The advice to ensure financial ruin? It fits on a 4×6 index card.



My Sunday Washington Post Business Section column is out. This morning, we look at the idea of putting all if the financial advice anyone needs on an 4×6 index card — the twist is to invert it, via some really bad advice.

br bad rweetBoth the print and online versions had the Twitter friendly headline How to ruin your financial life, #badadvice. This got lots of pickup when Tweeted, and I was curious how it might play out as a column.

Here’s an excerpt:

“Sometimes people need a bit more to keep them on the path to financial security — the sort of thing that lands like a two-by-four to the head, if only to a) grab their limited attention and b) make them focus on what really matters. That index-card trick certainly inspired people to rethink the virtues of simple, basic financial advice.

This week I am going to shamelessly steal the idea of offering advice so simple it fits on an index card, with my own twist: I will offer you really awful investing advice.”

It turned out to be rather fun — go check the whole thing.


How to ruin your financial life, #badadvice
Barry Ritholtz
Washington Post, September 13 2015


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  1. Molesworth commented on Sep 13

    That’s my brother in law!
    Loves stock picking for high dividends without caring about balance sheets.
    Loves actively managed high expense mutual funds and weirdly doesn’t care if the dividend they throw off is less than the expense (but you buy stocks based on dividends?) because these are five star fund managers and they should know.
    Trusts his stockbroker.

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