Category: Mutual Funds

Question: What Should I Invest In As A First-Time Investor?

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Jun 09, 2016
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Investing, Behavioral Finance, Question of the Day, Index Funds, Mutual Funds, Current Events, Video Resource, Compound Interest
Have your students watch this video from Globe and Mail and use it as a way to kick-off a classroom discussion: Questions for your students: What are the two key assumptions he makes before giving his advice? Why are they important to his strategy? Do you agree with his recommendation? What does he mean by equities? Why does investing consistently help to moderate the swings in the market? Do you think this strategy of monthly investing is a good idea? Want this resource and questions in...

Diversification Will Always Disappoint

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Jun 07, 2016
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Investing, Behavioral Finance, Index Funds, Mutual Funds, Stocks, Article
 This is probably too technical a read (hat tip to CB Insights) for your high school students but might help all of you who hold a diversified portfolio of index funds (or mutual funds for that matter). Three of my larger stock ETF holdings today (Vanguard ETF tickers in parentheses)  are the S&P500 (VOO), International stocks (VXUS) and Emerging Markets stocks (VWO).  The challenge as an investor in holding a portfolio like this is that you are constantly gauging the performance of...

Chart: Who's Winning? Active or Passive Investing?

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Mar 18, 2016
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Question of the Day, Index Funds, Mutual Funds, Current Events, Chart of the Week, Audio Resource
Hat tip to Big Picture Blog for pointing to this Quartz chart on the fund flows have shifted: As the writer of the article Matt Phillips succinctly tweeted “Bogle Won.” Bogle, being Jack Bogle, the founder of Vanguard Group, who pioneered the concept of the index fund. As the chart above shows, since 2007, investors have consistently fled actively managed funds and shifted their assets into index mutual funds and ETFs. Want to learn more about the origins of the Index Fund and...

Chart: Think You Can Beat The Stock Market?

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Mar 14, 2016
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Research, Index Funds, Investing, Mutual Funds, Stocks, Current Events, Chart of the Week
Here’s how “professional” investors have done against their relevant indices over the past 1, 5 and 10 year periods: So, what is the chart telling us…let’s take Large Cap Funds first. These are funds managed by investment professionals investing in larger companies (think Coca-Cola, Google, Apple) who usually charge about 1% of assets (each year) for that privilege. So, how have they done? Well, 66% were outperformed (i.e. that is, fell short) of the S&P500...

Everything You Need to Know About Finance and Investing in 45 Minutes...

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Mar 07, 2016
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Behavioral Finance, Investing, Mutual Funds, Stocks, Video Resource, Compound Interest
This investing video featuring hedge fund investor Bill Ackman had 1.2 million views so I thought I would give it a try: Here are my notes: For the first 21 1/2 minutes, Bill uses a lemonade stand example to provide an overview of the financial aspects of a business (revenue, profits, valuation, growth, pricing, balance sheet, income statements). From 21:30 – 25:00, Bill concentrates on investing, including the following key points: With some compound interest examples, he highlights...

Activity: Is This Good Financial Advice?

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Feb 18, 2016
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Credit Scores, Activity, Question of the Day, Investing, Mutual Funds, Savings, Teaching Strategies, Stocks, Parent Conversations
I believe strongly that one of my roles as teacher is to provide students with the tools to find credible, reliable sources to answer financial questions that they may have. The financial landscape is constantly changing which only increases the importance of finding a group of experts that you can tap into when necessary. One great source of information that I have found over the years is the Bogleheads forum, inspired by the founder of Vanguard, Jack Bogle. What makes it good? Lots of informed...

It's A New Year...New Case Studies from Next Gen Personal Finance

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Jan 08, 2016
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Credit Scores, Activity, Personal Finance, Mutual Funds, Savings, Teaching Strategies, Stocks, New Products, Purchase Decisions, Case Study, Credit Reports, Financial Scams
For those of you who have resolved to bring the case study method to your classroom, we used the holiday break to add FIVE new cases to NGPF Case Study library. For those of you who missed our initial launch in September, here are some answers to your questions: NGPF Case Studies FAQ What is an NGPF Case Study? Here are the main characteristics of an NGPF Case Study: Puts the student in the center as a decision maker Involves students taking on a role, such as peer advisor or counselor,...

Video Resource: Can You Trust A Financial Advisor?

