Stiletto Society hosts Ignite Savannah

SAVANNAH, Ga (WSAV) – Those seeking new opportunities and getting their business startups off the ground came together this morning.

Ignite Savannah is a seminar hosted by the stiletto society. the focus this morning was channeling business growth for entrepreneurs all around Savannah. The program featured inspirational speakers who talked financial independence, wealth building, entrepreneurship, and leadership.

“Not just launching my website, not just selling a t shirt, not that kind of stuff I am talking about making a global impact. You could have a major multi million dollar, multi billion dollar company and that’s what today is about,” says Sarita Pittman, founder of Stiletto Society.

Alert: This Multi-Millionaire Reveals His Top 3 Wealth-Building Tips

I recently had the pleasure of chatting with David, who very quietly amassed a fortune of several million dollars before his 55th birthday.

There’s nothing remarkable about David. Both he and his wife had very regular careers. David leveraged a summer jobinside a packaged-foods plant into a sales rep position — a position he held for 30 years. His wife, Tammy, taught first grade at a local public school. They raised two boys and put them both through university.

Yet David was able to accomplish something many of us can only dream about. He and his wife accumulated more than $3…

America Ranked Near the Bottom — Again — In Wealth Inequality

The stark earnings gap between Black and white Americans also is a growing problem in the US, with the disparities widening year by year. A study from theInstitute of Women’s Policy Research in 2016 showed that Black Americans and Latinos (both male and female) lagged behind in weekly wage earnings compared to their counterparts. For instance, Black and Hispanic workers had their weekly wages decrease in 2015, while workers of other races saw their weekly earnings nearly double.

When comparing Black and white economic wealth, study after study has shown that Black Americans fall behind in this area as well because they simply don’t earn as much. In 2016, researchersfrom the Corporation for Enterprise Development and the Institute for Policy Studies examined the growing racial wealth gap and found that it would take the average Black family a lengthy 228 years just to accrue the wealth of today’s average white family. That’s because, over the past 30 years, the wealth of white families ballooned 84 percent — three times the rate of economic growth for Black households.

Institutional racism has played a role in the widening disparity, as researchers highlighted the wealth-building policies that have consistently given white families financial advantages over Black ones. Such policies have exacerbated America’s poor distribution of wealth and have further slowed the upward mobility of African-Americans on the economic ladder.

“If the past 30 years were to repeat, the next three decades would see the average wealth of White households increase by over $18,000 per year, while Latino and Black households would see their respective wealth increase by about $2,250 and $750 per year,” the study read.

Recognising our limiting beliefs

This weekend I played my first game of Monopoly. I realise this may be met with the same incredulity as when I admitted I only recently learnt how to ride a bike!

I did not have a deprived childhood, just poor co-ordination. My aversion to Monopoly, however …

I remember it vividly, although I could only have been about five. My sister and her friends, all ten-year-olds, were playing the board game on the living room floor. I wanted in.

I’m not sure if they tried explaining the rules or just said it was too complicated for me, that I wouldn’t understand: it was about money, wealth and mortgages. Grown-up stuff and I was too little.

My mature response to this was to stomp all over the board, sending the little red and green buildings and silver trinkets flying. And, I haven’t played since, firmly believing the game boring and beyond me.

Until now.

My nine-year old asked me to play. My response: “No way, that’s a really hard game! I don’t even know how.”

I got an odd look. “I’ve played it before, mom. It’s really fun … I can teach you.”

Not wanting to be outdone by a fourth-grader, we set it up; apportioned the cash. I was the Top Hat. I poured over the directions trying to figure it all out: buying lots, charging rent, mortgaging.

Just reading the game rules I noticed the same anxiety building as when my bank statements arrive, which often remain unopened. The truth is, I find dealing with money matters a little bit scary. There’s a nagging sense that I do not understand money, it’s too complex, so I’d just rather not engage.

Secrets of the Millionaire Mind author, T. Harv Eker, suggests there are four different Money Personalities: The Hoarder, The Spender, The Avoider, The Money Monk, and that we are all either one or a mixture of these. ( Guess which one I am?

