Category Archives: learning

Women and Money, The Prospectus

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Have you been in this situation?  You pick up the prospectus for an investment and wonder, what is this?  It looks so boring, why should I even bother reading it?   How can it help me?

This post is to help you find some value in those printed pages and keep from being be overwhelmed by the information provided there.  Yes, it is more fun to look at magazines and catalogs which are colorful and clearly designed to attract our attention to buy, buy, buy.  Just think of the prospectus as part of the process for purchasing a specific investment and try to overlook the lack of pizzazz in the presentation.  Once again, this is an educational blog and not a recommendation to make a buying decision of any particular investment or product.  You may use a prospectus from any fund you wish as a tool to learn more about the investment.

Since my earlier posts were about a mutual fund which offers an investment option called gender lens investing, I’m going to refer to mutual funds as the type of investment—or security—for this discussion. There are, of course, other investments, such as individual securities like stocks or bonds, but mutual funds have evolved into a popular investment choice.   The prospectus for the Pax Ellevate Global Women’s Index Fund  is as good as any to use as an example and was mentioned in my  series about gender lens investing.

First, it is important to remember that the securities industry is highly regulated. The government organization with the main responsibility for setting rules and regulations is the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC). The organization which is responsible for setting a framework for firms (such as broker/dealers) and registered representatives (licensed individuals who work in the industry and serve clients), is called the Financial Industry Regulatory Agency (FINRA). Previously it was called the National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD). FINRA is not a government agency, but is referred to as a Self- Regulating Organization.  The SEC makes the rules and FINRA members (firms and individuals) implement them through more rules and regulations.  This is a simple explanation.  To learn more, please click here for the SEC website   and  click here for the FINRA website.

When you, as the client, make an investment in a mutual fund, you are given a prospectus. This is a regulatory requirement. The prospectus is supposed to be presented at the time of the investment, but there are some other guidelines which allow a slight delay. For your purposes, you should expect to receive the prospectus when you meet with your representative. It is pretty easy these days as the prospectus is usually readily available on-line.

So what is a prospectus? It is the story of the investment, in this case a mutual fund.  Some companies issue a separate prospectus for each fund.  Others, offer a booklet listing information about more than one fund.  The Pax Ellevate Global Women’s Index Fund  is one of seven funds listed in the prospectus we will be reviewing.  So when you look at the prospectus, please go to the index and you will see that  information about the Pax Ellevate Global Women’s Index Fund starts on page 49.

The prospectus contains a lot of information, but a good way to start is to locate the following information:

  1. The name of the company that manages the fund.
  2. The goal of the fund.
  3. The minimum investment for a lump sum and/or a periodic automatic investment.
  4. When the fund originated.  Information showing the long-term performance of the fund.
  5. Fees. What is the initial front load (cost to the investor) or a back-end load (cost to the investor)? What is are the annual operating expenses paid each year as a percentage of the value of the investment? Are there other fees and restrictions?

The best way to learn is to explore a prospectus and identify the items described above. Please link to the prospectus at   Pax Ellevate Global Women’s Index Fund and review pages 49-58 and page 89.  You probably commit a lot of time to making money and spending money.  So, please make a small commitment of time to understanding how to gain some value from a prospectus when considering an investment.

Next time–a review of the details provided by the  prospectus for the Pax Ellevate Global Women’s Index Fund.

 

 

(This information is designed to educate you about basic financial management concepts. Questions relevant to personal finances specific to the individual should be address to an appropriate professional to ensure that the situation has been evaluated carefully and appropriately. The Authors and Publisher specifically disclaim any liability loss, or risk which is incurred as a consequence directly or indirectly from the use and application of any contents of this work.)

Copyright2014©by Debra Hadsall

 

 

 

 

 

Financial Freedom Party for Women

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Today’s daunting task, calling the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to figure out what the letter they sent me about the Financial Freedom Party logo actually means.  20 years as a government employee and 15 as a financial advisor, and even I can’t figure it out.  Much prefer meeting with women and sharing financial education than dealing with trademark issues, but being the owner of a “mark” is pretty awesome.  Now to fax off what they want….this time.  Changing how women learn about money is sometimes just a bunch of boring detail work, but so worth it!

