Archive - July, 2010

Amazon Kindle – Joe Sangl’s Books Are Now Available!

Many of you have asked for this, so I am PUMPED to announce that my first two books are now available via the Amazon Kindle – the wireless ebook Reader.

AK

Here are the links to the “Kindle”-version of my books:

I’m PUMPED because this is yet another way that we can reach more people with our crusade “to help others accomplish far more than they ever thought possible with their personal finances.”

For those of you (like me) who still like the “analog” version of books, you can buy physical copies of any of our resources via our STORE – including our latest offering the DVD-based 6 Week I Was Broke. Now I’m Not. Group Study.

Read recent posts

The Mutual Fund Series: Franklin Templeton Investments

This is a continuation of The Mutual Fund Series here on JosephSangl.com.

During each part of this weekly series, we will be looking at a specific mutual fund company.

Today’s company is Franklin Templeton Investments.

FranklingTempleton

Franklin Templeton is a global organization known for frugal and conservative investment management. The company is based in San Mateo, CA and serves in more than 150 countries with offices in over 30 countries. They currently manage $586.8 billion in investments and the number of investments is continually growing.

What I Like About Franklin Templeton Investments

  • Stable History – Franklin Templeton was founded in 1947 and for 63 years it has maintained stability and success.
  • Diversification – Franklin Templeton Mutual Funds offers 11 types of mutual funds for investors: International, Global, Growth, Value, Blended, Hybrid, Sector, Asset Allocation, Fixed Income, Tax Free Income, and Money Funds.
  • Globalization – Franklin Templeton has offices in countries representing 84% of the World’s GDP and the company is the second-largest cross-border fund manager.
  • Strong Capital Management – Franklin Templeton has been given strong credit ratings with a stable outlook from both Standard & Poor’s (AA- / A-1+) and Moody’s (A1 / P-1). The company’s dividend has also increased every year since 1981.
  • Variety of Products and Services- Not only does Franklin Templeton offer mutual funds, they also offer 529 College Plans, Coverdell ESA’s, IRA’s (Roth and Traditional), and multiple online financial tools.
  • Easy Transfers – If an investor has a change in their investing objective, they can easily transfer from one fund to another, with little or no cost.

    What I Would Like To See Improved

    • Minimum Investment Required – Franklin Templeton’s minimum investment required is $1,000, which is lower than the previously mentioned Vanguard and Fidelity, yet it is still four times higher than a mutual fund from American Funds.
    • Charges and Fees – Franklin Templeton offers very few no-load mutual funds (shares sold without commissions or sales charges). About 82.4% of funds are load mutual funds and about 17.6% are no-load funds. A no-load mutual fund usually outperforms front-end load (when fees are charged at the time of purchase) and back-end load (when fees are charged at the time the mutual fund is sold) mutual funds.

      Franklin Templeton Mutual Funds I Own

      I do not currently own any Franklin Templeton mutual funds.

      Franklin Templeton Mutual Fund To Look At

      • Franklin Growth Fund [Ticker: FKGRX] – The Franklin Growth Fund primarily invests’ in common stocks, across a variety of industries. This fund has net assets of $2.4 billion with an annual fee expense ratio of 1.00% and an average annual return of 9.92% since inception.

      Read about other mutual fund companies

      Read recent posts

      NOTE:   Clemson student Anna Briscoe, a senior majoring in Economics with a minor in Financial Management has been so gracious to research and write the majority of this post.

      Top 10 Visited Posts At JosephSangl.com

      I was looking over the visitor stats using Google Analytics the other day, and I thought it might be interesting to share the Top 10 Visited Posts for JosephSangl.com since January 2010.

      1. SERIES: How Do I Budget
      2. USA Today Snapshot – 4/30/2010 – Why Many Are B-R-O-K-E
      3. Eliminate Budget-Crushing Expenses
      4. SERIES: Eliminate The Mortgage
      5. I Am Passionate About Helping
      6. SERIES: How To Pay Off Debt
      7. Funny Money YouTube Video
      8. Budget Spending Money
      9. SERIES: Setting Financial Goals
      10. Miracle On The Way

      And I will throw in my FAVORITE post of the year – when I announced the arrival of Keaton Joseph Sangl – who arrived on February 6th – a whole ten years after big sister Melea brightened our world with her arrival!

      How Often Do You Update Your Budget?

