Money Magazine is bad for me

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stemikger
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Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by stemikger » Sun Mar 25, 2012 8:18 am

I just realized that every time I read my monthly subscription of Money Magazine, depending on what I read in that particular issue, I start thinking about changing my plan, or adding to it and basically not staying the course.

This also happens with other noise and even sometimes on this site (but not as much). I also sometimes get depressed becasue when I read articles about other regular folks that have so much more saved, I feel like I am behind.

I just came to the conclusion with my personality type, I am better off keeping my head in the sand and like the great Mr. Bogle has said don't just do something stand there.

Does anybody else have this problem with reading too many money and investing related materials.

I just have to keep saying to myself:

The enemy of a good plan is the dream of a perfect one.
Choose Simplicity ~ Stay the Course!! ~ Press on Regardless!!!

livesoft
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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by livesoft » Sun Mar 25, 2012 8:22 am

I will save you some trouble and write the next 12 issues of Money magazine for you to read today:

April - How to Save Money on your Taxes
May - The Top 10 Investments for RIGHT NOW!
June - How to Save Money on your Taxes
July - The Top 10 Investments for RIGHT NOW!
August - How to Save Money on your Taxes
September - The Top 10 Investments for RIGHT NOW!
October - How to Save Money on your Taxes
November - The Top 10 Investments for RIGHT NOW!
December - How to Save Money on your Taxes
January - The Top 10 Investments for RIGHT NOW!
February - How to Save Money on your Taxes
March - The Top 10 Investments for RIGHT NOW!
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VictoriaF
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Shortcuts to trustworthy information

Post by VictoriaF » Sun Mar 25, 2012 8:31 am

stemikger wrote:Does anybody else have this problem with reading too many money and investing related materials.


I think most people have this problem to some extent, but it is not necessarily a problem. When new legitimate information becomes available, it would be foolish not to act on it. Unfortunately, there is no good way to screen legitimate, useful-to-you, information from all other information, and so you develop custom algorithms and shortcuts.

One shortcut is to read only trustworthy sources and actively avoid other sources. I have not read Money Magazine in several years, but I don't think everything there is useless. If you can discipline yourself, start with the table of contents and only open the articles written by people you respect, e.g., Jason Zweig, Bill Bernstein, etc.

Victoria
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SpringMan
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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by SpringMan » Sun Mar 25, 2012 9:23 am

Same thing can be said about listening to CNBC. I fiddled with my bond allocation tilting away from treasuries and more toward corporates based on what the so called experts were saying. I felt vindicated when Mr. Bogle said much the same in his latest interview.
Best Wishes, SpringMan

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by The Wizard » Sun Mar 25, 2012 9:29 am

I read Money magazine, along with certain other financial publications, from time to time. But a good part of the time, I'll end up saying Phooey! to something I've just read.
(In my public library, I say it very softly...)
Nonetheless, new stuff like TIPS and Roth IRAs happen every few decades and IRS changes happen even more frequently. So hiding head in sand really isn't the answer...
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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by billw » Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:01 am

As Jack, Taylor, Mel, Laura, Victoria and other BH's have and continue to stress,
Stay the course.
Keep it simple.
Tune out the noise.

By the time Money Magazine arrives in your mail box it's history and another slant on the tried and proven.

Let my subscription expire a while back, liked to read the articles but took them with a grain of salt.

Thumbed to the fund performance section to see that VG was always in the top funds. (Never fails)

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nisiprius
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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by nisiprius » Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:08 am

Everything's different nowadays. It's not like it used to be, back in the days when the stock market was steady and stable and you could count on it to earn 10% every year. Except of course once way back in 1929, which doesn't count because everyone agrees that 1929 shouldn't count.

