5 Distressing Facts You Probably Don’t Know About Social Security
1. Cash Negative: Social Security went cash negative in 2010, five years earlier than anticipated, according to the Brookings Institute.
2. A Big Percentage of the Federal Debt: Social Security adds to the federal debt every year. The current amount of debt that is attributable to “Intragovernment Holdings” (the name given to various federal accounts, including the social security trust fund) is $5.5 trillion and growing. The total U.S. public debt is $19.8 trillion (as of 5.26.17). The social security trusts (and a few other accounts) add up to 27.8% of the debt.
3. Tax Cuts and GDP Growth Are Unlikely to Fix It: According to Fitch Ratings (in a press release in 2016), “The most immediate fiscal challenge is to restore the social security system - largely unaddressed by 2016 budget proposals - to a more sustainable state.” On May 25, 2017, Charles Seville, Fitch Ratings senior director and lead analyst on the US sovereign rating, wrote that “The President’s Budget’s proposal to eliminate the federal deficit and reduce the debt/GDP ratio over 10 years rest on an optimistic long-run growth assumption of 3%, which is unlikely to be realized.” Tax cuts are unlikely to generate a lasting and substantial boost to growth, in Fitch's view.
4. The Disability Fund Dried Up in 2016 and is Borrowing from Social Security. The Disability Insurance Fund has been borrowing from the Old Age and Survivors Insurance (OASI) Trust Fund since 2016 – just before the DI Fund was depleted (source: Social Security Administration). The DI Fund is predicted to be drained dry in 2022 (in just 5 years), if no changes are made.
5. Tapped Out in 17 Years. The Social Security Funds are predicted to be depleted by 2034, unless measures are taken to shore the funds up. The last time this was about to happen, in 1983, Congress saved the day with measures that are not predicted to work as well this time. This also assumes that the fund depletion doesn’t move faster than predicted, as happened when the Social Security system went cash negative in 2010.
With one bonus, Social Security Note.
Should You Wait Until Age 70 to Retire?
It’s easy to see why the government website and many mainstream media outlets encourage people to wait until 70 to retire, under the rationale that waiting offers you a larger annual stipend. Waiting to retire helps the system stay afloat. However, if you do the math, then you realize it takes 12-20 years to make up the amount you forego when you wait that long. (If you wait until 67 to retire, instead of age 62, you could be giving up $100,000. If you wait until age 70, you could be passing up over $200,000.) If you’re an active income-earner, it won’t add up to retire early, when you could earn your full salary instead. However, if you’re out of work, the early retirement could be a Godsend.
Incidentally, the Brookings Institute reminds us that public pensions went cash negative over 25 years ago, in 1985. (2003 was one year when distributions were less than contributions, however, the majority of the time has been in the red.)
The bottom line is that if you’re counting on getting a fat check from your company or the government in retirement (or disability), your expectations are likely to hit a reality check in the years to come. Many pensioners, particularly those in the auto manufacturing and airlines industries, have already learned this the hard way – having received a big cut in the pension, health care and other post employment benefits that they were promised, but are not receiving. Private pension promises are rewritten and cut in bankruptcy proceedings. Politicians are having a hard time announcing reform to the public pension system, which is one of the big reasons why the U.S. debt is increasing each year.
The bankruptcies in the private system remind us that borrowing from Peter to pay Paul always has an expiration date. Let’s hope we can all come together to resolve the problems before that happens. Until then, it’s a good idea to have a Plan B for your retirement future. There are many ways that you can do a better job of providing for your future, while living a richer life today, by shoring up your assets, and making smarter choices in your energy, budget and savings expenses and strategy. Call 310-430-2397 to learn more about Natalie Pace’s:
Good math goes a long way in today’s world. It has been fueling the rise in the stock market, and it is also helping to make ends meet for the U.S. Federal Government. For instance, if you wait to retire until you are 67, the Social Security Administration will give you XYZ benefit level, and even more if you wait to 70. On the face of it, waiting looks like a good idea. However, if you do the math, you’ll realize that it will take you 20 years to make up the losses of waiting until you’re 67 to retire – longer than most people live. (Something that is never mentioned in the glossy brochure or blog.) That’s great for the U.S. (and “us”), but not so good for you individually, particularly if you are 62 and out of work.
And that’s the issue with stocks, too. The boom/bust economy that we’ve been embroiled in during this new Millennium can be great in the short term, but costs everyone dearly in the correction (which has been happening in an 8-year cycle since 2000). In 2000, Dot Com companies were given the cheap, easy money, resulting in a 78% correction in the NASDAQ Composite Index that took 15 years to recover from. Prior to the Great Recession, money flowed into liar loans, subprime and real estate, costing the Dow Jones Industrial Average a drop of 55%. The American taxpayer had to bail out the banks, insurance companies and brokerages, and over seven million people lost their homes. 5.4 million homes are still seriously underwater and the debt in the developed world has become astronomical (at $20 trillion in U.S. public debt and over $65 trillion in U.S. total debt and loans). This hits Main Street the hardest, since the “smart money” always moves out first.
So, where is the cheap, easy money flowing these days? Who is benefiting, and what will be the ultimate cost? The short answer is that corporations are getting the bulk of the money. They are buying back their own stock, which pushes up the stock market. Just as Internet companies couldn’t get to cash break even in 2000 (despite an inflow of investment money), many legacy companies are suffering from sluggish sales and drowning in debt, pensions and other post employment benefits – something that borrowing money doesn’t correct. Large corporations have been borrowing money very cheaply and using it to push up the value of their own stock, rather than investing in new products, people or productivity. Here’s how the financial engineering works.
Corporate Buybacks Look Great on Paper Because…
The Share Price Stays High
Earnings Look Higher Than They Are
Price to Earnings Ratio Looks like a Bargain
However, what is really happening is that …
Share Price Stays High
The share price is staying high because the company’s own buying makes it look like the stock is popular.
Earnings Look Higher Than they Are
Many companies buy back their own stock in order to make their quarterly earnings look good. How does this work? When you reduce the number of shares (as happens when corporations buy shares and take them out of circulation), the earnings per share goes up, even if the revenue (sales) is actually flat or even lower than it was a year ago.
Price to Earnings Ratio Looks like a Bargain
The Price to Earnings Ratio also looks more attractive when the share count is reduced. Investors think that the stock is on sale, and might be tempted to buy at what they perceive is a bargain price.
According to Howard Silverblatt, the senior index analyst for S&P Dow Jones Indices, corporate buybacks have boosted EPS by 20% over the last 4 years.
The Smart Money Exits Quietly, First
Corporate buybacks were down in 2016 and 2015, from the highs set in 2014 (which were on par with the highs set in 2007, before the Great Recession). The last two consecutive declines in buybacks occurred in 2008 and 2009 (when the Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped to a low of 6547).
