Books for someone who is not that interested

Discuss all general (i.e. non-personal) investing questions and issues, investing news, and theory.
Weston
Posts: 16
Joined: Wed Nov 06, 2013 12:53 pm
Location: South Florida

Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby Weston » Tue May 13, 2014 11:35 am

I've seen the list of suggested books on the forum and wiki and have read a few. However most seem to be coming from a presumption that the reader is really interested in the topic.

My daughter (early 20s) has just gotten her first full time job paying a reasonable salary. She really is not interested in the topic at all, but knows that she needs to learn a lot more since she will be moving out on her own and for the first time has to manage and invest her own money.

So, of the plethora of books that have been recommended, what book(s) would you give to a well educated young woman with little interest in investing and money management? I would like to give her two books. One focusing on investing and one focusing on money management/personal budgeting.

Again. A smart and extremely responsible young woman. She just doesn't give a damn about this stuff, although she knows she should.

Thanks

User avatar
linenfort
Posts: 1844
Joined: Sat Sep 22, 2007 9:22 am
Location: #96151D

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby linenfort » Tue May 13, 2014 11:41 am

Bill Schultheis' Coffeehouse Investor seems pretty short-attention-span friendly.
I mean, it's still covering the topic she's not interested in, but no getting around that.
RIP Paul Kangas. "Wishing you the best of goodbyes."

investor1
Posts: 1039
Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2012 8:15 pm

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby investor1 » Tue May 13, 2014 11:43 am

Maybe start with a video rather than a book since it can be completed faster. The Frontline doc would be a good way to get the point across about the importance of using low cost funds.

Then point her to the beginners guide on the wiki. If she develops an interest, maybe the "Guide To" books on the reading list.

anil686
Posts: 613
Joined: Thu May 08, 2014 12:33 pm

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby anil686 » Tue May 13, 2014 11:44 am

I like Bogle's The Little Book of Common Sense Investing - he covers why diversification and low costs are important - especially for a person (like me) who is also not interested but knows they must invest

Alex Frakt
Founder
Posts: 10723
Joined: Fri Feb 23, 2007 1:06 pm
Location: Chicago
Contact:

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby Alex Frakt » Tue May 13, 2014 11:59 am

Boglehead Michael LeBoeuf's The Millionaire in You: Ten Things You Need to Do Now to Have Money and Time to Enjoy It is the only thing I've ever gotten someone in the same situation to read. Perhaps because the investing stuff is wrapped in more general advice (that is at least as valuable as the investing stuff). It was published in 2002, but if the reader wants to follow up on the investing info, the current version of Bogle's Common Sense on Mutual Funds would be a good follow up.

Here's some excerpts from the amazon reviews:
If there is one book that is worth its weight in gold -- literally -- it's this book.

I have read many, many personal finance books, and this one is the most straightforward, concise guide to achieving financial success that I have ever read....

And LeBoeuf's Law is worth remembering: Invest your time actively and your money passively -- that is, put your money in index funds, and then work hard at finding what you want to do and making money while doing it.

This book is concise, straight forward, easy to understand and fun to read. It includes the very basics of becoming rich as well as a lot of very good real life examples. Also, it looks at wealth not only in terms of money but also in terms of quality of life.

... Some of the basic principles of success have been brought to the point in such a great way, that some of the well known self-help gurus use them in their programs quite often, I think.

This book should be required reading in college. Our world would be a better place if people focused on their priorities in life and resisted the constant seduction of wasting money.
Get it, read it, live it. You will not regret it!

Waba
Posts: 355
Joined: Wed Feb 26, 2014 9:19 pm

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby Waba » Tue May 13, 2014 12:26 pm

Suze Orman, Women and Money

From one of the reviews:
I never imagined in a million years I would pick up a book on personal
finance. I had an idea that investments and numbers were just too hard,
something I'd never understand. Reading Suze Orman's "Women & Money"
turned that notion on its head. Her warm, funny and no-nonsense book is
not only informative and empowering, it is also really enjoyable to
read. While she offers plenty of detailed and helpful financial advice,
the underlying theme throughout -and what really impacted me- is that
control of your financial destiny begins with you. How you treat your
money is an extension of how you treat yourself.


