What is Unbounded Wealth?
For nearly 20 years I have been involved with the financial markets. Since 2000, I have been a forensic accountant. That’s just a fancy phrase for someone who reads financial statements. I look for companies where management is aggressive in their accounting and they are pulling the wool over investors’ eyes.
You see, there’s a lot of incentive on the part of management to mislead investors about their true financial performance. Executives often have short career spans and most of their wealth may come from stock options or other investments tied to the price of their stock.
Accounting rules provide a lot of flexibility in reporting financial results. It’s not like these executives are breaking the law (most of the time). I have developed some of my own formulas that have both been tested over long periods of time as well as used in the real world. The more aggressive the management team, the lower the stock market returns over time.
In 2012 I co-authored a book called What’s Behind the Numbers? A Guide to Exposing Financial Chicanery and Avoiding Huge Losses in Your Portfolio (McGraw-Hill). It talks about the risks involved in owning individual stocks and provides techniques on how to spot trouble before it torpedoes your portfolio’s value. In addition, the case studies are real and were written in real-time unlike a lot of other investment books I have read. Plus, there are some unique formulas. But, the book can be a bit complicated at times.
In 2016 I co-authored Rule of 72 How to Compound Your Money and Uncover Hidden Stock Profits (Dent Research). This book covers some of the same topics but in a much more accessible way to the reader. It’s written in simplified language and also focuses on investing for yield.
After being involved with both projects I had the idea for a third book. The first book as technical, the second book was much more down to earth. The proper level to communicate with someone is at a 7th grade level. But, the lowest common denominator is pictures. Why write a lengthy post on Facebook when you can upload a photo to Instagram? A picture is worth 1,000 words.
So, I hired an illustrator and am putting together a book broken into two parts. The first part is a series of chapters that se a fictional family called the Jones’. If you’ve ever heard the phrase “keeping up with the Jones’” then you’ll know that many Americans get stuck in a rut keeping up with their neighbors from the standpoint of accumulating “stuff”. So, through a series of 10 chapters I walk people through how to get ahead by not keeping up with the Jones’. Each chapter is independent of every other chapter, written in plain, English, is under 1,500 words per chapter, and uses illustrations to make the most important points.
Once you have some extra cash on hand, then you can start to save and invest. The second half of the book is a series of portfolios you can invest in to help work toward your investment goals. It’s important to stick with whatever investment program you are following. Commitment in good times and bad is the key to success. One way to help with this is to decide what “investment rollercoaster ride” you want to go on. If you can handle more ups and downs, you’d choose certain portfolios and if you cannot then there’s something else you can invest in. The important thing is to look in the mirror and assess your ability to stick with the program.
I called the project “Unbounded Wealth”. It’s really a way to develop a strategy to break free of “The Man”. You don’t need to make lots of money to end up self-sufficient. Not everyone can make $100,000 a year. And, the truth is many of those that do are living paycheck to paycheck.
So, this is all about taking control of your own finances, and ultimately your own life so that you are not beholden to anyone else.
I’m not a regular blogger. But, with this I intend to post content I find interesting as well as my own thoughts on the destination of financial independence.