In spring of 2005 (two years before the subprime crisis), home builder CEOs were selling hundreds of millions of their company stock, including Angelo Mozillo at Countrywide, the Toll Brothers and the KB Home CEO. Over the last year, Apple insiders have taken profits on over $610 million in stock. Microsoft executives and directors have cashed out over $4.5 billion. Jeff Bezos (the CEO of Amazon) has sold over $1.7 billion of Amazon stock.
The First Signs of Distress: Retail Bankruptcies
The retail bankruptcies of the last few years have shocked consumers, but haven’t weighed on the stock markets – yet. Retailers continue to be at risk, with the threat of bankruptcy in the next 12-24 months looming for Sears Holding Company, Claire’s Stores, True Religion Apparel, 99 Cents Only Stores, Nebraska Book Company (for the 2nd time in five years), Nine West Holdings and Rue21 (source: Fitch Ratings). Payless declared bankruptcy on April 4, 2017. The loss of income for mall REITs can’t be good. Publicly traded mall REITs are heavily indebted, with Taubman Centers Inc. carrying a debt to equity ratio of 51 (source: Money.MSN.com).
No One Ever Predicts a Recession
In 2007, even as mortgage banks were going out of business in droves and the auto manufacturers were hanging on with backdoor borrowing from the U.S. Treasury, Treasury Secretary Henry Paulsen was still reassuring investors that the subprime mess wouldn’t affect the overall economy (source: Bloomberg, July 26, 2007). GDP growth predictions for 2009 were still 2-3% growth in June of 2008, even though Bear Stearns had already collapsed and Lehman Brothers, Washington Mutual, Merrill Lynch, AIG and many of the largest U.S. banks, insurance companies and brokerages were teetering on the edge of bankruptcy and negotiating behind closed doors for emergency capital to save their assets. Even after the bailouts, the October 2008 economic projections were still touting GDP growth. It wasn’t until January 28, 2009, just a month and a half before the bottom of the Great Recession, that the GDP growth predictions finally reflected negative growth. If you wait for the headlines that we’re in a recession, it’s too late to protect yourself.
What’s Really Going On Behind the Scenes
The basic analysis of what is really going on behind the scenes today is that everyone in most of the developed world (with rare exceptions), including governments, corporations and individuals, are borrowing from Peter to pay Paul. According to the Urban Institute, 1/3 of Americans with a credit score are in debt collections. It doesn’t take any amount of data to know that most of the people you know are struggling financially, buying less of everything, taking fewer vacations and being forced to come up with creative solutions for housing.
Financial engineering (fuzzy math) only takes things so far. When the correction occurs, there isn’t a warning. In fact, there is always a lot of high-level rhetoric reassuring everyone, while behind the scenes the smart money is cashing in as much as they can as fast as they can.
And that is why I’m encouraging everyone to make sure that you are safe and protected now. If you lost more than half in the Great Recession, and you haven’t made any changes to your strategy, you are as vulnerable today as you were then. The safe side of your portfolio is even more vulnerable. There are safe, easy, time-efficient, time-proven strategies that earned gains in the last two recessions, outperformed the bull markets in between and are easy-as-a-pie-chart. You can also save thousands of dollars every year with smarter energy, budgeting and investing choices (without a loss of life style), when you stop making the billionaires rich at your own expense. Wisdom is the cure.
Call 310-430-2397, or email info @ NataliePace.com to learn more. Join me on my teleconference this Thursday at 9 am PT (noon ET) for an interactive conversation on financial engineering, where I am happy to answer your questions. If you want to protect your assets before summer (and frolic in the warm Atlantic with new friends), then join me at my June 10-12, 2017 Oceanfront Florida Financial Empowerment Retreat. Only a few seats remain available.
Should You Sell in May and Go Away?
As we enter the 9th year of the current bull market (something akin to unicorns, historically), it’s definitely time to ask ourselves, “Should I sell in May and go away on holiday?” Is this the time to take profits, count blessings, get a little defensive and take an epic vacation? Below are a few considerations.
And here are details on each of these considerations.
2. How Do the Markets Perform May-October Under First Time Presidents?
As you can see from the chart below, the performance is more affected by the business cycle, than it is by the President. President George W. Bush had a terrible time his first year. However, he inherited an economy that was ripe for a recession. The U.S. had experienced eight years of prosperity under President Clinton. NASDAQ was a bubble that was ready to pop. When President Obama took office, the U.S. was near the bottom of the Great Recession (the exact bottom was March 9, 2009). There was nowhere to go but up. This year marks the 9th year of the current bull market – a difficult time for market gains, historically.
3. How’s the Economy Doing These Days?
The predictions are for very slow growth, at just 2.1% GDP growth for 2017. (No one ever predicts a recession.) The 1st quarter 2017 GDP growth was the lowest it has been in years, at 0.07%. Other issues include: $20 trillion in public debt, over $66 trillion in total U.S. Debt and Loans, and business, governments and people who are borrowing from Peter to pay Paul to try and make ends meet.
4. What Positive or Negative Events Are on the Horizon?
The current Budget funds government only through September 30, 2017. The U.S. Treasury Secretary is currently using extraordinary means to pay bills because the Debt Ceiling has been hit again. If the Debt Ceiling isn’t raised before the U.S. runs out of money to pay bills, then Fitch Ratings might downgrade the U.S. credit. The new budget and Debt Ceiling will have to be resolved in September to avoid all of this. The last time that Congress raised the Debt Ceiling, House Speaker John Boehner lost his job. He had to enlist the support of Democrats to get the Debt Ceiling raised. While the bipartisan Budget that was just passed makes it seem possible that all of this can get done, everyone is mum on the issues. If you wait for the headlines this fall, and they turn out to be contentious or problematic, it will be too late to protect yourself.
5. What’s Fueling the Bull Market?
Free, easy money (for corporations and countries, but not individuals or small businesses). Corporate buybacks. Financial engineering. For more on this, tune into my May 25, 2017 teleconference. Get call in instructions and listen back 24/7 on demand at http://www.BlogTalkRadio.com/NataliePace.
6. What Other Opportunities Exist for Investors?
The best opportunities today are safe, income-producing hard assets that you purchase for a good price. Real estate is more expensive in many areas than it was before the real estate bubble burst in the Great Recession. So, income property is not necessarily a good price right now (although it might be in some areas that have not experienced a return to the pre-Recession highs). Most of the best areas of opportunities lie in purchases you can make now to reduce the money that you spend monthly on big ticket items like housing, transportation, electricity, insurance, medical insurance, etc. (This is another major area of focus at my Investor Educational Retreats.)