Because finishing the book is probably more important than the quality of the investment recommendations.

b4nash
Posts: 86
Joined: Wed Apr 11, 2012 11:20 am

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby b4nash » Tue May 13, 2014 12:38 pm

I Will Teach You To Be Rich by Ramit Sethi

I am a twenty-something and have read a ton of personal finance books and this is the one I recommend to my younger brothers. The tone is irreverent and entertaining, but the information is solid. Ramit emphasizes conscious spending, automating your saving, and index funds.
Last edited by b4nash on Tue May 13, 2014 12:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
CABob
Posts: 4246
Joined: Sun Feb 25, 2007 8:55 pm
Location: Southern California

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby CABob » Tue May 13, 2014 12:41 pm

I suggest one or more of the books by Eric Tyson.
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_c_ ... Caps%2C350
I have read Personal Finance for Dummies, Mutual Funds for Dummies, and Let's Get Real about Money. There is some duplication between the books but all were interesting and informative and very easy reads. I see that he has some specifically targeted toward younger folks that might be good.
Bob

Fallible
Posts: 5881
Joined: Fri Nov 27, 2009 4:44 pm
Contact:

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby Fallible » Tue May 13, 2014 12:51 pm

Weston wrote:... I would like to give her two books. One focusing on investing and one focusing on money management/personal budgeting. ...


John Bogle's The Little Book of Common Sense Investing, and Jane Bryant Quinn's Making the Most of Your Money Now.
Bogleheads® wiki | Investing Advice Inspired by Jack Bogle

steve_14
Posts: 1507
Joined: Wed Jun 20, 2012 12:05 am

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby steve_14 » Tue May 13, 2014 12:59 pm

b4nash wrote:I Will Teach You To Be Rich by Ramit Sethi

I am a twenty-something and have read a ton of personal finance books and this is the one I recommend to my younger brothers. The tone is irreverent and entertaining, but the information is solid. Ramit emphasizes conscious spending, automating your saving, and index funds.


Hands down the best book for a 20 something.

lowerleisureclass
Posts: 60
Joined: Thu Apr 24, 2014 3:05 pm

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby lowerleisureclass » Tue May 13, 2014 1:03 pm

If You Can by William Bernstein, free and only 16 pages long so she can read it in an hour. Clear, to the point, and a quick read.

Available free here:
http://efficientfrontier.com/ef/0adhoc/2books.htm
"At either end of the economic spectrum there lies a leisure class." -- Eric Beck, rock climber

User avatar
Nahum
Posts: 120
Joined: Tue Nov 29, 2011 1:33 pm
Location: New York

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby Nahum » Tue May 13, 2014 1:35 pm

I recommend Ramit's I Will Teach You How To Be Rich. He makes personal finance a little more "hip"

But you are probably the best teacher. If she isn't interested in her finances she will less be interested in any personal finance book you give her. Try to catch her interest, before she leaves to go on her own tell her your stories, tell her what you learned from this forum in your own words in a way she can understand in 1 hr chunks when your together. Or set her up with Roth IRA account put some money as a gift to start her off.

b4nash
Posts: 86
Joined: Wed Apr 11, 2012 11:20 am

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby b4nash » Tue May 13, 2014 1:42 pm

The Little Book of Common Sense Investing and If You Can are fine books, but not for someone not that interested. The Little Book is full of numbers and in my opinion, meant to convince those already investing actively to convert to passive investments. If You Can is dense and intimidating for beginners; it is peppered with investment terminology and assumes you know what they mean. Any book that mentions "taxable account" on the first page is not for beginners.

Templeton
Posts: 21
Joined: Sat Nov 16, 2013 8:16 am
Location: Manchester, United Kingdom

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby Templeton » Tue May 13, 2014 2:36 pm

The following three books are ones that I have found most accessible and likely fit the bill, in respect of what you are requesting. I have placed them in order of preference, given your daughter's age but all are very good, in my view:

'Millionaire Teacher: The Nine Rules of Wealth You Should Have Learned In School' by Andrew Hallam

http://www.amazon.com/Millionaire-Teach ... re+teacher

'Late Bloomer Millionaires' by Steve Schullo and Dan Robertson

http://www.amazon.com/Late-Bloomer-Mill ... ds=schullo

'The Elements of Investing: Easy Lessons For Every Investor' by Burton Malkiel and Charles Ellis

http://www.amazon.com/Elements-Investin ... y+investor

Although I haven't read it, the following seems to get a lot of positive reviews and the author often posts on this site. Despite the title, the contents appear to be relevant to other professionals, not just medics.

