The Well Cultured Anonymous/Finance

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This website is an archive. It ran from 2006-2010. Virtually everything on here is outdated or inaccurate.

This article is part of The Well Cultured Anonymous


The Basics

The truly tl;dr version of economics boils down to one very simple statement (which is basically what you'll find in any Economics 101 textbook minus the fancy words:

 :: You have limited golds, which buys you things. Try to get more to have more things.

Seriously. In all of your Economics classes, this is the main concept: You, as a human, will never have enough money to cover every single want you will have in your lifetime. You have already lost that ability. You know that Power Ranger you wanted as a kid? You didn't get it, thus your (unlimited) wants were not satisfied, thus you no longer have the ability to say "I got everything I have ever wanted in my life".

The REAL goal of life is to take what you do have (current possessions, incoming money, etc) and turn it into things you do want (fun things, like hookers). This guide will teach you the very basics to managing your money right, so maybe when you're 60, you'll have a Taiwanese hooker on every arm. And maybe one will be like giving you a rimjob or something.

And for the love of all things, spending more than you earn regularly is FUCKING STUPID YOU USELESS DOUCHEBAG CUNTS. DO NOT REGULARLY SPEND MORE THAN YOU FUCKING EARN. If you don't think that creating a nice deficit for yourself is crippling then it's time to skip the rest and become an Hero.

LESSON 1: Budgeting

Budgeting is the act of taking what you're making (your income) and breaking it up in a way so that all of your bases are covered- that is, you can pay everything you have to pay (electric bills, phone bills, interbutt bills) and then having some money to spare for hookers and beer, and actually knowing you have that money. How do you do it? It's fairly simple.

How to Budget: The Dummies Guide

 :: Step 1: Write down EVERYTHING you have to pay for.
 :: ::: Write down everything you have to pay for- this includes electric bills, gas bills, cable bills, internet bills, water bills, rent, you name it. As well, figure out a general area of how much you pay for these- for example, if you tend to use from $200-$250 on your gas bill (which makes you fucking stupid), write down $250.
 :: Step 2: Write down a generalized list of what you want in the future, broken down by priorities.
 :: ::: Basically, go write down some shit you want in a year to two years. Start off with "small things" like "A cup of Starbucks coffee every week" to "A new PC" or something of that nature. Write down the price for each of those, too.
 :: Step 3: Figure out your monthly income.
 :: ::: Most Anonymous-es should be able to get this easily, as most people, even on a corporate level, are paid every two weeks. Just figure out how much you earn on average every month. Add all this up AFTER taxes and the like- basically, what your "take home pay" is.
 :: Step 4: Figure out what percentage of your paycheck goes to your bills.
 :: ::: For example, if I'm making $1000 every month (lol), and I pay $400 in bills, 40% of my income is going to bills. That means that I have 60% "Free" money to play with. This is just a bit of math, suck it up.
 :: Step 5: Account for your IRA and that kind of crap.
 :: ::: Protip: Figure it out where you can contribute the full $4k to your IRA. I'll go into more detail why in another lesson, but the long story short is that you need to be putting a substantial percentage into your long term savings account(s). This includes IRAs and 401-ks. Going with my example above, I'd maybe put in 10% toward my savings- like $70 into my IRA and $30 into savings. This wouldn't hit my $4k limit on IRA contributions, but considering I'm only making $12k a year in this example, that's a fucking lot.
 :: Step 6: Have fun with the remainder of the money.
 :: ::: Feel good about yourself! By budgeting that out and figuring out percentages, you just happily (and guilt-free) allocated yourself a percentage of your paycheck to do anything you want with. You've got your future covered, your electricity, and now you can go buy a 12 year old boy off the street to wear girl's clothing and suck you off. In my example, I did 50%- that's pretty big just for "lol spending" money- hey, $500 can be used to do a lot of things.

What We Just Did

Like I said above, budgeting is cutting your income into little bits and pieces to make room for all your miscellaneous expenditures. By doing it, you allow yourself to grab control over what you're making, and actually get an idea of what you're actually making and spending in life- instead of finding yourself strapped for cash every so often. It sounds kinda geeky, but trust me- by budgeting even for a year, you will find yourself in better financial situation than about 90% of the world, thus making you that much better.

But, of course, your experience is going to be much different than that I mentioned above. So, to make life easier on you, I'll break budgeting down into a few key points, in which you can run from there:


 :* Allocate your bills first. Remove what you automatically pay first. It won't go away anyway.
  • Try to cut out stuff you don't need. You'll probably realize with budgeting how much extra cash you spend on stupid shit, like MMORPGs or something like that. If you don't need it, cut it out- it'll free up cash.
  • ALWAYS save money in both a long term savings account and an IRA. An IRA, as I will explain later, is basically free money (especially if you're low-income and you're using a Roth IRA, blah blah...). A savings account is ABSOLUTELY necessary because it will save your ass if you come into trouble. If not? Use it for a vacation.
  • Avoid underestimating costs. You will probably use no gas for heating in the summer. Expect to use a fuckton in the winter. Always give yourself some elbow-room in your budget for your bills- and if you have extra cash, party!
  • Keep to it. This is the biggest deal. Getting lazy WILL end up throwing you into financial hell. Don't do it.

LESSON 2: Banking Institutions

Angry threats from an ex-bank employee

Okay, let me get these things out of the way. Your experience will be much better banking if you DO NOT DO THE FOLLOWING THINGS:

LESSON 3: Saving Up For Stuff

Buy the book The Richest Man in Babylon, or find a copy online. It's a good book that's been around since the 1920's, and will drill into your head the basic outline of becoming wealthy:

  1. Earn more than you spend
  2. Save the remainder (preferably a managed fund, Roth IRAs are good and the only decent thing to come out of Delaware)
  3. Live off the interest of your savings

If you get a big enough stash of savings, you'll be able to outpace inflation and live comfortably, and maybe pass some on to your children, who will probably spend it irresponsibly

LESSON 4: Stocks, Bonds, Mutual Funds and Hedge Funds


LESSON 5: How Not To Be A Fucking Idiot


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