your needs and circumstances.

    Your task involves looking for the method that will be consistent with your objectives, skills, resources, values and risk profile such that you will attain wealth and personal satisfaction. A financial guru’s own phenomenal success is exclusively his own; his approach does not necessarily apply in your own situation.

    Likewise, if your investment counselor is successful at his work of selling paper assets, such as (bonds, stocks, insurance, mutual funds, etc.); it does not follow at all that you cannot also make sufficient earnings in other paper assets, such as real estate or your own enterprise. In investing, there is no such thing as one-size-fits-all phenomenon.

    You need to realize that your road to financial security requires finding the appropriate size for your own use alone.




    Thank you for visiting and, if applicable, choosing to use our Services. We try to make our Privacy Policy easy to understand so that you are informed as to how we use your information. This Privacy Policy, like our Terms of Service, is an integral part of using our Service; therefore you must completely agree to our Privacy Policy in order to use our Site or Service. If you are under 18 please stop using our Service immediately.

    Information Collected

    Identifying information submitted by you

    When inquiring about our financial services, you will be required to supply your name, email and phone number. Additionally, we may collect your relevant financial information.

    Non-Identifying information

    Whenever you visit our Site, we may collect non-identifying information from you, such as your IP address, interactions with the Site and Service, referring URL, browser, operating system, cookie information, usage, data transferred and Internet Service Provider. Without a subpoena, voluntary compliance on the part of your Internet Service Provider, or additional records from a third party such as your wireless provider, this information alone cannot usually be used to identify you.

    Use of your information

    Our Site may use “cookies” to enhance User experience. User’s web browser places cookies on their hard drive for record-keeping purposes and sometimes to track information about them. User may choose to set their web browser to refuse cookies, or to alert you when cookies are being sent. If they do so, note that some parts of the Site may not function properly.

    How we use collected information

    We will never sell, transfer or give your information to a third party without your permission. However, you agree that we may use your information:

  • To enhance or improve our users’ experiences.
  • To provide our Service to you.
  • To contact you and to respond to inquiries.
  • To process transactions.
  • To register for an account and use our Service.
  • Additionally, we may give your information to law enforcement if we are compelled to by a court order, if there has been a violation of any EU laws, international laws or if a violation of the Terms of Service or Privacy Policy has occurred.

    Accessing, editing and removing your information

    You will not be able to edit any information submitted through our Site or Service. Additionally, you will be unable to opt of our data collection practices. If you want your information to be removed from our database please contact us. We will generally endeavour to delete our database of user information at regular intervals, but we cannot guarantee that your information has been or will be deleted immediately. Although some changes may occur immediately, information may still be stored in a web browser’s cache. We take no responsibility for stored information in your cache, or in other devices that may store information, and disclaim all liability of such. Additionally, after deletion of your information your data may be stored by us for up to 2 years for legal liability purposes.

    Third party access to your information

    Although you are entering into an Agreement with The Asquith Group to disclose your information to us, we do use third party individuals and organizations to assist us, including contractors, web hosts, and others.

    Throughout the course of our provision of our Services to you, we may delegate our authority to collect, access, use, and disseminate your information. For example, when you submit a form with personally identifiable information to us, that information will be disseminated or forwarded through our Service to your local law enforcement agency.

    It is therefore necessary that you grant the third parties we may use in the course of our business the same rights that you afford us under this Privacy Policy. For this reason, you hereby agree that for every authorization which you grant to us in this Privacy Policy, you also grant to any third party that we may hire, contract, or otherwise retain the services of for the purpose of operating, maintaining, repairing, or otherwise improving or preserving our website or its underlying files or systems. You agree not to hold us liable for the actions of any of these third parties, even if we would normally be held vicariously liable for their actions, and that you must take legal action against them directly should they commit any tort or other actionable wrong against you. The following is a non-exhaustive list of other entities that we may store, share, or transfer your information with:

  • Google AdSense
  • Law Enforcement

    You agree that we may disclose your information to authorities if compelled to by a court order. Additionally, you agree that we may disclose your information if we reasonably believe that you have violated a US law or the terms of our Terms of Service or Privacy Policy or if we believe that a third party is at risk of bodily harm. In the event that we receive a subpoena affecting your privacy, we may elect to notify you to give you an opportunity to file a motion to quash the subpoena, or we may attempt to quash it ourselves, but we are not obligated to do either. We may also proactively report you and release your information without receiving any request to third parties where we believe that it is proper to do so for legal reasons, such as instances where we believe your publications violate any law of the United States or any other country having jurisdiction over us, our Site, Services, or our Terms of Service. You release us from any damages that may arise from or relate to the release of your information to a request from law enforcement agencies or private litigants. We may release your information under the conditions listed in this paragraph whether it is to individuals or entities and to any state or Federal authorities within the United States, or elsewhere.