'The White Coat Investor: A Doctor's Guide to Personal Finance and Investing' by James Dahle, MD

http://www.amazon.com/White-Coat-Invest ... +investing

No harm in purchasing more than one and just letting her flick through to see which one appeals most to her. Ultimately, one can only lead a horse to water, etc., as I have discovered with my own son, so best of luck.

jimkinny
Posts: 1271
Joined: Sun Mar 14, 2010 1:51 pm

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby jimkinny » Tue May 13, 2014 2:42 pm

Boglehead Guide to Investing on Amazon

It only takes a couple hours to read, covers all the bases.

jim

User avatar
Toons
Posts: 11603
Joined: Fri Nov 21, 2008 10:20 am
Location: Hills of Tennessee

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby Toons » Tue May 13, 2014 2:44 pm

The Only Investment Guide You'll Ever Need-Andrew Tobias
At your local library :happy

"The Dow was under 1000 when the book came out in 1978"
"The basics never change. Live beneath your means, get off the debt treadmill, minimize your transaction costs, trust no one"

http://andrewtobias.com/column/the-only ... ever-need/

http://www.amazon.com/Only-Investment-G ... ap_title_1
"One does not accumulate but eliminate. It is not daily increase but daily decrease. The height of cultivation always runs to simplicity" –Bruce Lee

User avatar
bertilak
Posts: 5272
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2011 5:23 pm
Location: East of the Pecos, West of the Mississippi

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby bertilak » Tue May 13, 2014 2:53 pm

I'm surprised no one has mentioned Mike Piper's Investing Made Simple in 100 Pages or Less. Seems a perfect fit for what you are after.
Weston wrote:My daughter (early 20s) has just gotten her first full time job paying a reasonable salary. She really is not interested in the topic at all, but knows that she needs to learn a lot more since she will be moving out on her own and for the first time has to manage and invest her own money.

Note the "100 pages." It is an easy read and has the basics covered. It is not a complex instruction manual on exotic investments, but the point is, you don't really need any of that. Your daughter does not need to learn a lot more -- just some more. This book covers that without digressing into the deep theories or long anecdotal stories.

From Amazon's page:

Find all of the following explained in plain-English with no technical jargon:

  • Asset Allocation: What does it mean, why is it so important, and how should you determine your own?
  • How to Pick Mutual Funds: Learn how to maximize your likelihood of choosing a mutual fund with above-average performance.
  • Roth IRA vs. Traditional IRA vs. 401(k): What's the difference, and how

From a negative review...

    "Good for person who has no clue about investments."
Last edited by bertilak on Tue May 13, 2014 2:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.
I have a strong moral sense - by my standards. | -- Rex Stout

User avatar
HardKnocker
Posts: 2063
Joined: Mon Oct 06, 2008 11:55 am
Location: New Jersey USA

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby HardKnocker » Tue May 13, 2014 2:54 pm

When the student is ready the teacher will appear.

Don't waste your money buying books for someone who has no interest. If they were interested they could go to the library and get lots of books for free.

But...they are not interested.

Don't push a rock.

Image
“Gold gets dug out of the ground, then we melt it down, dig another hole, bury it again and pay people to stand around guarding it. It has no utility.”--Warren Buffett

overst33r
Posts: 103
Joined: Fri Jan 04, 2008 11:29 am

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby overst33r » Tue May 13, 2014 3:09 pm

I enjoyed The Richest Man in Babylon immensely.

It was very entertaining, and the principles are relevant today as they were since the dawn of mankind. This should spark some thirst for specifics applicable today.

Iorek
Posts: 833
Joined: Fri Mar 08, 2013 9:38 am

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby Iorek » Tue May 13, 2014 3:19 pm

lowerleisureclass wrote:If You Can by William Bernstein, free and only 16 pages long so she can read it in an hour. Clear, to the point, and a quick read.

Available free here:
http://efficientfrontier.com/ef/0adhoc/2books.htm



+1

On general personal finance, I've found Jane Bryant Quinn helpful (we had a book that did not need to be read cover to cover-- it covered various topics in short chapters). I think the CNN/money/personal finance 101 are helpful for various topics too.

sschullo
Posts: 2188
Joined: Sun Apr 01, 2007 8:25 am
Location: Rancho Mirage, CA
Contact:

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby sschullo » Tue May 13, 2014 3:23 pm

overst33r wrote:I enjoyed The Richest Man in Babylon immensely.

