The Power Of Compounding For Building Greater Wealth

by in Personal Finance on Jan 26th, 2015

“Compound interest is the eighth wonder of the world. He who understands it, earns it … he who doesn’t … pays it.

Compound interest is the most powerful force in the universe.

Compound interest is the greatest mathematical discovery of all time.”

~Albert Einstein (source: quotesonfinance website)

I’ve been amazed at the power of compounding ever since my mom explained the Rule of 72 to me many years ago. This simple exercise shows how long it will take for your money to double at a particular interest rate. Divide the expected interest rate into 72 and you have an approximation of how long it will take for your investment to double at the given interest rate. For example, if your projected return is 9 percent, then you divide 9 into 72 and the result is 8. According to the rule of 72, it will take approximately 8 years for your money to double at a 9 percent interest rate.

More recently – as I see the traditional retirement age coming into view- I’m doing some portfolio analysis to assess our financial picture now and into the future. One of the thing that amazes me is a particular TIAA CREF retirement account I contributed to decades ago when I worked at San Diego State University. I contributed to this account during my ten years of employment and invested 75 percent of my allocation in a diversified stock fund and 25 percent in a fixed option. After those ten years were up, I never contributed again nor did I change the asset allocation.

Several decades later, the account value has increased 6 times. That means if I invested $35,000 during those ten years, that account would be worth $210,000 today. It still amazes me as I write this article how a mere $300 or so dollars per month invested conservatively for ten years grew to a respectable sum. When calculating the annual average rate of return on that account, it was approximately 6.75 percent. This is a very attainable rate of return. Read More

Should You Consider A Career In Investment Banking?

by in Personal Finance on Dec 28th, 2014

New year, new career?

If words such as takeover, IPOs, financial modeling, research, and bridge loans are some of your favorite conversation topics, you might want to consider investment banking as a career option. The same goes if MSNBC and Bloomberg TV are your go-to channels, and you have an addiction watching the red and green flashing lights of tickers go up and down all day long.

Investments banks have played a major role in M&A, underwriting, and raising money for the corporate world. Although investment banking has lost a lot of its pre 2008 luster, it is still difficult to get a job in this notoriously competitive and demanding industry. But at the same time, it is still a lucrative career choice for its most disciplined players. If you want to emerge as a winner in this field, familiarize yourself with the below:

Who Will Offer You An Entry-Level Role In Investment Banking?

If you wish to be a part of this industry that is constantly involved in shaping the destiny of major corporate houses, you have options to join one of the following:

  • Bulge bracket firms consisting of the top investment banks like JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley.
  • Regionally oriented IBs or ones located in the middle market like Jefferies, Lazard or Greenhill.
  • Boutiques or specialized firms oriented towards a specific industry vertical – ex. program trading, bond-trading, technical analysis, or M&A advisory.
  • Merger and Acquisition wing of a large company, like General Electric, as an in house staff member who evaluates strategies for inorganic growth

How Do You Get Into Investment Banking? Read More

The 2015 Savings Challenge

by in Personal Finance on Dec 16th, 2014

Last week, Graham from Moneystepper launched the Moneystepper 2015 Savings Challenge where anyone, from anywhere in the world, in whatever financial situation they may be in, is invited to come together and work as a community to accelerate their journey on the path to financial freedom.

To keep things succinct, the key points of the challenge can be summarized as follows:

  1. Everyone strives towards the same two goals. These goals are designed to be appropriate for EVERYONE. They are:
    1. % Increase In Net Wealth
    2. Savings Rate %

These percentages have been designed to be appropriate (and comparable) for everyone: from people paying down mountains of debt to multi-millionaires.

  1. Each participant submits their two percentages before the start of the year, and their progress against their goals each month.
  2. The results are released monthly and everyone will be “grouped” with people who are of a similar net wealth (although participants’ net wealth will never be published) and who have similar goals.

Simple enough, right? But, hugely powerful – believe me! Read More

Four Important Hardware Peripherals for Your Mobile POS

by in Personal Finance on Nov 4th, 2014

So you’ve decided that a mobile Point of Sale system will work better for your small business. You already have your iPad (or other tablet) and have picked out the ecommerce software provider you are planning on using. But now you need to figure out which hardware add-ons you need. Unlike the older, cumbersome cash register terminal systems you are used to seeing, a mobile system provides an unprecedented level of mobility and flexibility.

You can use just the tablet and a cash drawer or you can outfit your system with all the hardware peripherals you’d expect to see with a regular register terminal. But what are the peripherals you should definitely get your hands on? Truthfully, that depends on your personal desires and the type of business you are running. However, there are some items that could be considered absolute necessities in any situation. Read More

How to Use Coupons to Cut Down on Medical Bills

by in Personal Finance on Sep 30th, 2014

Whether you’re seeing the doctor for some allergy relief or even the common cold or you need some lab tests done, you would be surprised at how medical bills can get so expensive. Fortunately, there are a number of ways that you can reduce your healthcare costs. If you’re a coupon clipper or the type who doesn’t mind the extra effort in finding a good price on the products you buy, then you will be glad to know that one of the best ways to cut down on your medical bills is to use coupons.

Now, there are many pharmaceutical companies that have made it one of their direct-to-consumer marketing tactics to offer free trial periods or coupons for their best-selling drugs. While there is some debate that surrounds the use of drugstore coupons, there are healthcare advocates who encourage consumers to take advantage of these money-savers for drugs that are marketed directly to consumers. Supporters also argue that drug coupons make medications affordable for patients with medical conditions that cannot be treated by generic or non-prescription drugs.

Free Trial Periods

Read More

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