Indexing and buy-and-hold don't work any more. The days when index funds beat the index are long gone. You need to be agile, seeking opportunity, no matter how bizarre, wherever and whenever it presents itself. You need to adapt to the ever-changing realities of the dynamic marketplace of today. Innovative new products are coming on the market all the time, and you will miss out if you limit yourself to stocks and bonds, when ETFs now give you access to investments once reserved for privileged insiders--commodity futures, junk bonds, and leveraged short positions. That's why we constantly publish fresh new articles like "6 International REIT funds to watch," and "Highest-performing Timber ETFs of 2011."

You need to stay on top of your investments 24x7 and you need vital new information every month to help you do smart decision-making. If you don't monitor the situation, your fund manager might lose the fire in his belly and you wouldn't even suspect it.

Just one favorable decision and your subscription has paid for itself.

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
Warning, this post contains irony. :)
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bob90245
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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by bob90245 » Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:40 am

stemikger wrote:I just realized that every time I read my monthly subscription of Money Magazine, depending on what I read in that particular issue, I start thinking about changing my plan, or adding to it and basically not staying the course.

The way I "solved" this problem is that my portfolio has a variety of asset classes, but missing other asset classes. So what ever asset class is being featured in financial publications like Money, I either have it. Or for those asset classes I don't have, I have thoroughly considered them and decided the disadvantages outweigh the benefit.

I strongly encourage you to go through this exercise yourself. It could be that your portfolio is still not diversified enough and you have that nagging feeling you should include one or more asset classes. This could be the reason why you are so easily tempted to start thinking about changing your plan.
Ignore the market noise. Keep to your rebalancing schedule whether that is semi-annual, annual or trigger bands.

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Aptenodytes
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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by Aptenodytes » Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:47 am

I got a new (used) car about 6 months ago, and discovered that the AM radio didn't work only after I got the car home, and never went through the hassle of taking the car back to get it diagnosed and fixed. I discovered that not being able to tune in to Bloomberg Radio was a big plus for me. In my pre-Boglehead days that was a dangerous temptation to try to engage in picking winners, and even after my "conversion" I would still listen to it and entertain the fantasy once in a while that I should start picking winners again. I managed to resist the temptation, but just not listening to the station at all is better for my state of mind all around. Bloomberg Radio has some good content and they aren't bat**** crazy like some business media outlets, but their overall ethos remains committed to the idea that individual investors can outsmart the market.

I second your vote for tuning out the noise.

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by LynnC » Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:54 am

livesoft wrote:I will save you some trouble and write the next 12 issues of Money magazine for you to read today:

April - How to Save Money on your Taxes
May - The Top 10 Investments for RIGHT NOW!
June - How to Save Money on your Taxes
July - The Top 10 Investments for RIGHT NOW!
August - How to Save Money on your Taxes
September - The Top 10 Investments for RIGHT NOW!
October - How to Save Money on your Taxes
November - The Top 10 Investments for RIGHT NOW!
December - How to Save Money on your Taxes
January - The Top 10 Investments for RIGHT NOW!
February - How to Save Money on your Taxes
March - The Top 10 Investments for RIGHT NOW!


That's about it, except throw in one, "Best Places to Retire" (pick any town).

I'm letting my subscription go, also.

LynnC

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1210sda
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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by 1210sda » Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:57 am

I acknowledge that there is a lot of "nothing" in Money.

I do, however, subscribe to it. Pay $10 for 13 issues. I figure that at $0.77 per issue, every couple of months I'll see an article that I find of interest. (repairing or replacing an applicance; healthcare issues; rewards checking and of course, the article on Mr. Bogle in the March issue, etc.).

The one author that I do enjoy reading every issue is Walter Updegrave. He seems like a straight shooter.

1210

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by Tom_T » Sun Mar 25, 2012 1:33 pm

There's also "Retire at 50!"

Usually these stories are along the lines of "Bill and Kate each contributed the maximum to their 401K plans, and invested in low-cost index funds. Their savings got a boost when Kate received a $1 million inheritance, and Jim's firm was bought out, allowing him to cash in his company stock options."