It was very entertaining, and the principles are relevant today as they were since the dawn of mankind. This should spark some thirst for specifics applicable today.


+1
Public School K-12 Educators: "Ask NOT what your annuity sales person can do for you, ask what you can do to be a Do-It-Yourselfer (DIY)."

User avatar
Ice-9
Posts: 1125
Joined: Wed Oct 15, 2008 12:40 pm
Location: Rockville, MD

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby Ice-9 » Tue May 13, 2014 4:11 pm

The Millionaire Next Door discusses the authors' study of millionaires, nailing home the point that most have what they have because they don't overspend. Generally an easy read, and even if your daughter were to tire of reading the details of the studies, the main point is made very early in the book.

My favorite investing book is Four Pillars of Investing by William Bernstein. He's a great writer, and this book was - per the introduction - a deliberate attempt to tell the story of a previous book The Intelligent Asset Allocator, but with less math and formulas for which friends had been telling him may have lost some readers. In particular, he tells the history of investing in an interesting way. The book is more than ten years old. He has a newer, shorter book called Investor's Manifesto that you might find appropriate as well. (I'm biased towards Four Pillars, however.)

User avatar
bertilak
Posts: 5272
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2011 5:23 pm
Location: East of the Pecos, West of the Mississippi

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby bertilak » Tue May 13, 2014 4:25 pm

overst33r wrote:I enjoyed The Richest Man in Babylon immensely.

It was very entertaining, and the principles are relevant today as they were since the dawn of mankind. This should spark some thirst for specifics applicable today.

So did I. It might even capture the interest (no pun intended!) of someone who cares little about investing.
I have a strong moral sense - by my standards. | -- Rex Stout

dharrythomas
Posts: 739
Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2007 4:46 pm

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby dharrythomas » Tue May 13, 2014 7:28 pm

The Automatic Millioniare

I also like many of the other books mentioned. This shows that it's hard because of the discipline :shock: required but not overly complicated. Make it automatic and worry about the rest of your life.

My daughter with no interest and my daughter in the Econ PhD program at Columbia both enjoyed it.

Good luck!

Harry

BigJohn
Posts: 1333
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 11:27 pm

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby BigJohn » Tue May 13, 2014 11:16 pm

lowerleisureclass wrote:If You Can by William Bernstein, free and only 16 pages long so she can read it in an hour. Clear, to the point, and a quick read.

Available free here:
http://efficientfrontier.com/ef/0adhoc/2books.htm


+2

Very short and an easy read but will give your daughter all the right info for a good start (save early, low cost matters, watch out for investment advisers, etc) . If she wants a Kindle version you can buy it for $0.99 on Amazon. I sent a copy to all my children, nieces and nephews a few weeks ago. My 20 something niece and daughter have read and asked a few questions about how to make good choices in their 401(k)/401(a) defined contribution plans at their new jobs.

HurdyGurdy
Posts: 1152
Joined: Wed May 09, 2012 10:21 pm

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby HurdyGurdy » Tue May 13, 2014 11:41 pm

investor1 wrote:Maybe start with a video rather than a book since it can be completed faster. The Frontline doc would be a good way to get the point across about the importance of using low cost funds.


Good choice to start a conversation! http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/retirement-gamble/

etarini
Posts: 615
Joined: Sun Jan 24, 2010 6:46 pm

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby etarini » Wed May 14, 2014 9:49 pm

Another vote for Bill Bernstein's If You Can - I bought it for myself and loved it - and I'm 64! Mike Piper's little investing book is also a favorite of mine (as is his Social Security book - and I have several SS books). You can find bigger books, but you won't find more value than these two.

Eric

User avatar
CyberBob
Posts: 3129
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 2:53 pm

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby CyberBob » Wed May 14, 2014 10:23 pm

lowerleisureclass wrote:If You Can by William Bernstein, free and only 16 pages long so she can read it in an hour. Clear, to the point, and a quick read.

Available free here:
http://efficientfrontier.com/ef/0adhoc/2books.htm


Bill Bernstein's book for millennials is an excellent and concise guide for someone without much interest in reading about investing.

