Savings accounts & investment accounts – what’s the right balance?

Bad things happen. Best be prepared.

emergencyfund

I have lived most of my life on financial edge. First it was school, then it was contract jobs. There was never a moment of financial stability until about 2 years ago when I transitioned into full-time employment.

In that time between steady job and what felt like drifting, I was a hoarder. I’d save as much as my pay check as I could and stick it in a savings account, watching it grow a measly 0.5% at the time (this is pre-discovery of Tangerine and EQ Bank). My savings allocations were basically 100% emergency fund, 0% investments.

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Lesson: We don’t all understand the meaning of the “F” word.

I had an interesting conversation with a colleague of mine a few weeks ago. I overheard two of them talking about Skechers walking shoes and I couldn’t help but chime in as a brand advocate (they are, by the way, simply the best walking shoe I’ve ever owned).

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When Index Investing, I Skip the TSX

Canada is great. Its major stock market index is not.

canadian flag.jpg
A diverse nation with an undiversified index.

Passive investing is in, active investing is out. The literature is all there, frequently citing how a passive fund tracking the major international indices will frequently outperform actively managed mutual funds. Those passive index funds also have lower management fees, to boot.

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Got plans for retirement? Don’t wait till 65.

hospital

My girlfriend’s parents are lovely people. They did everything right. They worked hard, raised a wonderful family, and saved and invested diligently. They met all of their financial goals, having saved enough to retire, send their kids off to their own lives, and travel the world.

Then the worst news imaginable happened.

Continue reading “Got plans for retirement? Don’t wait till 65.”

Even though I have a pension, I still buy bonds.

Bonds are boring and safe. Boring and safe can be good.

bonds-screen-918x516
The boring but essential investment.

I’m pretty freaking lucky to be part of defined benefit pension plan, one of those things that used to exist much more broadly 30 years ago.

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How do the rich actually get richer?

(And why I want to retire early).

2054

When I started my new job, I got a pension letter that read:

“Congratulations, you are eligible to retire in 2054.”

I looked that number.

“2054?” I’d have to wait 37 years to drop the mic and walk away from work? (More like amble, because I’d be old.)

Continue reading “How do the rich actually get richer?”