Debra Hadsall

www.ffptalk.com

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Great Way to Teach Children about Income and Expenses

Moms are the best and I love it when they teach life skills in a fun way.  Check out how one mom is teaching children about money while making it a fun project.

Just click here to learn more.

 

Debra Hadsall

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To order my book, please click here.

www.ffptalk.com

www.financialfreedomparty.com

 

Oops-I Dinged My Credit Score from onyourown.org

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Nice post and great information from onyourown.org.

If you are just venturing out into the world of  credit and credit cards  please click here for some quick and easy tips which can make life a lot easier.

Enjoy!

Debra Hadsall

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Financial Freedom Party for Women, A Little Book about Money for Women, Workbook Edition is now available at Amazon.com

Why Blog about the Financial Freedom Party for Women?

Knowing that many of you have joined my blog after earlier posts were created, I am going to do some re-blogging.  I ask you considering sharing these with the women in your life.  It is important that those of us who understand financial management share what we have learned with others.  During my financial advisory career I heard often from women who said “nobody ever taught me this”.  That is one of the reasons I created the Financial Freedom Party for Women.  Now is the time to teach our friends, children, and grandchildren.  If we don’t do it, who will? 

My book, Financial Freedom for Women, A Little Book about Money for Women, Workbook Edition, is now available at amazon.com.  Just click here.  Now you can just add a copy of the book to your Amazon orders!!! 

So, starting from the beginning we have some background into why I blog.  Just click here.

http://ffptalk.com/2010/05/14/why-blog-about-financial-freedom-party-for-women/

More to come and thanks for reading and sharing.

Debra Hadsall

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www.financialfreedomparty.com

www.ffptalk.com

Culture of Threes-#3

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This posting relates to what I refer to as our Culture of Threes. As explained in previous posts, when an idea or concept comes to me three times from totally different sources, I have learned to pay attention, process the information, and then act. 

The Culture of Threes happened to me recently concerning my Financial Freedom Party for Women.

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My Number 1 post was about the Financial Freedom Party for Women and how financial education for women meets party plans and the financial industry asks, “Like Tupperware parties?”  Please go back to my previous post for all the details.

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Number 2 was about a fictional character in a novel who encounters mystery with a backdrop of relationships, relationship selling, and Tupperware.  The book is The Husband’s Secret by Liane Moriarty.

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Number 3 appeared when I turned on the TV one morning.

I have never watched the CBS This Morning Show, just glanced at it while channel surfing.  I was about to switch channels and then saw Gayle King talking.  I decided to watch CBS since I hadn’t seen Gayle (a journalist and media personality in her own right, but best known as being Oprah’s best friend) in action for a while.  I always say that Oprah and Gayle made having “girlfriends” cool again.  Gayle intrigues me and I always appreciate her viewpoint.

Rick Goings, the CEO of Tupperware Brands, was being interviewed.  What a nice way to start the day with such a positive story.   This was a huge contrast to all the other reporting which centered around the challenges of the day such the government shutdown, health care reform, and the debt ceiling. 

Tupperware has been around my life over the years and I have products in my kitchen that I purchased a long time ago.  This is a pretty big deal since I come from that generation of professional women who thought parties to sell products were kind of unsophisticated and not for us.  The irony of this attitude is that later in life I became a distributor for several direct sales companies and also created a new business model for marketing traditional products such as investments and life insurance through my Financial Freedom Party for Women®  Had I not learned so much about the value of parties in business to the clients and the company, I would not have had the ability to modify the concept and transfer it to the financial services industry.

Embracing a party concept for my financial services business came out my observation that a whole bunch of women showed up at my neighbor’s home for a Pampered Chef party and then proceeded to buy “a lot”.  This all happened on short notice with only a couple of days planning by the hostess who simply invited her friends.  Yes, she had a lot of friends.  Even so, this was quite a change from what I and a small team of women brokers encountered when we planned ahead for financial seminars and found few women would show.  Obviously we (and the industry) were doing something wrong.  Things needed to change.