But if Bernstein's 16 pages is still too much, read the Forbes article about the book: http://www.forbes.com/sites/johnwasik/2 ... plan-ever/

And if that's still too much read this excerpt:
  • Save 15 percent of your salary annually and put it into a 401(k), Individual Retirement Account, taxable account or all three.
  • Put equal amounts of that 15 percent in a) US Total Stock Market Index Fund, b) International Total Stock Market Index fund, and c) US Total Bond Market Index Fund.
  • Rebalance once a year to ensure that each fund contains equal amounts (one-third to each for those doing the brutal arithmetic).
And if that's too much, I guess it's lottery tickets from the convenience store down the block :D

Bob

CrossOverGuy
Posts: 227
Joined: Fri Apr 27, 2007 2:19 pm

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby CrossOverGuy » Wed May 14, 2014 10:51 pm

Jonathan Clements' "The Little Book of Main Street Money" - small book packed with great information on investing and other financial and life matters pertaining to personal finance

Another nod to Andrew Tobias' "The Only Investment Guide You'll Ever Need" - very funny book as well

Plus, Burton Malkiel's "The Random Walk Guide to Investing", a shortened and simplified, but still enjoyable and informative lite version of his classic "A Random Walk Down Wall Street".

hq38sq43
Posts: 402
Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2011 5:25 pm
Location: Bradenton FL

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby hq38sq43 » Thu May 15, 2014 11:30 am

Toons wrote:The Only Investment Guide You'll Ever Need-Andrew Tobias
At your local library :happy

"The Dow was under 1000 when the book came out in 1978"
"The basics never change. Live beneath your means, get off the debt treadmill, minimize your transaction costs, trust no one"

http://andrewtobias.com/column/the-only ... ever-need/

http://www.amazon.com/Only-Investment-G ... ap_title_1


Also my favorite for beginners. Easy, entertaining reading and lots of sound, useful advice.
Harry at Bradenton

User avatar
simplesimon
Posts: 2902
Joined: Mon Feb 25, 2008 8:53 pm
Location: Boston, MA

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby simplesimon » Thu May 15, 2014 11:39 am

I second (or fourth now I guess) Ramit Sethi's I Will Teach You To Be Rich.

A young coworker who just graduated college and started at my company asked me about personal finance and this is what I recommended to him.

fidelio
Posts: 217
Joined: Sun May 04, 2008 5:28 pm

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby fidelio » Fri May 16, 2014 3:26 am

thanx cyberbob, i emailed the forbes art. to my son (26) -- short and to the point (invest in a 3-fund port.!). i gave him bogle's common sense book but i don't think he ever read it. maybe now that he's making a little money ....

boomergeneration
Posts: 89
Joined: Tue Jan 08, 2013 2:41 pm

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby boomergeneration » Fri May 16, 2014 10:46 am

Another vote for The Only Investment Guide You'll Ever Need because it is informational and funny. Both my sons read it in their late teens and enjoyed it; neither had much interest in investing at the time.

User avatar
ginmqi
Posts: 228
Joined: Sat Feb 22, 2014 4:35 pm

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby ginmqi » Sat May 17, 2014 9:37 pm

Lots of good books. But maybe can start off with a nice multimedia presentation to whet her appetite.

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline ... nt-gamble/

This is actually what got me interested and learning/reading all about personal finance and retirement investing.

User avatar
bertilak
Posts: 5272
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2011 5:23 pm
Location: East of the Pecos, West of the Mississippi

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby bertilak » Sun May 18, 2014 6:23 pm

Toons wrote:The Only Investment Guide You'll Ever Need-Andrew Tobias...

I read that many years ago (early '80s?) and thought it was pretty good. Hadn't read it since so I decided to get the latest version for Kindle.

It is still a decent little book, but I found a few things odd.