      The most important action that helped me achieve financial freedom was preparing an INCOME – OUTGO = EXACTLY ZERO budget.

      The simple act of sitting down with my bride and planning our spending for the upcoming month is what allowed us to become debt-free in just 14 months and has allowed us to fund tons of dreams like giving a ton of money away and saving money for college, retirement, and vacations.

      Every single time that we sit down with an individual or couple in a financial counseling appointment, we work with them to prepare a budget.   For most, it is the first time in their lives that they have planned their spending out to the very last dollar.   When I meet with many of the counselees a few months later, I discover that they have failed to prepare another budget since the time that they left our last meeting   – and, guess what, they have not been able to maximize their money.

      It makes me want to ask the AWESOME readers of JosephSangl.com these two questions:

      1. How often do you prepare/update your spending plan?
      2. How well is your plan working?

      Let the conversation begin!

      Read recent posts by Joe

      Receive each post in your E-MAIL

      The Mutual Fund Series: Oppenheimer Funds

      This is a continuation of The Mutual Fund Series here on JosephSangl.com.

      During each part of this weekly series, we will be looking at a specific mutual fund company.

      Today’s company is Oppenheimer Funds.

      oppenheimer

      Oppenheimer Funds is an asset management company with headquarters in New York, NY, with $255 billion of currently managed assets. Founded in 1960, Oppenheimer Funds was affiliated with the brokerage firm Oppenheimer & Company, Inc. However, Oppenheimer Funds is now owned by Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (Mass Mutual) and has no corporate ties to Oppenheimer & Co., Inc. or Oppenheimer Capital.

      What I Like About Oppenheimer Funds

      • Diversification – Oppenheimer Funds offer 12 types of mutual funds for investors: global, growth, large growth, value, quantitative, portfolio solutions, taxable bond, municipal bond, specialty, money market, cash reserves and institutional. However, Oppenheimer Funds has become well-known for their niche with bond funds in the mutual bond market.
      • Variety of Products and Services – Oppenheimer Funds offer other products and services, such as IRA’s (Roth and Traditional), 403(b), 401(k), 529 college plans, and Coverdell ESA’s.
      • Award Winning Website – www.oppenheimerfunds.com was designated as Excellent by DALBAR in 2009 for the websites functionality and usability.

      What I Would Like To See Improved

      • Minimum Investment Required – The minimum investment for OppenheimerFunds is $1000, which is the same as Franklin Templeton: not as high as some mutual funds, but you could find it lower elsewhere.
      • Front-End Load Funds – Many of Oppenheimer Funds’ top rated mutual funds by Morningstar carry large front-end loads of 3.50% to 5.75%, which will start off your investment with a 3.50% to 5.75% LOSS! Even worse, only 8.7% of Oppenheimer Funds’ assets are no-load funds.
      • Fund Performance – Oppenheimer Funds owns several five-star and four-star mutual funds as of February 2009, which are excellent ratings; however, the company’s municipal and taxable bond funds have recently experienced poor performance.

      Oppenheimer Mutual Funds I Own

      I do not currently own any Oppenheimer mutual funds.

      Oppenheimer Mutual Fund To Look At

      • Oppenheimer Equity Fund Inc. [Ticker: OEQAX] – This mutual fund’s inception date was October 2, 1947 with a focus on investments in medium to large-capitalization companies. The fund has assets of $1.62 billion, an average annual return of 9.54% since inception, and an expense ratio of 1.03%.

      Read about other mutual fund companies

      Read recent posts

      NOTE:   Clemson student Anna Briscoe, a senior majoring in Economics with a minor in Financial Management has been so gracious to research and write the majority of this post.

      Upcoming Schedule

      I am passionate about helping people accomplish far more than they ever thought possible with their personal finances.   It is because I firmly believe that when people are financially free, they are much more likely to go do EXACTLY what they have been put on Earth to do!   Chances are that you believe the same since you are a reading this blog!   I am so blessed to be given the opportunity to speak and teach at so many locations throughout the nation, and it looks like Fall 2010 will be the busiest yet!   Below are the scheduled events, and we are nailing down the dates on several more.

      I would be honored to have the opportunity to speak and teach at your church or business – just fill out the contact form HERE to get started!

