Ten personal finance checks and measures; Persistence pays off for start-ups; Why bosses go bad; Four things to think about before jumping ship; John Ralston Saul

Ten personal finance checks and measures; Persistence pays off for start-ups; Why bosses go bad; Four things to think about before jumping ship; John Ralston Saul

By Amanda Morrall

1) Get fit

Personal finance is a bit like gardening in that it requires constant attention, maintenance and vigilance. Whilst it's easy to get overwhelmed by the volume of administration required, the worst thing you can do is become paralysed. Just as it's better to pull one or two weeds (which you know will multiple if left neglected) rather than do nothing, getting a better grip on your personal finance doesn't have to be an all or nothing affair.

In that spirit, here's an excellent piece from Time's Money section on 10 ways to improve your financial health. The article makes a good point that even if you do one of the 10, you'll have accomplished something. Baby steps. 

2) Start-ups

Just a reminder (and I'm not an ANZ customer or agent or affiliate) that the bank's $30K flying start competition for the best business plan is closing next week. I picked one of their small business start-up guides the other week, and it's full of excellent tools, resources, and tips. It's available on-line as well. 

And for more inspiration, the following article from Unlimited magazine discusses the importance of persistence in business and how failure will only make you stronger, if you don't give up. 

3) Bad bosses

Is your boss a narcissist or a psychopath? Over the years I have had both and wondered why these people end up in management when clearly they have no people skills. In the Buddhist tradition, every person you come across serves as a mirror, either for latent qualities in yourself that need to be nurtured and drawn out, or for less attractive characteristics that ought to squelch or manage. It's something I always try to keep in mind in my relationships with people, particularly those who frustrate me. 

Here's the Financial Times writing about the making of financial psychopaths Allen Stanford of Stanford International Bank and Rajat Gupta of McKinsey & Co and Goldman Sachs both of whom were ensnared by the karma cops recently. 

4) Before you quit

If you have the misfortune of having a bad boss and are itching to quit or change jobs, you'll want to think carefully about the consequences. Investopedia explores four considerations before switching jobs.

5) Writers and investors

Here's a pairing that caught my eye this morning. The Responsible Investment Association Australasia, for its upcoming conference in Melbourne Aug.30-31st, has teamed up with the Writer's Festival. Their two featured guest speakers are Canada's John Ralston Saul, ("The Collapse of Globalism and Reinvention of the World") and Affluenza: The All Consuming Epidemic author John De Graaf.

Please Bernard can I go to Melbourne?

Here's Raulston Saul talking about the decline of globalisation and his book.


Never heard of Affluenza? Watch this.


To read other Take Fives by Amanda Morrall click here. You can also follow Amanda on Twitter@amandamorrall

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Well thanks very much for the John Ralston Saul video.  Just reading a transcript of a detailed interview now and it's very interesting.  He has some clarity of thinking and some nice honesty about his intellect.

John Ralston is really good with his lines(1:42).
"The Financial system is like this gigantic souffle of meaningless money that dosen't do anything, that sort of has fun with itself, its pretty self-indulgent"
Later he talks about this "delusionary misunderstanding that money is real, money is not real"
Not much comfort here for the paper bugs with these sort of sayings.

I know, loved that line about the souffles.

this gigantic souffle of meaningless money that dosen't do anything
The exact reason I retired early - the crap they kept giving me in return for my finite time was no longer acceptable - have a word with Chaston and demand something with more substance for your endeavours, unless he already obliges with ingots etc. 

I think Tim Groser and all the TPP teams needs to look at this John Ralston video. It was very interesting.
Question: Is the TPP about free trade or about Globalisation?

I'm starting to think that regardless of how much 'maintenance and vigilance', modern porfolio theory may well be doomed under our crony capitalist systems.

No, its doomed under a post-peak oil scenario....with a protfolio you imply profit....that assumes more energy, when you have less energy you cannot even underwrite the borrowed capital let alone any interest/profit.  So the only way left is more debt....its a death spiral into a depression we are in....
"our $10,000 was at the end of March 2012, worth only $7,102.39."
He's lucky, I put 10k sterling in northern rock, got < $1k back....it would have been over 1k but they took their pound of flesh at year end/closing of the account.  Or my main pension scheme should have paid out $50k at 65, its looking like it wont even manage $18k, and $11k is possible...or even 0.  An ex NZ pension plan, I put in $4k+NZ over the period I worked for a comapny who did a private pension svcheme, got about $3.5k back after charges some of which I had no idea existed....one huge con...
Trouble is mark you wear libertarian blinkers and so does the above quoted writer, this automatically limits the intake of relevent information.  I could see this wasnt going well 15 years ago and determined to do my own thing....you know, be personally responsible for my retirement, I just wish I'd been more savvy at 17.....thats one kudos I'll give GBH.
As Paul Krugman has said, listening to the WSJ editoral and not him would have cost you a lot of money.....same applies here....prtflios need to be exited and be in cash and bonds, why do you think the US bond rate is so low and so heavily subscribed?   because many ppl know, despite the rhetoric they spew that the de-regualted market has produced a huge ponzi scheme that is set to implode.
Austrians should rejoice they are about to get the depression they so want......be careful what you wish for is the motto of the day.

Tribeless,  Financial market trading suffers already - best algorithm wins - got one?

No. Rack full of wine though.