His book theorises that we each have an inner financial blueprint, a “preset programme or way of being in relation to money”. Our blueprint is based on the messages we received as a child, from parents, teachers, media, siblings: the verbal messages, by modelling what we saw, and from experiencing specific incidents.

Children are impressionable little sponges soaking up all the information around them. How they process it and the meanings they make from it, however, can often be other than intended. Skewed meanings can become fixed and form the belief system by which that person continues to view themselves and the world around them, for life.

Could it be I created my relationship with money based on a board game and a tantrum? I laughed to see so many of my real-life “patterns” at play in the game: fear of not having enough, using “hope” as a strategy, “getting by” rather than proactively wealth-building, looking forward to Passing Go and Payday.

Consciously, I know managing finances is not that hard. Plenty of people do it. Self-sabotage, however, comes when deeply rooted feelings rear up and we act on them: especially fear. Fear that I am not grown up enough to handle money and I will not understand it.

Recognising our limiting beliefs is like a “get out of jail free” card. It’s the first step in addressing them and creating new and empowering beliefs that are truer and more useful for us now. What do you believe about yourself that might be holding you back? Why not get some coaching to better set yourself up for success.

o Julia Pitt is a trained Success Coach and certified NLP practitioner on the team at Benedict Associates. For further information contact Julia on (441)705-7488,;;/igt;

Local investment company fined $70000

A local investment company has been ordered to pay $70,000 in fines and penalties for failing to properly supervise one of its past advisers.

Professional Investments, which has been headquartered in Kingston since 1984 and has five other locations between Belleville and Ottawa, faces the penalties from the Mutual Fund Dealers Association of Canada (MFDA). The settlement hearing was released publicly on Friday. It states Professional Investments failed to supervise Patrick Caicco, who admitted in a statement of agreed facts and to the Whig-Standard to engaging in securities outside of a MFDA member.

Between May 12, 2009, and March 12, 2010, Caicco was registered as a mutual fund salesperson with Professional Investments based in Ottawa. Without initially notifying or asking permission from the local company, Caicco incorporated Advantage Wealth Building Strategies Inc. to carry out wealth coaching and wealth planning services, reads a November 2015 MFDA case summary.

Caicco said on Thursday that, at the time, he was moving out of the mutual fund game and into alternative investments. One of those investments was The Skyline Real Estate Investment Trust, between March 2008 and May 2010. Caicco referred 21 people, four of whom were clients of Professional investments, to invest a combined $1,343,449. Caicco collected one per cent in referral fees from Skyline. Caicco said that the Skyline investment was a success and that some of his clients have doubled their investments.

Things went south in 2009 when Caicco started to work with the Assaly Group. Caicco recommended that 21 people, including five Professional Investments clients, invest a combined $1,838,000 in the Assaly Groups Natures Walk Gated Community and one person to invest $171,000 in Villa Montague. Natures Walk was going to be a gated community and golf course in North Grenville while Villa Montague was a real estate investment pool to redevelop an existing retirement residence located in Smith Falls.

Investors were initially receiving returns on this investments but they suddenly stopped in February 2011. Suing The Assaly Group, the court process revealed the two projects were hopelessly insolvent and in stages of abandonment. The settlement from MFDA says there is no reasonable prospect that investors will recover the full amount of their investments.

For his actions, Caicco was banned from the MFDA and from ever working in the mutual fund business. He was also fined $50,000 and ordered to pay $5,000 in proceedings costs. Caicco said on Thursday he likely wont pay the penalties.

I havent paid the fine and probably never will because I dont have the money to pay it, Caicco said.

While Caicco didnt invest in the Assaly ventures and made three per cent in referral fees, he said he went bankrupt going after The Assaly Group.

I spent a whole year trying to fight Assaly with the lawyers, because I wanted to get them, so I didnt work for a year, lost probably $100,000 of income, and I get bankrupt and I lost all my assets, Caicco said. If [Assaly] hadnt defaulted, MFDA wouldnt have found out and I wouldnt have had to go bankrupt and my clients wouldnt have lost money.

His default set a cascading effect right across the board.

