Yakezie Member Post: Robert from The College Investor Thumbnail

Hi!  I’m Robert, and I’m a recent MBA graduate who has always had a passion for investing and personal finance.

My Story

Since I can remember, I have had a passion for investing and all things related to personal finance.  Honestly, when I was about 13, I wanted to do my own taxes.  Yes, taxes.  But what I really liked about it was that I had even made income to pay taxes on.  I thought that was so cool.  Throughout my teens, I focused my attention on ways to make money.  I sold stuff on eBay, and took my earnings and saved and invested.  I made more money than I lost, and I was hooked.

I got to college, and I realized that most people were oblivious to investing and personal finance, but there was a small contingent that really found it interesting.  This group was investing and doing some crazy stuff (penny stocks, etc.) and it didn’t really suite me either.  So, I went my own direction with a mix of common sense personal finance and investing ideas.

It turns out, when I went to graduate school, this is what most of my peers were looking for.  Even though this was a class of MBA students, many people were unaware of the basics of personal finance and investing.  I’ve learned through my interactions with young adults that there is a fundamental lack of financial knowledge among 9 out of 10 individuals.  Most don’t know what a 401(k) is, or even about checking and savings accounts.  I worked in a fairly low income area for a while, and I would estimate that 50% of the employees didn’t even have a checking account.  On paydays, they would go to a check cashing place and pay 2% when they could have gotten a free checking account at a local bank or credit union.

All of these experiences have made me passionate about educating and sharing my knowledge and experiences with others, especially young adults who can build a solid foundation based on the financial choices they make today.

The College Investor Blog

I started this blog to showcase my common sense thoughts and ideas with younger adults.  At work and school, I heard some pretty scary advice, and I hope that I don’t become anything like that.  With this site, I want to be as transparent as possible with what I’m doing with my finances.  That is where student loan debt came in.  I have showcased my battle with my provider, and it has provided my readers with a lot of insight into the student loan market.  I also want to provide genuine and sincere thoughts and advice to individuals who may just be starting out.

If you have never had any type of financial education, investing can be a scary premise.  Not to mention all of the choices that come along with that basic premise.  Uncle Sam doesn’t make it easy for people to make the right choices.   The government has essentially incentivized the accumulation of debt while punishing those who save.  To highlight this, all you have to do is look at taxes.  The government taxes earnings on savings and investments, and while sometimes taxed at a lower rate, are taxed nonetheless.  However, the government also incentivizes debt by giving tax breaks on debt interest: mortgage interest, student loan interest, etc.  And then since the government knows that they do this, they give investors choices to save that “kind-of” avoid these taxes: IRAs, Defined Contribution Plans, Tax-Advantaged Savings Plans, etc.  But in the end, it can be pretty darn confusing…

My goal for the site is to provide the information that young adults need and want for their entire financial lives – savings, spending, debt, investing, etc.  I do love investing, and spend a lot of time discussing it, but I also spend a lot of time talking about debt and ways to get out quickly!  In order to save, you have to pay back what you spent.  I want to end this with the fact that I don’t consider myself some sort of investing “guru”, my ideas are not necessarily new, and my techniques aren’t secret.  I’m just looking to provide a one-stop shop for young adults, college students, and others who want financial information that relates to them.

Thanks!

- The College Investor

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