      July 24, 2010   FCE First Baptist Simpsonville Simpsonville, SC

      July 25, 2010   Speaking First Baptist Simpsonville Simpsonville, SC

      July 25, 2010     FLE First Baptist Simpsonville Simpsonville, SC

      August 3, 2010     FLE Grace Church Kingsport, TN

      August 11, 2010 Speaking   Stewardship Challenge Minneapolis, IN at Pentecostals Of The World Conference

      July 23, 2010 Speaking   Palmetto Christian Business Network Greenville, SC

      September 18, 2010 FCE Messiah Lutheran Church Midlands, MI

      September 19, 2010   Speaking Messiah Lutheran Church Midlands, MI

      September 19, 2010   FLE Messiah Lutheran Church Midlands, MI

      September 26, 2010   Speaking   NewSpring Church Anderson Campus Anderson, SC

      September 27, 2010   FLE NewSpring Church – Campus, SC

      September 28, 2010   FLE NewSpring Church – Campus, SC

      September 29, 2010   FLE NewSpring Church – Campus, SC

      September 30, 2010   FLE NewSpring Church – Campus, SC

      October 16, 2010   FCE Lifepoint Church Fredericksburg, VA

      October 17, 2010   Speaking   Lifepoint Church Fredericksburg, VA

      October 17, 2010     FLE Lifepoint Church Fredericksburg, VA

      October 22, 2010 FCE Messiah Lutheran Church Midlands, MI

      October 23, 2010   Speaking Messiah Lutheran Church Midlands, MI

      October 23, 2010   FLE Messiah Lutheran Church Midlands, MI

      All I can say is, “I can’t believe I get to do life-changing work for a living!”

      Read recent posts

      ConnectNC Church Planters Leadership Network

      I am excited about the opportunity to invest in church planters as part of the ConnectNC Church Planters Leadership Network in November.   This network kicks off on August 19th and meets monthly for six consecutive months.   If you are church planter in the triad and triangle areas, I highly recommend that you participate in this learning opportunity.

      There are even scholarships available:

      • The NC Baptist State Convention is offering $250 scholarships to the first 20 church planters. Cost with scholarship is only $250
      • The Piedmont Baptist Association is also offering $125 scholarships to the first 20 PBA church planters
      • Both scholarships are available (in couponing world we call this “stacking” coupons) if a church planter is part of both organizations

      Learn more by visiting the following sites:

      Web: www.connectNC.TV
      Twitter: www.twitter.com/connectnctv

      The Mutual Fund Series: Janus Funds

      This is a continuation of The Mutual Fund Series here on JosephSangl.com.

      During each part of this weekly series, we will be looking at a specific mutual fund company.

      Today’s company is Janus.

      Janus

      Janus Capital Management is a subsidiary of Janus Capital Group, Inc. that is based in Denver, Colorado and it was founded in 1969 by Thomas Bailey. Janus Capital Group, Inc. is comprised of Janus Capital Management LLC, INTECH Investment Management LLC, and Perkin Investment Management LLC. All three of these subsidiaries currently manage $165.5 billion. Janus Capital Management handles balanced, alternative, fixed-income, and money market funds.

      What I Like About Janus Funds

      • Intensive Research – Janus is a devoted to thorough research of each stock they invest in. Millions of dollars are spent each year for research purposes.
      • Employee Investments – Janus requires every mutual fund employee to invest in the funds they represent in order to ensure that the interest of the employees is always in alignment with the interest of the clients.
      • Award-Winning Funds – Janus has been recently honored by Lipper with awards for delivering consistently strong risk-adjusted relative performance and the company has won multiple awards for individual funds. Around 95% of Janus’ funds are no-load.
      • Rejecting Buyouts – Janus Capital Group rejected buyout offers from MassMutual and FranklinTempleton, which is extremely important for their hometown Denver, CO. Even though Janus is a smaller fund company compared T. Rowe Price, FranklinTempleton, and Oppenheimer, the company has seen growing fund performance rates in the past few months, giving Janus hope of staying independent.

      Something To Consider

      • Reputation – Unfortunately, Janus was involved in the mutual fund scandal in 2003 by allowing favored clients to participate in illegal market timing trading. Janus eventually agreed to a $226 million settlement with federal and state regulators in 2004. Even though Janus seems to be showing great fund performance now, investors should always be cautious.

      Janus Mutual Funds I Own

      I do not currently own any Janus mutual funds.