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by FabLab » Sun Mar 25, 2012 1:43 pm

1210sda wrote:The one author that I do enjoy reading every issue is Walter Updegrave. He seems like a straight shooter.

1210


While I don't take a subscription to Money, I also enjoy reading Updegrave. You probably know this already: his writing can be accessed via the CNNMoney website for free.
The fundamental things apply as time goes by -- Herman Hupfeld

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by rgb73 » Sun Mar 25, 2012 2:28 pm

Yes I agree, I tend to get slightly swept up after seeing some financial recommendation; or seeing some hedge fund guy explain why you should buy this stock now or something. I try to use bob90245's technique, where I think about the index that I hold and think "I own it already...".

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by Fallible » Sun Mar 25, 2012 2:40 pm

I stopped being seriously tempted (I say "seriously" because, being human, we're all tempted to one degree or another) to change my investments when I truly understood them and why they were right for me based on my risk tolerance. If you have a written IPS and find the market "noise" tempting you to violate it, dig it out and apply it to those temptations. If you're still tempted (seriously), perhaps something is missing in your IPS. In that case, you could consider changing the IPS to better reflect your goals, objectives, and risk tolerance - all the while ignoring the :twisted: (temptations).
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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by cjackson0 » Sun Mar 25, 2012 2:46 pm

rgb73 wrote:Yes I agree, I tend to get slightly swept up after seeing some financial recommendation; or seeing some hedge fund guy explain why you should buy this stock now or something. I try to use bob90245's technique, where I think about the index that I hold and think "I own it already...".


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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by JMDV » Sun Mar 25, 2012 2:59 pm

Consider the source in everything you read, whether it be WSJ, FinTimes, blogs, yes even this blog! Money provides their view with story lines to catch reader interests etc. I enjoy reading different perspectives, the challenge becomes distilling all the info into the right decisions over time, and for me taking the Van/Bogel approach has worked out best.
:happy

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by livesoft » Sun Mar 25, 2012 3:29 pm

I admit that Money magazine inspired the thread title "How to pay ZERO taxes in retirement", but maybe I was not inspired enough?

How to pay ZERO taxes in early retirement at age 50 with the 10 best investments YOU NEED NOW!
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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by dbonnett » Sun Mar 25, 2012 3:43 pm

Magazines are a for profit commercial venture. The profit is derived from advertising. Advertisers are promised a sympathetic environment where their advertisement can flourish. Never biting the hand that feeds you is a given. Editorial fits the template.

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by bob90245 » Sun Mar 25, 2012 3:47 pm

Vanguard advertises in Money Magazine.
Ignore the market noise. Keep to your rebalancing schedule whether that is semi-annual, annual or trigger bands.

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by BHCadet » Sun Mar 25, 2012 4:37 pm

The last issue (March 2012) of Money magazine featured articles of Heroes (A yearlong celebration of 40 peoples who have made extraordinary efforts to improve others financial well being.).
Jack Bogle and Bogleheads were profiled.
Looking at the pictures of Taylor Larimore, Laura Dogu, and Mel Lindauer, it was my first time matching the names to their faces.

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by jginseattle » Sun Mar 25, 2012 5:20 pm

I think that Money magazine is fairly worthless.

A year or two ago they recommended several bond portfolios. One included both Vanguard's Total Bond Index fund and the GNMA fund. They did not disclose the fact that Total Bond has a substantial positon in GNMAs. Perhaps they were unaware of this.

protagonist
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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by protagonist » Sun Mar 25, 2012 6:04 pm

"The more you drive, the less intelligent you get".
-Miller, Repo Man (film), 1984.

Perhaps more relevant, the more you get your news from mainstream media, the less intelligent you get.

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by 3CT_Paddler » Sun Mar 25, 2012 6:15 pm

I think most investors would be better served reading 1 or 2 recomended Boglehead books, setting an allocation and plan (how your allocation will change with time) and completely ignoring the market and any other noise that might cause a change. Oh, and don't look at your portfolio daily, weekly or monthly. Sometimes the best way to be disciplined is avoid distractions instead of fighting them.