Caicco said one of the advisers at Professional Investments knew he was working in a grey area because he was transferring his mutual fund clients to him. MFDA and Professional Investments agree in the settlement that when they found out about Caiccos actions, they didnt initially report it to the MFDA. Caicco said Professional Investments had eventually suggested that he resign from the company.

Because Professional Investments wasnt adequately supervising Caicco and it failed to report to the MFDA that Caicco was working outside its domain, panelists Martin Friedland and Guenther Kleberg fined Professional Investments $60,000 and $10,000 in proceedings costs.

This is not the first time Professional Investments has been penalized by the MFDA. In December 2008, the company entered a settlement with MFDA that stated it did not establish, implement and maintain two-tier compliance structure. A compliance structure ensures investments are right for the individual investor. Investments must be approved by a manager and the companys head office.

Professional Investments was fined $10,000, was ordered to pay the $2,500 for the costs of the MFDA disciplinary proceedings, and was ordered to retain KPMG Inc. to help set up and monitor the compliance structure.

Caicco now works in mortgage investments with FMP Mortgage Investments Inc. but would like to expand further into the food services industry.

Personal finance checklist at age 50

In a youth-oriented culture, it is easy to feel a little over the hill by the time you turn 50. When it comes to building wealth though, your 50s are the prime of your life – a period when you have a chance to emerge from debt, enjoy your peak earning years and start to see your investments make a serious contribution to your net worth.

To take advantage of this crucial phase of your financial life, it is important to understand some key factors that can help you make the most of your 50s.

Personal finance checklist at age 50

As you look over your financial situation once you turn 50, here are some things you should attend to:

1. Shift more heavily from borrowing to saving

Early in your career, accumulated savings are likely to be modest and it seems you are taking out one loan after another: student loans, car loans, home mortgages, etc. By the time you reach age 50 though, you should have greatly reduced your debt burden. In its place, you should see a growing portfolio of retirement assets. This is the type of trend that can feed on itself: the more you retire your debt, the more of your monthly budget can go to savings rather than loan payments.

2. Estimate your Social Security benefits

The US Social Security Administration will provide you with a free projection of your retirement benefits based on your career earnings so far. While this will remain subject to change based on your subsequent earnings, by age 50 you should have enough of a track record to get a sense of what contribution Social Security will make to your retirement income. This projection can also help you start to think seriously about the pros and cons of retiring early or working longer to achieve the maximum annual benefit.

3. Reassess your retirement goals

In addition to Social Security, look at your other retirement savings and see how much income they project to provide. Knowing where you stand will help you make more concrete plans about the future, including when to retire and what kind of lifestyle to expect.

4. Use catch-up retirement saving opportunities

Looking at your projected Social Security benefits and your savings accounts relative to your goals may tell you that you have some catching up to do. Fortunately, the government gives you some catch-up opportunities in the form off additional tax-deferred retirement contributions to 401(k) or individual retirement account (IRA) plans that you can make once you turn 50. Use this as an incentive to start making extra contributions.

5. Keep your asset allocation aggressive

People often feel their investments should get more conservative as they get older, but age 50 is too soon to throttle back to a less growth-oriented asset allocation. At that age, you are probably still more than a decade away from retirement, and still have an investment time horizon of some 30 or so years stretched out ahead of you. Plus, if you are contributing heavily to your retirement plans, this positive cash flow will help smooth out some of the volatility from growth investments.

6. Update your will

If you first made a will when you started your family, you might find things are radically different by the time you turn 50. Your kids may be on the verge of adulthood and your net worth may be substantially greater, so it is a good time to take a fresh look at what provisions youve made for your survivors.

7. Dont be shy about discounts

Turning 50 makes you eligible for AARP membership. Dont let that make you feel old – just look at the discounts available, and think of it as an advantage youve earned.

8. Take advantage of senior checking accounts

Some banks offer checking accounts for older customers that have no monthly fees. Eligibility is often set at age 50, and with free checking getting harder to find these days, signing up for one of these accounts can be another advantage of getting older.

9. Survey your career opportunities

Since these can be your peak earnings years, you should assess whether your current employer is the best place to capitalize on those years, or whether you could do better somewhere else. To think more defensively, you should also take an honest look at whether your job skills need freshening up so your employer does not view you as out of date.

