If you receive emails from investment advisory services, you may have gotten a sales pitch for The Big Black Book of Income Secrets from the Palm Beach Research Group.
The promo promises you’ll discover “30 unique income tools” in The Big Black Book of Income Secrets.
The offer entices you with a “risk-free 60-day trial subscription to the Palm Beach Letter.” If you’re not satisfied before the two-month trial is up, you’re told you can get a refund and keep the book and some “bonus” reports that are included in the offer.
To find out if The Big Black Book of Income Secrets lived up to its promises, we signed up for the “Platinum Subscription” for $99 for the first year, which comes with additional “bonus” reports.
Three weeks later, the book arrived, containing 22 (not 30 as promised) strategies, with a cover letter from the Publisher, Tom Dyson, explaining that we could log into their website to access the reports we signed on for and back issues of the Palm Beach Letter. (I guess for $99, they can’t afford to mail you hard copies of the reports.)
The First Red Flag in The Big Black Book of Income Secrets is “Income For Life”
Does that seem like a crazy or dumb question? After all, the Dow closed 2015 at only 17,425. It would have to more than double to get to 35,000. But it’s not a dumb question. I’ll explain why in a moment.
For the last five years, we’ve been tracking the Dow Jones Industrial Average and what that number means to you in your real life.
Sure, the Dow has gone up and down, and it’s gone up more than it’s gone down. But is it up enough to actually give you a return that justifies after all the sleepless nights and stomach-churning highs and lows?
Do you remember how much value the stock market lost in the crashes of 2000 and 2007? I’m talking about what percent the market lost during each of those crashes.
If you’re not sure, take a guess before you read on.
The tech crash happened just 15 years ago. The S&P 500 lost 49% from March, 2000 to October, 2002. Many investors – myself included – had moved their money into NASDAQ tech stocks, which plunged 78% during that same 2-1/2-year period.
Then the S&P 500 peaked again in 2007 – just a few years later. By March of 2009, it had plunged 57%.
What if I told you that it’s possible to get an effective annual return of nearly 10% over time – without the risk of stocks, real estate or other volatile investments?
Watch the Video above to see proof of the return of Bank On Yourself (then click on the icon in the lower right to enlarge)
I’m pretty sure you’d wonder what I’ve been smoking!
But I’m going to prove to you how you would have to get a 9.94% return every year in a tax-deferred account like a 401(k) or IRA to equal the return of a Bank On Yourself Plan over the last half century.
Watch the Video above to see proof of the return of Bank On Yourself
That means if your account should have been worth $500,000, you end up with only $314,000 – all because of stealth fees that are draining your hard-earned savings! That’s $186,000(!) of your money that will end up in other people’s pockets, not yours.
These money-sucking fees often apply even to funds that track stock market indexes such as the S&P 500… as well as to the “Target Date” Funds that most employers now automatically put employees’ 401(k) money into.
Listen to John Bogle, the founder and former CEO of Vanguard, who many consider to be the father of the indexed mutual fund, quoted in MarketWatch:
For two years before the dot-com stock market bubble crashed, my husband Larry and I studied “stock charting” with one of the country’s top technical analysts. It’s one of the 450+ financial strategies and vehicles I’ve investigated over the last 25 years.
Stock charting looks at patterns in the charts of stocks, indexes and various market indicators to determine the best times to buy or sell, based on the knowledge that history repeats itself. (Frankly, I don’t have the patience for that kind of analysis and found it excruciatingly boring.)
We owned a lot of tech stocks, and we’d check our retirement account balance every day because it was growing so fast. Some weeks we’d see such an enormous jump that we’d high-five each other shouting, “We’re rich! We’re rich!”
Yup, back then we were part of the “dumb money” – following the crowd like lemmings blindly following each other off a cliff. But I’m getting a little ahead of myself…
We were paying this analyst a good chunk of change for his coaching. Just when the dot-com bubble was peaking (as we now know with 20/20 hindsight), the analyst sent us this urgent one-sentence message:[Read more…] “Do you feel lucky?”
It was announced that more than $1 trillion has been added to the value of American equities since the stock market hit a two-month low on August 7th. Americans’ wealth has reached a record high, thanks to a surge in the value of stocks and homes.
I’m sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but here’s a news flash: You haven’t made a penny in the stock OR real estate market!
We’ve been here before…
Just like those glowing reports about how much Americans’ wealth had ballooned prior to the last financial crash, the new reports are pure fiction. Until you sell your assets and lock in your (hopefully) gains, you have nothing more than a bunch of eye-popping numbers on paper. Those numbers repeatedly sucker many of us into believing we have real wealth and financial security when we do not. [Read more…] “Are we living in the United States of Amnesia?”