Want to Win $2,500 of Apple Stock?

I’m an Apple fanboy.

A few years ago I got my first Macbook Pro and I haven’t looked back.

If you were to visit the Rose household, you would see that the entire family is on the Apple bandwagon with 1 iMac, 2 Macbook Pro’s, 1 iPad, 3 mini iPads, 1 Time Capsule and iPhone’s galore.

Yeah, we love Apple.

When Nvestly, a new social investment platform, asked me to participate in a $2,500 Apple share giveaway to bring awareness to their recent launch I was totally onboard.

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The Simple Way to Find Out How Much Investing Risk You Can Stomach

Risk is everywhere.

All I have to do is turn on the news to be reminded of that.

I think it’s easy to go about our day-to-day lives and forget that bad things can happen – until suddenly they do.

Speeding down the highway. Smoking cigarettes (or anything else). Driving after one too many drinks. All of these are examples of risky behavior. Could you do it and be fine? Maybe. But each of these behaviors carries an element of risk of harm to yourself and others.

The sad truth is that risky behavior sometimes ends in tragedies – some worse than others.

And sometimes, we don’t even realize how much risk we’re taking until something unexpected happens that changes how we think about what we’re doing.

The truth is, whatever you do in this life carries a degree of risk.

But there’s another side to this coin.

The Simple Way to Find Out How Much Investing Risk You Can Stomach

Benjamin Franklin is credited with saying, “Nothing ventured, nothing gained!”

That’s true. I get up in the morning and work hard because I believe and hope that I can make a difference in the world. I take risks, just like you do – and that’s okay.
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Grow Your Dough Throwdown – It’s Almost Done! (October Update)

The Grow Your Dough Throwdown is almost over (sigh).

It’s been a fun challenge, and it’s been exciting to see how my different portfolios have held up.

**You can check out the original announcement post here. And here is the March update, May update, and the Midyear update.

What hasn’t been exciting is seeing the other personal finance bloggers that are kicking my butt.

Like, serious butt kicking.

Either way, it’s been fun, and I’m looking forward to announcing that the Grow Your Dough Throwdown 2.0 will be happening next year.

October Update

This one should be bigger and better, and I can’t wait to share the details. Until then, let’s take a look at how my portfolios are doing.
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The Right Time to Buy Stock Is…..

It never fails.

Anytime a new investor wants to get started investing, they always want to buy stock.

Always.

Doesn’t matter that they’ve never invested before.

Doesn’t matter that they have no idea what makes a good stock.

They just know that guys like Warren Buffet made a killing by buying stocks and they want to, too.

Even worse is when they want to buy a penny stock. >>>PLEASE<<<< don't do that.

If you think you're ready to buy some stock, watch this video first.

GF¢ 035: How to Invest a Million Dollars (without blowing it like a rockstar)

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They say you have a 1 in 10,000,000 chance of winning the lottery.

Well, today is my lucky day, because I just won – yeah baby!!

Okay….maybe I didn’t actually win.

We’re just going to pretend I did for the sake of this post.  :)

I once had a client ask me,

“Jeff, if you had a million dollars, how would you invest it?”

I’m not one who is usually into playing these games of pretend.

How to Invest a Million Dollars

Sure, as a kid, I loved to pretend that I was He-Man and that the big cardboard box in our basement was Castle Grayskull.  “I have the power!”  <<<He-man quote.  Fellas, don’t pretend like you don’t remember that! Haha….

But those days of “pretend” are long gone. That is, until today.

Today’s post is merely for the fun of it.

I’m pretending that I hit the jackpot and walked away with a cool mil.

For this pretend exercise, we’ll say that I’m netting a million dollars, and I have all of it to invest.

Just so we’re clear, this is not investment advice, so don’t take it as such.  And just in case that isn’t clear enough, read here.  You have been warned.
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Grow Your Dough Throwdown (Mid-Year Update)

It’s time for another Grow Your Dough Throwdown update.

We’ve reached the midway point, and the competition is definitely heating up. The Dow Jones shows no sign of letting go, hitting that phenomenal 17,000 mark.

Side note – isn’t that freaking crazy? It seems like yesterday that it was March of 2009 and the Dow Jones was at 6,500, and now we’ve hit 17,000? As my Filipino mom would say, “What the heck is that?”  I digress, I digress…..