7. What’s at Stake?
The last two times that the U.S. economy went 8 years without a correction, the economy crashed. Investors lost more than half in the Great Recession (and over 7 million people also lost their homes), and more than 3/4ths in the Dot Com Recession. This economy is far more fragile than it was in either of those two recessions, with all of the debt that abounds.
Performance of the Dow Jones Industrial Average Index from Oct. 2007 to March 2009
Performance of the NASDAQ Composite Index from March 2000 to October 2002.
Access my teleconference, "Should You Sell in May and Go Away?" at http://www.BlogTalkRadio.com/NataliePace/2017/05/05/sell-in-may-and-go-away.
About Natalie Pace
Natalie Wynne Pace is the co-creator of the Earth Gratitude project and the author of the Amazon bestsellers The Gratitude Game, The ABCs of Money and Put Your Money Where Your Heart Is (aka You Vs. Wall Street). She has been ranked as a No. 1 stock picker, above over 835 A-list pundits, by an independent tracking agency (TipsTraders). The ABCs of Money remained at or near the #1 Investing Basics e-book on Amazon for over 3 year (in its vertical).
Rich people know and understand the basics of money, and how to make the best out of any situation. It’s like playing tennis with Serena Williams. She can ace a tennis ball like a missile off your head, lob, volley or fake you out. She’s been practicing endless hours every day, and has thousands of tools at hand that you’ve never heard of.
There are many times when you’re going to be standing there stunned, wondering what just happened, as another ball zings past your face before you’ve even seen it. If you’ve ever felt that way about the economy, like say in 2008 and 2000, that’s what’s happening. The “smart” money knows when a house of cards is about to fall. The CEOs of KB Home, Countrywide, Toll Brothers and Goldman Sachs (and many more) all sold hundreds of millions of dollars of stock between 2005 and 2008 – before the Great Recession. It may be bittersweet to make money when others are devastated, but it is certainly better than losing.
In finance, amateurs get wiped out in recessions. Everyone makes money in bull markets, just as anyone can float downstream on a slow-moving river. It’s the white-water rapids that let you know, as Warren Buffett says, “Who has been swimming naked.”
As we enter the 9th year of the current bull market, and the white-water rapids of the next recession become nearer, here are some very important facts to consider.
Below are a few ways that Rich Americans protect themselves to rise above tough times and soar when the wind is at their back… Billionaires and Royals place a priority on family, on keeping their hard-earned money and on earning money while they sleep. If you know the tricks, you can embrace and adopt them, too.
10 Money Secrets Billionaires and Royals Know.
The rich are getting richer. The middle class is getting squeezed. And the lower class is still at the back of the line. You can change all of this by learning the ABCs of Money that we all should have received in high school. Call 310-430-2397 to learn more now.
If you want to get safe before the end of summer, join me at my next Investor Educational Retreat.
In the updated 2017 nest egg pie charts, I have an important alert for the safe side. Bonds and money market funds are vulnerable. FDIC-insured cash is safer. Safe, income-producing hard assets that you purchase for a good price are best. Why do I say that and what does that mean? (Click to get your own personalized nest egg pie chart in my free web app.) Is there any safe investment that pays a good return (like 20-40%)?
Bonds are vulnerable. They have already begun losing value, and in the worst-case scenario they become toilet paper or illiquid (the airline industry, auto manufacturers and Greek bond “restructurings” are examples). In today’s Debt World, this is a real consideration. Read my blog, “The U.S. Treasury Secretary is Using Extraordinary Means to Pay Bills” for more information on the risks of investing during such a highly-leveraged time. There are two aphorisms to remember when it comes to bonds today.
“I am more concerned about the return of my money than the return on my money,” Roy Rogers.
“Never reach for yield.” It’s hard to know who first coined this one. (If you know, please Tweet me.) But it has been said by many a wise woman and man over the years.
Money market funds now have redemption gates and liquidity fees. That means exactly what it sounds like. There could be times when you have to wait or pay to have access to your money.
Cash is vulnerable, too. When there is a shift in global currency trends, it takes a lot more cash to buy things. Inflation can whip up out of nowhere. We’ve already experienced that in housing, where many markets are simply unaffordable to 90% of the population.
So what are safe, income producing hard assets that you can purchase for a good price?
Let me stress that every single word in that sentence counts. The first thing that you might be thinking is buying a house and renting it out on AirBnB. I’ve known many a exasperated landlord who would warn against it. You definitely have to know what you’re getting into, including renter rights, before you become an income-property owner. You’ll also need to set up a business entity to protect yourself, and account for expenses and payments to independent contractors. But income property is not the first or best hard asset to purchase! (Be sure to read this blog to the bottom.)
When I did my first Investor Empowerment Retreat in Cocoa Beach, Florida back in 2013, as we were playing the Billionaire Game® on the beach at dawn, we noticed a group of guys dressed up like Vikings. They were there to launch a satellite at nearby Cape Canaveral, and were doing an early-morning team building exercise out on the sand. (Drinking? Just kidding.)
Later that day, as we discussed the important considerations for purchasing a home or apartment building to rent out, I mentioned that I would like to buy a beach house in Cocoa Beach to rent out to Elon Musk and his satellite launch crew, when they come into town for space launches. At the time, the Cocoa Beach Beachfront Hilton rooms were going for about $99 a night. Today, just four years later, the rooms at the Cocoa Beach Hilton are often selling for $199 a night or higher. Why? Because there are so many satellite launches coming into town.
Since 2013, another consideration has been rising into the mix for Florida real estate – sunny day flooding. The entire Eastern seaboard is vulnerable to rising sea levels. According to the former Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus, the naval base at Norfolk, Virginia is at risk if we don’t slow the rate of sea level rise. Sarasota realtors must disclose that rising sea levels could become a problem in that area within the next 15 years. Clearly, you don’t want to just have a great idea, and then purchase something that you might be stuck with until it is covered in water. Climate change is one of the reasons why I didn’t purchase in Cocoa Beach, Florida in 2013. Real estate is not a liquid asset (or one that works well underwater). You have to have a 10-year horizon at minimum when you think about income property.
There are a lot of homes in Cocoa Beach that were built during the first Space Race in the 1960s. They are pretty run down, and optimum for renovating. Due to high foreclosures and bank-owned property in the area, they could be a steal. Are they vulnerable to climate change? Is it worth it? These are some of the things that we are able to examine firsthand at the Florida retreat, which we aren’t able to do at the California retreats, where real estate has become unaffordable.
Some of the best income-producing hard assets aren’t those that earn you an income, but are those that save you money. Life has become unaffordable for many Americans, due to the high cost of basic needs, like housing, transportation, gasoline, electricity and food. There are many ways that you can invest and save, literally, thousands of dollars every year in your annual budget.
