If You Have Questions or Comments…

Rob Bennett is the author of the book “Passion Saving,” the publisher of this web site, and the owner of The Freedom Store, LLC. You can contact Rob with questions or comments in any of three ways:

1) You may send me mail at the following address:

The Freedom Store, LLC
P.O. Box 2652
Purcellville, VA 20134

2) You may call me at 540-751-0685.

3) You may send an e-mail by writing your message in the space below and clicking “Submit.”
 

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Passion Saving in the News

This page sets forth links to articles referring to Rob Bennett’s book Passion Saving: The Path to Plentiful Free Time and Soul-Satisfying Work, to his daily Financial Freedom Blog, to the rise of The New School of Safe Withdrawal Rate Analysis (founded and led by Rob) and to Rob’s other writings on the Passion Saving approach to money management.

ABC News,
Video of Seven-Minute Interview with Rob on “Ten Unconventional Saving Tips”

Juicy Excerpt: Are you tired of the same old how-to-save-money tips? Wish you had some fresh ideas? This is pretty exciting.

MSNBC Money,
Retired by 50: Real-Life Stories
Juicy Excerpt: “This to me is like a mission,” Bennett said, “to have some meaningful work and time with my family.”

The Money, Mission and Meaning Podcast,
Getting Excited About Saving: The Passion Saving Mindset and Methodology, Part One
Juicy Excerpt: I want to say straight out that I think you’ve accomplished something radical with your idea of Passion Saving. From my perspective, you’ve really created not just another ‘how to’ money book, where you show people how to invest, or a motivational book that just has people do the things they already know to do. You actually offer a whole new way of thinking about saving money that taps into our human psychology and desire. Now, I am going to have you highlight each of the key ideas in Passion Saving for my listeners so that they can have their minds blown like mine was.

The Money, Mission and Meaning Podcast,
Getting Excited About Saving: The Passion Saving Mindset and Methodology, Part Two
Juicy Excerpt: It’s just amazing to me that in all of the years that I have been studying this, I have never heard this particular way of putting it and how much it opens up…. I was in the financial planning business…. I probably read 50 books on finance and money and saving and investing, and I can count the number of them on one hand for which I said, “well, there is something really new and important in here”, and your book is definitely in that category. I just want to thank you for that because that’s a gift to me.

News Radio KEX in Portland, Oregon, Sunday Morning Update

This 15-minute interview with Rob (in five parts of three minutes each) was conducted by Maxine Frost and aired from October 7, 2001, through November 4, 2001, on the Sunday Morning Update program on Newsradio KEX in Portland, Oregon. It provides a good overview of the ideas explored in depth in the book.

Network Abundance Radio, Interview with Rob re the Passion Saving Approach to Money Management

WritersHelper.com, Review of Passion Saving

Juicy Excerpt: Passion Saving is the Diets Don’t Work of the financial world….Rob’s expertise both in training and life shine through every page. His voice of authority creates trust. Every detail, including the look and feel of the book, shows Rob’s respect for his information and his reader.

Dollar Stretcher, Review of Passion Saving

Juicy Excerpt: I found Bennett’s style very enjoyable to read and his ideas intriguing. I even experienced my own ‘aha!’ moment while reading this book! You could say that “Passion Saving” is the “Your Money or Your Life” book for a new generation!

Motley Fool, The Plan: Financial Independence

Juicy Excerpt: The elegant simplicity of his ideas throughout warms the heart and startles the brain….Reports like this one, and books like Your Money or Your Life, should be required reading for anyone seeking a high-school diploma.

Note: The excerpt immediately above is from Motley Fool Co-Founder Tom Gardner’s Rule Maker column on Rob Bennett’s Secrets of Retiring Early report. The report set forth an early exploration of the themes explored in greater depth in Bennett’s subsequently published book Passion Saving: The Path to Plentiful Free Time and Soul-Satisfying Work.

Payscale.com, Thinking Big: From Middle-Class American to Millionaire

Juicy Excerpt: “My best year I saved $88,000.”

Market Movers Blog, A Look at Long-Term Stock Valuations

Juicy Excerpt: Think of Rob as a buy-and-hold kinda guy with very infrequent reallocations, just like most sensible financial advisers. But Rob’s reallocations are really infrequent: only once a decade or so…. This plan isn’t really about market timing: it would have had you underweight equities for pretty much all of the big 1990s boom…. I think Rob’s approach has a lot to be said for it, but I do have a few problems with it…. For people who like to take a 30,000-foot view of investing, this is a very handy little tool.

