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

How Are Financial Advisors Like Congress?

If you voted for your congressman then they’re great but the rest are bums and if you voted against him then he’s a crook like all the rest. The same feelings are often held about financial advisors. How can the industry have such a bad reputation if so many people think that they have the only good one? Read more

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The “Hidden” Sales Charge

I received a call recently from an investor that was a little confused about differences in mutual fund share classes. It seems this individual opened an IRA with a financial advisor a few years ago and purchased an “A” share mutual fund. Then, just a few days ago, they received a letter from the custodian informing them that “B” shares would no longer be available for purchase. The investor had never heard of a “B” share and wasn’t quite sure what this meant, so they decided to call the Financial Helpline.  Read more

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How to Invest While Getting a Tan

June signifies summer, a time when millions of Americans flock to frolic in the sand and soak up some sun. If only investing were as easy as a day at the beach…or is it? It can be if you follow these simple guidelines: Read more

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How Many Toys Is Enough?

My neighbor down the street is selling his camper, and so my wife walks in the house the other day and says, “Honey, did you see the camper for sale down the street?” Now I love to camp, and to be quite honest, I was stunned she even asked the question. First of all, we already have a boat, and second, she’s not really a big fan of camping. To me, camping is about “roughing” it, but for my wife, she likes to “pamp,” (which is a word my friend made up that describes people who want to be pampered when they camp—thus the name). Read more

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Getting Rid Of Your Cell Phone? Wipe It Clean First

Cell phones have become so common in our world today that we forget how much sensitive information is contained on these innocuous devices. Such information in the wrong hands could give an unscrupulous person access to private information, including links and passwords to financial accounts and statements. I recently switched cell phone providers to reduce my cost and increase my coverage and reliability, but I was not prepared to make sure the data that had accumulated on my old phone was cleared out before passing it on to the next user. Read more

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Should You Lease Or Buy Your Cell Phone?

Usually when someone is talking about leasing versus buying, they are talking about a car or real estate. However, have you ever stopped to consider that when it comes to choosing a cell phone provider, you might be making the exact same decision? You probably never thought of it this way, but when you sign a contract with any one of the major carriers, you are in essence leasing the phone.  Read more

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Always Read the Fine Print

Last month was my son David’s 15th birthday. For years, he has been asking for a cell phone, and now that he is a freshman in high school, has maintained good grades, and has shown at least some level of responsibility, his mother and I decided he was ready. I agreed to add David to our cell phone plan on one condition: that he buys his own phone. (Susan and I have found that the kids are more likely to take care of their devices when the cost to purchase it comes out of their own pocket.)  Read more

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Financial Planning For Any Weather

In some parts of the country, May means beautiful flowers and beautiful weather but for most of us, it also means checking the weather app on your phone constantly to have a clue of what’s going to happen. Will it be a mild spring day, rainy, or shorts and flip-flop weather? At least you can get a good guess from the weather app, but what about the unexpected events in your financial life? How do you prepare for life’s unexpected changes? Read more

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How to Give the RIGHT Way

December is associated with giving gifts to loved ones, but often May and June are months where significant milestones like graduations and weddings occur. If you are making a gift of cash, there are a few questions you might want to ask yourself. How much is enough, how much is too much, and what’s the best way to give?  Read more

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Three Investment Terms You Should Know

Have you ever noticed how different words mean different things to different people? The other day I was talking with a helpline caller who was looking for a way to invest their retirement funds such that they couldn’t lose money and could draw an income from it in the future. When I mentioned the word “annuity,” they immediately had a negative reaction as they were lead to believe all annuities were bad, which seemed ironic considering that’s exactly what they just described they were looking for. When it comes to investment terminology, not understanding the meaning of a word can be a financial mistake. Here are three investment terms that are frequently used but often misunderstood: Read more

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