      Janus Mutual Fund To Look At

      Janus Advisor Large Cap Growth [Ticker: JDGAX]- The objective of this fund is long-term growth of capital by investing in common stocks with growth potential. This fund’s inception date was February 5, 1970. It has an annual expense ratio of 1.04%, an average annual return of 12.06%, and a minimum investment of $2,500. Morningstar gave this fund a 3-star rating.

      Read about other mutual fund companies

      Read recent posts

      NOTE:   Clemson student Anna Briscoe, a senior majoring in Economics with a minor in Financial Management has been so gracious to research and write the majority of this post.

      US National Debt: Debt Commission Report

      President Obama has appointed a national debt commission [National Commision on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform] to determine a plan of action to reduce our annual deficits to 3% of the national economy by 2015.   The two leaders of this commission, Republican Alan Simpson and Democrat Erskine Bowles delivered the report.   You should take the three minutes to read it HERE.

      Statements that stood out to me:

      • “This debt is like a cancer,” Bowles said in a sober presentation …   “It is truly going to destroy the country from within.”
      • Bowles said if the U.S. makes no changes it will be spending $2 trillion by 2020 just for interest on the national debt.   “Just think about that: All that money, going somewhere else, to create jobs and opportunity somewhere else,” he said.
      • “What we do is not so hard to figure out; it’s the political consequences of doing it that makes it really tough,” he [Bowles] said.

      My thoughts …

      If it takes tax increases to eliminate this debt, then let my generation be the one that pays for it.   As long as I see the national debt declining, a balanced budget, and a future with lower taxes and zero national debt – I’m in.

      Bowles said, “It’s the political consequences of doing it that makes it really tough.”   If we get enough people on this crusade to accomplish far more than they ever thought possible with their personal finances, there would be no negative consequences for doing the right thing.

      Your thoughts?

      Read recent posts

      YOU Can Help Pay Off The Government (Our) Debt

      I was enchanted to find out that the United States Treasury provides an on-line avenue whereby we can all make a contribution to reduce the public debt (HERE).   You can also choose to make a contribution when filing your taxes each year.

      Let’s see …   I can contribute to reduce the public debt when the public debt is increasing at a rate of approximately $4.12 billion/day.   I am going to have to make a contribution of $4.13 billion per day just to reduce the debt.

      This crusade appears to have never-ending work – I need your help to change this!

      Read recent posts

      Success Story: Freed up $425/month by selling car

      Rebekah sent me a link to her blog post recently where she shared her family’s story – and their decision to sell their car.

      You should take the three minutes necessary to read THEIR STORY.

      Read it?   OK, here are my thoughts …

      • It took awhile to have their IHHE Moment (I Have Had Enough Moment)
      • Once they had their IHHE Moment, they persevered long enough to take their next step
      • They determined their next step – and then they took the next step (I see SO many people who KNOW what they should do, but for whatever reason, they are unable to make it happen.)

      Way to go Rebekah and Chad!   We are all cheering you on as you take your next steps toward financial freedom!

      Read more success stories

      Read recent posts

      The Mutual Fund Series: T. Rowe Price

      This is a continuation of The Mutual Fund Series here on JosephSangl.com.

      During each part of this weekly series, we will be looking at a specific mutual fund company.

      Today’s company is T. Rowe Price.

      TRowePrice

      T. Rowe Price is an independent, global investment company founded in 1937 by Thomas Rowe Price, Jr. The company is based in Baltimore, Maryland, with offices in 12 countries around the world. T. Rowe Price currently manages $419 Billion in assets.

      What I Like About T. Rowe Price

      • Award-Winning Company – T. Rowe Price is recognized by Morningstar as the number one mutual fund company based on fund return, stewardship, manager tenure, manager investment, and retention. The company has also been esteemed as having consistently strong risk-adjusted performance and was named Best Overall Large Company by Lipper.
      • Community Involvement - T. Rowe Price is greatly involved in their surrounding communities by volunteering, giving, leading, and educating. The T. Rowe Price Associates Foundation was founded in 1981 and it was established to provide assistance for nonprofit organizations, educate families, and provide scholarships.
      • Retirement Plan Management – T. Rowe Price has an excellent website that provides the client with account access, do-it-yourself planning tools, and target-date portfolios that allows you to invest and manage based on time. The company offers four retirement choices: T. Rowe Price Mutual Funds, One-Step Portfolios, Open Architecture (combined T. Rowe Price funds with outside funds), and Tradelink (self-directed). T. Rowe Price gives their clients many options for investing with exceptional website tools.
      • 100% No-Load! – T. Rowe Price provides investors with over 90 mutual funds with no front-end or back-end loads, as well as low fee rates.
      • Minimum Investment Options – T. Rowe Price Mutual Funds have a minimum investment of $1,000 or $2,500 depending on the fund. HOWEVER, they do offer a Systematic Purchase Minimum that allows you to invest $50 each month. This is a great option for those that don’t have $1,000 or $2,500 to put down on an investment!

