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Asset Allocation

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What They Didn't Tell Ya About Money In High School Part 5

Dear Wise Consumer,

Its football season and I'm stoked! It's time for great plays, games and ESPN highlights. Have you ever watched interviews with top NFL players? When asked what a key to their success is, here's a common answer.

"I spend extra time studying film."

In high school they taught us the importance of studying our subjects. It would've been nice if they'd preached the same thing about personal finance. We've got to have the same mindset as an NFL player watching game film.

Like a pro athlete we must study personal finance. The more we know about it the more we can save for retirement. Here are 3 things pro football players look for in the film room.

How to Study
Personal Finance Like
An NFL Pro

Pro Tip #1: Watch for Tendencies

There's an old saying that habits don't lie. Every NFL player has certain things they always do, like pump-faking the ball or looking off a wide receiver. Their counterparts look for these tendencies. And tendencies display weaknesses and strengths.

Study your personal finances for your own weaknesses and strengths. Are you a saver or spender? Do you eat out too much or enjoy investing? Once you find both make each stronger. This will increase your wealth and retirement savings.

Pro Tip #2: Timing and Rhythm

Defensive players watch for the rhythm and timing of an offense. They try to find ways to disrupt both. Treat your retirement savings like a "Run and Shoot" offense. You should develop timing and rhythm with growing your savings.

Let's say you only put $100 in your 401K every 90 days. Not much rhythm there. But once you start to put $100 in every two weeks, everything changes. With employer contributions and compound interest, here's what can happen.

401K Balance: $2,000
Annual Income: $50,000
Annual Salary Increase: 3%
401K Contribution: 6%
Employer Match: 50%
Frequency, Per Month: 6%
Years to Fund: 20
Annual Interest: 9%

This comes out to $245,276.48 for retirement. Now that's the kind of timing and rhythm you deserve!

Pro Tip #3: Eliminate the Threat

The New England Patriots beat the St. Louis Rams in Super Bowl XXXI. How did they do it? When watching film they noticed that the wide receiver corps, burned opponents yard after yard. They're answer? Eliminate the threat, by beating up the receivers.

What's the number one threat to your personal finances? Once you find it eliminate it. Poor spending habits, too many credit cards, eliminate it! The faster you do this, the quicker you'll build money for your retirement.

One More Thing

There's another tip I'd like to reinforce. Pro football players refuse to quit. Never give up on your personal finances. They'll never go away. Keep working and strategizing to improve them. You won't be sorry!

Clyde McDade is a Financial Copywriter. He's the author of the upcoming E-book, "How to Grow More Money for Retirement and Your Child's College Fund." He can be reached at

The information in this article is not to be taken as financial or investing advice. Always seek the services of a Financial Advisor, Accountant or Financial Planner.