I once was asked by a senior manager if I knew exactly what my positions were while a trader on Wall St. Yes, I did. Good thing, because it would be a challenge to confidence if I had not. You know that feeling; do I have a solid grasp on something as important as my finances, as well? If I wasn’t motivated before, I was then.
I’ve known MBA graduates as well as traders handling billions of dollars in their job functions for top notch firms. In many cases, these professional have avoided applying their focus on their own personal financial management. Amazing! We all get busy and the job of organizing, collecting, and solidifying one’s personal fiancés seems daunting. But it is easy enough to take this task in, a layer at a time.
See a Financial advisor, but typically they focus on managing assets. That is typically related to their main business, investment or bank accounts. To start, make a budget going. Know your spending, recording it in either a spread sheet or purchase a money management software. It takes some time to get familiar with the software, but work at a level in the program that uses the basics. You will learn where your money goes and how much of your spending is non discretionary, and how much is discretionary. With this step, you can avoid spending until the cash runs out as your budget process. And you can adjust your savings rate from a fixed amount to one that varies according to your income conditions, Take this step first and you gain tremendously.
Although we have this piece in the capital markets, it is an important insight for those focusing on personal investing. “Get Ready For Deeper, Longer Bear Markets in Stocks:” by David Ader

Get Ready For Deeper, Longer Bear Markets in Stocks: David Ader (2018-04-11 15:30:12.353 GMT)
By David Ader
(Bloomberg Prophets)  When I started out as a strategist more than 30 years ago, I had the arrogance of youth, a long- term investing horizon and less wealth to worry about. Those three qualities worked well then, but not so much now.
I have the wealth to enable a comfortable retirement — at the moment. What I don’t have is the time left to sleep easily at night in the event the stock market enters a serious bear market. I’m not alone: Those aged 55 and older are a larger portion of the population than they’ve ever been. We’re 35 percent of the country and growing. Compare that to 27.4 percent in 2000 and 31 percent in 2008. I’ll get back to those years in a bit.
When you consider the recent gyrations in equities in the context of the aging population, logic follows that folks facing or in retirement will be much more defensive in their behavior than in the past. If that means they will be quicker to get out of equities in the next downturn and stay out, their impact will be felt for a long time. That’s especially true given where wealth lies. Older people have it but neither the time nor mindset to recover from a bear market no matter how many times they hear their stockbroker utter encouraging words such as, “Despite short-term market gyrations, it’s important to maintain a long-term perspective, based on your goals and financial plan.”
My camp — the baby boomers — is unlikely to see a surge in interest rates that will provide a comfortable return of, say, 5 percent to 6 percent in long-term, safe municipal debt securities. Total returns in the bond market are going to be modest — forever.
My generation has been here before in an economic sense.Approaching 2000, we all knew the dot-com-fueled Nasdaq Composite Index was blowing up into a bubble, but greed and a belief that we were smarter than everyone else kept us riding the momentum until we wished we hadn’t. But then we were 40 or 45 years old, and arguably had 20 to 25 working years left to make up for the momentary loss. Bothered, yes, but younger and with time on our side.
All went well, especially the value of our homes. We didn’t worry about meek wage gains because our wealth was growing.
This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.
To contact the author of this story: David Ader at dader2@bloomberg.net
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Robert Burgess at bburgess@bloomberg.net

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Tom Kutzen has more than thirty years experience in the financial markets working across many markets working with all types of participant investors and many luminaries of the financial world. Tom is now sharing his years of experience in the capital markets with individuals and organizations outside the financial services industry in order to help them develop the skills necessary to further their own financial education, financial literacy and economic success. The information in TKSmartworth will cover categories ranging from Volatility; Economic Growth, Trade & Inflation; Equities; Bonds; Currencies; Derivatives; Participants; Central Bank Policy; and more.