    Commercial and Non-commercial Communication

    By providing information to the Site that forms the basis of communication with you, such as contact information, you waive all rights to file complaints concerning unsolicited email from us, since you have agreed to such communication by providing your information to us. However, you may unsubscribe from certain communications by notifying The Asquith Group that you no longer wish to receive solicitations or information and we will endeavour to remove you from our database where you have the right to request this under our Agreement, Privacy Policy, or applicable law, or where we voluntarily decide to grant the request.

    Third Parties

    The Asquith Group may post links to third party websites on our Site or Service, which may include information that we have no control over. When accessing a third party site through our Site or Service, you acknowledge that you are aware that these third party websites are not screened for privacy or security issues by us, and you release us from any liability for the conduct of these third party websites.

    Please be aware that this Privacy Policy, and any other policies in place, in addition to any amendments, does not create rights enforceable by third parties. The Asquith Group bears no responsibility for the information collected or used by any advertiser or third party website. You must review their Terms of Service and Privacy to understand how their information collection practices work.

    Security Measures

    We take certain measures to enhance the security of our Site and Services and to ensure the security of your financial information. However, we make no guarantees as to the security or privacy of your information. We recommend that you use anti-virus software, routine credit checks, firewalls, and other precautions to protect yourself from security and privacy threats.

    Your European Privacy Rights

    The Asquith Group intends to comply with Directive 95/46/EC of the European Union. If you are a resident of any EU member countries please contact us at with any privacy questions.

    Age Compliance

    We intend to fully comply with international laws respecting children’s privacy. Therefore, we do not collect or process any information for any persons under the age of 18. If you are under 18 and using our Site or Service, please stop immediately and do not submit any information to us.

    International Transfer

    Your information may be transferred to - and maintained on - computers located outside of your state, province, country, or other governmental jurisdiction where the privacy laws may not be as protective as those in your jurisdiction. We may transfer personal information to Indonesia or elsewhere and process it there. Your consent to this Privacy Policy followed by your submission of such information represents your agreement to that transfer.


    Like our Terms of Service, we may amend this Privacy Policy from time to time.

    When we amend this Privacy Policy, we will place a note on our Site or we may contact you. You must agree to the amendments as a condition of your continued use of our Site and Service. If you do not agree, you must immediately cease using our Site and Service and notify us of your refusal to agree by e-mailing us at



    Your Acceptance

    Welcome to the Terms and Conditions for The Asquith Group is an investment and wealth management company helping expatriates living in Asia manage and invest their finances. This is an agreement (“Agreement”) between The Asquith Group (“The Asquith Group”), the owner and operator of (the “Site” and any “Services”) and you (“you” or “your” or “user(s)”), a user of the Site and Service. This Agreement is legally binding and governs your use of our Site and Service. Throughout this Agreement, the words “The Asquith Group,” “us,” “we,” and “our,” refer to, The Asquith Group, and our website,, and any of our financial Services provided through our website. By using or accessing our Site and using any of our Services, you acknowledge and agree to these terms and agree to be bound by this Agreement and the Privacy Policy. We may amend our Terms of Service or Privacy Policy from time to time, we will notify you of these changes to our policy. Your continued use constitutes acceptance to these changes.

    If you do not agree to the Terms and Conditions or the Privacy Policy please stop using our Site and Service immediately. Users of our Site and Service must be above the age of 18.

    The Asquith Group Description of Service

    The Asquith Group is a financial advisory service that caters to the global expatriate community. The Asquith Group offers wealth management, offshore investment and retirement planning along with other financial investment vehicles and opportunities. We lead the investment industry in knowledge and high level performance. We use our experience and know-how to bring you the best in international investment.

    Contact Information

    In order to contact us, we ask you to submit your name, phone number, email address and other financial information. Additionally, we request that you leave a short message describing your financial goals and needs.