  • He says one thing good about index funds is their low turnover but then goes on to say that equal-weighted indexes are better than cap-weighted. Doesn't he know equal weighting will generate a lot of turnover?
  • Similarly he says that randomly picked stocks will beat the S&P 500 but treats that as a free lunch (without actually saying so) by saying the extra return is enough to claim it as a better strategy than an S&P500 index fund. Doesn't he know that strategy generates a riskier portfolio by tilting (a lot!) toward smaller stocks?
  • He is a bit schizophrenic about stock picking. He says it can't really be done but then recommends Forbes and Barons as good places to get help in finding good stocks. This is also after warning that any news us peons can hear will be old news and already discounted in the stock prices. He also recommends magicformulainvesting.com, based on a book he wrote the forward to.
Kind of a mixed bag. Some good advice that conflicts with (I suspect) holdovers from earlier editions.
I have a strong moral sense - by my standards. | -- Rex Stout

pkcrafter
Posts: 11447
Joined: Sun Mar 04, 2007 12:19 pm
Location: CA
Contact:

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby pkcrafter » Sun May 18, 2014 6:41 pm

Books for someone who is not that interested


I think I can come up with one: "The Most Uninteresting Investment Book You've Ever Read"

Paul
When times are good, investors tend to forget about risk and focus on opportunity. When times are bad, investors tend to forget about opportunity and focus on risk.

User avatar
BL
Posts: 6783
Joined: Sun Mar 01, 2009 2:28 pm

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby BL » Sun May 18, 2014 6:52 pm

JuanZ wrote:
investor1 wrote:Maybe start with a video rather than a book since it can be completed faster. The Frontline doc would be a good way to get the point across about the importance of using low cost funds.


Good choice to start a conversation! http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/retirement-gamble/


+1
If they aren't interested they probably won't read anything you give them.

dl7848
Posts: 440
Joined: Tue Mar 25, 2014 12:46 am

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby dl7848 » Sun May 18, 2014 9:01 pm

BL wrote:
If they aren't interested they probably won't read anything you give them.


There's a business opportunity here. A comic book format would be a great boon for getting everyone, even the sluggards, to learn about the basic principles. I bet even old-timers would learn something new if material was presented in comic book format, because for the first time, they wouldn't be distracted by a lot of unnecessary details. The fact that any old-time Bogleheads with big egos would read it in the dark with a flashlight and not tell anyone about it is irrelevant.

rmark1
Posts: 356
Joined: Sat Jun 16, 2007 7:43 am

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby rmark1 » Sun May 18, 2014 9:06 pm

I'd suggest 'The Wealthy Barber', 3rd edition, by David Chilton. Pretty easy to read. Plus you can buy near new copies for about $1 online.

User avatar
packer16
Posts: 757
Joined: Sat Jan 04, 2014 2:28 pm

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby packer16 » Sun May 18, 2014 9:18 pm

An interesting idea Charles Ellis had was to give his kids an envelope with a letter on the basics of investing and when they were ready to learn about finances they could open it. The letter is in one of the recent versions of the AAII Journal. This provided a graceful way to provide advise without pushing it on them. I have 2 teen aged kids that have no interest either but there interest may increase once they have funds to invest.

Packer
Buy cheap and something good might happen

User avatar
Hondo
Posts: 195
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 3:41 pm

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby Hondo » Mon May 19, 2014 6:09 am

Link: http://www.aaii.com/journal/article/my-investment-letter-words-of-advice-for-my-grandchildren

packer16 wrote:An interesting idea Charles Ellis had was to give his kids an envelope with a letter on the basics of investing and when they were ready to learn about finances they could open it. The letter is in one of the recent versions of the AAII Journal. This provided a graceful way to provide advise without pushing it on them. I have 2 teen aged kids that have no interest either but there interest may increase once they have funds to invest. Packer

User avatar
BL
Posts: 6783
Joined: Sun Mar 01, 2009 2:28 pm

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby BL » Mon May 19, 2014 7:48 am

CyberBob wrote:
lowerleisureclass wrote:If You Can by William Bernstein, free and only 16 pages long so she can read it in an hour. Clear, to the point, and a quick read.

Available free here:
http://efficientfrontier.com/ef/0adhoc/2books.htm


Bill Bernstein's book for millennials is an excellent and concise guide for someone without much interest in reading about investing.

But if Bernstein's 16 pages is still too much, read the Forbes article about the book: http://www.forbes.com/sites/johnwasik/2 ... plan-ever/

And if that's still too much read this excerpt:
  • Save 15 percent of your salary annually and put it into a 401(k), Individual Retirement Account, taxable account or all three.
  • Put equal amounts of that 15 percent in a) US Total Stock Market Index Fund, b) International Total Stock Market Index fund, and c) US Total Bond Market Index Fund.
  • Rebalance once a year to ensure that each fund contains equal amounts (one-third to each for those doing the brutal arithmetic).
And if that's too much, I guess it's lottery tickets from the convenience store down the block :D

Bob


+1
There you go! 16 page book or an even shorter summary of a decent way to get started!

