A Financial Education over 25 years

I joined the insurance industry in February 1987; the following October the FTSE100 crashed. As a newcomer to the world of investment I never saw the crash coming, and interestingly my elder colleagues never saw it coming either. And yet the FTSE100 had spent the previous 9 months on an almost vertical upwards trajectory; in hindsight the crash was inevitable. The advice we passed on to investors back then was…

“don’t panic, the markets will recover”…

and recover they did, eventually. Where did we get this advice? We received it from Abbey Life’s all-knowing fund managers. Back then we weren’t paid to think, we were paid to sell. Continue reading “A Financial Education over 25 years”

2011 Census

Two things happened this weekend. Firstly we lost an hour of our life; they took it from us in the middle of the night so we wouldn’t notice. If we are good we will get it back in September. If it were money that was borrowed for 6 months we should earn some interest, so do we get back our hour and a few extra minutes of life? And if we did how would you measure that extra life? That brings me to the second thing that happened this weekend, the 2011 census. Continue reading “2011 Census”


I wrote this before I went to Japan on 9th February but delayed sending it as events overtook me. It’s ironic my only resolution this year was to send an email every 2 weeks

OK, the jury has returned as we are 6 weeks into 2011. What’s the verdict? How have your New Years Resolutions faired? They say it takes 30 days to change a habit; miss just one day and you must start the 30 day clock again. Is it any wonder so many New Years Resolutions fail?

We all need a long term plan. What we don’t need is an unrealistic short term goal that we will undoubtedly break and then feel very bad about. Everyone’s plan is different, but there are some tools I can share with you which can help you to visualise your own plan. Continue reading “Plan”

Paradigm Shift

I endured a manual gearbox in a car until 1994. For fourteen years I believed that true motoring pleasure could only be derived by co-ordinating a movement of my feet in opposite directions, along with a pull or shove of my left arm. Whenever I bought a car I was looking forward to the enjoyment of the open road, but the truth usually looked more like a crowded M61/M62 interchange on a wet Friday evening. In a traffic jam manual cars are such hard work compared to automatic cars. I watch Jeremy on Top Gear every week and think “I bet you drive an automatic to work really”.

I made a “Paradigm Shift”. Continue reading “Paradigm Shift”