    During your use of our Service you will be exposed to Confidential Information. “Confidential Information” means any information or communications whether written, oral, graphic or electronic, provided to you by us including but not limited to investment plans, strategies, agreements with third parties, and all other investment related information. In order to protect our investment knowledge and financial techniques, it is important that none of our Confidential Information be disclosed. Therefore, by submitting information to us and using our Service, you agree that you will not disclose any Confidential Information to any person or entity except as we may approve in writing. Additionally, you agree to use your best efforts in safeguarding our Confidential Information. In the event of any violation of this provision of the Agreement, you agree that a breach will cause irreparable damage to The Asquith Group. Therefore, if you breach this provisions we will be entitled to injunctive relief, without being required to post any bond, thus restraining you from violating or continuing to violate this Agreement.

    Intellectual Property Rights

    The design of the along with The Asquith Group created text, scripts, graphics, interactive features and the trademarks, service marks and logos contained therein (“Marks”), are owned by or licensed to The Asquith Group, subject to copyright and other intellectual property rights under United States, EU and foreign laws and international conventions. You agree to not engage in the use, copying, or distribution anything contained within the Site or Service unless we have given you express written permission.


    Our reputation is very important to us. By submitting any information to us or using any of our Services you agree that you will not disparage The Asquith Group, its services, officers, agents or employees in a harmful manner that will either hurt our reputation or our business reputation. This non-disparagement clause becomes effective immediately after you agree to our Terms of Service. The word “disparage” shall mean making comments to a person not a party to this agreement which would be actionable under legal principles of defamation or which materially cause damage to the reputation of a party to this agreement. In the event of any violation of this provision of the Agreement, you agree that a breach will cause irreparable damage to The Asquith Group. Therefore, if you breach this provisions we will be entitled to injunctive relief, without being required to post any bond, thus restraining you from violating or continuing to violate this Agreement.

    Limitations on Liability


    Representations and Warranties



    For Jurisdictions that do not allow us to limit our liability: Notwithstanding any provision of these Terms, if your jurisdiction has provisions specific to waiver or liability that conflict with the above then our liability is limited to the smallest extent possible by law. Specifically, in those jurisdictions not allowed, we do not disclaim liability for: (a) death or personal injury caused by its negligence or that of any of its officers, employees or agents; or (b) fraudulent misrepresentation; or (c) any liability which it is not lawful to exclude either now or in the future.



    You agree to indemnify and hold us harmless for any claims by you or any third party which may arise from or relate to this Agreement or the provision of any of our Services to you, including any damages caused by your use of our Site or Service, or by your breach of this Agreement. You also agree that you have a duty to defend us against such claims and we may require you to pay for an attorney(s) of our choice in such cases. You agree that this indemnity extends to requiring you to pay for our reasonable attorneys’ fees, court costs, and disbursements. In the event of a claim such as one described in this paragraph, we may elect to settle with the party/parties making the claim and you shall be liable for the damages as though we had proceeded with a trial.

    Third Party Links

    We may link to third party websites from our own website. We have no control over, and are not responsible for, these third party websites or their use of your personal information. We do not endorse, recommend or vouch for the security of such websites. We recommend that you review their terms of service and privacy policies before accessing and using the third party site. Additionally, users may be able to post third party links through content submitted to our Site. We are not responsible for such links and do not monitor the posting of such links. Please exercise caution when clicking on such links as they may cause harm to your computer.

    User Age

    The Asquith Group and its Services may only be used by persons over 18 years and older. If you are under the age of 18 please do not submit any information to us and please stop using our Site and Service immediately.

    Choice of Law

    This Agreement shall be governed by the laws in force in Indonesia. The offer and acceptance of this contract is deemed to have occurred in Indonesia.

    Forum of Dispute

    You agree that any dispute arising from or relating to this Agreement will be heard solely by a court of competent jurisdiction in or nearest to Jakarta, Indonesia. If you bring a dispute in a manner other than in accordance with this section, you agree that we may move to have it dismissed, and that you will be responsible for our reasonable attorneys’ fees, court costs, and disbursements in doing so. You agree that the unsuccessful party in any dispute arising from or relating to this Agreement will be responsible for the reimbursement of the successful party’s reasonable attorneys’ fees, court costs, and disbursements.

    Force Majeure

    You agree that we are not responsible to you for anything that we may otherwise be responsible for, if it is the result of events beyond our control, including, but not limited to, acts of God, war, insurrection, riots, terrorism, crime, labor shortages (including lawful and unlawful strikes), embargoes, postal disruption, communication disruption, failure or shortage of infrastructure, shortage of materials, or any other event beyond our control.


    In the event that a provision of this Agreement is found to be unlawful, conflicting with another provision of the Agreement, or otherwise unenforceable, the Agreement will remain in force as though it had been entered into without that unenforceable provision being included in it.