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by pjstack » Sun Mar 25, 2012 7:07 pm

Don't forget, "It's a stock pickers market"! I hear this piece of wisdom often on the radio when some expert is called upon to opine on matters financial.

They never explain exactly how to go about this, although "due diligence" is sometimes mentioned.
pjstack

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by Regal 56 » Sun Mar 25, 2012 7:20 pm

At my local library there's a basket near the door where people can leave old magazines for others to take as they like and read. I always pick up some of these to read as I eat lunch. From time to time, issues of Money magazine from two or three years ago are there. If you want to know the real value of predictions in the financial press, just read through some old issues. That'll cure you of the desire to act on the predictions.

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by Dandy » Sun Mar 25, 2012 8:39 pm

Money magazine used to do a good job of explaining something new to the average investor e.g. if they changed the regs for 401ks, or Social Security. Unfortuately, the education benefit was often drowed out by finacial media hype. After awhile I realized that the education value was minimal so I dropped it.

To the OP -- don't be discouraged, the benefit of compounding takes awhile. Keep saving in a well diversified manner and limit debt and you will most likely be fine. Excessive tinkering will probably not do much good, likely the opposite and will lead to frustration.

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by bschultheis » Sun Mar 25, 2012 8:57 pm

nisiprius wrote:
You need to stay on top of your investments 24x7 and you need vital new information every month to help you do smart decision-making. If you don't monitor the situation, your fund manager might lose the fire in his belly and you wouldn't even suspect it.

Just one favorable decision and your subscription has paid for itself.

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
Warning, this post contains irony. :)


Nisiprius, I had to laugh reading your post, and then there is always some sadness, in that unfortunately, too much truth to your irony, especially this 24/7 thing.

Seems a "major" mutual fund company located in the Northeast (which shall remain nameless), has teamed up with a "major" software/hardware company in Silicon Valley (which will remain nameless, but just released version 3 of its hot, cool product), and both these companies have combined for TV advertising that is absolutely over the top in absurd financial marketing. Investors can get the latest updates from around the world instantaneously and adjust their portfolios accordingly to prepare themselves for a secure retirement. I want to upchuck when I see these TV spots, and then I want to be a fly on the wall in the room and listen to the decision makers who actually give the green light for these commercials to be run.

Now, I can sort of handle it when a company like "e Trade" or someone who actually has the word "Trade" in their name, runs a commercial like this, but when a major respectable mutual fund company that houses the retirement plans of millions and millions of investors across the nation runs this stuff, I have to wonder if they missed the class on integrity in the second grade.

It boggles my mind - we have such an incredible opportunity to help investors by introducing to them some simple tenets.

Bill Schultheis

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by haban01 » Sun Mar 25, 2012 9:09 pm

Bill, The funny thing is that I've been seeing the same commercials too!! :)
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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by baw703916 » Sun Mar 25, 2012 9:27 pm

How can I get the issues 12 months early, so I'll know what next year's top funds will be? 8-)
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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by dhodson » Sun Mar 25, 2012 9:43 pm

These type of feelings are normal. Just don't act on feelings.

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by umfundi » Sun Mar 25, 2012 9:46 pm

The garlic for your vampire impulse is to write an Investment Policy Statement (IPS). Really, write it down. Sign it. The rule is, you are not allowed to change your investments without revising your statement. If your significant other has to agree to a change, so much the better.

