The most important tool we have to fight against entanglements in government or anywhere else is knowledge. While we at Tin Shingle are not publishing an official position on the Occupy Wall Street movement at the moment, we do appreciate their efforts in trying to fix a problem, or what may evolve as layers of problems.
One of the most important things to us is your financial empowerment, and involvement in your company. Yes, you run your own company, but do you...:
- Have an eye on your books for bookkeeping? (we have a class for that)
- Do you strategize with your accountant to save money on taxes or anticipate the future?
- Do you have a retirement plan?
- Do you save for your kid's colleges?
- Do you deduct your childcare as an expense?
- Do you deduct your house cleaning as an office expense if you work from home? But did you know that you can't if you write the check to "Cash" (aka, your house cleaner isn't reporting it on their end).
This may not be what the occupiers are chanting and carrying on their signs, but it's all rooted in the same place. You need to have a grasp on what is going on in your financial world, so that you can keep control of it. Then, you can start spotting when things don't add up.
Therefore, we are making a must-read list based on the resources we read - Sabina, Melissa and myself - for you to form a plan, and stay on plan. Some of these you may already read, so you're already on the right track!
Daily Worth: I read this one (largly based on subject line!) A great, quick read. Easy to digest and do. Not scary at all. And a pretty design. ;)
Galia Gachon's Down to Earth Finance: I reads this one, and have always had on the todo list to take one of Galia's financial planning courses. Galia provides financial advice and planning directly, but you can get her for free in her newsletters where she zeros in on areas you can focus on now. She does offer live and teleclasses.
Forbes.com: Sabina reads newsletters for Forbes that cover women and entrepreneurs.
The Smart Women/Men/Couples Finish Rich series by David Bach. I read this one because Melissa gave me her own copy (which had notes in the margin!). Melissa says: "This book was so powerful for me that not only have I recommended it to friends, but I actually picked up a copy for the 'girls' who worked for me, bought them each a little tabbed folio to keep track of everything and had a real heart to heart with each of them about their financial well-being."
Personal Finance for Dummies: Melissa loves this one. She describes it as: "A basic overview (and all the lingo!) to get you started. Doesn't matter if you don't know what a stock is or how to value a portfolio, PFFD spells it out in laymen's terms. I first read this book about 10 years ago and filled in my 'goals' on the worksheets. It's really interesting to go back now and compare where I am to where I thought I'd be."
New York Times' Small Business section: Melissa loves this section for great headline news.
Wall Street Journal's Business section: I keep tabs on the movements of big (and little) business here. Often times, little headlines turn into front page news, and I was already aware, and familiar with some of the smaller details lost when the story gets bigger.
Wall Street Journal's Marketplace: This kept me sane at my day job. Each day the Wall Street Journal would get delivered to the office. Thanks to its early coverage of Google (and my involvement with SEO), I bought Google stock the day they went public. All two shares. ;) An enlightening source for new business ideas of your own. Usually does a great job covering digital developments at websites, and what retailers are doing online.
Marketplace from American Public Media: I let go of the day (and try not to get stressed during frustrating economic news). They spotlight great stories, such as the blogger who blogged a sentence, and the Occupier who saw it online, made it into a poster, which then got into a picture online, which then the original blogger saw, and then there he was on Marketplace talking about it. Marketplace keeps me informed about economic news, so that when it becomes a big news story on the local news, it's not scary because I'd been informed about it for weeks and had already been processing the information.
What are your favorite financial reads? Please share with us in the Comments below!