Scott Burns’ Column in the Dallas Morning News, As You Age, Tap More of Nest Egg (Link No Longer Available)

Juicy Excerpt: Let’s review the latest thinking on safe withdrawal rates. While most of the research says any retiree can safely start with a withdrawal rate of 4 percent to 5 percent a year, a newer school of thought believes the safe withdrawal rate depends on how stocks are priced at the time you start making withdrawals.

Scott Burns’ Column in the Dallas Morning News Rates of Withdrawal Add Up to Confusion (Link No Longer Available)

Juicy Excerpt: You should know, by the way, that there is a very vocal group on the Internet that believes the 4 percent to 5 percent withdrawal rate is far too high most of the time. They believe, following research originally done by Steve Leuthold and renewed later by Rob Arnott, that future stock returns depend on the price-to-earnings ratio of stocks at the time you start. Retire in a high P/E period – such as 1972 or 1999 – and the odds of portfolio survival decline, because future returns are likely to be poor. Retire in a low P/E period – such as 1981 – and the odds of portfolio survival soar because future returns are likely to be high.

Note: I am grateful to Scott for bringing some attention to the New School of Safe Withdrawal Rate Analysis. I need to note, however, that he is wrong to say that the New School argues that a 4 percent withdrawal is “far too high most of the time.” That is so today for those with high stock allocations. At times of reasonable valuations, however, the safe withdrawal rate for those with high stock allocations rises to 5.4 percent. At times of extremely low valuations, it can rise to as high as 9 percent.

MSN Money, To Cut Costs, Move to Small Town USA

Juicy Excerpt: After losing his dream job in the 1990-1991 recession, Rob Bennett made financial independence his goal. A former reporter covering tax legislation on Capitol Hill, Bennett took a corporate job “for the money” and started saving as much as he could. He and his wife, Mary, paid off the $148,800 mortgage on their Arlington town home in four years while researching small towns where they could live inexpensively.

Bankrate.com, Six Worthless Excuses for Not Saving Money

Juicy Excerpt: “I call it spending money at The Freedom Store,” says Bennett. “Just like you buy a product or buy a service, you buy freedom. And every time you put money into savings, you are a little more free than you were before.”

Links.com Stock Valuation Tool — Predicting the Future Stock Market (Link No Longer Available)

Juicy Excerpt: This Stock Market Valuation tool on the PassionSaving.com may take a long time to load, but we think it is worth the wait. The calculator is based upon the principle that over the long term, stock market prices will reflect the ten years earnings growth of the underlying companies.

Karthick’s Random Ramblings, Your 401(k) Is All Wrong!

Juicy Excerpt: What’s nice about the Passion Saving website is that it uses a much simpler way to bring the valuation issue to focus.

The Wall Street Journal, Forcing 20-Somethings To Save

Juicy Excerpt: Rob Bennett, the author of a book called Passion Saving,, thinks the saving problem is partly one of packaging. So he prefers to couch it in the language of freedom: “What works with young people is, ‘How do you feel about the fact that you’ll be under the thumb of an employer for the rest of your life?’ ” he says.

The New York Times, To Showcase Your Skills, Seize the Initiative

Juicy Excerpt: Staying too long in a job where you don’t feel relevant takes a toll, said Rob Bennett, who worked for years in a well-paying corporate communications job where he didn’t have enough to do.

Passion Saving in the News — Page Eight

Cute Fuzzy Bunny reminds us in a post to the Early Retirement Forum that we had better not report accurately what the historical stock-return data says about safe withdrawal rates if we know what’s good for us.

I post a Letter to the Editor to the www.Early-Retirement-Planning-Insights.com site entitled Obtaining “Permission” to Ignore Valuations. I say: “I’m beginning to think that people are counting on the illusory safety of indexing to make them feel better about the unacknowledged risk they take on by going with Passive Investing.”

The Kirk Report (link no longer available) describes the Retirement Risk Evaluator as “a different retirement calculator.”

The And Freedom Tastes Like Reality blog (link no longer available) says: “I’ve looked at the Passion Saving return predictor, and as of this post, the S&P 500 index is over 1500, so the Price/Earnings ratio is over 30. Unless I’m in a retirement plan with an employer match, my investment dollars will not go far in an equities market. “

The Generational Dynamics Site notes the recent New York Times article that uses the P/E10 tool to form a reasonable assessment of long-term stock prices. It says: ““This is an extraordinary and historic event in economic journalism.”

