In addition to being a great friend, SavvyGage is the first person I turn to for feedback when I have a personal finance question or thought. He is a retired U.S. Air Force officer (As a retired U.S. Army NCO, I will not hold that against him) who first started saving and learning about personal financial planning during the summer of 1986 after completing pilot training. Tired of not knowing where his bi-weekly pay check was going, he invested in his first mutual fund – Dean Witter Dividend Growth, which he no longer owns – on January 2, 1987 when the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed at 1,927.
Since that day, he has consistently saved a minimum of 20% of his monthly take home salary and remains fully invested (i.e. he has never tried to time the market) at all times. SavvyGage admits that it was tough watching the DJIA lose over 22% of its value on October 19, 1987; however, he ‘stayed the course’ and to this day, he says it was the best financial lesson of his life.
Savvy Gage preaches the power of compound interest (his first contribution is SavvyQuiz #4), dollar cost averaging, and maintaining an emergency fund of at least one year’s expenses. As far as debt is concerned, credit card(s) must be paid off monthly, and the only ‘acceptable’ debt is a home mortgage.
It is truly a pleasure and my honor to be working with SavvyGage on this blog. Keep an eye out for contributions in the Discussions, Recommendations, and Quizzes sections.