Financial Wellness @ Work

Author Archives: Greg Ward

About Greg Ward

CFP®, AFC®

Greg Ward is a Senior Resident Financial Planner at Financial Finesse and is our chief financial research analyst. Greg is responsible for all of the data, statistics, and fact checking at Financial Finesse as well as providing service delivery of the company's Financial Helpline, Workshops and Webcasts.

Greg contributes weekly with tips on personal finance and best practices for taking control of your money.

His background includes over 19 years in the financial services industry with positions ranging from Pension Service Representative to Investment Specialist to Financial Advisor. He achieved the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ designation in 2004. Greg holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Statistics from The University of California, Davis.

Favorite Financial Guru: Dave Ramsey

Fun Fact: "I have jumped out of a perfectly good airplane – twice. Otherwise, I’m a pretty boring guy"

Favorite Quote: "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose." – Jim Elliot

Cyber-Thieves Strike Again: What To Do If You Are a Victim

Well, it’s happened again. Another national retailer has had its payment systems hacked. This and similar cyber attacks against corporations appear to be on the rise so as a consumer you will want to be especially diligent in watching your accounts for unauthorized use. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) offers four steps you should take when you suspect that your debit or credit card information has been compromised: Read more

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Three Ways to Skin the Asset Allocation Cat

Over the past several weeks, you’ve heard me talk a lot about investing and for good reason. Investing is one of the most important parts of any financial goal or wealth accumulation strategy. The problem, like with most things, is that there is no one perfect way to do it. You probably know the basics—diversify, re-balance, dollar-cost average—but did you realize that there are at least three forms of asset allocation? Knowing what they are, how they are different, and which one may be right for you could make you a better investor over time. Read more

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Four Steps to Car Buying

This year my daughter is turning 16,and you know what that means. Buying and selling a vehicle can be one of the most intimidating financial transactions you will ever experience, but there is a plethora of information and advice out there to help even the most nervous consumer get through the process. Here are some simple steps you can take to acquire the car of your dreams: Read more

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We’re Not Gonna Take It Anymore! (Part 3)

Several weeks ago, I introduced the idea of challenging corporate financial policies that put the company ahead of the customer. I talked about how cancellation policies are not set in stone and how consumers have nothing to lose by requesting a refund of unused services despite what the cancellation policy says. Last week, I continued the discussion by challenging the notion that new-customer deals should only be available to new customers while existing customers should be satisfied with the status quo. For this week’s blog post, I’m taking on the notion that some deals are only good “for a limited time.” Read more

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We’re Not Gonna Take It Anymore! (Part 2)

Last week, I shared with you how cancellation policies can intimidate you into not asking for a refund when you do not intend on using a prepaid service. Another policy that drives me nuts and may be intimidating consumers into settling for less is the policy that it’s okay to offer better options to new customers only. Since when is it okay to treat new friends better than old onesRead more

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We’re Not Gonna Take It Anymore! (Part 1)

One thing my daughter and I share in common is our affinity for 80’s rock music. From Def Leppard to Duran Duran, she loves the classics and one of her all-time favorite 80’s songs is Twisted Sister’s We’re Not Gonna Take It.  This song—an anthem for my generation—has inspired my attitude about many things, including money. In our current culture, we are conditioned to accept the financial policies of businesses without question but since when were we here to serve businesses instead of businesses serving us?  There’s a lot of competition out there for our money so when it comes to silly financial policies, maybe it’s time we STOP taking it! Read more

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How to Invest: A Tale of Two Investment Theories

My first exposure to investment theories was during an economics class I took in college. I was always sort of a geek when it came to graphs and numbers—which I guess explains my degree in statistics—so I was captivated when the professor drew an example of the efficient frontier on the chalk board. It made perfect sense to me.  Read more

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4 Ways to Plan For Long Term Care

According to the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance, over 70% of long-term care insurance policies are applied for after age 54. Maybe it happens after the kids leave the nest or perhaps when other goals like retirement are realized but I believe most people don’t start thinking about long-term care until they’ve experienced it through someone else.  I’ve had my share of experience dealing with long-term care but my most recent encounter with Patty Smith (name changed to protect the innocent) has made me realize why it is so important to plan for long-term care before it is too late. Read more

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What Was I Thinking? – How Some Investment Decisions Are Made

Think about the last investment decision you made. Why did you make it?  Was it part of an existing investment strategy? Did you see somebody else do it? Perhaps it was done for you?   Read more

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What’s the Deal With Car Reservations?

Oscar Wilde once wrote “Life imitates Art far more than Art imitates life.”  As though this statement needed any proof, my recent trip to a rental car agency proved to be a reenactment of a classic Seinfeld episode.  Several months ago, I reserved a minivan in anticipation of a family trip to the West Coast. Upon arriving at the rental car agency, I was told that there were no minivans available. How could this be?  They knew what I needed.  They knew when I would be there.  So why would they not have a car waiting for me?   Read more

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