Anecdote: The day the microphone voiced its protest!

Published: October 13, 2013 at 7:30 am

Last Updated on

Assume that I am speaking about ‘how to plan for retirement’ in a seminar (what were the organizers thinking!  Asking a nut job like me to talk!)

Let us say that more than half my audience consists of people (duh!) in their early 30s to mid 50s.

I go on and on about the factors one needs to worry about while planning for retirement and then suddenly say,

All that I have said is relevant only if your children will not take care of you’.

 ‘If your children are loving and do take of all your expenses in retirement, then none of what I said about retirement planning is relevant to you’.

If you were in the audience, how would you react?

The anecdote concerns a seminar on retirement by Mr. Debashis Basu, founder, editor and publisher of Moneylife magazine.

It is a good and informative seminar. One that everyone should see. No doubt about that.

Unfortunately, his microphone did not like what he said or rather what he was going to say, 20 minutes into the talk!

Watch: Retirement savings seminar: Be prepared for the unknowns

The video is about 54 minutes long. So if you like, you could go straight to the part when the microphone voiced its protest

I agree with the microphone.  Do you?

Moneylife and Freefincal

Regular readers would readily agree that I am not a big fan of the way Moneylife magazine reports news.  I have regularly referenced their articles in poor light.

1. Well, not all of my Moneylife-mentions are in poor light.  In the hope that you will not called me biased, let me start with a positive mention.

We must salute the courage of Ms. Sucheta Dalal who exposed the Harshad Mehta Scam to the world.  Her work has had an extraordinary impact on Indian stock markets. You see this for yourself here:

Understanding the Nature of Stock Market Returns

Here is an article that refers to Mr. Debashis Basu’s book, Face ValueCreation and Destruction of Shareholder Value in India

 Myth Buster

The rest of the mentions, I am afraid are not as endearing.

 

2. Moneylife first caught my attention when I read their article on surrendering insurance policies. So I wrote this (hopefully more balanced) article to accompany the

Insurance Policy Surrender Value & Paid-up Value Calculator

 

3. While working on mutual fund investment mode (SIP, VIP, lumpsum etc.) comparison calculator, I noticed they had written a related article and claimed that theirs was the ‘first comprehensive and unbiased research on SIPs’. They claimed that SIPs are not as successful as they are made out to be, but failed to take into account investment durations greater than 10 years.

I hope the conclusions accompanying this Comprehensive Mutual Fund Investment Mode Comparator are a bit more balanced (that word again!).

 

4. When bonds crashed in July, Moneylife had a field day claiming how debt funds are not suitable for the average investors, completely (or conveniently) forgetting that every portfolio (esp. those for long-term goals) would benefit (in more ways than one) with debt funds in them.

So in response I asked: Is This Financial Literacy?

This post divided readers. Many agreed with me, and a few strongly disagreed! I was told to do research to counter Moneylife’s conclusions.

Well, what stinks, stinks. I see no need to research it.

 

5. Their article titled, Five Reasons not to Buy Debt Funds was amusingly based on  

the ‘average returns of debt schemes that have a corpus above Rs100 crore’

Amusing because, it is like making conclusions after averaging apples and potatoes.

More details can be found here: Debt Mutual Funds vs. Fixed Deposits: Volatility Simulator

Hopefully investors and planners could use this simulator make more sensible conclusions with regard to the safety of debt mutual funds.

 !!!!!

 In case if you are wondering what the fuss is all about, please consider this:

I am pushing 40. My son is pushing 4! I love my son and he loves me.   Therefore, I will assume that he would love me and take care of me when I retire.  So I will forget about my retirement plan, transfer all my assets to him, assume that I have parented a good son, and place my trust on the traditional values so unique to India.

How wise would that be?

 If you are a Moneylife fan, feel free to criticise me.  I promise to publish your comment unedited!

Do share if you found this useful
Share your thoughts on this topic at the  Reddit freefincal_user_forum

Reach your financial goals like a pro! Join our 1600+ Facebook Group on Portfolio Management! You can now reduce fear, doubt and uncertainty while investing for your financial goals! Sign up for our lectures on goal-based portfolio management and join our exclusive Facebook Community. The 1st lecture is free!
Want to check if the market is overvalued or undervalued? Use our market valuation tool (will work with any index!) or you buy the new Tactical Buy/Sell timing tool!
About the Author Pattabiraman editor freefincalM. Pattabiraman(PhD) is the founder, managing editor and primary author of freefincal. He is an associate professor at the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras. since Aug 2006. Connect with him via Twitter or Linkedin Pattabiraman has co-authored two print-books, You can be rich too with goal-based investing (CNBC TV18) and Gamechanger and seven other free e-books on various topics of money management. He is a patron and co-founder of “Fee-only India” an organisation to promote unbiased, commission-free investment advice. He conducts free money management sessions for corporates and associations on the basis of money management. Previous engagements include World Bank, RBI, BHEL, Asian Paints, Cognizant, Madras Atomic Power Station, Honeywell, Tamil Nadu Investors Association. For speaking engagements write to pattu [at] freefincal [dot] com
About freefincal & its content policy Freefincal is a News Media Organization dedicated to providing original analysis, reports, reviews and insights on developments in mutual funds, stocks, investing, retirement and personal finance. We do so without conflict of interest and bias. We operate in a non-profit manner. All revenue is used only for expenses and for the future growth of the site. Follow us on Google News Freefincal serves more than one million readers a year (2.5 million page views) with articles based only on factual information and detailed analysis by its authors. All statements made will be verified from credible and knowledgeable sources before publication. Freefincal does not publish any kind of paid articles, promotions or PR, satire or opinions without data. All opinions presented will only be inferences backed by verifiable, reproducible evidence/data. Contact information: letters {at} freefincal {dot} com (sponsored posts or paid collaborations will not be entertained)
Connect with us on social media
Our publications

You Can Be Rich Too with Goal-Based Investing

You can be rich too with goal based investingPublished by CNBC TV18, this book is meant to help you ask the right questions, seek the right answers and since it comes with nine online calculators, you can also create custom solutions for your lifestyle! Get it now. It is also available in Kindle format.
Gamechanger: Forget Startups, Join Corporate & Still Live the Rich Life You Want Gamechanger: Forget Start-ups, Join Corporate and Still Live the Rich Life you wantThis book is meant for young earners to get their basics right from day one! It will also help you travel to exotic places at low cost! Get it or gift it to a young earner

Your Ultimate Guide to Travel

Travel-Training-Kit-Cover-new This is a deep dive analysis into vacation planning, finding cheap flights, budget accommodation, what to do when travelling, how travelling slowly is better financially and psychologically with links to the web pages and hand-holding at every step. Get the pdf for Rs 199 (instant download)
Free android apps