by Alexander Green, Investment U Chief Investment Strategist
Monday, February 6, 2012: Issue #1702
What if you could reach total financial independence in just four minutes a day?
If that sounds unrealistic, stay tuned. Because in the weeks ahead, our panel of experts at Investment U is going to show you exactly how it’s done. Best of all, it won’t cost you a dime. After all, this service is free.
It’s a shame, really, that the average person graduates from high school and still doesn’t truly understand compound interest, or adjustable-rate mortgages or what a 401(k) is. Far fewer still know how to navigate the world’s treacherous but lucrative financial markets.
Since financial literacy and advanced money management skills aren’t taught in school, many men and women follow a predictable path when it comes to investing.
First, realizing they don’t know enough to risk their saving without potentially making huge mistakes, they turn to a stockbroker, insurance agent or mutual fund salesman for advice.
Not good. Many people in the financial industry are peddling advice that is pedestrian, self-serving, far too expensive or all three. Expect to hear these folks tell you, for example, that full-load mutual funds, whole life insurance and high-cost variable annuities are the best things since night baseball.
After a few years, the typical customer realizes that he’s dealing not with a fiduciary but a salesman – and a primary reason he’s not doing well is that his broker is doing too well.
That’s when many investors make their next predictable move. They transfer their account to a discount broker like E-Trade or Charles Schwab.
And while a discounter is a whole lot cheaper than a full-service broker, it quickly becomes apparent that the customer isn’t a professional money manager himself and – truth be told – really doesn’t know that much about what he’s doing.
The typical discount customer ends up with a few winners and a few losers, but doesn’t know when to sell them or why. At the end of the year, he looks at his statement and sees he isn’t much closer to his financial goals – if, indeed, he ever took the time to set any.
This brings many investors (older, wiser and generally poorer) to the conclusion that they do need qualified help, just not from a salesman in a transaction-based relationship.
Eventually, hundreds of thousands of investors turn to Investment U, the free, Web-based source for men and women seeking to achieve and maintain total financial freedom.
We do something virtually no one else does. Investment U provides daily commentary and analysis about today’s fast-moving financial markets, but always with the objective of tying our advice to timeless investment principles.
Economies expand and contract. Currencies rise and fall. Governments come and go. Markets zig and zag. But proven investment principles don’t change.
Yet the sad fact is that most investors have never learned them. They’re trying to ace Trigonometry without having mastered Algebra 1. Why don’t you have the crucial knowledge you need? Because schools don’t teach it and telling the unvarnished truth isn’t conducive to selling high-priced financial products.
As Vanguard founder John Bogle likes to say, “It’s amazing how difficult it is for a man to understand something if he’s paid a small fortune not to understand it.”
We don’t have conflicts like that here. We don’t charge commissions or fees. We don’t want to “capture your assets.”
Yes, Investment U offers premium services to subscribers. (We couldn’t support a free e-letter forever if we didn’t.) But there is never any obligation to buy and any purchase comes with a free-trial period and a money-back guarantee.
So stick with us. In the weeks ahead, we are going to reveal big dividend plays, high-yield bonds, undervalued currencies, ultra-cheap commodities, risk-reduction techniques, and proven strategies to prevent losses, protect gains and navigate today’s volatile investment environment.
Best of all, we’re going to do all this with a single goal in mind: To show you the shortest, most direct route to total financial independence.
The only commitment it requires from you is four minutes a day. That’s how long it takes the average reader to finish our daily column.
The service is free. But the knowledge is priceless.