For those of you who are new to the Grow Your Dough Throwdown, here’s a brief recap on what this Throwdown is all about:

I opened seven different accounts with seven different online brokers and investment sites, and deposited $1000 into each. The idea was to see how each would compare after a year’s worth of growth. To make it more exciting, I solicited several other personal finance blogging experts to join me in the fun.

Grow Your Dough Recap Mid Year

Each of them has opened up an account at an online investment site of their choice, and deposited $1,000. As a rule of state, we cannot deposit any more money throughout the year, but we can trade as much as we want. Since I opened up seven different accounts, I’m using only one account with my numbers compared to them. So how is it going? Let’s take a look.
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Grow Your Dough Update (May Update)

I am not a stock picker.

When I came up with the bright idea of starting the Grow Your Dough throw down, I had a haunting suspicion that I would lose.

Why, you ask? Because I absolutely suck at picking stocks. Yes, I’ve made a few good picks in my day, but many of those have been erased by all the horrible ones. Well, maybe not as bad as my penny stock fiasco, but still, my stock picking resume hasn’t been that good.

Grow Your Dough Recap

Unfortunately, that seems to have carried over into the Grow Your Dough throw down. In case this is the first time that you’ve caught wind of the Grow Your Dough throw down, you can read about how it came to be here.
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50 Experts Share Their First Investment Ever

“You don’t have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great.” ~ Zig Ziglar

To be good at anything, you have to first get started.  This applies to investing as well.

Before I made my first investment, I knew nothing about investing.   Heck, I really couldn’t even explain what a mutual fund was.

I shared this in GF¢ podcast Ep. 21 which reveals how clueless I was when it came to investing.

The biggest takeaway, though, is that I wouldn’t be where I am today with my investments had I not bitten the bullet and taken that first plunge.

In this roundup post, 50 investing experts share how they got started.

If you’re still on the fence on where to start, there are plenty of stories to nudge you in the right direction.  Be sure to join me in Operation: #investNOW and take the pledge to start investing in yourself.

first investments roundup
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How to Get Out of a Bad Annuity (without breaking the bank)

See if this situation sounds familiar…

I recently had a call from an individual who had left his job, and he needed to roll over his 401(k). Not having a financial advisor, he relied on the referral of a neighbor on who he should work with.

Without doing any more research, he met with the advisor, and the advisor recommended that he roll over his 401(k) into an IRA annuity (note: this isn’t an actual product, just a term for buying an annuity inside an IRA).

Upon learning more about the advisor, the individual felt uncomfortable working with him, and he began to wonder if the annuity was in his best interest, or the advisor’s. Wanting to know his options, he called me.

get out of annuity

When it comes to wanting to cash out or cancel an annuity, this might not be every situation, but it does bring up an interesting discussion: what it takes to get out of an annuity.

Before I start, I should make a point that there are many types of annuities: fixed, variable, indexed, immediate, etc. This post is to be more general in nature, so some or all of the information may or may not apply, depending on the type of annuity we’re talking about.
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Grow Your Dough Throwdown (March Update)

The Grow Your Dough Throw-Down is starting to heat up.

The later part of 2013, I challenged 15 other personal finance bloggers to see who could grow $1000 the most at the end of this year and named it the Grow Your Dough Throwdown.

Every blogger is giving me a month-by-month update, which I’m going to be tracking here on the blog.

Grow Your Dough Recap copy

Thus far, the throw-down has been pretty much what I would imagine it to be, smack-talking, showboating and a whole lot of action. If you recall, I went a little above and beyond the $1000 with one online broker.

I opened accounts with seven other online investing platforms. These were your traditional online brokerages, a few peer-to-peer lending companies and a few niche players. To make it even more fun, I gave my wife free reign to choose some stocks for one of those brokers, which was Scottrade.

You can read the original recap post here as well as my original stock picks here.

Let’s see how we’re doing.
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Why You Must Start Investing Now

This is a guest post to to help kick off Operation: #investNOW where I’m inspiring 1 million people to start investing in themselves. This post comes from Barbara Friedberg of BarbaraFriedbergPersonalFinance.com

Why you must start investing now

Never Before Told Personal Investing Story

When my husband and I were first married we were on an extremely tight budget. We relocated from Ohio for him to go to a very expensive graduate school, and I had no job!

Eventually, I got a job as a career counselor and student affairs administrator at San Diego State University.

His tuition was about 1/3 of my gross salary. Fortunately, we had some savings to help with expenses.

This story explains how we managed to invest on a small salary, and ultimately grew our initial investment over 6 times.

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