So that morning on CBS it was really refreshing to hear how Tupperware has re-branded the company and recognized that with 90% of their market outside the United States, they needed to change and adapt their product line.  Tupperware acknowledged that the U.S. market is all about bargain shopping and price.  With the advent of inexpensive plastic storage containers, U.S. customers were not as abundant.  This 65-year-old business re-invented itself and offers an entrepreneurial opportunity internationally and current has 2.8 million representatives, most of them women.  A nice story about success brought on by understanding the market and creating change.

At the core of the party plan process is not only products, but women who understand relationship selling.  In a busy world where we can buy products and services on-line, party plans understand the importance that we women place on having a little special attention and understanding what we are buying.

I have always admired how direct selling and network marketing businesses remember that the connection between the customer and the product is most effective when it is through some sort of relationship.  This concept transferred effectively for me when using the Financial Freedom Party for Women® to meet women, teach them financial basics, and sell them investment and insurance solutions.

For me, hearing this short segment on Tupperware and the women (and their families and friends) it serves, was a nice and positive way to start the day.  I was surprised and pleased to hear the statistic concerning women  in Indonesia who are making $100,000. You can hear more by clicking here.

Being a financial services professional who is advocating a party concept for teaching women about money management and seeing it as a marketing tool for the financial services industry is not easy. Many people in the industry are more entertained by the concept of the Freedom Party for Women® than they are impressed.  Watching the Tupperware story re-inspires me that what worked for me in my business and for my clients, can work for many more.

That completes my Culture of Threes story about the Freedom Party for Women®, women, money, products, success, business models, relationships, party plans and of course—Tupperware.  I am listening and paying attention!

If you wish to purchase copies of the Freedom Party for Women®, A Little Book about Money for Women, Workbook Edition at www.amazon.com. please Just click here.

Until Next Time.

financialFreedom_book

Debra Hadsall

www.financialfreedomparty.com

www.ffptalk.com

My Monkey Mind – Culture of Threes

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My monkey mind postings relate to Buddha’s description of the human mind as being filled with drunken monkeys, jumping around, screeching, chattering, and carrying on endlessly. These postings come from my monkey mind.

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A Culture of Threes

These  Monkey Mind posts are just fun.  They allow me to step back, process thoughts, ideas, and other information which come my way, and then look for connections.   Connecting the dots is apparently a creative process.

Since our world is super-charged with information, it is impossible to react to everything which interests me.  So, I have used our culture of threes as a filter to lead me to those things which are worth pursuing further.

Our culture of threes was introduced to me by a trainer whose heritage was American Indian.  Her perspective was different from those of us in the audience.  She was attempting to teach change management and elevate the level of understanding about diversity in the workplace to a group of accounting oriented employees.  Her approach began with talking about how most of us (in the Western world), live in a culture where we refer to things in threes.   I had never thought about it, but she  went on to list a few common terms and descriptions such as:

Three blind mice

The three musketeers

Three strikes and you’re out

Then I began thinking of others like

Three Dog Night (a band)

Once, twice, three times a lady (from a song)

Three wise men

A triple threat

and of course the familiar , I’m counting to three and you better….

You can probably think of many more.  When I googled the subject I found some expanded writing which you can read by clicking here.

That day the instructor was trying to make a point about  how just because we are comfortable with a culture of threes, it doesn’t mean that everyone in the world sees things this way.  Unfortunately the subtlety of her message was not getting through to most.  One attendee stood up and informed the group that he had a lot of work to do at his desk and just wanted to know what not to say and do when it came to dealing with women.  He pretty much let us all know that this was a waste of time to him.  The instructor looked shocked, and I was so grateful that I wasn’t the speaker that day.

The culture of threes and the reaction of the man in the audience who was so resistant to change have stayed with me over the years.  As with most of us, when I hear something new, or someone wants me to pursue a certain activity, join a group, or spend my energy in a certain way, I often resist and shut off the message.  So I adopted a personal rule that when something came into my consciousness the first time I would just make a mental note and move on.  Then, when it comes again from a totally different source, I start paying attention.  When it arrives again for the third time from yet another source, I invest some time and energy is seeing what I am supposed to do with all these triggers of information.  I sense there is a message reminding me to open my heart and mind and see where things go from there.

In the last few weeks I had one of those culture of threes experiences.  These are just little things which don’t mean much to anyone else but me.  Put together, they have made me smile, encouraged me in my work with the Financial Freedom Party for Women, and connected some dots in a manner I didn’t expect.  I will be posting about them in future postings.

