Today, You Have the Tools to Manage Your Own Money for Low-Cost

In the Old World, Before the Internet

Information about investment funds, fees, and performance was scarce and hard to find. In addition, buying shares in stocks was expensive.

 

K.C. Grainger, a veteran broker now based in Montreal, said the average commission in the late 1980s was $45 dollars.(Source: Business Insider)

Today, Thanks to the Internet, Information is at Your Fingertips

You can use Google Finance, Morningstar, and a dozen other sites to research potential investments.

 

And trading commissions have fallen to under $5 dollars at most brokerages. Robinhood, a new stock trading app, charges $0 dollars to execute a trade.

With Better Access to Information and Low-Transaction Costs, There is a Trade-Off

How do you know what information to trust and how do you guard yourself against bad investment behavior?

 

Most importantly, how can you set yourself up for investment success and ensure you have enough money for retirement?

First, lets invert the question

What Actions Can I Take to Ensure I Will not Have Enough Money in Retirement?

Don't Save

Don't put aside money for your investment account. Don't take advantage of your employer match or the tax benefits of a roth IRA.

Pay High Fees

You get what you pay for. Right? Morningstar did a study of which funds performed best over the long-run. The answer-Those with the lowest fees.  

Trade the News

Let the current headlines determine your investment strategy. The world is ending according to this or that market pundit? Sell, sell, sell.

In Order to Win in Retirement, You Need to do the Opposite of the Actions Above

 

Let's see how with the three-bucket strategy

(1) How toSave Money

These tools are great for helping you save money. Give them a look.

Digit

Every day, Digit tries to move some money from your checking account to your Digit account. Digit never transfers more than you can afford, so you don't have to worry about over-drafting your account. In fact, we have a no-overdraft guarantee.

 

Mint

Because Mint helps you watch/manage your money; Mint will also help you find savings along the way. We analyze thousands of checking, savings, credit card, brokerage, CD and IRA rollover offers—then make recommendations that could help save you the most based on your lifestyle and goals.

 

Good Budget

A budget tracker for the modern age. Say no more to carrying paper envelopes. This virtual budget program keeps you on track with family and friends with the time-tested envelope budgeting method.

 

(2) Low-CostWell Diversified

This could be your 401k, pension, IRA, or any type of retirement vehicle. It should be low-cost and well diversified.

Betterment

Our approach to long-term investing can help you earn 2.66% more per year than a typical investor. Our technology helps make this possible by lowering taxes, lowering fees, diversifying your portfolio, and enabling better investor behavior.

 

Wealthfront

Manage your risk

Your investments should reflect the risk you’re willing to take. We’ll create a diversified portfolio and keep it balanced for your risk tolerance.

Minimize your fees

They compound over time and eat into your returns. We choose low-cost investments and charge a low 0.25% annual advisory fee — a quarter of the industry average

 

Nerd Wallet

If you would like to hire a financial advisor, NerdWallet has a great guide on what you should look for and how to pick one.

 

(3) TakeRisks

This is money, not in your retirement account, that you can play with, speculate with.

Depending on your investing goals, this could be as little as 5% of your investment capital or up to 50% depending on your age and risk tolerance.

Morningstar

A great website to research potential investments. They offer research for stocks, bonds, mutual funds, and ETFs.

 

Angel List Syndicates

For accredited investors only.

Want to invest in startups? Now you can. Experienced angel investors will invest in companies that most people don't have access to on your behalf.

This is high risk investing, but also high reward. I recommend reading the book "Angel" by Jason Calacanis before you start this type of investing.

 

True Alpha

SAM's flagship newsletter. True Alpha is designed to capture trends within a 1-3 time frame.


We express our ideas through stocks and ETFs with specific targets designed to maximize our upside and limit our downside.