As just one example:
If you purchase solar panels for $20,000,
Take a tax credit for 1/3 of the costs,
And your electricity costs drop to $30/month, from $300/month,
It will take you four years to pay off the $13,200.
Thereafter your “yield” or return on investment is 24.5%, with $3,240/annual savings on electricity.
If you switch to an electric car and “fuel” it up with solar energy instead of gasoline, that could save you an additional $2,000 or more each year, putting the annual savings at $5,240 (or more), with a yield of 40% annually.
You just don’t get anything close to that ROI on any bond. Even junk bonds only pay 6%.
One important tip: always do an air-test on your home, insulate properly, and switch your light bulbs to LEDs, before you purchase your own energy system (like solar). Reducing your energy consumption is one simple trick that can cut your energy costs by up to 80% on its own!
These are just a few examples of how learning The ABCs of Money that we all should have received in high school transforms our life. Most people report earning back the price of the retreat in the first few months in budget savings alone. One retreat attendee is saving $20,000 each year! That allows you to live a richer life today, provide far better for your future, take more bucket list vacations and sleep better at night.
Wisdom is the cure.
Join me for an intimate, empowering investor educational, boardroom retreat in the beautiful beach town of Cocoa Beach, Florida, June 10-12, 2017 for a life transforming, fun 3-days, where you’ll learn great strategies for protecting what you have, keeping more of what you earn and thriving with a well-designed, easy-as-a-pie-chart investment strategy! Register by March 31, 2017 to receive the best price. Get a great discount when you come with a friend. Call 310-430-2397 to learn more.
Debt Ceiling Hit March 16, 2017.
Treasury Secretary Uses Extraordinary Measures to Pay Bills.
Today, while headlines focused on the Federal Reserve raising interest rates 25 basis points to a hair's breath over 0 (up to 1%), the U.S. debt continues to spiral out of control. The Debt Ceiling was hit again, on March 16, 2017. The U.S. Treasury Secretary has already begun using “extraordinary measures” to pay bills until the debt ceiling is raised (again). Analysts predict that tax revenues and financial tools could run out by August or September. (In the last few Debt Ceiling crises, they’ve held until October.) If the Debt Ceiling is lifted before the Extraordinary Means run out, then there won’t be much hoopla. If it isn’t, the U.S. is facing a potential credit downgrade from Fitch Ratings.
According to a Fitch Ratings press release issued on March 15, 2017, “Fitch has previously made it clear that reaching the so-called "x date", when the Treasury's scope for extraordinary measures runs out, without raising the debt ceiling, is a negative U.S. sovereign rating trigger… In this scenario, Fitch would review the U.S. sovereign rating, and may judge these developments to be incompatible with AAA status.” The message to Congress and the current Administration couldn’t be more clear: raise the debt ceiling before fall, or risk the U.S. AAA rating.
What’s a bit heartbreaking about this is how the debt-spiral is already affecting regular people. On December 8, 2016, the IRS issued a press release saying that there will be a delay on refunds for anyone who is claiming the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and the Additional Child Tax Credit (ACTC). If the Debt Ceiling isn’t raised by “x date,” the U.S. will be late in paying Social Security, government employees, contractors, pensioners, etc. There is a bill in Congress to prioritize debt service and social security payments.
Having the U.S. issue IOUs to government employees would be quite alarming at home and abroad. Thus, everyone expects the Debt Ceiling to be lifted before any of the fallout starts. However, that's not what happened last time, or the time before that. In 2015, Speaker John Boehner (R) had to get Democrats to raise the Debt Ceiling, and then he lost his job. In 2011, The U.S. Congress waited until hours before the Treasury ran out of money before raising the Debt Ceiling. On August 5, 2011, Standard and Poor's downgraded the U.S. credit as a result of that. gold soared. Stocks sank... until the currency printing machine cranked out more bills and loaned them out to the corporations (who bought back their own stock, prompting another Wall Street rise). As we all know from our personal budgets, borrowing from Peter to pay Paul isn't good husbandry.
Public Debt is $20 Trillion. Total Debt is $66 trillion.
Another astonishing fact is the U.S. public debt is an eye-popping $20 trillion, while the total U.S. debt and loans are an intergalactic $66 trillion (almost). That includes bank debt (including left over liabilities from the Great Recession), $12.6 trillion in consumer debt (housing, auto, student loans, credit cards), $6 trillion nonfinancial corporate debt, $3 trillion in state and local debt (not including employee retirement funds) and the public debt.
Most people are just looking at the recent rally in the stock market as an indicator of the economy, without examining the fundamentals that are fueling that rise. There were bubbles in real estate before the Great Recession, and in Dot Coms before that recession. Both times, the headlines were screaming about all of the money that people were making in real estate and Internet stocks. Both times, there were reasons why this time was going to be different. In fact, the last two times that the stock market went eight years without a correction, investors lost more than half. The NASDAQ dropped 78% between 2000-2002, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 55% in the Great Recession (to a low of 6547!). Is the current bull market a true recovery with more potential, or is there something else going on? Is clear that the U.S. government is borrowing from Peter to pay Paul. (That’s why we have to keep raising the Debt Ceiling and borrowing more money to pay our bills.) Are corporations doing that, too?
What is Financial Engineering?
With interest rates near zero, companies can borrow money very cheaply. Apple, a company with over $246 billion in cash ($230 billion of it offshore), borrows at less than 1%, and uses the money to pay dividends and to buy back stock, without being taxed on their offshore income. Heavily indebted companies, like auto manufacturers and other legacy brands, can borrow at just 6%, even though many of them owe a lot more money than the company is worth. The companies then use that ‘free’ easy money to purchase their own stocks. Buybacks reduce the amount of shares outstanding, which makes the earnings per share go up, even if earnings are flat or negative. When the earnings per share goes up, the price to earnings ratio goes down, making the company look like a “good buy.” The one time that corporate buybacks were higher than they are now was in 2007. You got it, right before the Great Recession.
Are We Living on Borrowed Time?
The risks that accompany the kind of astronomical debt that the U.S. (and much of the developed world) is embroiled in, and having so many government agencies, people and corporations borrowing from Peter to pay Paul, is something that will impact you directly (if it hasn't already). The powers that be hope that we can just cycle through this period, much as we did post-World War II, another period of extremely high debt in the U.S. That time, we had massive innovation on our side, and the U.S. dollar had just replaced the British pound as the global reserve currency. The U.S. is still making products that the world loves (the Internet is a strong suit), but the global currency is now a basket, with many countries choosing to trade between themselves in their own currency. And GDP growth is barely breathing. The Atlanta Federal Reserve Bank is predicting that 1Q 2017 GDP growth will under 1%. The Bureau of Economic Analysis will release the advance estimates of 1Q 2017 GDP growth on April 28, 2017.