Then, come to this forum. You will get some great advice. But, you can also spend all of your day opining on what others should do, rather than tinkering and tampering with your own plan. :D

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by norookie » Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:05 pm

8-) Hi, i've a newsletter, would you like to subscribe? First 3 copies are free....then it's only 99.99 annually if you accept the first 3 copies, do you have a CC number ? Its alpha cherry picked record is unreal./sarcasm off/ :P
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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by dewey » Sun Mar 25, 2012 11:12 pm

Why do psychics always have to ask you your name???
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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by Mrs.Feeley » Mon Mar 26, 2012 12:40 am

I avoid Money Mag for the same reason I avoid reading fashion magazines. I might be tempted to trade in my long-time preferred style of footwear, big fuzzy socks with big grungy sandals with rubber tread thick as that on ATV tires, for the season's new thin strappy style with 5-inch heels. Sure, my life might be more exciting with the new strappy styles with 5-inch heels. But there's an even greater likelihood I would end up face-down on the pavement with skinned knees, sprained ankles, chipped teeth, and emergency room visits. So I prefer to stick with a footwear choice I have considered long and hard over a lifetime of travails and with a sensible goal of remainly firmly planted on the ground. And that's why I avoid fashion magazines, Money, and stick to wearing big grungy sandals with big fuzzy socks.

Anyhow the last article I read in Money was about how average investors like me had been steered safely to retirement with the help of financial planners. And that did not end at all well. :beer

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by madbrain » Mon Mar 26, 2012 1:51 am

nisiprius wrote:Just one favorable decision and your subscription has paid for itself.


Good one !
My subscriptions to Money, SmartMoney, and Fortune - all bought with airline miles - are about to run out. I think the most favorable decision for me will be to let them expire.

heyyou
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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by heyyou » Mon Mar 26, 2012 7:25 am

I start thinking about changing my plan, or adding to it and basically not staying the course.


It is greed. You are just human, you are doing fine because you recognize it. It isn't going away, but you are dealing with it correctly. "My name is heyyou and I am greedy. I want more performance than my index funds are delivering, and I want it this week." Any decade with low returns does test your resolve, but your slowly growing index funds are still doing better than most other funds. You have been buying on the cheap, if and when the markets do go up.

I'm sure that any significant retirement plan changes will be discussed here, so I do not expect to miss something important by not subscribing to one specific publication. At my municipal library, the older magazine copies are stored behind the diplayed ones. The vertical display is the dust cover for the flat stacked ones on the shelf.

Forbes Sr., the founder of Forbes magazine, "I've made more money selling investing advice than I ever made following the investing advice that I sold."

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by beardsworth » Mon Mar 26, 2012 7:59 am

livesoft wrote:I admit that Money magazine inspired the thread title "How to pay ZERO taxes in retirement", but maybe I was not inspired enough?

How to pay ZERO taxes in early retirement at age 50 with the 10 best investments YOU NEED NOW!


You forgot: while living in one of America's Best Places To Retire!! :)

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by Fallible » Mon Mar 26, 2012 9:32 am

Mrs.Feeley wrote:I avoid Money Mag for the same reason I avoid reading fashion magazines. I might be tempted to trade in my long-time preferred style of footwear, big fuzzy socks with big grungy sandals with rubber tread thick as that on ATV tires, for the season's new thin strappy style with 5-inch heels. Sure, my life might be more exciting with the new strappy styles with 5-inch heels. But there's an even greater likelihood I would end up face-down on the pavement with skinned knees, sprained ankles, chipped teeth, and emergency room visits. So I prefer to stick with a footwear choice I have considered long and hard over a lifetime of travails and with a sensible goal of remainly firmly planted on the ground. And that's why I avoid fashion magazines, Money, and stick to wearing big grungy sandals with big fuzzy socks.
...


A fun post! Reminds me that a great perk in retirement was going from heels (mine were more like 2-3 inchers) to much safer and less painful tennis shoes or comfy sandals and, in winter, "big, fuzzy socks." :D
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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by umfundi » Mon Mar 26, 2012 9:48 am

MarcMyWord wrote:
livesoft wrote:I admit that Money magazine inspired the thread title "How to pay ZERO taxes in retirement", but maybe I was not inspired enough?

How to pay ZERO taxes in early retirement at age 50 with the 10 best investments YOU NEED NOW!


You forgot: while living in one of America's Best Places To Retire!! :)

Yes, "Money" is indeed a parody of itself.