The 2Merrill blog links to the article on “Pros and Cons of Invdexing” (please see the “Valuation-Informed Indexing” section of the site) in the first sentence of its description of John Bogle’s revolution in investing.

I post a Letter to the Editor at the Early-Retirement-Planning-Insights.com site entitled Is the Stock Market a Closed System?
I say: “We are saying that there is more integrity to the portfolio numbers when stocks are at fair value than there is when stocks are wildly overvalued. I really think it is fair to say that that is the bottom-line point we are making. We are saying that at times of overvaluation investors need to mentally adjust down those numbers to have them reflect reality or else they are fooling themselves.”

The Nature Lover Blog (link no longer available) says of the “The Self-Directed Life” section of the site: “I’ve been doing a lot of research and reading since I decided to simplify my life, because I’ve been trying to find tips and direction on how to go about it. I came across this site and I found this particular article very interesting. I have bookmarked the site and will be going back to it often.”

Norbert Schenkler presents historical performance charts at the Financial WebRing Forum showing that Valuation-Informed Indexing has historically beaten conventional buy-and-hold strategies.

“J” at the Yahoo Finance Groups cites The Stock-Return Predictor in support of the proposition that the “current valuation of S&P 500 companies already indicates poor forward-looking returns.”

The Get Rich Slowly blog discusses the profile of my Retire Early plan done by Liz Pulliam Weston at MSN Money. One poster notes: “Early retirement is not about stopping working, it’s really about doing what you want, stopping worrying about money and salary and I’m convinced it opens many more opportunities than when you work.”

I post a Letter to the Editor at Early-Retirement-Planning-Insights.com site entitled The Trouble with Mechanically Defined Algorithms. I say: “I want to make the Valuation-Informed Indexing approach sound as appealing as possible. If I tell people to go with a 100 percent stock allocation at a P/E10 of 17, that will make the numbers look better in the case I put forward for how this strategy pays off long term. It’s hard for me to resist the pull to at least tell people what the numbers say (and I sometimes do indeed do just this).”

I post a Letter to the Editor at the www.Early-Retirement-Planning-Insights.com site entitled Do All Really Bad Price Drops Happen at Times of High Valuations? I say: “If an investor could be assured of not being likely to experience a loss of greater than 20 percent for more than five years, I think that would make stock investing more attractive.”

I post a Letter to the Editor at the www.Early-Retirement-Planning-Insights.com site entitled How Long Do You Have to Wait for 7 Percent? I say: “I would like to be able to cite to people how long it would take them to get to 7 percent in a worst-case scenario, for purchases made today, for purchases made in January 2000, and for purchases made at moderate valuations. I think it would also be helpful to know the number that applies at extremely low valuations.”

I post a Letter to the Editor at the www.Early-Retirement-Planning-Insights.com site entitled A New Take on the 7 Percent Rule. I say: “There’s are big differences between being sure of a 7 percent return in 10 years and being sure in 30 years and being sure in 50 years.”

I post a Letter to the Editor at the www.Early-Retirement-Planning-Insights.com site entitled True Buy-and-Hold Investing. I say: “I do not believe that an investor should be using the newspaper prices of his stock investments to determine his net worth.”

I post a Letter to the Editor at the www.Early-Retirement-Planning-Insights.com site entitled You Can’t Count on 7 Percent. I say: “There is no need for an indexing investor to choose particular stocks. What he chooses instead are different mixes of income streams. The strategic issue facing the indexing investor is — how much do I put in stocks today and how much do I put in non-stocks so that the long-term income streams generated are likely to provide the best help to my quest to achieve my most important life, work, and money goals?”

I post a Letter to the Editor at the www.Early-Retirement-Planning-Insights.com site entitled Safe Withdrawal Rates and Historical Surviving Withdrawal Rates. I say: “The root flaw of the conventional methodology is not that we entered a bubble in the late 1990s, but that the methodology always examined not safety but survival. The bubble greatly exacerbated the problem that existed from the day the conventional methodology was created.”

I post a Letter to the Editor at the www.Early-Retirement-Planning-Insights.com site entitled Safe and Hazardous Regions. I say: “We need to call a spade a spade. Retirements that have more than a one in four chance of going bust are not properly termed “safe,” in my view. I would like to think that few are ‘planning’ such retirements.”

I post an article at the www.Early-Retirement-Planning-Insights.com site entitled
Using SWR Analysis to Compare Asset Classes. I say: “Another factor that is often overlooked is the growth potential of a safe asset class like TIPS when the intent is to transfer those funds to stocks when the SWR for stocks becomes attractive.”

