How much can you save?

by Jim Toes

No matter what industry you work in, the need to save a portion of your income is important. If you work in the financial services sector where incomes and job security are inconsistent, it is critical. But for many, including myself, finding the discipline to save is challenging. According to a Forbes article, Americans saved 17% of their income in 2013. I’m not certain that rate holds true for many of us…again, including me.

To this point I’d like to introduce Dr Steve Franklin, a former portfolio manager, turned professor and author. In 2007 Dr Franklin set out to capture the “Wisdom of America’s Centenarians and share it with The Younger Generation”. He and his research team have combined videotaped, interviewed and surveyed over 500 Centenarians all across the United States. Dr Franklin spoke at an STA Washington DC conference in 2012. His presentation resonated extremely well as he described how financial responsibility means something different for this generation. Making little, but saving a lot is more honorable and wise than making a lot and saving little.

Today, we are not living in a Depression, which is a good thing. Unfortunately, few if any of us know someone who did. There are great lessons to be learned from these individuals.

Today, we are not living in a Depression, which is a good thing. Unfortunately, few if any of us know someone who did. There are great lessons to be learned from these individuals. Their experiences from the 1920’s not only add perspective to what we have gone through the past five to seven years, but also provide sound practical advice like; save and avoid debt. Their stories, almost all wrapped in humor, are some of our nation’s true treasures. Dr Franklin’s book, Celebrate 100: Centenarian Secrets to Success in Business and Life can be found here. If you prefer to browse some of the interviews first then go here You will not know of any of the centenarians in these clips, but you will recognize their messages and perhaps hear the voices of relatives gone by.