Keith
Déjà Vu is not a prediction

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by moneywise3 » Mon Mar 26, 2012 10:13 am

There seem to be 2 parts to what you said:
1) Noise affecting your plans - you ability to stay the course gets better with time. Do not worry.
2) Others doing better than you - It is the same "problem" I have when I see other runners or slot machine winners or people wearing better shirts than me. It is not a problem, it is part of living in a society. It should serve as motivation and remind you that no one can be on top in every field.

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by mickeyd » Mon Mar 26, 2012 1:06 pm

The main value that I see in Money is that it occasionally steers readers to this forum where they can view real valuable personal finance advice and guidance. Of course, I only read the current issues at the library when I stop by occasionally.
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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by umfundi » Mon Mar 26, 2012 1:55 pm

mickeyd wrote: Of course, I only read the current issues at the library when I stop by occasionally.


I think I heard Zvi Bodie say that most people would rather visit the dentist than deal with planning personal finances.

So, I suppose, reading Money in the dentist's waiting room is the worst of all worlds!

Keith
Déjà Vu is not a prediction

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by Gordon » Mon Mar 26, 2012 2:12 pm

When Jason Zweig left Money Magazine I cancelled my subscription to Money Magazine. But I would never buy the WSJ so I'll just wait for his next book.

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by MortgageOnBlack » Mon Mar 26, 2012 3:16 pm

I read it only because it keeps the "lingo" fresh in my head. Keeping it fresh in my head also keeps me on track (guess I'm getting that hanging out on this forum a bit now :mrgreen: ) I have learned to take everything with a grain salt.

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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by Mr. Stubacca » Mon Mar 26, 2012 4:04 pm

have a subscription because I used to subscribe to US news and world report. When they went under, i got converted to Money magazine by the publisher. I could have got my money back but due to the # of issues published a year and complaints over some missed issues, i now have a 6 year subscription to this. :oops:
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Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by IowaFarmBoy » Tue Mar 27, 2012 6:01 am

Hi,
I receive because I get it as a gift.

My observations:
1) I get some value from it in what I would call the personal finance (as opposed to investing articles)- things like how to get good deals, mortgages, etc. I think this is where I discovered the PenFed credit card.
2) I tend to ignore the "hot investment" stuff. A funny experience was that a number of years ago I started reading a copy what was on the table in the vacation home we were renting. Not sure what year it was but it was touting airlines as the next big thing to invest in. "That's peculiar," I thought since all the news is about how much trouble they are in. Then I checked the date and the magazine was a year old. They missed that call.

Lyle

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baw703916
Posts: 6640
Joined: Sun Apr 01, 2007 1:10 pm
Location: Seattle

Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by baw703916 » Tue Mar 27, 2012 10:48 am

umfundi wrote:I think I heard Zvi Bodie say that most people would rather visit the dentist than deal with planning personal finances.

So, I suppose, reading Money in the dentist's waiting room is the worst of all worlds!

Keith


+100 :D
Most of my posts assume no behavioral errors.

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VictoriaF
Posts: 17515
Joined: Tue Feb 27, 2007 7:27 am
Location: Black Swan Lake

Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by VictoriaF » Tue Mar 27, 2012 12:36 pm

baw703916 wrote:
umfundi wrote:I think I heard Zvi Bodie say that most people would rather visit the dentist than deal with planning personal finances.

So, I suppose, reading Money in the dentist's waiting room is the worst of all worlds!

Keith


+100 :D


In comparison to my early experiences with the Soviet dentistry my appointments with an American dentist are like yoga session.

Victoria
WINNER of the 2015 Boglehead Contest. | Every joke has a bit of a joke. ... The rest is the truth. (Marat F)

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curly lambeau
Posts: 666
Joined: Wed Apr 25, 2007 10:42 am

Re: Money Magazine is bad for me

Post by curly lambeau » Tue Mar 27, 2012 12:47 pm

Tune on, turn in, drop out!

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