Mind Your Money


Welcome to the library's multi-author blog and associated resources for increased financial literacy. This program is made possible by a grant from the FINRA Investor Education Foundation through Smart investing@your library®, a partnership with the American Library Association

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For questions or comments about this program, please send email to mym [at] hmcpl [dot] org.



Avengers Comic Teaches Mad Money Skills!

Join the Avengers and a special guest in this exciting educational comic about saving money and saving the day. The heroes team up to defeat Mole Man and his evil army, all while learning important financial skills. The action-packed comic features a budgeting worksheet, finance terms and more.

The comic  is available in eight digitally in eight different languages, and offers a free teacher's guide as well as a "Budget Blaster Worksheet" to allow kids to print out and track their own emerging budgeting skills. 

Who knew saving money was so much fun?

Saving the Day

Morningstar's 5 Notable Interviews From 2014 Investment Conference

Morningstar's 5 Notable Interviews From 2014 Investment Conference

One-on-one interviews with some of the industry's best investing minds.  On June 18-20, the Morningstar Investment Conference brought together the most innovative minds in investing.  To view the videos and read the blogs from the conference select this link or the linked title above.

There was no shortage of big issues to tackle this year. Attendees heard keynote presentations from PIMCO co-founder and chief investment officer Bill Gross, AQR founder and managing principal Cliff Asness, Franklin Templeton executive vice president and chief investment officer, global bonds, Michael Hasenstab, and Focus Consulting's Michael Falk.

Morningstar analysts also led panel discussions featuring notable investors, such as GMO's Ben Inker, Fidelity's Will Danoff, Ariel Investments' John Rogers, and Oakmark manager David Herro, covering a wide variety of topics, including proven active management strategies, strategic beta, the macroeconomic landscape, unconstrained bond funds, dividend-paying stocks, international opportunities, and more.

Investing for Your Kids

As a parent, you want to teach your children about investing because you understand that nothing can touch the sweetness of long-term growth.

The Motley Fool has a great page to help you get started, with a guide to help you answer many questions you may have about investing for your children. 

"In addition to putting away money for your own retirement, you'd like to have an account earmarked for your child. As she gets older, you'll be able to tell her that she has this account, and at a certain point, having watched it grow from acorn to oak, she'll happily take shelter in its shade. Because you've introduced her to the magical concept of compound returns, and because she's already excited at the fact that her account total has shot up like Jack's magic beanstalk, she will be unlikely to chop the thing down, pull out the money, and splurge it on her "Treasure-hunting Spanish Booty in the Strait of Hormuz" fantasy trip.

In addition, since she's heard how college can expand the mind every bit as much as travel, and since many of her friends are heading off to higher education, she'll come to see that this is her ticket. 'Twould be foolish (not Foolish) to throw away her ticket to a better life.

If, on the other hand, she decides she's going to go to New York, to live in a hovel, to gargle with Drano, and to become the next raspy blues singing sensation, well, maybe you'll have to let her do that. But at least if you've planned ahead you'll have the option -- and you'll be able to let her have the option -- when the time comes.

To this end, we're going to illuminate the following shadowy issues:

  • Who do you want to control the account -- you or your child?
  • What kind of account can you set up? Is a custodial account your best bet, or a guardian account -- and what the heck is the difference, anyhow? How do the various types of IRA accounts fit into the picture? Are there substantial tax benefits? What about restrictions?
  • Once you've decided on the type of account, what can you put into it? Money market accounts? CDs? Stocks?
  • How exactly do you go about setting up an account?
  • How can you teach your child about this great investment oak even as it grows?

If this dizzying panoply of questions hasn't sent you running for the hills, then hold out your hand. We'll take you where you want to go, as far as we can, and then, like the trusty, crusty guide who must turn back and head for his own hearth and home; like the Momma who tearfully kisses her little boy goodbye as he boards the bus to college (or to seek his fame and fortune with the rodeo, for that matter) we'll send you on your way. You'll be well-armed for skirmishes on the playing fields of finance.

All right then. Buckle up. Strap on your chainmail and ready your mace. The clarion call to action fills the air and swells our hearts with brave and clear-eyed foresight. Click, click on, O ye sons and daughters of the Commonweal!"

Motley fool banner from website

Morningstar Financial Literacy Online Presentation Series: Dividend Paying Stocks

Morningstar is excited to announce our new, live financial education series—free with your Morningstar Investment Research Center subscription available through the Huntsville-Madison County Public Library.  You will need your library card number and password/PIN.

Thursday, June 19th : Dividend Paying Stocks

Presented by Josh Peters, Editor of Morningstar’s Dividend Investor (@MStarJPeters)

In this session, Josh Peters, Morningstar’s editor of the popular DividendInvestor newsletter, will discuss:

• How dividend paying stocks can help build your portfolio and allow you to generate a ‘paycheck in retirement’
• His time-tested process for finding high-quality, high-paying investments
• The risks to watch out for and how to avoid dividend cuts

Attend this session and see how dividend paying investments can pay off in your portfolio.

In addition to the DividendInvestor newsletter, Josh manages two real-money portfolios – Dividend Builder for maximum dividend growth and Dividend Harvest for high but sustainable yields - and authored the book, The Ultimate Dividend Playbook.

Presentation date & times: Thursday, 06/19/14; 5:00 PM CT & 6:30 PM CT

To learn more about how to register, http://register.webcastgroup.com/L4/?wid=0579506386.

Free webinars May 22nd - 29th for increasing your financial literacy

Money Management International, the largest nonprofit, full-service credit counseling agency in the United States, offers free webinars to help you learn how to manage your money, raise your credit score and get out of debt. Click on the titles below to find out more information and to register.

Need help calculating your time zone to match the listings? Click here!

Put your debt on a diet

  • Start Time: 05/22/2014 1:00 PM
  • End Time:  05/22/2014 2:00 PM
  • Time Zone: (GMT-05:00) Eastern Time (US and Canada)
  • Do you want to get out of debt faster? This free webinar will show you how to pay off debt by using our Fast Track Payoff Plan. You will also learn how to free up additional monies by using the Step-Down Budgeting Plan.

Your credit report and credit score

  • Start Time: 05/27/2014 2:00 PM
  • End Time: 05/27/2014 3:00 PM
  • Time Zone: (GMT-05:00) Eastern Time (US and Canada)
  • After completion of this free credit webinar you will know how to understand your credit report, obtain your free report, dispute incorrect information, understand your credit score, and understand how your credit score impacts your financial health.

Budgeting: Make your money count

  • Start Time: 05/27//2014 4:00 PM
  • End Time: 05/27/2014 5:00 PM
  • Time Zone: (GMT-05:00) Eastern Time (US and Canada)
  • Without a spending plan written out we will never gain control over our financial situation.  Learn the components of a spending plan and how to develop a plan to take control over your finances.  This leads to less stress in our lives and a sense of achievement.

Guide to frugal living

  • Start Time: 05/29/2014 4:00 PM
  • End Time: 05/29/2014 5:00 PM
  • Time Zone: (GMT-05:00) Eastern Time (US and Canada)
  • If you want to change your current lifestyle, think about frugal living becoming your new normal. Through this free financial webinar, you'll learn about frugal living and how to implement your own frugal living program.

These seminars are transmitted over the Web through Adobe Connect. More information about the requirements and links to test your computer may be found here.

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5 Simple Tips for Achieving Greater Financial Security

Could your personal finance plan use a bit of structure?  FINRA can get you started with their 5 tips for achieving greater financial security.  Simple steps, such as thinking about retirement, investing, and credit reports, are a good start.  And the article provides links for further reseources on the Save and Invest website.

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