With proper attention to your finances, this could be your greatest decade for wealth building. After all, it is too late for procrastination and too early for slowing down. This is prime time.

More form

Personal finance checklist for age 40

Turning 30? See this personal finance checklist

Over 40 with no retirement savings? Take these 6 steps

Five small monthly saving schemes for long-term wealth creation

All of us want our savings to give maximum possible returns with the least possible risk. And to achieve this, we invest in variety of instruments which we think will contribute to our long-term wealth building goals. Like they say you should not keep all your eggs in the same basket, similarly you should diversify your investments so that you get full benefit of all the asset classes available for investment. Let’s discuss some investments which you can do on a monthly basis to generate wealth in the long run.

Equity Mutual Fund SIP: Systematic Investment Plan (SIP) in an Equity Mutual Fund which allows one to invest a set amount every month on a particular date selected by the investor. As the money is getting invested on a particular date, it helps in rupee cost averaging ie when the market is low, investor will get more units and when the market is high he will get less number of units. SIP also helps in inculcating discipline towards investing. And the minimum investment amount is also rather small ie between Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 per month and so everyone can easily start an SIP savings plan.

Public Provident Fund: PPF is scheme under which you can get Tax Rebate as well since it comes under section 80(C). PPF also comes under EEE category ie Exempt, Exempt, Exempt which means that there is an exemption on the amount invested, exemption on the interest accrued, and exemption on the total income earned from the investment. There is limit of Rs 1.5 lakh for investment in PPF per annum, which can be easily divided into monthly instalments to get guaranteed sound returns. The current PPF rate is 8% pa tax free.

Gold ETF: Everyone knows gold is an investment used for its hedging quality. So, you can have 5-10% allocation of your portfolio towards gold. When it comes to gold as an investment, you should not buy physical gold but should invest into Gold ETF (Exchange Traded Fund) which aims to track domestic physical gold prices and operate like Mutual Funds or E-Gold which is available at the National Spot Exchange (NSEL) in smaller denominations to invest every month.

Whatever method you choose, you need to keep the investment in demat form. If you are looking for a lumpsum investment into this asset class, then you can also look at Sovereign Gold Bonds which are issued by the RBI on behalf of the Government of India and also bear interest rate on the issue price. Equities: If you are planning for a better return in the long run, then you can’t miss equities in your portfolio. You can invest monthly some amount towards large-cap stocks.

And if you don’t know how to track good stock but still want to invest in the stock market, you can always look at Index ETFs. Index ETFs are nothing but Index Funds that are listed and traded on the Stock Exchange. An Index ETF comprises basket of stocks which reflects the composition of an Index like BSE SENSEX, Samp;P CNX Nifty, etc. The only difference between Index ETF and Index Fund is that unlike Mutual Fund ETF, it can be traded real-time.

Sukanya Samriddhi Yojna: If you have a girl child under 10 years of age, again this is one of the best triple exempt schemes under section 80(C) where you are allowed to invest up to Rs 1.5 lakh per annum. The two main requirements for success in investing is discipline and asset allocation. A monthly saving habit and discipline is most important to create long-term wealth. And along with asset allocation to different types of investment, one can expect sound returns over a five- to 10-year horizon.

(The writer is MD at Sinhasi Consultants)

Three Wealth-Building Lessons From Leicester City

Well done to Leicester City, who last night became Premier League champions for the first time in their history.

Even those among us who pretend to know nothing about football will have some idea that Leicester winning the league is a pretty special achievement.

In a sport (although, let’s face it, it’s as much a business) where money is supposed to rule and the same teams generally win the title year after year, the fact that a side that were just last year facing relegation have now won it

Well, it is pretty incredible.

In fact, only one player in the side – a rather large man called Robert Huth – has any previous experience of winning the league. For everyone else in the team, it’s a totally new experience.

I’m sure there’ll be much commentary on it in the days to come, but this morning, I thought I’d share a quick note on three things I’ve personally noticed in the Leicester team that I think are good lessons not just for winning a Premier League title, but for creating wealth too