      What I Would Like To See Improved At T. Rowe Price

      • Commissions Fees – T. Rowe Price charges higher stock brokerage commissions fees than other brokers. The cost is $20 for 1,000 total shares and 2 cents more for every share above 1,000. An investor could also be charged $118 if assistance is needed to make a stock trade.

      T. Rowe Price Mutual Funds I Own

      I do not currently own any T. Rowe. Price mutual funds.

      T. Rowe Price Mutual Fund To Look At

      T. Rowe Price New Horizons Fund [Ticker: PRNHX] – This fund’s objective is to provide long-term growth of capital by investing in small, rapidly growing companies. The inception date of this fund was June 3, 1960. It has an expense ratio of 0.85%, an average annual return since inception of 10.69%, and requires a minimum investment of $2,500. Morningstar has given this fund a 4-star rating.

      Read about other mutual fund companies

      Read recent posts

      NOTE:   Clemson student Anna Briscoe, a senior majoring in Economics with a minor in Financial Management has been so gracious to research and write the majority of this post.

      Success Story: Jeep Paid Off!

      I received the below note via Twitter from a person who is on staff at a church where we taught the Financial Learning Experience.   With their permission, I am sharing it below:

      As of this week [wife's name] & I now officially own our jeep! ( @jsangl @IWasBroke ) – and he shared the below picture.

      JeepPay-OffSpectacular

      My thoughts …

      YES!   That is exactly what this crusade is ALL about!   Helping others get ahead financially so that they can use their financial resources to fund the things that are most important and fulfilling – like giving money away, saving for the future, and enjoying some fine things in life!   Oh, and the reduction/elimination of financial stress is really nice too!

      Read more success stories

      Read recent posts

      I’m Hiring – Administrative Assistant

      I am so excited about this crusade that our team is on to help people accomplish far more than they ever thought possible.   Others are also apparently excited too – since we have been given the opportunity to teach and speak to literally tens of thousands of people (nearly 100,000!) over the past three years.

      With this growth comes the need for great people to help steward this tremendous effort.   That’s why we are hiring an Administrative Assistant.   We will be starting with a 20 hour/week position with the potential that it will grow into a full-time position.   This will be an “in the office” position with hours of 1:00 PM – 5:00 PM each weekday.

      I’m looking for someone who wants to do life-changing and life-giving work, is living what we are teaching, and is passionate about helping others accomplish far more than they ever thought possible.

      Download the full job description HERE.

      If you feel like this role would be an incredible fit with you – here is what you can do to be considered for this critical role:

      • Send your resume to: info@iwasbrokenowimnot.com
      • Tell us why you feel that you would be an incredible fit for our team and this role
      • Include as many specific skill sets and abilities that you possess that believe would allow you to excel in this role

      I can’t wait!

      Success Story: Paid off $55,000 in 2.5 years!

      I received the below note from a person who is on staff at a church where we taught the Financial Learning Experience.

      Hey it’s [name protected] from [name protected] Church. Last time we talked I had sold my vehicles and budgeted to where we had paid off about $40K. I asked your opinion on stock, sold it like you suggested and we are now DEBT FREE and have our emergency fund complete. We were blessed to pay off a total of $55K and finish the emergency fund in 2 1/2 years.

      Now, I really need to open a roth IRA because I want to begin retirement, but I need some wisdom as to where. Do you have any suggestions? I want to make sure it’s a reliable place with the best return possible. Definitely wanted your opinion before making any moves. Thank you so much for all your help along the way.

      We receive these types of stories regularly, and I haven’t shared them enough!   In 2.5 years, this person was able to take control of their “average” financial situation and turn it into a “great” financial situation.   Now they are prepared to fund their Roth IRA.   Reminds me of Proverbs 21:5 – “The plans of the diligent lead to profit; as surely as haste leads to poverty.”

      Way to be diligent!!!   It is leading to profit!

      Read more success stories

      Read recent posts

      Page 1 of 212»