Mike Piper

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Mike Piper, aka Oblivious Investor

Mike Piper: I’m a fairly young fellow (28), married, living in St. Louis. Prior to becoming a full-time personal finance writer, I worked as a financial advisor (for Edward Jones) and as a tax accountant for a large real estate company in Chicago.

I now make a living writing a series of books that’s somewhat akin to Cliffs Notes for personal finance topics.


  • Accounting Made Simple: Explained in 100 Pages or Less ISBN 978-0981454221
  • Oblivious Investing: Building Wealth by Ignoring the Noise ISBN 978-0981454238
  • Taxes Made Simple: Income Taxes Explained in 100 Pages or Less ISBN 978-0981454214
  • Surprisingly Simple: Independent Contractor, Sole Proprietor, and LLC Taxes Explained in 100 Pages or Less ISBN 978-0615158433
  • Surprisingly Simple: LLC vs. S-Corp vs. C-Corp Explained in 100 Pages or Less ISBN 978-0615158433
  • 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

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Mike Piper - Oblivious Investor

This week, author/advisor Larry Swedroe provided an excellent answer to a question I see from time to time: Should we fear a stock crash as a result of baby boomers retiring and selling off their shares? Swedroe writes: “We’ll begin by pointing out that only unexpected events have an impact on stock prices. And if anything […]
A reader writes in, asking: “I’m trying to find more info on ACA premium subsidies. Specifically, I want to understand which year’s MAGI [modified adjusted gross income] is used. For example, would a person’s health insurance premiums for 2015 be determined based upon his 2014 MAGI or 2013 MAGI, etc.?” The premium tax credit (i.e., […]
One question readers ask from time to time is how many Vanguard index funds manage to trail their index by an amount less than the fund’s expense ratio. To some extent, the answer is pure randomness. An index fund doesn’t typically hold every security in the index, in exactly the designated proportion, at every moment […]
I’ve been getting a lot of questions about the Treasury Department’s recent release of final regulations that create a new type of annuity in the tax law: “Qualifying Longevity Annuity Contracts” (QLACs). To explain, we first need to back up a step. This isn’t really a new type of annuity. This is simply a new tax treatment […]
This week, I especially enjoyed a MarketWatch article from Mitchell Tuchman pointing out a number of errors investors often make. This little gem stood out to me in particular: “Your long-term investments shouldn’t be allocated in a way that pressures you to review them constantly. That’s not investing. It’s a slow-motion form of panic.” 5 […]

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