Until next time.

Debra Hadsall

www.financialfreedomparty.com and www.ffptalk.com

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Speaking Out for Financial Education for Young People

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As a financial advisor, I learned that most people are never taught the fundamentals of financial management. Some only learn from television or the Internet, which can be both good and bad.  Sometimes applying a broadcast approach to something which needs to be personalized isn’t helpful.

I know I learned basics from my parents, but the advanced topics like creating wealth through investing or really understanding life insurance, health insurance, and legal protection were concepts I learned along the way or through my college education because I majored in business and minored in economics.  Really, until I became a registered representative and learned how to teach others about financial management, I didn’t grasp the big picture.  When you teach others and market/sell products to them that help them meet their goals, you have to learn a lot first.  Of course the number of people in this country who chose to be advisors or brokers is just a small part of the overall population.  So who is teaching the rest of the population, particularly young people?

Recently I read a post about how we have lots of room to improve our education of youth about financial management.  Please click here to read the article.

Over the years , my friend Emily and I were asked to provide financial education to teens who attended our church.  Emily and I are more skilled in working with business leaders and executives, so we reached out to find materials appropriate for youth.  The materials we found at the National Endowment for Financial Education were absolutely the best.  They start with basics like where does my money go…or why is my first pay check so much smaller than what I expected…to insurance investing, goals, etc.  Everything we all need to know and understand, no matter our age.  To learn more please click here.  Currently I am using selected parts of these materials in a life skills mentoring program in a local high school.  Sometimes we need to teach young people in the manner they have been comfortable with in day-to-day living, sound bites.  Doing the whole book isn’t an option, but short sessions on topics works great.

The reason I created the Financial Freedom Party for Women and the corresponding book, and co-authored (with my friend Emily), First You Dream, A Financial Management Workbook, was to encourage learning and empower consumers.  As an advisor it was much easier to work with a potential client who understood the basics and felt more confident in her or his decisions.

As the saying goes, “you can be part of the problem or part of the solution”.  Getting to the solution requires us to acknowledge that it is a shared responsibility when it comes to financial management education for young people.

Until Next Time

Debra Hadsall

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www.financialfreedomparty.com

www.ffptalk.com

My Monkey Mind – Change and the New Normal

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My monkey mind postings relate to Buddha’s description of the human mind as being filled with drunken monkeys, jumping around, screeching, chattering, and carrying on endlessly. These postings come from my monkey mind.
 

 It is interesting how we get into habits and then something changes such as a move to a new area.  Then we find ourselves learning new skills, experiencing a different lifestyle, meeting new people, and become more observant.

First, with our recent move from a small town on the Gulf of Mexico, to the hill country of Texas, I do not currently have daily access to Internet.  What used to be a simple phone call to the local cable or phone company to have service connected in a home in town just doesn’t work in the area where we live outside of town.  So I have become good friends with the Yellow Pages and my new hard-line telephone.  I can’t even research Internet providers on-line unless I go to town and where I use a connection in the library or McDonald’s.  However, at the library I discovered it has great Internet access and a generous check out limit of 25 books per person.  Apparently lots of folks home school children so the library accommodates their needs with this limit.  Nice and we all benefit.  My other Internet stop is the local McDonald’s.  I have seen that it is the hang-out for other Internet users and, more interestingly, the local elderly gentlemen who meet and have coffee in the morning or ice cream in the afternoon.  I have learned a lot about ranching, farming, trapping “coons”, trucks, farm equipment, families, friends, and Johnny Manziel (the Heisman Trophy winner who is from the city next door), during their conversations.   No, I am not eavesdropping; these southern gentlemen can be clearly heard by all.  They make me smile.  Like I said, a change in environment teaches us new skills and forces us to pay more attention to our surroundings.

I have learned to be grateful for the guy who climbed up on the metal roof of the house in 100+ temperatures to see if his company could provide Internet service. When he told me they couldn’t, I was so busy wondering what to do next that I didn’t even react when I realized he had mentioned the word “sweetheart” when delivering the bad news.  Not my favorite term.   I decided that any man who lives in south central Texas and climbs on a hot roof in the Texas sun may call me whatever he wishes.  Still, no Internet and on to the next option.  I think the end is in site, but only when I sit at this table and use the Internet will I declare success.