We’ve seen quite a lot of tragedies that have occurred as a result of people, corporations, etc., borrowing from Peter to pay Paul. This “liar loan” mentality was the flaky foundation of the real estate meltdown in 2006. The auto manufacturing and airline industries have had most of the major companies experiencing slumping sales, increased costs and slim profit margins, resulting in Chapter 11 bankruptcy. MF Global, a financial services company helmed by Jon Corzine, a former Senator/Governor/chairman of Goldman Sachs, was a casualty of the Greek bond crisis. We don’t know the names or the stories of the investors who suffered financially in Detroit or Stockton, at the airlines, automakers or MF Global, bond and stock holders of AIG or banks in 2008, or any of the other corporate bankruptcies, like we do the victims of Bernie Madoff. However, they are likely as heartbreaking. And it is worth it to make sure that you don’t become one of them.
How Long Do Investors Have Before the Next Downturn?
Until the buyers dry up, and the sellers freak out about that. A credit downgrade by Fitch Ratings could spark that. Retail or other corporate bankruptcies could fire up the sellers. A terrible GDP report will spook buyers.
Main Street investors always get the memo after Wall Street insiders. (Homebuilder CEOs sold hundreds of millions of dollars of their own stock starting in early 2005, when Main Street homebuyers were still in a frenzy.) Wall Street insiders know about the Fitch Ratings warning, about X date, about extraordinary means, etc., and are already planning their strategy based upon what happens in the DC beltway. That’s why you have to get a better plan now. If you wait for the headline to act, it will be too late.
Which Companies, Cities, Etc. Will Be the First to Drop?
Follow the money – or the lack of it… Any entity that is spending more than it earns, and amassing debt to pay bills, is vulnerable. Getting that information is actually as easy as a few clicks! Once you learn this, it is far less time and money than you are currently spending trying to get this info in the “news.” It’s all publicly available. You just have to know where to look.
Never reach for yield. Preserving capital is paramount in a Debt World, followed by a policy of securing safe, income-producing hard assets that you purchase for a good price. This is easy-as-a-pie chart. (I have free web apps and bestselling books that can help. If you want to learn and implement these strategies now, attend my Florida Retreat in June 2017. Call 310-430-2397 to learn more now.)
REITs: Many private-placement REITs are paying 6% or higher dividend – putting them in junk bond territory. What a lot of unsuspecting investors don’t know is that companies that are paying that high of a dividend have been cash negative for years, and are at risk of having to restructure their equity and debt. Stockholders typically lose everything when companies declare bankruptcy. You don’t want to take on high risk for a measly 6% return.
Retail: In September of 2016, Fitch Ratings identified 7 U.S. retailers at risk of bankruptcy over the next 12-24 months: Sears, Claire’s Stores, True Religion Apparel, 99 Cents Only Stores, Nebraska Book Company, Nine West and Rue 21. Aeropostale and Pacific Sunwear avoided liquidation in 2016, after their Chapter 11 filings. Half of the recent retail bankruptcies closed up shop for good, versus 17% across all corporates. Stock and bondholders lose in that scenario.
50+-year-old companies: The higher the dividend, the higher the risk. Legacy brands with pension and other post employment benefit obligations are the most vulnerable.
Autos and Airlines: These legacy industries are always vulnerable because they have very high debt, massive employee obligations, low profit margins and flat (or negative) revenue growth. Autos have seen a marked increase in defaults on their subprime loans. A rise in interest rates, high levels of inventory and more defaults will impact auto sales. Airlines are only slightly profitable with oil prices at 10-year lows. When oil prices rise, that puts many airlines in the red.
The Bottom Line (That’s Not Making Headlines)
Americans are carrying more debt today than they did before the Great Recession, with no measurable wage growth to offset that. The economy has relied upon massive financial rescues by the government, low interest rates, large deficits and astronomical debt to show any economic growth at all. What will have to happen to shift this unsustainable trend is the opposite. We’ll need more exports – to continue to invent the products and services that the world desires and purchases – to reduce debt and to live within our means. In other words, the current predicament for the U.S. as a nation and us personally cannot be solved solely by earning more, though that is a piece of the equation.
The Spring Rally
Anytime there is a herd mentality, you have to worry about getting crushed. Today's herd mentality is dividends and stock market gains. High-dividend stocks (and REITs) are being sold as safe, even though they are some of the riskiest investments. Safe investments have little chance of capital loss. The stock market is in a rally because this is the season for rallies, not because there is great economic news on the horizon. Make sure your safe, diversified plan is in place before summer.
You can live a rich life, have more money for bucket list vacations, plan far better for your future, and save thousands every year in your annual budget. It starts with making sure that you are not putting too much at risk in today’s Debt World. It’s equally important to make sure that you are not borrowing from Peter to pay Paul in your own life. Individuals don’t get the same interest rates as corporation (except for housing). If you’re borrowing on your credit card, the interest rate could over 20%! There are ways to live within your means, protect your assets from the next downturn and make money while you sleep. As we enter the 9th year of the current bull market, this is more important now than ever. Wisdom is the cure.
Join me in Florida this June at my Financial Empowerment Retreat, where you will learn the time-proven, easy-as-a-pie chart nest egg strategies and the Thrive Budget. Call 310-430-2397 to learn more now.
I discussed the Debt Ceiling on My BlogTalkRadio show on March 16, 2017. Listen back 24/7 on demand at: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/nataliepace.
About Natalie Pace
Natalie Pace is the co-creator of the Earth Gratitude Project and the bestselling author of The Gratitude Game, The ABCs of Money and Put Your Money Where Your Heart Is (aka You Vs. Wall Street in paperback). The Earth Gratitude project urges all of us to honor Mother Earth on April 22nd with at least one hour of personal net zero. Get additional information at http://earthgratitude.org/. Learn more about Natalie Pace at http://www.nataliepace.com/.
Will the Snap Inc. IPO be a spectacle, or will the disappearing app offer a disappearing IPO? To put the Snap IPO into better perspective, I lined up some of the key metrics alongside the uber-successful Google IPO on August 19 of 2004.
The next gen social media platform Snapchat is now known as Snap Inc., a camera company. Snap Inc. intends to reinvent the camera because, according to the IPO filing, it is their “greatest opportunity to improve the way people live and communicate.” Hmmm. With that being said, you’d expect their first camera product to be drop-dead impressive.
