Author Archives: Debra

Women and Money: Financial Feminism

Mind the Gap, Seven Chapters on Financial Feminism, showed up in my inbox today and I had to share!

I have written before about Sallie Krawcheck, Ellevate, and gender lens investing.  This little book is from Ellevest which is a digital advisor.  All these pieces fit together!

Confused?  It’s easier than you think please just click here and enjoy!

 

Gender Lens Investing, Repeated

This is a repeat performance of my article about gender lens investing.  There are lots of good things going on surrounding women in business and investing through the “gender lens.”

Yes, some of this seems rather technical, but read a section at a time over a week or so.  It will soak in!

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Social Entrepreneur & Benefit Corporations

Social-Entrepreneurship

I am learning new words to describe new ways of doing things in our world.

First, I became acquainted with the term “social entrepreneur” when I connected with Molly Barker, founder of Girls on the Run and now the lead advocate Red Book Coalition. I think the concept of social entrepreneurship describes the work of my Financial Freedom Party for Women.

While reading about Kickstarter, I learned about Benefit Corporations. Kickstarter describes it as follows:

Benefit Corporations are for-profit companies that are obligated to consider the impact of their decisions on society, not only shareholders. Radically, positive impact on society becomes part of a Benefit Corporation’s legally defined goals.

As I work on getting my Financial Freedom Party for Women business entity established in Texas, I’m thinking these are the concepts we will be embracing. Things look better for what FFP offers for women and the business community than they did in 1998 when we started this whole FFP thing. We are focused more like Benefit Corporation than a non-profit. Why does teaching financial literacy for women, giving them information to take to the marketplace, and connecting them with the financial services industry  have to be considered a non-business activity? Apparently it doesn’t!

The Middle Class is Disappearing…

 

moneymiddleclass

“The middle class is disappearing” has been a standard line during this election cycle.  As it turns out, it’s not wrong…”

These words caught my attention as I breezed through my morning reading on the NPR News application on my smartphone.

Middle class is a term which is rather abstract and undefined in the world we live in.  Some young people may have never experienced a world where the middle class was vibrant, growing, and empowered.

To learn more, please click here to read about a brief history of American’s middle class.  Quick and easy read and something to think about!

 

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Credit and Young Adults, aka Millennials

Credit - Red Billboard on Sky Background. Business Concept.

When it comes to those preapproved credit card applications, remember, what the big print giveth, the small print taketh away.

This is one of my favorite quotes about credit cards from Mary Hunt and it is mentioned in my book, Financial Freedom Party for Women, A Little Book about Money for Women.

I am never sure who is teaching younger people about the use of credit and credit cards, except the credit industry.  Not always a good idea to learn from those whose main interest is in making money by you purchasing what they offer!

So, I thank yahoo.com for a wonderful article titled: What real millennials want to know about credit.   Millennials are described as those in their 20s and 30s.

Please click here to enjoy the article, learn and share with your friends.  Even this one simple educational piece can undo a lot of bad habits learned by buying in to the very powerful marketing activities of those in the lending business.  As with any product, credit can be a valuable tool when used appropriately.  It’s just not for everyone.

 

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Domestic Abuse-Financial Abuse

Domestic Abuse: Violence Amid a Life of Luxury

This is the title of an article by the BBC.  We are reminded that domestic violence occurs at all income levels, including those considered to be wealthy.

You may link to this insightful story by clicking here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-australia-36339247

salliecrawcheckSo excited to read the article about Sallie Krawcheck’s new offering for women investors.

Not sure who she is?  Wonder why she is involved in investing and women?  Curious to know about a new investment process which steps away from the traditional investment models?  Please just click here and enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

myRA – Starting Small

dreamis

ffpcovermarch2016lulufinalAs a broker and financial advisor I used to dream that someday (the wishful someday we all know about) there would be a way for lower and middle class income people to start preparing for retirement with a small investment account.

I had seen how getting people started with a small investment of $25 a month increases their confidence and understanding of the value of the concept of accumulating funds.  Over time it has been less financially attractive for the investment community to offer services to small individual investors  who aren’t part of a larger level of overall contributions from a workplace retirement plan like a 401k and 403b.  This means that people who want to contribute to a Roth IRA often had few choices except to accumulate money just to get started.  That of course, usually didn’t happen and nothing changed.

A new program called myRA is an option to fill that gap between getting started and entering the investment community.  Is it all I dreamed of?  Yes, pretty close.  Is it worth learning more about if you aren’t accumulating money for retirement?  Yes!  Is it perfect?  No, but then neither are we and our best intentions to invest when we accumulate some funds are overcome with this option.

The information below is from the myRA.gov website.  As always, tell your friends and family.  It doesn’t take an investment professional to get you to this solution.

About myRA

The United States Department of the Treasury developed myRA® to help more people start saving for retirement.

Why was myRA developed?

myRA was developed to remove common barriers to saving and help people take the first step toward a more secure retirement.

Who is myRA for?

myRA is designed for people who don’t have access to a employer-sponsored retirement savings plans or lack other options to start saving for retirement.

How does myRA work?

People can contribute to their myRA account with as little as a few dollars a month generally up to $5,500 per year (or $6,500 per year for those age 50 and over).

Millions of Americans aren’t saving—or aren’t saving enough—for their retirement. myRA offers a simple, safe, and affordable way for people, especially those who don’t have access to a retirement savings plan at work, to get started.

myRA is a Roth IRA retirement savings account with no start-up cost and no fees. myRA has no minimum contribution requirement, so people can contribute the amount that best fits their budget.*

Contributions to myRA accounts are invested in a new United States Treasury security, which safely earns interest at the same variable rate as investments in the government securities fund for federal employees. This investment is backed by the United States Treasury and the account carries no risk of losing money.

People can fund their myRA account directly from their paycheck, or from a personal account, such as a checking or savings account, or by directing some or all of their federal tax refund to their account when they file their taxes.

myRA can be a first step

myRA can help people without access to a retirement savings plan get started saving, but it is not intended to be the only way they save for retirement. myRA is not a replacement for 401(k)s or other types of employer-sponsored retirement savings plans. People can have a maximum account balance of $15,000, or a lower balance for up to 30 years. When either of those limits is reached, savings will be transferred or rolled over into a private-sector Roth IRA where people can continue to grow their savings

From: myRA.gov. You can learn more there and enroll!

 

myRA

 

baby-steps

Looking at my television and seeing an official from the Department of the Treasury talking about the new myRA Plans!!!

When I first heard of these plans, which are targeted to those who can make smaller contributions to a retirement account and who do not have the opportunity to easily invest through a retirement plan offered at work, I was excited.  Sometimes we have to take baby steps to get into the routine of saving, investing, and having enough money to be attractive to the overall investment community.

The website explains this option has no cost or fees, no complicated investment options, and no risk of losing money.

Please take the time to learn more.  Just click here

 

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Please click here to order my book!