Buzz — Page One

Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Eight

Podcast #57 (60 minutes) — January 28, 2009 — Buffett is the Scarecrow, Shiller is the Tin Man, Bogle is the Cowardly Lion

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Podcast #58 (71 minutes) — January 30, 2009 — Evolution, Environmentalism and Other Investing Topics

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Podcast #59 (77 minutes) — February 2, 2009 — The Politics of Investing

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Podcast #60 (76 minutes) — February 4, 2009 — Stock Cycles

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Podcast #61 (73 minutes) — February 6, 2009 — Don’t Get Sad, Don’t Get Angry — Get Smart!

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Podcast #62 (69 minutes) — February 9, 2009 — How Obama Might Change the History of Investing

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Podcast #63 (76 minutes) — February 11, 2009 — Investing Ethics: An Oxymoron?

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Podcast #64 (71 minutes) — February 13, 2009 — Money Magazine Is Asked: “Just How Bad Would Things Have to Get Before You Guys Changed Your Advice?”

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Personal Finance Podcasts — Page One (Includes Links to All Other Podcasts)

Personal Finance Podcasts

Podcast #1 (32 minutes) — July 18, 2008 — Buy-and-Hold Cannot Work — Here’s Why

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Podcast #2 (32 minutes) — July 25, 2008 — Passive Investing vs. Rational Investing

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Podcast #3 (32 minutes) — August 1, 2008 — Few Dare to Tell the Truth About Stock Investing

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Podcast #4 (35 minutes) — August 8, 2008 — I’d Be the Growlingest Bear on the Internet If Only I Were A Bear

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Podcast #5 (32 minutes) — August 15, 2008 — The Great Safe-Withdrawal-Rate Debate

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Podcast #6 (32 minutes) — August 21, 2008 — Rob Bennett, the Reluctant Investing “Expert”

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Podcast #7 (38 minutes) — August 22, 2008 — I Know More About Investing Than John Bogle (and You Can Too!)

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Podcast #8 (40 minutes) — August 28, 2008 — The Coming Revolution in Investing Advice

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Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Two

Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Three

Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Four

Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Five

Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Six

Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Seven

Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Eight

Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Nine

Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Ten

Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Eleven

Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Twelve

Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Thirteen

Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Fourteen

Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Fifteen

Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Sixteen

Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Seventeen

Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Eighteen

Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Nineteen

Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Twenty

Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Twenty-One

Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Twenty-Two

Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Twenty-Three

Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Twenty-Four

Personal Finance Podcasts — Page Twenty-Five

 

Passion Saving in the News — Page Two

This page sets forth links to articles referring to Rob Bennett’s book Passion Saving: The Path to Plentiful Free Time and Soul-Satisfying Work, to his daily Financial Freedom Blog, to the rise of The New School of Safe Withdrawal Rate Analysis (founded and led by Rob), and to Rob’s other writings on the Passion Saving approach to money management.

The Albany Times-Union, You Better Watch Out
Juicy Excerpt: “Make it fun,” Bennett says. “That way it’s not this boring exercise of, ‘Let’s go do a budget.’ It’s just talking about where your life’s headed. It’ll make you closer to your spouse or partner.”

The Fresno Bee, Planning Can Save Your Future: 20- and 30-Somethings Can Do Something, Even If They’re Broke (Link No Longer Available)
Juicy Excerpt: Make a plan about how you will save when you have money, he says. Plan for the day when you get a $5,000 raise — it will happen eventually, Bennett assures.

Money, Letter to the Editor — November 2005 Issue, Page 22)
Juicy Excerpt: I was impressed by your article “Declare Independence” [September]. I have participated in a number of Internet discussion boards on which highly effective savers explained how they were able to retire in their forties and fifties. The common theme is that they were saving not to support their old age but to gain the financial freedom to do the work they loved. Bravo to Money for taking note of an approach to saving that works and that makes sense!

MSNBC.com, Planning Can Cut Holiday Shopping Angst
Juicy Excerpt: “I’ll go to a used bookstore and find just the right book for Boo, maybe something out of print,” he said. “It may cost just $5, but I know it’s something she wants.”

The New York Times, The Office Collection: To Give or Not to Give
Juicy Excerpt: Rob Bennett, a career development consultant in Purcellville, Va., said that citing your current personal financial situation was acceptable. Mr. Bennett added that it was better to say nothing than to fabricate reasons.