We put a hardline telephone into our new place since half the time our cell phone calls drop.  Not having had a hard-line phone for personal use in a home for a very long time I decided to get the basic package with local service only. Stacks of costs for phones make me crazy and my preference is to use cell phones only.  So I was proud of my cost conscious decision to save $50 a month and not have long distance, voicemail and all that other stuff.  I reasoned that I could just use a prepaid long distance card and buy a phone with an old-fashioned recorder.  Never mind that I used to make fun of my Mom’s use of the recorder rather than voicemail   It only took me a visit to Wal-Mart, the local grocery store, and a popular convenience store to find out my calling card knowledge was lost in the stone ages.  I could buy cards to call Mexico, cards to add minutes to almost any cellular phone plan, and cards for international calling (which were kept in an enclosed plastic case) but there weren’t any cards for prepaid long distance.  Not giving up, I journeyed from the store to the library where I went on-line and found that yes; I could buy calling card access.  I purchased 300 minutes and felt like I was redeemed.  My plan worked.  The other night my husband was going to make a long distance call from our new hardline phone.  I told him I would dial it for him because I knew how to make it happen.  He informed me he could dial a phone by himself.  In the end, I did it for him since I had been practicing with that old-fashioned calling card.  New habits, new people, new experiences.  While we will never be back to our old normal, we will be up to a better than ever normal.

Until Next Time

Debra Hadsall

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www.ffptalk.com

www.financialfreedomparty.com

Welfare a Career Choice–Not Really

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There has been a Facebook posting going around recently which says:

 WELFARE ISN’T A CAREER PATH

I hit the LIKE button because there is so much wisdom in so few words. 

Those of us who haven’t experienced welfare as the family business have to kind of step back and see why young folks might envision long time public assistance as the way to make a living.

Children and youth are highly influenced by their environments, parents, or whoever is responsible for raising and educating them.  So, if a young person comes from a family who accepts public assistance as the norm, how will she or he change without learning alternatives and seeing different behavior modeled?  I believe some of this learning needs to be about finances.  How can no earned income and low-income folks do better if they don’t learn the basics?

Over the last few years, I have been part of a team of women who are lucky enough to do life skills mentoring with a small group of young women who are in high school.  Some of the students come from home situations which involve parents who work many hours at low paying jobs, or who rely on some level of public assistance.  Geographically, they live in an area which has pockets of poverty and an overall cultural acceptance of pregnancy in teens. 

We feel lucky.  These students are smart and willing to learn.  This year we included an enhanced focus on teaching sound bite pieces of financial information.  Topics were as basic as understanding a checking account, using a debit card, or how the little print on credit card applications needs to be carefully understood.  The students read short quotes from my book, Financial Freedom for Women®, A Little Book about Money for Women, and from other writings.  One afternoon we bravely did a short segment on stocks, bonds, and mutual funds.  As with adults, some were interested and some weren’t.

We learned that the concept of saving (except for  purchase of an iphone) was pretty much a foreign idea in general, and that retirement savings and even being able to retire at all were totally unheard of in their community. And for now in this economy, it’s pretty difficult to show how interest can work for you (make your savings grow) instead of against you (credit card debt & student loans). As always, tiny bites work well for everyone.

At the end of the school year we offered to give each student a copy of my book at no cost.  We suggested not asking for one if it was just going to get pitched into the trash (always a possibility with anyone and financial books).  Big surprise, they all signed up to get copies.  It was exciting to know that this group of students has access to basic financial information which teaches about a life choice of creating income and the value of investing.  Will they all read and learn, hard to tell.  At least we took a chance on each other. 

I’m hoping that someday my Facebook page will show postings from one or more of these young women which read something like this:

  MC910215909 I OPENED A ROTH IRA

  MC910215909 I BECAME A FINANCIAL ADVISOR

  MC910215909 TODAY I BOUGHT LIFE INSURANCE

Then I will hit the LIKE button again and again!

Until next time.

 

Debra Hadsall

www.financialfreedomparty.com