Jul 01, 2016

NGPF Podcast: Tim Talks to Mike Finley About Simplifying Your Approach To Investing

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Thanks to Mike Finley for joining the NGPF podcast to discuss his simple approach to investing. For so many educators, investing is their most challenging topic to cover in the personal finance curriculum. With so many investment options, so many talking heads with such varying advice and so much jargon, it is no surprise that many struggle with this topic.  And yet, like so many things in life, sometimes the simplest approach is the best one. Mike shares the investing wisdom he has gained from his thirty years as an avid reader of all things investment-related, as an investor, an educator and author.  You will walk away with some new ideas on how to simplify your investing lessons (and perhaps your own investing strategy too!).  Enjoy!


  • 0:00~0:59 – Introduction
  • 0:59~1:50 – Mike’s current gigs
  • 1:50~3:32 – How Mike got interested in personal finance
  • 3:32~4:34 – The book that influenced Mike and changed his thinking about money
  • 4:34~5:45 – Mike’s financial mistakes
  • 5:45~7:49 – Mike’s approach on teaching investing
  • 7:49~9:40 – Mike explains what a ‘non-correlated asset’ is
  • 9:40~11:50 – Mike explains what a ‘modern portfolio theory’ is
  • 11:50~17:41 – How individual investors fail when they trade individual stocks
  • 17:41~21:29 – Emotions behind investing
  • 21:29~23:32 – Teaching students about bonds
  • 23:32~26:22 – Index funds for students
  • 26:22~28:49 – Advice for appropriate first investment for students
  • 28:49~30:57 – Why Mike recommends Vanguard
  • 30:57~31:30 – A word (or a few words) about Next Gen Personal Finance
  • 31:30~32:54 – Book recommendations
  • 32:54~35:42 – Why people chase performance
  • 35:42~37:51 – Games and simulations that are effective in a classroom
  • 37:51~40:30 – Compounding effect of fees
  • 40:30~42:00 – Three concepts that every student should understand about investing
  • 42:00~43:36  – The ‘pink wig’
  • 43:36~ – Conclusion
Book Recommendations:


Notable quotes
  • “(Financial) Managers do not make you money; they make money off of you”

About the Author

Tim Ranzetta

Tim's saving habits started at seven when a neighbor with a broken hip gave him a dog walking job. Her recovery, which took almost a year, resulted in Tim getting to know the bank tellers quite well (and accumulating a savings account balance of over $300!). His recent entrepreneurial adventures have included driving a shredding truck, analyzing executive compensation packages for Fortune 500 companies and helping families make better college financing decisions. After volunteering in 2010 to create and teach a personal finance program at Eastside College Prep in East Palo Alto, Tim saw firsthand the impact of an engaging and activity-based curriculum, which inspired him to start a new non-profit, Next Gen Personal Finance.

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