Weekend Reading: Happy Holidays Edition

Weekend Reading_ Happy Holidays Edition-1

Welcome to another edition of Weekend Reading! I’m on holidays but I wanted to share a quick update and thank you to all of my readers and clients for your support this year.  

I started this blog back in 2010 during what I’d call the height of popularity for personal finance blogs. Today, the preferred mediums have shifted to podcasts, YouTube, TikTok, and Instagram. Blogs seem to be slowly fading away.

But I love writing and I plan to keep this blog going for as long as you’re interested in my takes on personal finance, investing, and retirement planning. I’ll continue sharing my successes and failures, answering reader questions in the ‘money bag‘, and rounding up the best personal finance articles from around the web.

I’m grateful for the 15 million page views in the 12 years since this blog launched – including 1.25M so far this year. What started as a way to share my experience with money turned into a freelance writing career and a financial planning business. Simply put, it has changed my life for the better.

I may never start a podcast or a YouTube channel or a TikTok account, but as long as you keep reading I promise to keep writing here.

I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas weekend. I might post something during the void between Christmas and New Year’s, but if not I’ll catch up with you in 2023!

Weekend Reading:

David Booth, founder of Dimensional Funds, says this past year has been a test on developing a financial plan you can stick with. I agree 100%.

A Wealth of Common Sense blogger Ben Carlson answers the impossible question of what’s going to happen in the stock market next year?

Mr. Carlson then looks at how often the market is down in consecutive years.

This terrific episode of the Rational Reminder podcast covers investing basics and answers common questions like should you own your employer’s stock, should you pick stocks in your TFSA, and how to prepare your portfolio for a recession.

On the topic of owning your employer’s stock I recall someone being upset that I suggested he unload a large amount of employer stock to diversify and accelerate some other financial goals. The stock went on to surge another 50% over the next six months. But today the stock is down 67% from the time he sold.

Owning employer's stock

What is a good retirement income target? Fred Vettese argues that it’s not the often cited 70% of gross income (subs):

“If the mortgage is paid off and the children become self-supporting by retirement age, a good retirement income target is 50 per cent of gross income.”

Now to dash your hopes of safely spending up to 4% of your portfolio without fear of running out of money. New research suggests that number is closer to 2.7%:

Millionaire Teacher Andrew Hallam debunks the idea that after a stock market crash investors should move their money to ‘safe’ assets like gold.

Travel is a mess right now. Barry Choi shares a detailed guide to understand the ins and outs travel insurance

Patrick Sojka at Rewards Canada explains credit card spending caps in his latest loyalty lesson article.

Of Dollars and Data blogger Nick Maggiulli wonders if his parents could have avoided bankruptcy and divorce if they had a higher degree of financial literacy.

Mr. Maggiulli also rounded up his favourite investing writing of 2022.

Bank of Canada governor Tiff Macklem says the Bank missed the mark on rising inflation but a turnaround is near (subs).

Finally, why Canadian doctors trained at international medical schools increasingly give up on returning to their home country for work.

Happy holidays, everyone!

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  1. Pete on December 23, 2022 at 5:00 pm

    I’m just blown away by the all the B.S. that I hear from the financial industry. Now they tell us that we should only take 2 to 3% of our portfolio each year. We have a non-registered and TFSA portfolio that pays almost 5% out in dividends almost $100,000 a year and overall dividend growth is above 6% before touching RRSP’s, a small defined pension, OAS and CPP. I personally think the industry wants us to invest in their snake oil for their profits instead of teaching people that DGI might be a better and more productive approach to retirement income. There are no fees to it also
    Have a Merry Christmas

    • John on December 26, 2022 at 10:36 pm

      It’s 2.7% of the value of your portfolio in your first year of retirement, then adjusted for inflation. If you have other sources of income and are willing to be flexible then any competent and ethical financial professional (sadly not as common as you would hope but Ben Felix is one) will tell you you can withdraw more.

