Ten things I learnt from Asan Ideas For Wealth

Published: August 8, 2015 at 9:50 pm

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Asan Ideas for wealth (AIFW) is a Facebook group on personal finance, run by Ashal Jauhari. I have been a ‘active’ member there for a little more than 2 years now. Here are some things the group has taught me.

  1. If you spend too much time in a forum, people tend to think (incorrectly) that you are one of the administrators and  that most of your blog traffic comes from there
  2. Free lunch is a dish best served hot for most people. The search option is rarely used.
  3. Do not argue with a closed mind. If you do, call yourself a *%$# and never repeat that mistake.
  4. I am yet to understand why only 10% of members are ‘active’ and what the others, especially members from the financial services are doing.
  5. Balaji Swaminathan is a search engine expert (among other things).
  6. Captain A. K. Anand has an extraordinary memory
  7. Sundaram Anathakrishnan is the most perceptive person I have met, and can see through a person quite quickly.
  8. Ashal Jauhari is a monk (munk, if you are Goundamani fan)
  9. People change their profile pictures. So remember names. Mandatory for pt. 3.
  10. ‘What others are doing’ is a hot topic in a ‘personal’ finance forum.
  11. Do not assume everyone who posts will understand abbreviations like MDBSC and taglines like “Nike” –> ‘Just do it’  and “Hero Honda” –> fill it, shut it, forget it!
  12. People who don’t have any conflict of interest are the first (and perhaps the only ones) to understand what it means!

That is more than ten. My bad, I should have known how inspiring AIFW is for a blogger.  There is more, much of it unfit for public consumption.

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Let me take this opportunity to thank all the friends I have made through AIFW despite my caustic nature.  Thank you for your support. Thank you for understanding what I am trying to say.

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About the Author M Pattabiraman author of freefincal.comM. Pattabiraman(PhD) is the author and owner of freefincal.com.  He is an associate professor at the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras since Aug 2006. Pattu” as he is popularly known, 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. Pattu publishes unbiased, promotion-free research, analysis and holistic money management advice. Freefincal serves more than one million readers a year (2.5 million page views) with numbers based analysis on topical issues and has more than a 100 free calculators on different aspects of insurance and investment analysis. He conducts free money management sessions for corporates  and associations(see details below). Previous engagements include World Bank, RBI, BHEL, Asian Paints, TamilNadu Investors Association etc. Contact information: freefincal {at} Gmail {dot} com (sponsored posts or paid collaborations will not be entertained)
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20 Comments

  1. Thanks Pattu for the compliment. God knows how much of it is true today, at my age. But thanks all the same. A very nice, and light post. Just read it out to my family. Delighted they were!!

  2. Thanks Pattu for the compliment. God knows how much of it is true today, at my age. But thanks all the same. A very nice, and light post. Just read it out to my family. Delighted they were!!

  3. My biggest takeaways:
    1. Despite the fact that the nifty jr ETF has given over 14% cagr in the last 10 yrs nobody will like it simply because it’s an ETF (even though they want only 10% return from equities)
    2. Nobody considers the risk of fund manager and fund management house over say 25-50yr+ investment horizon although everyone wants to invest for retirement
    3.Amount of Effort spent vs excess returns obtained is a metric no one seems to care about. Hair splitting over a percentage point or two of gains is common but the real big gains are made in direct equity investments which no one is wants to look into and invest.
    4. Everyone is essentially running their own “fund of funds” but they don’t want to invest in a fund of funds (which has automatic and good asset allocation)
    5. Any simple answer for “where to invest” is wrong. A complex and confusing answer sounds intelligent so it is right.
    6. It is more important to appear intelligent on a fb group than just sit still and compound your wealth.

    And so on…

    It is no wonder that agents are making money off commissions from common people.

  4. My biggest takeaways:
    1. Despite the fact that the nifty jr ETF has given over 14% cagr in the last 10 yrs nobody will like it simply because it’s an ETF (even though they want only 10% return from equities)
    2. Nobody considers the risk of fund manager and fund management house over say 25-50yr+ investment horizon although everyone wants to invest for retirement
    3.Amount of Effort spent vs excess returns obtained is a metric no one seems to care about. Hair splitting over a percentage point or two of gains is common but the real big gains are made in direct equity investments which no one is wants to look into and invest.
    4. Everyone is essentially running their own “fund of funds” but they don’t want to invest in a fund of funds (which has automatic and good asset allocation)
    5. Any simple answer for “where to invest” is wrong. A complex and confusing answer sounds intelligent so it is right.
    6. It is more important to appear intelligent on a fb group than just sit still and compound your wealth.

    And so on…

    It is no wonder that agents are making money off commissions from common people.

  5. pattu ji, that was a grt post from you. unfortunately or fortunately i am not able to make much comments cos i belong to the category of ppl mentioned in item no 4 — inactive.
    i hope to start being active. after all, i was one of the early birds and i have gained a lot from gurudev ashalji, baba pattu ji, manish bhai, anand ji etc etc

  6. What others are doing? Like me, being Passive aggressive! Read, understand and implement what we get from the forum! Ex: Super Top up – My insurance agent argued vehemently against it saying “Sir, nobody buys it, since the Restore option has been introduced super top-up is now redundant”! I had to explain him and after an hour he said – “Sir, your thinking is awesome”! I said, not mine sir, collective financial intelligence!!

  7. Today i thank you and AIFW for all the good financial steps i have made till now. My only own good financial step was Ppf. I look forward to the day when i will meet most of group people. Thank you for your blog as well as AIFW members for helping us all.

  8. With 10 % of the members being active, we get about 30 to 40 % repetetive questions. Imagine the percentage of repetetive questions we will get if 90 % of the members become active. It could lead to chaos. So, ” Let sleeping members lie !”

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