The attractive models wearing the new Snap Inc. Spectacles video recorder sunglasses are definitely eye candy. But a tech company has to be far more than skin deep. Twitter has proven that even when a tech company offers something unique and does it well (and is the 45th President’s favorite late-night toy), they need to be cash positive to catch an investor’s eye. Snap is struggling in both areas. Unique they have in spades. It’s the technology and cash burn that are of concern.
Spectacles are fashion-forward sunglasses with a video recorder that gives a unique “first-person shooter” perspective. Spectacles started out as one of the hottest tech products of the year, going for as high as $1000/pair on eBay in November 2016. Since then, however, in only three months, the average sales price on eBay has dropped down to retail – at $130/pair. You can easily purchase your own Spectacles at Spectacles.com.
When it comes to actual performance, the reviews of Spectacles fall flat. They look good. They’re fun. But the novelty wears off rather quickly. According to Avery Hartmans of Business Insider, “If you're buying them for everyday use, you might be disappointed… The camera is below-average.” Problems include that the camera doesn’t record well in low-light situations. HD is an option, but requires a lot of extra work. The social media side is stronger than the actual video capability, i.e. you might want to Snap Video a concert or a goofy stunt, but probably not a scenic landscape. Sometimes your hair flies in front of the camera. Who would dream of surfing or skydiving with Spectacles for their videos? The reviews and user experience of Spectacles is very different from the launch of, say, the iPhone. The novelty of smart phone technology is still jaw-dropping a decade later.
So, does this doom the Snap Inc. IPO, which is scheduled to price on March 1, 2017 (Wednesday) after the markets close? Will investors want to court a company when their premiere product is more of a beautiful one-night stand? Snap Inc. revised their projections downward for the IPO on Feb. 17, 2017, according to Reuters, but still believes the market value of the company will come in at $19.5-$22.3 billion. Is Snap Inc. worth twice as much as Twitter and $20 billion more than GoPro?
Below is where Snap lines up with users, compared to Twitter, Facebook and Google. As you can see by the media metrics, most Millennials are more active on Google, Facebook and Twitter. FYI: Facebook’s video/photo app Instagram is included with the parent company metrics.
Comscore.com December 2016
Snap has one very attractive asset, which might seduce investors – revenue growth. In 2015, revenue was about $58.7 million. Last year, the company brought in $404.5 million – a jump of about 6.9 times. That is drop-dead impressive. If you go to the Snap app, there are actually more ads now than status updates. The ads are inviting, rather than offensive, on first look. Snap’s chief strategy officer Imran Khan boasts that Snap lets users "play with brands." Of course, that assumes that customers actually want to be sold stuff while they’re being entertained – a premise that users have been trying to escape for the past century. I, for one, didn’t stick around to play. When I found myself bombarded with ads, after I tried to look at some behind-the-scenes video of the Oscars Best Picture debacle, I ended my search abruptly and have been reticent to try checking out other updates since.
To put the Snap IPO into better perspective, I lined up some of the key metrics alongside the Google IPO on August 19 of 2004.
Data Crunch by Natalie Pace.
The problem with novelty products is that the shine can fade fast. The issue with companies that are having difficulty defining themselves, and are being forced to monetize quickly, so that the insiders can turn their paper profits into houses and cars, is that the customers may feel sold out. Since the chief camera product is not impressive – though it looks cool – and the main monetization plan is still advertising, it seems like a major misstep for Snap to be redefining itself as a camera company right before the IPO. Even a popular camera company like GoPro is only valued at $1.4 billion – not $20 billion.
Snap is hot and perceived as a very innovative company, so it could get a bump from chatter on the investor boards. However, whereas Google took off like a rocket and has rewarded investors with a 10 times return on investment, Snap could easily be more like the Groupon IPO, which roared onto the scene and then lost 80% of its value over the coming year, and has been at the bottom of its trading range ever since.
Whether Snap remains a “camera company” or returns to social media, it has little hope of competing with Facebook and Twitter (or even GoPro) without major technology innovation. Can a group led by entertainment executives and bankers hope to compete with tech giants backed by Andreessen Horowitz and Facebook? MySpace tried that route back in 2006, and it wasn’t a happy ending. Perhaps the best move that Mark Zuckerberg made was to uproot himself from Harvard and plant himself in Silicon Valley. The laid-back, look-cool Southern California vibe will only work if the executives discover the next Satoshi Nakamoto to run technology and innovation, and that’s less likely to happen on Venice Beach than it is in Palo Alto.
In short, I’d let tomorrow’s Snap Inc. IPO update disappear, and check back later in the year (late September) to see if goofy and cool has become something more substantive, at a better valuation and price.
Cut Your Tax Bill in Half! 8 Tips.
A lot of you have heard me say, “Stop making everyone else rich, including the tax man, the debt collector, the landlord, the gas station, the utility company, the insurance salesman, etc.” Tax season is the perfect time to start keeping more of your dough and living a richer life as a result. Below are 8 tips to cut your tax bill in half (or more).
8 Tips to Stop Making Everyone Else Rich!
These tips will help you put your best leg forward on the path to financial freedom. See the list below for what applies to you, and then details on each tax credit/deduction below the list. Go to IRS.gov for additional information.
1. Health Savings Accounts.
2. IRA Contributions.
3. Mortgage Interest Deduction.
4. Student Loan Interest Deduction.
5. Qualified Education Expenses.
6. EVs, Energy Efficiency and Clean Power Tax Credits.
7. Charitable Contributions.
8. Refund Delays.
1. Health Savings Accounts. Here’s another way to increase your assets and beautify your bottom line, while giving less to Uncle Sam AND the insurance company, for a triple tax benefit. Health Savings Accounts work best for healthy people. An HSA, combined with a high deductible health insurance plan, could save you thousands of dollars in insurance premiums each year, offers a tax credit of $3,350 for individuals (and $6,750 for families) and can be invested for tax-free gains. There is no penalty if you need to withdraw for medical expenses, and the money grows each year, becoming your best long-term health plan. Opening an HSA with a brokerage will offer you more investment options than opening the account with an insurance company or bank.
2. IRA Contributions: You can still contribute to your IRA and receive credit for 2016, up until April 18, 2017. (Roth IRAs are not tax deductible.) Should you opt for Roth or traditional? Most people earn more in their working years – when they can most benefit from the tax credit – and less in their retirement years. According to the IRS, “Amounts in your traditional IRA, including earnings, generally are not taxed until distributed to you.” The IRA contribution helps in at least four ways. It’s a tax credit. Increasing your own assets increases your FICO score, which allows you to borrow at a lower interest rate. Gains made in your IRA are not taxed. (Brokerage account gains not in a qualified retirement plan are). When you invest 10% of your income in a tax-protected retirement account, and it earns a 10% gain (what stocks have done over the past 30 years), you have more money in your account than you earn within 7 ½ years and your money makes more than you do in 25 years. This is your ticket to financial freedom.
