Mike Piper

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Mike Piper, aka Oblivious Investor

Mike Piper: Mike is the author of several personal finance books as well as the popular blog ObliviousInvestor.com. He is a Colorado licensed CPA. Mike’s writing has been featured in many places, including The Wall Street Journal, Money Magazine, Forbes, MarketWatch, and Morningstar. Mike lives with his wife in Manitou Springs, Colorado, where they enjoy hiking and rock climbing.


  • Accounting Made Simple: Explained in 100 Pages or Less ISBN 978-0981454221
  • Taxes Made Simple: Income Taxes Explained in 100 Pages or Less ISBN 978-0981454214
  • Independent Contractor, Sole Proprietor, and LLC Taxes Explained in 100 Pages or Less ISBN 978-0981454269
  • LLC vs. S-Corp vs. C-Corp Explained in 100 Pages or Less ISBN 978-0981454276
  • Investing Made Simple: Index Fund Investing and ETF Investing Exlained in 100 Pages or Less ISBN 978-0981454245
  • Can I Retire? How Much Money You Need to Retire and How to Manage Your Retirement Savings: Explained in 100 Pages or Less ISBN 978-0981454252
  • Social Security Made Simple: Social Security Retirement Benefits and Related Planning Topics Explained in 100 Pages or Less ISBN 978-0981454283
  • Microeconomics Made Simple: Basic Microeconomic Principles, Explained in 100 Pages or Less (coauthored with Austin Frakt, PhD) ISBN 978-0981454290
  • Oblivious Investing: Building Wealth by Ignoring the Noise ISBN 978-0981454238 [Now out of print.]

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Mike Piper - Oblivious Investor

A few readers have asked what I think about the recent announcement that Vanguard will be increasing the international allocation in the Target Retirement and LifeStrategy funds. (In case you missed the announcement: The international equity allocation will increase from 30% to 40%, and the international bond allocation will increase from 20% of nominal fixed-income […]
For several months now, Schwab has been promoting their upcoming “Intelligent Portfolios” platform, which will offer automated rebalancing and tax-loss harvesting of a portfolio of ETFs. The big selling point is that there is no fee for the service, aside from the cost of the funds held in the portfolio. Frankly, an automatically rebalanced portfolio of Schwab’s super low-cost […]
When I recently asked for suggestions of specific estate-planning-related topics to write about, one thing that immediately became clear is that many people aren’t entirely sure what estate planning is — and whether it’s something they should be thinking about. To put it bluntly, estate planning is planning for your incapacitation or death — choosing, for example, […]
There are many personal finance rules of thumb that can be helpful when developing a rough-draft retirement plan. However, as Darrow Kirkpatrick and Christine Benz remind us this week, following a given rule of thumb may not be the best approach. Kirkpatrick addresses the question of how much to spend per year, while Benz looks at which account(s) […]
A reader writes in, asking: “I heard on the radio recently that Obama will be changing IRA rules so that Roth IRAs will require RMDs and so there will be a limit on IRA account size. Do you think this has a big effect on the decision of which type of account to contribute to?” To […]

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