The best personal finance book you’ll ever read this year is the Chicago Tribune

The best personal finance book you’ll ever read this year is the Chicago Tribune

If you’re reading a single financial book this year, read “Money Magic: The Secrets of an Economist for More Money, Less Risk, and a Better Life” (Little, Brown Spark) by well-known economist Laurence Kotlikoff, who also – was the author of the definitive book on social security, “Get What’s Yours.” Kotlikoff has an extraordinary ability to make financial matters difficult to understand – and to disprove the baits of Wall Street and the financial planning community.

Kotlikoff is a financial benefactor and has done his best work in the recently released “Money Magic”. Let me give you just a few of the most important moments, in the hope that you will want to read his concise and personal explanations of how the financial world really works. This book will create “Aha!” moments for readers of all ages.

For example, have you ever wanted to tell your child or grandchild that it is crazy to take on debt in order to earn a degree in a field that can never pay the debt plus interest? It’s just common sense, of course. But no one wants to ruin their children’s dreams of a career in fine arts or tell them that entry-level PR positions will not help repay student loans.

Kotlikoff shows you how to get information about careers that have a high earning potential based on demographic changes, such as aging. To avoid being outsourced by a robot or relocated to the next business cycle, he advises looking into the fast-growing healthcare industry – or even becoming a mortar! ) He rightly observes that the installers will always be on the lookout.

Here is another chapter that may not seem politically correct, but it has an extraordinary financial meaning. Read his arguments in the chapter entitled “Marry for Money.” This chapter is too fun to spoil with a description. Let me tell you – I knew I had heard this advice before – from my grandmother!

The chapter entitled “Enrich Your Home” explains the long-term impact of the decision on where you will live – and how the money is. do not spend on housing can be used for future financial security. Creative ideas to make sure you understand the true cost of your home decisions can change your perspective – from moving home with your mom and helping her save money on repairs (while saving on rent) to choosing a location away from home. fashion, but expensive. cities. Spending less on your home now can significantly increase your standard of living throughout your life.

Of course, there is a concise yet detailed chapter on the “pitfalls” of Social Security and the importance of waiting as long as possible to receive benefits. For all those who have ever claimed that they “want social security now”, here are the factual and mathematical reasons to wait. And there are important tips for the complicated decisions that spouses can make to maximize their benefits for life.

Not only does Kotlikoff complain about Social Security for his mistakes in advising those who come to him for advice, but he calls one aspect of Social Security a “scam.” It seems that Social Security called people waiting to receive maximum benefits at the age of 70 and offered them a few months of advance payments, only to start right before the age of 70. your life!

Note: If you want to get the right answers about your social security decisions before you make a costly mistake in life, Kotlikoff’s website has useful and accurate decision-making software that you can access for 40 USD.

Kotlikoff’s real target is the financial planning industry. He reveals the costs and motivations of Wall Street, which is now trying to accumulate assets and charge commissions. Why else should a planning firm take Social Security earlier (limiting the value of the largest pension asset forever) while advising you to take your transferred money to “make it grow”?

If you are ready to make your own smart planning decisions, Kotlikoff has another website,, with tools for individuals or professionals.

From mortgages to student loans, from calculating the real cost of divorce to understanding the real risk of stocks, “Money Magic” has the answers.

And the amazing thing is that it’s not magic at all. It is only the cleverly explained reality of the economy behind the most important money decisions. And this is the Wild Truth.

(Terry Savage is a registered investment advisor and author of four best-selling books, including “The Savage Truth on Money.” Terry answers questions on her blog.)

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