July 2012

Study reveals that world's super-rich might have about $21 trillion in offshore accounts

That is actually about as much as the GDP of Japan and the United States put together!

There is more to the beaches in the Cayman Islands than their beauty, which draws the wealthiest individuals on this planet to them. The astounding size of the offshore accounts is pretty significant since it could have a big impact on the current levels of global poverty.

All of this data is pretty reliable as it comes from quite a reputable source which is none other than the chief economist of the management consultancy giant McKinsey. James Henry is this chief economist and his research points to big names in the investment banking world such as Goldman Sachs, Credit Suisse and UBS having assisted in the funds being moved offshore and managed well.

Hot stock news this week

It seems that giant stocks like Wal-Mart are the way to go.

It's been awhile and now I think I have all the education and stock market introduction covered. So it is time to talk about the latest stock news. Right now, it seems that mega-cap stocks are the best performers. I already had a post in the retirement talk blog where I stressed how important it was to have these stocks in an investment portfolio.

There was a New York Times article that investors should look through to get a better idea of how stocks have been performing lately in the United States. It stresses that the European debt crisis that has become such a common new story in financial circles has made the American mega cap stocks a safer bet for a better return as well.

The world of private equity

Insights from an informational interview I recently did with a private equity veteran

I was able to get some serious insights into the world of private equity and how to break in. I am going to be very generous and share these insights with you in this Investment Talk post. I really felt that it would help to get some good education on what private equity is and who really works in the industry.

I will mostly cover the structure of private equity firms and their role in the investment environment. If you aspire to break into private equity and have been actively reading my other blogs on networking and getting your dream job, then post a comment below for me to cover resumes and private equity interviews. But still, if you’re looking for a way to get the plum jobs in private equity, head over to the Minneapolis Job Market where you can get more information about online job listings for the industry.

Helping out with Student Loans

Using Your Money for a Good Cause

If you're like me, you're a tad skeptical of  Tim Ferriss. Could it be that we're jealous? After all, he's barely 35 years old and speaks five languages, holds a degree from Princeton, and has made tons of money as an Internet entrepreneur. His lifestyle book The Four Hour Work Week raked in millions, as did his diet book The Four Hour Body. (Perhaps even more irritating is the fact that while doctors have called Ferriss a fitness fraud because of the methods in The Four Hour Body, yours truly knows several people who have actually lost weight and kept it off using Ferriss' book.) 

Although this author finds Ferriss to be a tad dubious, I do read his blog regularly. Why? Because Ferriss has a winning attitude towards business, money, and life. There is no whining in any form in his posts. Want to get fit? Cool. Pick up a kettlebell and get swinging. Want to talk to a celebrity? Nice. E-mail said famous person and start a conversation. Ferriss' outlook is always simple: find ways to get the job done, be persistent, and stay positive. Not only that, Ferriss champions several important causes, using his own money to give back and inspiring others to do the same. 

Ferriss' newest cause is one that all of us should be participating in. His most recent blog post asks readers to part with a little cash -- temporarily --  to send kids in developing nations to school. What do I mean by temporarily? I mean that your money is given in the form of a loan, not a donation. By partnering with Vittana, an organization with 99.8% repayment rate, your cash takes the form of a helping hand, not a handout. That's right. Unless you prefer to make a donation, your money comes back to you when the loan is repayed. Either way, you're supporting a great cause by sending a kid to school. You can even choose which student you prefer to fund.

Reviewing your budget

This is something that you should do a couple times a year.

Reviewing your budget is something that everyone should do at least once or twice each year. We are halfway through this year, and if you have not reviewed yours recently, now is a good time to do this.

If you do not have a budget, maybe now is the time to make one. Living on a budget offers many rewards. People that have budgets and stick with them are able to pay their bills on time and they generally save more money. One of the reasons for this is because they budget their savings into their weekly or monthly list. 

Use coupons to clear debt

When you are trying to get out of debt, every little bit of money that you are able to put toward paying off loans can really help.  So do not be too quick to laugh when I say to you that regular use of coupons while shopping can be just the thing to quicken the rate of which you are able to pay off your debt.  It is after all, the simplest way for you to save some money every single week.

How to get the maximum enhancement from your business school experience

Hit the ground running.

If I am to summarize what to expect as you read this article, it would be the following: This article will help you to get your life organized by the time the first day of class comes around. Class work and academics are great, but b-school is all about socializing and networking.

I know this is the money fest blog and instead of continuing to talk about ways to make money and businesses to start, I wanted to talk about something that a lot of entrepreneurs, people in finance and consulting and others could relate to and that is business school.

Stuff like getting a new bank account and taking a walk around the campus to get acquainted with the facilities should be a breeze. The real issue is the time management to make sure you get your school work done well. The main thing I’ve learned is to make sure that you select your study group judiciously. Not only will a great study group improve your b-school experience and grades, they also become your future contacts that will open doors for you.

How to get a leg up in educating yourself on finance and investments

Book suggestions for you to pick up and read.

Sometimes, the best way to actually learn something is to go out and get the book and read it from cover to cover. If you have been visiting this blog for some time now, chances are you are passionate about investing. So go ahead and educate yourself in finance and investments.

The first time I ever read anything finance related was back in high school when I happened to be given Reuben Advani’s The Wall Street MBA as a gift. There are other books too that you can either just read the chapters you want to master or read cover to cover. But I will recommend you to pick one book and read it cover to cover. Invest in yourself and try to enhance your knowledge of finance and investments.

Roadside assistance insurance options

Look into getting this option added to your auto insurance policy.

If you look at your insurance policy, you will be able to tell if you have roadside assistance coverage. It may be called something different than this, but it is worth having.

Roadside assistance is something you can add to your policy and it may not cost you much at all. I recently purchased a second vehicle and was driving it for the first time to a place around 45 minutes away. The day was very hot and the car overheated. I was stranded.