3. Mortgage Interest Deduction. Mortgage interest paid on a qualified first and second home can be deducted. This is a massive tax deduction, since the majority of your mortgage payment is interest, one that many Millennials are missing out on, one that allows you to stop making the landlord and the taxman rich. Home prices on a nationwide basis are back above what they were before the real estate crash and the Great Recession, so it’s not a great idea to just race out and purchase. (Many who did that in 2005-2007 have had a terrible decade.) However, there are opportunities for smart buyers to rethink their housing, purchase in the shadow inventory and create a win-win-win for themselves. These are some of the strategies that I teach in my Investor Educational Retreats.
4. Student Loan Interest Deduction. If you earned less than $80,000 in MAGI (modified adjusted gross income) in 2016, and you paid on a student loan, you could deduct up to $2,500 of the interest you paid.
5. Qualified Education Expenses. You may be able to deduct education costs for yourself and/or a student in your immediate family. You may also be able to take an early distribution from an IRA without paying the early distribution penalty and additional taxes, if the withdrawal was made to cover a qualified education expense. If the education is work-related, you may qualify for a business deduction.
6. EVs, Clean Power & Energy Efficiency Credits. If you purchased an electric vehicle, installed solar panels, or insulated your home, you could qualify for a generous tax credit. EV credits are between $2,500-$7,500 and wind/solar power product and labor credits can be as high as 30 percent of the purchase price. 2016 was the last year to take advantage of tax credits for Energy Star appliances, skylights, windows and doors. The tax credits for solar are good to go through Dec. 31, 2019, at which point they will begin being phased out. Proper insulation can reduce your heating/cooling bill by 80%. EVs can cut your gasoline costs by half or more. Solar panel costs have dropped so that the payback is 3-5 years if you live in a sunny state.
7. Charitable Contributions. Your charitable contribution is tax deductible, provided it is made to a qualified 501c3. In addition to deducting your cash contributions, you generally can deduct the fair market value of any property you donate to qualified organizations.
8. Refund Delays. On December 8, 2016, the IRS issued a press release saying that there will be a delay on refunds for anyone who is claiming the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and the Additional Child Tax Credit (ACTC). While the rationale is reasonable, the delays are a bit suspect. For instance, it doesn’t take two weeks for money to transfer from the federal government to a bank (something the press release is saying might happen). Your best defense here is to file as early as possible, so that you’re not caught in the gaping hole of whatever is really going on (a public debt of $20 trillion, say?), including “dealing with resource limitations.”
Another Helpful Tax Tip
Facing an Audit or Penalty? Hire an experienced, qualified accountant to review your case and communicate with the IRS on your behalf. As Wayne Layton, CPA, reminds us, “Most taxpayers become fearful upon receiving these letters as some of them even refer to liens and levies. There are many times that, on behalf of my clients, I write a letter disagreeing with the IRS’s position, attaching proof of why the taxpayer does not owe the additional tax, and the additional tax assessed is either reduced or the balance is adjusted to zero.” It’s a good idea to discuss your options with a qualified Certified Public Accountant before simply writing the check.
One More Important Consideration
As we enter the 9th year of the current bull market, the most important consideration is to make sure that your assets are safe and protected. The last two times that we went 8 years without a correction in stocks the economy crashed. Most people lost 55% in stocks and real estate in the Great Recession. If you lost that (or more) and you haven’t made any changes, you are just as vulnerable now as you were then. You can’t afford to lose half every eight years, as happened in 2000 and 2008. Also, the recent drop in the euro, pound and Canadian dollar, and the bankruptcies/bailouts of Greece, Detroit and more remind us that currency fluctuations and credit crises are dramatic and happen overnight. Bonds and cash can be vulnerable to losses. Wisdom is the cure! Call 310-430-2397 to register for my May 20-22, 2017 Investor Educational Retreat at the beautiful beachfront Cocoa Beach, Florida Hilton.
Is It True About a Windfall in Cannabis Penny Stocks? Readers Ask Natalie.
January 31, 2017
Hi Natalie! I've been seeing all kinds of articles and info on Facebook today about putting $50 into the cannabis industry TODAY, before Feb. 1st and making enormous profits. Is this true? I would love to know what Natalie has to say about this! I'm sure there are many others who would like to know what's happening on this front as well! Thank you for your time.
Signed: High on Pot Gains
I found the Agora Financial Facebook ad that you are referring to. I’m linking to it here. We’ll see how long this link stays live.
Since today is Jan. 31, 2017 and you have to respond by tomorrow, I’m turning this around as quickly as I can, in hopes of saving you $50 or an arm and a leg. Really this response should be: Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them.
One of the fantastic examples of massive gains of over 2000% listed in the Agora Financial ad -- Fusion Pharma – is a company that was accused of fraud and deceiving investors by the SEC and the Department of Justice on Sept. 16, 2016. Shares are frozen; the owners have been fined and are facing jail time. Another, Novus Acquisition, has no financial information available. The Novus CEO Gary Labrozzi had trouble with the SEC a decade ago with his former company Brandmakers. The sad thing is that those people who are not reading this blog could be on the losing end of fraudulent investments, if they are not careful. Keep reading to learn more about how to avoid these types of scams.
Here are 5 Tips That You’re Looking at a Scam, so that you can ID crooks in seconds next time. The thing about scams is that taking the $50 bait is only the beginning. The deeper you dive into the trap, the more it will cost you. Sometimes that’s thousands of dollars. Sometimes, it can bankrupt you.
What About Pot in General?
See my comments on the cannabis industry directly below the 5 Tips.
5 Tips You’re Looking at a Scam
1. You have to respond within 24 hours or miss the opportunity.
No extra elucidation needed on this one. It’s classic pump-and-dump strategy. Experienced, successful investors know that investments are like a 100-piece puzzle. The more you know, the more likely you are to make great gains. The less you know, the more likely you are to be taken advantage of.
2. The charts and data are dated.
The Facebook ad shows a sexy chart of Abattis Bioceuticals Corp rising above $2.00/share and posting 9000% gains! If you look closely at the chart, you'll see that it is from 2014, and covers only a 3-month period. If you click over to Google Finance, you can access a 5-year chart, showing Abattis at the price it currently trades at – 10 cents. Most investors who bought Abattis have lost a ton of money. It is very likely that the only people who made any money at all were the insiders who were pumping and dumping the stock in March of 2014.