WageSlave
Posts: 56
Joined: Tue Jan 08, 2013 3:20 pm

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby WageSlave » Tue May 20, 2014 5:33 pm

CyberBob wrote:And if that's still too much read this excerpt:
  • Save 15 percent of your salary annually and put it into a 401(k), Individual Retirement Account, taxable account or all three.
  • Put equal amounts of that 15 percent in a) US Total Stock Market Index Fund, b) International Total Stock Market Index fund, and c) US Total Bond Market Index Fund.
  • Rebalance once a year to ensure that each fund contains equal amounts (one-third to each for those doing the brutal arithmetic).
And if that's too much, I guess it's lottery tickets from the convenience store down the block :D


This is along the lines of what I was thinking. If someone isn't interested, are they really going to read anything on the topic? I have a little personal experience with this: one, my aunt is nearing retirement age. She was asking me if I could recommend any books to help her make sense of her finances, and I suggested William Bernstein's The Four Pillars of Investing. In fact, I loaned her my copy! I personally find Bernstein's writing to be very "conversational", and easy-to-read, while not diluting the content. She said she couldn't make it through the book (although her husband did). Granted, she's in a different position than the OP's daughter, but I think there's some commonality in the mindset: they know they should be interested in this stuff, because it's important, but the material just doesn't float their boat.

All the statistics I've seen on savings rates of the average person in the USA suggest that the fundamental problem is living beyond one's means. Save 15% or more of your income, even in a mediocre fund, and you're still better off than the majority of the population.

It's easy for me to say all this now, as middle-aged guy with young kids... but I do remember being fresh out of college, and having real money for the first time. Hard not to go crazy, especially when all your friends are doing the same.
Second example is my wife. She too claims to be interested in the material, but when I start talking in any more than trivial detail, her eyes quickly gloss over. I've pushed her to read a book or two; one she made it through (grudgingly), and the second remains unfinished. She's flat out said, "I'm glad you're interested in this stuff!"

I agree with some of the other poster's comments in this thread on Bernstein's latest short free e-book. I consider the material to be "old news" for myself, but I still read it. While I'm a huge fan of Bernstein's writing, my initial reaction was, "This is intended as an introduction? No way financial newbies are going to understand half the words here." But to be fair, most technical books start out by introducing terms, which, unless you're naturally interested in the material, is just boring. It's a problem that comes with any area of study that has its own lingo.

In short, in my experience, when it comes to personal finance, people want to do the right thing, but are unwilling to invest the time to understand what the right thing is. Like so many things, they want a turnkey solution... and that's why there are so many bad deals out there, not just in finance. As with most purchased solutions (financial or otherwise), going in with a little knowledge can greatly improve your chances of not getting fleeced.

For someone just starting out in his or her career, I'd further simplify the above instructions:
  • Maximize any employer matching on 401(k) or similar plan.
  • Eliminate all debt as soon as possible.
  • Save up six months or more of living expenses.
  • Max out 401(k) and/or Traditional or Roth IRAs.

Expanding on those ideas a bit:
  • For 401(k) or similar plan: anyone who doesn't take full advantage of an employer match is basically voluntarily lowering their pay. Where to funnel this money? Easiest is to just pick a target retirement fund. Sometimes these are good (e.g. Vanguard), sometimes they suck, but even if they suck, the employer match probably outweighs the suckiness. Additionally, if the employer offers Vanguard funds in the 401(k) or equivalent, assume they are good and max out contributions to the IRS limit. There are probably other good target retirement funds we could add to the "turnkey short list" that meets BH standards.
  • Debt elimination: some debt can arguably be called "good" debt, e.g. fixed-rate home mortgage or low-interest student loans. But someone fresh out of school is unlikely to be buying a house, and in the interest of simplicity, we'll just say, pay off all debt as early as possible. If someone gets used to living well below their means to eliminate debt, then it will feel "natural" to divert the money once used for debt paydown into savings.
  • Emergency fund: I consider debt an emergency, so debt paydown comes first. People often go into debt because of emergencies, so why not avoid the vicious cycle, eliminate debt first, then save up six or more months of living expenses. I'd even say open up a second account that you "forget" about, so as to avoid the temptation to tap into that money for "wants" rather than true emergencies.
  • Max out Traditional or Roth IRA to IRS limit. I've seen this debated which is better, so whoever relays these rules can choose TIRA or Roth. :) Outside the confines of the company defined-contribution plan, one is free to use any fund provider. Vanguard is turnkey. Just pour all the money into a target retirement fund. But, a little math is required here: after debts are paid down, at least 15% of gross income should be going to retirement, either via defined-contribution, TIRA, Roth, or some combination of those.

