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Weekend reading: Millennials toasted

What caught my eye this week.

I have a soft spot for Baby Boomers who appreciate that the younger generation really does have it much harder than they did, financially speaking.

Boomers like Jim, who writes on his blog SexHealthMoneyDeath [1] that:

…if I was a youth today, I’d be damn angry about it. Especially if I read blogs like mine where Baby Boomers in their fifties ponder early retirement and the most tax efficient ways to drawdown their pensions while wondering if they can be bothered taking two long haul holidays a year?

A Baby Boomer, that is, like me who was given a fantastic free education, who took out a mortgage as soon as he started working (required deposit, fifteen hundred quid and a 95% loan) and sat back to watch property rocket over his working lifetime.

Nice work, if you can get it. Which you no longer can.

But while there’s a little bit more inter-generational understanding these days – at least in terms of words, if not actions – Millennials are still regularly hearing guff like the reason they can’t buy a house is because they eat too much smashed avocado on toast. Seriously [2].

The LA Times [3] notes that the Australian millionaire who doled out that advice actually started his own business with a $34,000 handout from his grandfather.

Good on him for making a success of it, but equally $34,000 buys a lot of avocado on toast – even at the $19 a pop he seems to find it selling for.

At least the youth have Buzzfeed, which collected a super set of Tweets [4] to cheer them up, such as:

From Monevator

Vanguard goes direct to UK consumers [Read the comments, too]Monevator [6]

Out of the archive-ator: Coping with the guilt of losing money – Monevator [7]


Note: Some links are Google search results – in PC/desktop view these enable you to click through to read the piece without being a paid subscriber.1 [8]

Bye Bye buy-to-let? Amount lent to UK landlords falls 80% in a year – ThisIsMoney [9]

Rich US retirees are hoarding cash out of fear – Bloomberg [10]

What the election promises mean for your money [Not a search result, something is going wrong with it]FT [11]

£1 tops $1.30 for the first time in eight months – Telegraph [12]

One good thing to come from our imminent one-party state: Tories to downgrade triple-lock pension to a double-lock, since their base is hardly going to switch to a ’70s-styled Labour – ThisIsMoney [13]

Cautious fund manager Neil Woodford spends £200m on Lloyds shares – ThisIsMoney [14]

US company profits have moved to a higher plateau, killing mean reversion strategies – Morningstar [15]

Products and services

Kingdom Bank – established to fund church expansion – now offers the top cash ISA rate, paying 1.2%. Yes, it’s covered by the FSCS. The answer to your prayers, etc? – Telegraph [16]

Meanwhile a new one-year ‘bond’ from Charter Savings Bank [17] pays 1.55% a year interest (but that’ll still lag inflation) – ThisIsMoney [18]

Ford has launched a new regular savings account paying 4% (with the usual restrictions and caveats) as well as some new cash ISA options – Telegraph [19]

Lloyds and Metro bank are bringing back safes and safety deposit boxes – ThisIsMoney [20]

Not only will you get £10 off your first Thriva blood test kit with the following link, you can use the code ITSMAY at checkout to get a further 50% deduction – Thriva [21]

Comment and opinion

Swedroe: It’s so hard to tell investing skill from luck, you may as well presume there’s no skill – ETF.com [22]

The Snapchat IPO has been a good lesson for young investors – A Wealth of Common Sense [23]

Try to be a little underemployed, says Morgan Housel – Collaborative Funds [24]

How to plan for a future stock market crash [Search result]FT [25]

“A study of consultants by a professor at Boston University found that managers could not tell the difference between employees who worked 80 hours a week and those who just pretended to.”Guardian [26]

Dealing with the ‘unknown unknowns’ of investing – Of Dollars and Data [27]

Doomsters be damned: The US stock market tripled because profits tripled – Investing Caffeine [28]

Profit opportunities exist only until researchers publish inefficiencies – Bloomberg [29]

American Gods: The tech firms the market trusts to trump Trump – Reformed Broker [30]

Michael Mauboussin sits down with Patrick O’Shaughnessy [Podcast]Investor’s Field Guide [31]

Regulation is turning the sell-side business model into an honesty box – Bloomberg [32]

Why VC-funded start-ups – especially ‘Unicorns’ – are often overvalued [Research]SSRN [33]

When Norway struck oil in the 1960s, one savvy investor bet different – The Macro Tourist [34]

Off our beat

Today’s big tech companies might be even bigger than you think – The Atlantic [35]

Want higher-quality Internet content? Maybe we should pay for it – Wired [36]

And finally

“Skyrocketing markets that depend purely on psychic support have invariably succumbed the financial law of gravitation. Unsustainable prices may persist for years, but eventually they reverse themselves. Such reversals come with the suddenness of an earthquake; and the bigger the binge, the greater the resulting hangover.”
– Burton Malkiel, A Random Walk Down Wall Street [37]

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  1. Note some articles can only be accessed through the search results if you’re using PC/desktop view (from mobile/tablet view they bring up the firewall/subscription page). To circumvent, switch your mobile browser to use the desktop view. On Chrome for Android: press the menu button followed by “Request Desktop Site”. [ [42]]