3. There aren’t any real testimonials.
Agora Financial claims that “Agora Financial editors’ consistent ability to stay ahead of the mainstream has earned recognition from dozens of media sources, including The Wall Street Journal, The Economist, Financial Times and others. The link to the proof of this claim is broken. There is no one lending their name to a testimonial. That’s a pretty big red flag.
4. The executives and owners of the business are hidden.
So, who owns Agora Financial? How long have they been in business? Is the company profitable? You can see a list of “editors,” but the About Us page is extremely vague about who runs the show. If you invest in a publicly traded company, you’ll see who the executives are and even be able to see how profitable the company is. The more transparent the company is, the more likely it is on the up-and-up. The harder it is to find even basic information, the more there is to hide.
5. There is a long list of complaints on the company.
Agora Financial has a long list of complaints filed with the SEC. Click to read. A simple Google search will reveal warnings from former subscribers. As I mentioned, the owners of Fusion Pharma have been charged with fraud by the SEC and the US Department of Justice. While I didn’t conduct a forensic dive into each of the massive wins outlined in the Agora ad, two out of three that I did look at had obvious problems and the third was rife with red flags. Show me your friends and I’ll tell you who you are.
What About Pot Penny Stocks in General?
Penny stocks are companies that aren’t making the grade to trade on the big boards yet. They are highly susceptible to pump-and-dump schemes and are often thinly traded, meaning that if you buy them, you might not be able to sell them – ever. (Meaning any gains you think you’ve made are really worthless.) If you’re interested in investing in a penny stock, it’s more like a 1000-piece puzzle that you need to put together before plunking down the dough. Novices should just avoid penny stocks altogether.
One other thing to keep in mind is that this is an industry that has been run by the underground for decades (by “crooks”), and is still illegal in most states. Yes, it’s a massive industry. However, we are still pretty far away from bringing the pot industry completely out in the open, with transparent business practices, no jail time and no extra legal costs. Even opening up a bank account can be difficult for a pot business.
There is at least one pot stock that is traded on the big boards – GW Pharmaceuticals. GW Pharma is developing cannabis drugs for the treatment of epilepsy, cancer and pain. However, GWPH sales dropped almost 70% year over year, and the company lost $80 million in 2016 (on $13 million in sales). The stock is trading near its all-time high, but this has more to do with hot air than fundamentals.
If you are interested in learning how to invest successfully, then join me at one of my Investor Educational Retreats. There you'll learn how to invest successfully in real estate, stocks, bonds, gold, hard assets, how to adopt a Thrive Budget and how to save thousands of dollars every year with smarter energy, budgeting and investing choices. Two of my 2016 hot funds doubled. And my stock picking strategies earned me the ranking of No. 1 stock picker. Call 310-430-2397 to get more information, or click on the banner ads on the home page at NataliePace.com to learn more about my Valentine's Retreat in Santa Monica, California and my beachfront Florida Retreat to be held May 20-22, 2017.
Testimonials (Real Testimonials by Respected VIPs)
"Many people, including educated men and women, often get into trouble when they neglect to follow simple and fundamental rules of the type provided [by Natalie]. This is why I recommend it with enthusiasm." Professor Gary S. Becker. Dr. Becker won the 1992 Nobel Prize in economics for his theories on human capital.
"College students need this information before they get their first credit card. Young adults need it before they buy their first home. Empty nesters can use the information to downsize to a sustainable lifestyle, before they get into trouble," Joe Moglia, Chairman, TD AMERITRADE.
Investor IQ Test 2017. by Natalie Pace. 20 Life Math questions to help you score higher where it counts most.
January 15, 2017
Do you think you’re a rock star investor? A complete novice? Check your Investor IQ with the 20 questions below.
Answers are listed in the article "Answers: 2017 Investor IQ Test" in the NataliePace.com blog.
If you want to live the life of your dreams you need to replace blind faith with wisdom and right action. When you stop making the taxman, the gas station, the utility, the landlord, the debt collector, the bond salesman, the insurance company and more rich at your expense, you can save thousands of dollars each year. (This is a very different strategy than just cutting out cafe lattes.) Those savings can go to things you love, like fun and bucket list vacations, while also providing far better for your future.
Join us at our next Investor Educational Retreat! Call 310-430-2397 or email info@NataliePace.com to learn more now.
About Natalie Pace:
Natalie Pace is the author of the Amazon bestsellers The Gratitude Game, The ABCs of Money and You Vs. Wall Street (aka Put Your Money Where Your Heart Is in hard cover) and the co-creator of the Earth Gratitude project. The Earth Gratitude project features wisdom from the world’s most respected leaders, including The Dalai Lama, The Heir to The Throne of The United Kingdom, Elon Musk, The Duchess of Northumberland and the Earth Day Network. Natalie has been saving homes and nest eggs for two decades, while at the same time earning the ranking of No. 1 stock picker. Natalie Pace is a blogger on HuffingtonPost.com and a repeat guest on national television and radio shows such as Good Morning America, Fox News, CNBC, ABC-TV, Forbes.com, NPR and more. As a strong believer in giving back, she has been instrumental in raising tens of millions for public schools, financial literacy, the arts and underserved women and girls worldwide. Follow her on Twitter.com/NataliePace, and Facebook.com/TheABCsofMoney. For more information please visit NataliePace.com. Click to access a longer bio on Natalie Pace.
Please note: NataliePace.com does not act or operate like a broker. We report on financial news, and are one of the most trusted independently owned and operated financial news corporations in North America. This article is intended to educate and inform individual investors, and, thus, to give investors a competitive edge in their personal decision-making. Any publicly traded companies or funds mentioned in this article are not intended to be buy or sell recommendations.
ALWAYS do your research and consult an experienced, reputable financial professional before buying or selling any security, and consider your long-term goals and strategies. Investors should NOT be all in on any asset class or individual stocks. Your retirement plan should reflect a diversified strategy, which has been designed with the assistance of a financial professional who is familiar with your goals, risk tolerance, tax needs and more. The "trading" portion of your portfolio should be a very small part of your investment strategy, and the amount of money you invest into individual companies should never be greater than your experience, wisdom, knowledge and patience.
Information has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable however NataliePace.com does not warrant its completeness or accuracy. Opinions constitute our judgment as of the date of this publication and are subject to change without notice. This material is not intended as an offer or solicitation for the purchase or sale of any financial instrument. Securities, financial instruments or strategies mentioned herein may not be suitable for all investors.
Natalie Pace is the co-creator of the Earth Gratitude Project and the author of The Gratitude Game, The ABCs of Money and Put Your Money Where Your Heart Is. She blogs on Huffington Post and Medium, and is a frequent guest contributor to national news shows and magazines. She has been ranked the No. 1 stock picker, above over 830 A-list pundits, by an independent tracking agency, and has been saving homes and nest eggs since 1999.