  2. Sandy King on December 23, 2022 at 5:16 pm

    Thank you for all the interesting articles this year. I have really enjoyed them and I know I have gotten a lot out of them.

    Merry Christmas and all the best in 2023 to yourself and your family !

  3. Eddie on December 23, 2022 at 6:08 pm

    Doctors that train away from Canada pay large sums to do so. Thus you end up with a lot of people who essentially BOUGHT their medical degree.

    I will stick with the Canadian medical school graduates who actually earned their degree with merit.

    • Fausto Alvarez on December 24, 2022 at 9:03 am

      Beware. You are taking a lot of risk.

  4. Bridget Roman on December 23, 2022 at 7:32 pm

    Keep the blogs coming. So much more interesting to read and really be inpired to contemplate compared to Tik Toks.

  5. Gin on December 23, 2022 at 8:13 pm

    Thanks for your blog. I have loved your writing and being part of your journey during all this time and look forward to many more years.
    Wishing you and the family all the best for the festive season: a great Christmas, and a Healthy and Prosperous 2023.

  6. Lucille on December 23, 2022 at 11:49 pm

    Thanks Rob for this wonderful insightful blog! Hopefully we all continue reading for a long time yet! It so very important for financial literacy to grow even more yet. I love to suggest your writing to so many people because you write in terms everyday folks can understand!
    Merry Christmas and the best in 2023!

  7. David S. on December 24, 2022 at 6:00 am

    Robb, I’ve been reading your writing for several years as yours are a trustworthy voice. I’ll be here for as long as you wish to keep sharing your thoughts and ideas with all of us. Blogs still rule in my world!

    All the best to you and your family in 2023.

  8. Gary and Marg on December 24, 2022 at 7:01 am

    Hi Robb: I think I’ve been following you pretty well since the beginning. I’ve benefited so much from your writings and I should have told you that a long time ago. Your blogs not only help beginners but us old retired farts as well. Keep up the great work!
    Merry Christmas and a Happy Healthy New Year to you and your family!

  9. Al on December 24, 2022 at 8:22 am

    Yes, please keep the written word. This way I can easily scan back a paragraph or two to make sure I’ve got full grasp of what you’re saying. I have hearing issues so even with Bluetooth to the hearing aids, it’s tough to go back to re-listen to only a portion of what just played on a podcast, etc. With the written word, I have been known to screenshot and print some of it for future reference and learning. So keep doing what you’re doing the way you’re doing it.

    • David Cameron on December 24, 2022 at 10:33 am

      Merry Christmas Rob,
      I have been a subscriber since January 2012 and still learn something with every issue. I have all issues since then in my email folder for Boomer & Echo.

  10. Jim on December 24, 2022 at 3:12 pm

    Thank you for all you do. Ive been following you only for a short time, but in that time, Ive learned so much from reading your articles
    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and your family

  11. Sheldon on December 24, 2022 at 6:28 pm

    Please, keep on writing and I will keep reading. Thank you and have a merry Christmas.

  12. Hope M. Gabriel on December 25, 2022 at 5:23 am

    Robb blog still rules. So you’re not giving way anytime soon. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and your entire household.

  13. Manish Shah on December 25, 2022 at 8:28 am

    Robb I have thoroughly enjoyed reading your weekly blog’s and learnt a lot out of them. Keep them coming.
    Happy holidays and best wishes for 2023.

  14. Mike Holman on December 25, 2022 at 2:52 pm

    Love the blog. Have a great holidays!

  15. dj on December 28, 2022 at 11:50 am

    Rob – what are your thoughts on short term bonds vs mid-long term bonds?
    Are you still proponent of ZAG or should one move some money to short term bonds?

  16. Brenda on December 28, 2022 at 3:41 pm

    I’m old enough to have been on the internet before blogging started 😀
    Your blog is one of my valued go-to sources of quality financial content for Canadians. It helps me stay on top of the changing landscape and on track for my long term goals. Thank you for all of the invaluable information so far and hopefully for many years to come!

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