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Dec 23, 2015
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Behavioral Finance, Policy, Question of the Day, Investing, Mutual Funds, Current Events, Video Resource
Incentives are a key part of understanding any financial transaction. What are the incentives of the person sitting on the other side of the table? Does the financial advisor recommending an investment that he/she earns a large commission on really care about the long-term performance of that investment? Students may be interested to learn that advisors today do not have a responsibility to their clients first. But that may be changing…   The NewsHour (5 minute video) reports on the...

The Powers of Persuasion: Lessons in Advertising

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Dec 11, 2015
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Activity, Behavioral Finance, Research, Credit Cards, Mutual Funds, Advertising, Purchase Decisions, Insurance, Video Resource
I saw this US News and World Report article titled “7 Tricks Advertisers Use to Make You Spend Money” and immediately thought it would be fun to pair with a series of advertisements. The assignment is simple: Students review the advertisements (see below) and indicate which of the 7 tricks the advertiser uses (several of the ads may use multiple tricks): Appealing to greed or other vices Exciting our emotions Suggesting that everyone else is doing it Using attractive people in...

Question: Would You Let A Robot Invest Your Money?

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Oct 21, 2015
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Investing, Mutual Funds, Audio Resource
Audio resource from NPR describes how some millenials are choosing “robo-advisors” to manage their investments. Questions for students: What are the advantages of using a “robo-advisor?” How much in fees do American households pay for 401(k)s over their lifetime? Do you think technology can help you be a better investor? Why or why not? How large is “robo-advising” relative to the size of the investment management industry? ...

New Product: Give the Gift of Stock…

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Aug 31, 2015
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Investing, Mutual Funds, Stocks, New Products, Generosity
I just came across this start-up, SparkGift, which allows you to give gifts of stock and index funds to friends and family.  Here  is a summary of their offering from their website: Teach someone about investing Many people don’t have a savings or investment account. Traditional financial firms can make investing complicated. Spark makes investing simple so that young investors can learn the value of investing early and experienced investors can receive gifts that grow their portfolio. A...

NGPF August 25th Webinar: Teach Investing With Engaging Activities and Projects

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Aug 12, 2015
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Index Funds, Investing, Mutual Funds, Teaching Strategies, Stocks, Webinar
Register using this link. Here are the details: Our recent NGPF survey finds that investing is one of the most challenging topics for you to teach your students. With that thought in mind, attending this webinar will enable you to: (1) Learn how to put students at the center of the investment decision-making process for maximum engagement and learning. (2) Understand our investment project design process to make the planning and execution of investing activities easy and stress-free. (3) See...

Why Does Investing Make People So Anxious?

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Aug 11, 2015
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Behavioral Finance, Question of the Day, Research, Index Funds, Investing, Mutual Funds, Stocks, Current Events
Useful survey out of Canada that would probably also have similar results in the United States: The study found nearly all Canadian investors (97 per cent) feel anxiety when thinking about their investments. When thinking of investing and making investment decisions, Canadians are most worried about: — Fear of financial loss (47 per cent overall; 43 per cent for men and 50 per cent for women). — Not receiving a ‘good’ return on their investments (40 per cent overall; 39...

Why Is Investing So Complicated?

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Jul 13, 2015
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Behavioral Finance, Question of the Day, Investing, Mutual Funds, Advertising, Current Events, Article
One of the top NY Times articles columns this weekend came from a Harvard economics professor and was titled “Why Investing Is So Complicated And How To Make It Simpler.”  This will be great article for your students to read to become more familiar with investing terminology and understand why so many are flustered by the thought of making investment choices. As the professor notes at the conclusion of the article, throwing one’s hands up and not doing anything isn’t a...

How to Invest Like LeBron James

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Jun 30, 2015
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Personal Finance, Index Funds, Investing, Mutual Funds, Financial Literacy, Stocks, Current Events, Video Resource, Front Page Spotlight
Andrew and Jessica have had an epic time at the FBLA National Conference in Chicago. We’ve loved the enthusiasm shown by both the student competitors and their advisors. For those who attended our Tuesday or Wednesday workshop, “How to Invest Like LeBron James,” we promised you the slides, and we’re delivering here. The live polling is closed, but you could set up your own poll for free (like we did), using Poll Everywhere (not an official endorsement — just the...