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China defaults may worsen with huge dollar debt (The Business Times)

$8.6 billion of offshore bonds doesn’t seem like a lot given that China’s economy is estimated to be around $14.2 trillion. But it does seem like there will be a increased stress in the credit system for China.

And given how China’s economy is integrated into other parts of the world…

Three hours spent with a financial planner at her bank and she’s still feeling lost (The Globe and Mail)

No surprises to see headlines like this because a financial planner looking out for their commissions may not necessarily have their clients’ best interest in mind.

The article’s context is Canadian but we’re not too far off here in Singapore. I still find it amusing that we’re some way into the 21st century and yet financial planning in Singapore is very much based on the same model that has been around since the 1990s.

Why hasn’t the industry moved away from selling products tied to insurance firms and fund houses?

Guest post on Get Rich Slowly: The ten-year update (Early Retirement Extreme)

The OG of the FIRE movement.

I love his emphasis that FIRE was always supposed to be about how to add value to society as it frees resources from being tied up in unproductive and unnecessary endeavours.

Of course, the FIRE movement got popular because other people started emphasizing the aspects that seem most appealing to people – being able to leave the drudgery of a mundane job and being able to travel the world ad infinitum.

This is precisely what most criticisms of the FIRE movement revolve around; That those in the movement are putting their future selves at risk but not having enough buffer for medical emergencies if they retire early.

Read ERE’s post and realise that the FIRE movement has got it wrong. Financial Independence doesn’t necessarily mean Retiring Early. It’s more like a lifestyle change where you embark on financially healthier habits that lead to a more fulfilling life, both personally and for society as well.