Category Economics

Yes, You can Make Money Playing Video Games. Here Are 7 Ways to Do It

Frederick Aldeco was the youngest of three boys who loved to game.

Growing up, he and his brothers first fought over who could play the Nintendo, then the Super Nintendo, then the PlayStation — he could only play when his older brothers let him.

But then he got his own Game Boy. It came with Pokémon Yellow, and everything changed.

“I could play anytime I wanted to without them having an issue,” Aldeco said.

Nearly two decades later, Aldeco, 29, still loves Pokémon — so much so that he runs a Pokémon news channel on YouTube under the moniker DaddyGamer Fred.

Besides that, he’s done what most gamers dream of doing: Making money playing video games. While it’s not his full-time gig, Aldeco said his content has earned him up to $300 a week.

Over the years, gaming has become incr...

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Book Review: Mastering the Market Cycle

15 February 2019

Mastering the Market Cycle: Getting the Odds on Your Side2018. Howard Marks, CFA.

Investors can gainfully spend their time researching three areas:

  1. Knowing the knowable, the fundamentals of an investment.
  2. Understanding value and being disciplined on the price they pay.
  3. Studying the investment environment we are in and appropriately positioning portfolios for it.

This book focuses on the third. It is harder to gain an edge over investors in judging the environment — where we are in the market cycle — than in the first two areas. But it is not impossible.

Cycles are largely driven by human psychology and behavior...

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Worried You Won’t Qualify for Life Insurance? This Company Has You Covered

Nobody’s perfect. Maybe you’re interested in getting some life insurance, but you’re worried you won’t even qualify for it because of your health.

Maybe you have diabetes or heart disease. Maybe you’re a smoker. Maybe you’re a little heavy. Maybe your family history is littered with medical landmines. Or maybe you’re… welllllll, just not as young as you used to be. That happens to all of us.

If that’s the case, how can you get life insurance without paying through the nose for it?

The short answer is to shop around. Here’s the tricky part: Life insurance companies have radically different ideas about what constitutes a health risk.

“Not all companies treat health conditions equally...

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How to Talk Money in a Relationship: Dos and Don’ts

My good friend Dave once went on a date with a woman who straight-up asked him which tax bracket he fell into. Taken aback by the woman’s lack of tact and transparent criteria for a partner, Dave swiftly changed the subject. After he paid for dinner, they went their separate ways. As you can imagine, there was no second date.

While there are obvious faux pas with what money questions to ask while dating, it’s mission-critical to discuss finances when you’re coupled. Easier said than done, right? In the U.S., talking about one’s finances is typically considered more taboo than talking about politics or sex. But gently tiptoeing the subject of money in a partnership can have disastrous consequences.

Case in point: Studies reveal that money is the leading source of stress in a relati...

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2019 US Wealth Management Outlook: The Old Guard and Fintech Cozy Up

The old guard wealth management industry and fintech have kept each other at arm’s length for years, claiming the other lacks the tools to meet current client needs. But in 2019, we expect they’ll put past differences aside and finally cozy up to each other.

“Partnerships” will be the buzzword for the new year as incumbent players realize they must embrace tech to meet the demands of their millennial clients, while so-called fintech players realize sometimes clients really do want the intimacy of a face-to-face meeting.

As proof of concept, look no further than Morgan Stanley’s recently announced bid to buy Solium Capital in a $900-million all-cash deal — its biggest acquisition since the financial crisis.

By snatching up the Canada-based employee stock plan administrator, whic...

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Valentine’s Day: Budget Friendly Ways to Celebrate

Not everyone is a big fan of Valentine’s Day. My husband and I, for instance, see it as an excuse to sell greeting cards and boxes of chocolate. When February 14th rolls around, you won’t catch us at a fancy restaurant or on a romantic getaway.  

But as cynical as we can be, we still make a point to celebrate in some way every year. Valentine’s Day is a great excuse to spend time together, create some memories and maybe even exchange a gift or two. We just try to do that without spending too much money. 

Over the years, we’ve perfected the art of the cheap date. Here are some of our favorite options for budget-friendly ways to celebrate Valentine’s Day. 

Cook a Nice Meal Together 

I’ll never forget the first Valentine’s Day that my now-husband and I spent together...

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Smart Beta: Broken by Design?

Reality Dysfunction

Steve Jobs’s “reality distortion field” warped Apple employees’ perception of what was technically possible. Though it led to many internal conflicts, it also drove Apple to create world-changing products like the iPhone.

Finance has reality distortion fields of its own: Providers help redefine investors’ expectations of what particular investment strategies can deliver. Smart beta has an especially strong reality distortion field. Academic research detailing the benefits of factor investing strategies has helped persuade investors to allocate more than $1 trillion to smart beta products.

But the scholarship motivating these allocations largely ignores transaction costs that reduce returns significantly...

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Investing for Beginners (Seriously, if You Know Nothing, Start Here)

If you’ve spent so much as 10 minutes reading a personal finance blog — and clearly you have — chances are, you’ve heard that investing is one of the best ways to put your money to work for you.

The power of compound interest can turn even modest savings into an appreciable nest egg over time. And best of all, it’s passive income.

But if you’ve never put money into the stock market before, the prospect can be overwhelming. What exactly does “buying stocks” even mean? And what kind of account do you need to get started?

What Is Investing, Anyway?

Investing is a way to build wealth by purchasing assets today that you anticipate will grow in value, yielding a profit over time.

There are many different ways to invest, including purchasing tangible items (like real estate or fin...

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Dear Penny: I Want to Help My Elderly Parents by Buying Their House

Dear Penny,

My husband and I live in Florida and are paying a mortgage on our home. We want to help my parents out by buying their home in Maryland to help them pay off their debt. They will live there rent-free until they can no longer live on their own. They are retired and in their late 70s/early 80s.

My husband and I hope to retire in five years. Is there a right way and wrong way to do this? What do we need to be sure we do when we get the paperwork prepared?


This sounds like a super generous move. After so many years of turning to your parents for care and advice, this is, for many, the dream: to be able to return the favor. But caring for your parents in this way can have a lot of complications.

I called in help from two experts: financial adviser Stephanie McCullough, and fina...

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Return on Integrity: The New Metric for Financial Performance

What is integrity?

From Wikipedia:

“The word integrity evolved from the Latin adjective integer, meaning whole or complete. In this context, integrity is the inner sense of ‘wholeness’ deriving from qualities such as honesty and consistency of character. As such, one may judge that others ‘have integrity’ to the extent that they act according to the values, beliefs and principles they claim to hold.”

How can personal integrity influence business success?

Kim Shannon, CFA, is the president and co-chief investment officer (CIO) of Sionna Investment Managers in Toronto. Shannon’s biggest business risk is a perfect example of leading with integrity, and also shows how integrity comes in different flavors...

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