    If two or more provisions of this Agreement are deemed to conflict with each other’s operation, The Asquith Group shall have the sole right to elect which provision remains in force.


    We reserve all rights permitted to us under this Agreement as well as under the provisions of any applicable law. Our non-enforcement of any particular provision or provisions of this Agreement or the any applicable law should not be construed as our waiver of the right to enforce that same provision under the same or different circumstances at any time in the future.

    Termination and Cancellation

    We may terminate or suspend service or any other provision of services to you at our discretion without explanation and notice, though we will strive to provide a timely explanation in most cases. If you wish to terminate this Agreement, you are solely responsible for properly notifying us. All provisions of this Agreement which by their nature should survive termination shall survive termination, including, without limitation, ownership provisions, warranty disclaimers, indemnity and limitations of liability.


    You may not assign your rights and/or obligations under this Agreement to any other party without our prior written consent. We may assign our rights and/or obligations under this Agreement to any other party at our discretion.


    We may amend this Agreement from time to time. When we amend this Agreement, we will update this page and indicate the date that it was last modified. You may refuse to agree to the amendments, but if you do, you must immediately cease using our website and our Service. You must visit this page each time you come to our website and read and agree to it if the date it was last modified is more recent than the last time you agreed to the Agreement.



    Read this before proceeding

    Please read this warning and disclaimer before proceeding, it explains legal and regulatory restrictions applicable for the investment services we provide.

    Intended Audience

    The information contained herein is provided for informational purposes and should not be regarded as an offer, or solicitation of an offer, to buy or sell any investments or related services that may be referenced at

    This website is intended for professional clients and eligible counterparties exclusively. It is not intended for distribution to, or use by, any person in any jurisdiction, where such distribution or use where it is contrary to local law or regulation.

    No Tax or Legal Advice

    Nothing herein constitutes investment, legal, tax or other advice nor should it be relied upon in making an investment decision.

    Past Performance

    Past performance is not a guide to future performance. Stock markets and currency movements may cause the value of investments and income from them to fall as well as rise and investors may not get back the amount they originally invested.

    Where investments are made in unquoted securities or smaller companies, their potential volatility may increase the risk of return and the income from the investment.

    Money Laundering

    As a result of money laundering regulations and to prevent fraud, additional documentation for identification purposes may be required when you make your investment. This is fully disclosed in the relevant account documents.

    Investment Decisions

    As with all financial or investment matters, you should exercise care in using the provided information on this website or any other, or through links available from this website. You should research the facts, opinions and strategies mentioned in this website before making any financial investment decisions. If you are unsure about the meaning of any information provided, please consult your financial adviser or other professional adviser.

    Risk Avoidance & Fraud Prevention

    The Asquith Group has extensive controls to prevent client exposure to external fraudulent, dishonest or unscrupulous practices. Fraud prevention and research teams review each opportunity to identify irregularities, scams, or otherwise suspect aspects of these investments. The Company exhausts every professionally prudent approach to minimize risk, but cannot be held liable for broad market trends or shifts in the investment environment.

    No Warranty & Limitation on Liability

    While all reasonable care has been taken in the preparation of all relevant documentation, The Asquith Group cannot guarantee the accuracy or completeness of such information, either expressly or implied.

    Neither The Asquith Group , nor any of its directors, officers or employees, nor any third party vendor, will be liable or have any responsibility of any kind for any loss or damage that you incur in the event of any failure or interruption of this site, or resulting from the act or omission of any other party involved in making this site or the data contained therein available to you, or from any other cause relating to your access to, inability to access, or use of the site or these materials, whether or not the circumstances giving rise to such cause may have been within the control of The Asquith Group, or of any vendor providing software or services support.

    All information and content on this website is, subject to applicable statutes and regulations, furnished “as is”, without warranty of any kind, express or implied, including but not limited to implied warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose or non-infringement. We make no warranty as to the operation, functionality or availability of this website, that the website will be error-free or that defects will be corrected.



    The Process involved:

    1. Evaluate Your Risk Capacity Level

    Assess objectives, income targets, and time frame

    Draw up an Investment Policy Statement

    2. Evaluate Existing Investments

    Assess investments, review tax issues involved, and assets diversification

    3. Submit Portfolio Recommendations

    Joint-analyze proposed investments

    4. Institute Investment Adjustments

    Rearrange accounts

    5. Re-evaluate and Redistribute Portfolio

    Investment evaluation and market analysis