Financial wellness

January is Financial Wellness Month, and many of us are motivated to pay attention as the holiday bills arrive. If the word “budget” gives you the willies and the word “savings” means checking the couch for lost change, it’s time to get a grip. Our Investing subject guide provides some resources to help you have a happier new year. Some highlights:

Feed The Pig is the place to go when you don’t know where to start. It’s brought to us by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), but don’t let that scare you off. This is the place for clear, simple, workable information and “how-to’s” on making your spending plan, a savings plan, and a happier life plan. You can use the Home Budget Calculator to sort out your income and outgo, sign up for a savings tips newsletter, or learn the basics of investing.

If you prefer to start in your easy chair with a print book rather than a computer, consider checking out a classic, easy-to-digest guide written like a novel, David Chilton’s The Wealthy Barber. The newest edition is available in most of our library locations, and will take you painlessly from “financial illiteracy” to “insights into investments and income tax.”

Speaking of investing: When your know-it-all Father-in-law tells you to invest in plastics, you can investigate the industry for yourself by using the Library’s link to the Business Insights: Essentials database. This database gives you the ability to explore an industry, compare companies within that industry, and obtain market share information or product trends.

When a company strikes you as a potential investment, you can use ValueLine for details on the company’s financial status, history, and forecasts.

Or, if you prefer to keep your money in mutual funds, use Morningstar for evaluation of funds.

Everyone needs an emergency fund and short-term savings. But is your bank a safe place to stash that cash? And speaking of emergencies—is your insurance company really going to be there when you need them? The Weiss Financial Ratings Series gives us independent advice on the financial stability of banks, credit unions, and insurance companies.

Happy new year, and happy new financial life!

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