I graduated from university with a degree in Economics. I started my own business when I was in my late twenties. Owning your own business requires a wide variety of skills but I really excelled in financial management. I then enhanced my Economics degree by completing several courses in order to become a financial advisor. I have enjoyed a very long, successful career as an entrepreneur. I am now in my early 60’s and retired.
I decided to write a financial blog because I am concerned about the economic future of Canadians. The financial crisis of 2008 was a warning sign of too much debt in world economies. The banking system almost collapsed and the problem has been kicked down the road by printing more money. Keeping interest rates below normal historical levels enables both consumers and government from defaulting on their debt. The problem of too much debt in world economies hasn’t been resolved. Closer to home, headlines like “City of Detroit files for bankruptcy” and “Consumer debt hits record $1.4-trillion”in Canada, should scare you. I live in Ontario and I am petrified!
Ontario’s growing debt problem has been estimated to reach $282 billion dollars by the end of 2014! That means to pay it off, the government would have to collect more than $28,000 in extra taxes from every man, woman and child living in Ontario. Yes, I said living not working. Keep in mind, the Ontario government’s annual budget deficit hasn’t been balanced yet so this debt keeps growing.
I believe that the lack of financial literacy among Canadians has caused this debt spiral to continue. We have allowed governments to buy our votes to pay with promises that are becoming unaffordable. Easy credit and a buy now, pay later attitude of Canadian consumers have reduced our savings rates. I still can’t believe that 30% of Canadians carry credit card debt and pay almost 20% in interest charges on their outstanding balance. Raising consumer debt has turned the retirement slogan of freedom 55, to freedom 75 because of the lack of savings. Unfortunately, I find that money and financial matters take a back seat to other priorities in the lives of both the young and old. It doesn’t help that the vocabulary and acronyms used by the financial industry are really confusing.
My goals are to encourage you to take control of your finances and to provide you with information that will improve your financial knowledge and hopefully overtime increase your personal wealth. I will also offer my views on possible financial trends that could affect your financial well-being. Money can’t buy happiness but it can give you the freedom to do what you love.