Obviously, the more understanding one has, and the more "hands on" they're willing to be with that knowledge, the better their long-term result... but to me, I think of the Vanguard Target Retirement funds as "you could do a little better, but a lot worse." They are turnkey; you sacrifice a little extra ER and/or self-tailored optimization for something that is as low-maintenance, low-knowledge as possible.

I also added the emphasis on getting out of debt and, by implication, avoiding it in the future. For the person who isn't interested in finance (of which debt is a huge component), the answer is simple: avoid it. It's step one in a lifestyle of living below one's means. I would go on to say: "You can't even take out a loan for a house until you are willing to learn about and understand the basics of finance. Otherwise, save up to buy the house outright."

Call_Me_Op
Posts: 6451
Joined: Mon Sep 07, 2009 2:57 pm
Location: Milky Way

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby Call_Me_Op » Wed May 21, 2014 10:24 am

linenfort wrote:Bill Schultheis' Coffeehouse Investor seems pretty short-attention-span friendly.
I mean, it's still covering the topic she's not interested in, but no getting around that.


I'm not sure why so many like that book. I bought it because I liked the name (I like coffeehouses) but didn't find it a good read. It certainly is an easy read, but I much prefer Mike Piper's short "Investing Made Simple" ebook.
Best regards, -Op | | "In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity." Einstein

leehamster
Posts: 21
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 1:43 pm

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby leehamster » Wed May 21, 2014 6:26 pm

rmark1 wrote:I'd suggest 'The Wealthy Barber', 3rd edition, by David Chilton. Pretty easy to read. Plus you can buy near new copies for about $1 online.


I've given this book to recent graduates before, and I think it was well received. It's got the basics: save more than spend, invest regularly and automatically, make hay while the sun shines.

Tobias' "Only Investment Guide" is pretty entertaining and relatively encyclopedic in a small volume, if she could use a reference to have on the shelf.

rec7
Posts: 1993
Joined: Tue Oct 28, 2008 7:22 pm
Location: ST LOUIS

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby rec7 » Thu May 22, 2014 12:41 am

I loved Stop Acting Rich by Thomas J. Stanley

dl7848
Posts: 440
Joined: Tue Mar 25, 2014 12:46 am

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby dl7848 » Thu May 22, 2014 3:23 pm

All right, another business opportunity...

Bogle Flakes! Or Bogle Krispies! Or Bogle Puffs!

On the back of the cereal box would be printed the principles of Boglehead investing. Maybe with colorful drawings.

A nice way to start the day. :)

I've learned more about (unfortunately) trivial things, by reading the backs of cereal boxes. It's the "capitive audience" principle. People can't resist reading the backs of cereal boxes.

User avatar
ginmqi
Posts: 228
Joined: Sat Feb 22, 2014 4:35 pm

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby ginmqi » Thu May 22, 2014 3:34 pm

Seriously, sounds like she is a person who would enjoy a well done documentary film.

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline ... nt-gamble/

Highly recommended. Book is probably bit too dry to start off, email her that link!

User avatar
abuss368
Posts: 11228
Joined: Mon Aug 03, 2009 2:33 pm
Location: Where the water is warm, the drinks are cold, and I don't know the names of the players!

Re: Books for someone who is not that interested

Postby abuss368 » Thu May 22, 2014 4:07 pm

I always vote for these two excellent and very easy to digest and understand books:

1) Jack Bogle - The Little Book of Common Sense Investing

2) John Brennan (Jack Bogle's successor) - Plain Talk on Investing
John C. Bogle: "You simply do not need to put your money into 8 different mutual funds!" | | Disclosure: Three Fund Portfolio + U.S. & International REITs


Return to “Investing - Theory, News & General”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: aceoperations, gfmels, laserquest, Rubric, selters, TF Hutch and 18 guests