The Los Angeles Times, Money for Now, Money for Later. (There is no longer a link available for this article.)
Juicy Excerpt: “When you are age 25, an age 65 retirement is so far off in the future that the hope of making progress on that saving goal provides little motivation,” he explains.

MSNBC.com, Young Adults’ Pursestrings Still Tied to Mom and Dad
Juicy Excerpt: Bennett, now in his 40’s, learned to take control of his money by defining his own life ambitions.

The Chicago Tribune, Live In Your Home, Not Off It
Juicy Excerpt: Instead of ignoring your home equity or depending on housing wealth to carry your retirement, maybe it’s best to take an approach in the middle, Bennett says.

The Sacramento Bee, Paper or Plastic? (Link No Longer Available)
Juicy Excerpt: “The idea that people can put a card into a slot machine and mindlessly feed money into it is a horrible thing,” said Rob Bennett, who publishes and writes a daily blog for the Web site PassionSaving.com.

The Juneau Empire, Workplace Gossip Can Be Costly to Your Career
Juicy Excerpt: “The big risk with contributing to office gossip is that – because all communication of it is veiled in secrecy – the message conveyed can be altered by any participant in the communication chain to the detriment of any previous participant,” says Rob Bennett, Purcellville, Va.-based author of Passion Saving: The Path to Plentiful Free Time and Soul-Satisfying Work.

Monster.com, Keeping Options Open Is Key to 21st Century Career Paths
Juicy Excerpt: “Those who gain a reasonable level of financial freedom early in life are free to explore all sorts of job opportunities not open to those who have not saved effectively,” says Bennett, author of Passion Saving: The Path to Plentiful Free Time and Soul-Satisfying Work.

Monster.com, An Introvert in Sales? (Link No Longer Available)
Juicy Excerpt: “Introverts are particularly effective salespeople when, as is frequently the case, they have genuine conviction about their product, says Rob Bennett, author of Passion Saving: The Path to Plentiful Free Time and Soul-Satisfying Work.

Retirement Weekly, Blog Watch (July 15, 2005, Issue)
Juicy Excerpt: Here’s an example of one recent posting: “…It is anti-life to be always putting things off, putting things off, putting things off. Saving should add to life, not subtract from it. I’d rather be a spendthrift than a miser. At least a spendthrift understands the reality of death, and is aiming to fit in some good times before the grim reaper arrives at the doorstep.”

Early-Retirement-Planning-Insights.com, Book Review–Passion Saving
Juicy Excerpt: Each chapter comes with a new and powerfully explosive insight.

Owning My Own Life Blog, Passion Saving
Juicy Excerpt: I didn’t know you can save enough to retire young either. So, this site is pretty interesting and can really open up your mind about saving. Saving doesn’t have to be a chore.

The author of the A Penny Saved blog frankly (and courageously and properly, in my assessment) ventures of The Stock-Return Predictor: “Maybe you can find the value in it. Me? I’m a little confused with it to actually have it do me any good.” Maybe that’s part of my marketing problem! He recommends: “Please go over and toy with it a little.”

ExplainThatStuff.com gives a starred listing to the article “Six Unconventional Mid-Life Career Change Tips” in the “Retire Different!” section of the site.

The comments section for an article entitled “Empty Pockets” at the The Gospel According to Paul blog recommends PassionSaving.com. The poster writes: “You might want to visit this site I frequent. It’s about developing a passion for saving so that you can retire early.”

I post a Letter to the Editor at the Early-Retirement-Planning-Insights.com site entitled A New Layer of Building Blocks. I say: “The question that I am asked most frequently in e-mails is “Well, what specifically should I do, at what P/E10 levels should I make shifts?” We have both of course given guidance on this question. But we have also both refrained from giving specific statements as to the “right” thing to do. That’s because there is no one right thing to do. The question itself is a product of EMT thinking.”

Buzz — Page One

Passion Saving in the News — Page Three

This page sets forth links to articles referring to Rob Bennett’s book Passion Saving: The Path to Plentiful Free Time and Soul-Satisfying Work, to his daily Financial Freedom Blog, to the rise of The New School of Safe Withdrawal Rate Analysis (founded and led by Rob), and to Rob’s other writings on the Passion Saving approach to money management.

MarketWatch.com, The Number? New Thinking on Nest-Egg Withdrawals in Retirement
Juicy Excerpt: It’s likely the stock and bond markets will return far less than the historical averages over the next few years. And that could spell trouble for retirees who spend more than 3% from their investment accounts earmarked for retirement spending. [This article was written at my suggestion — it publicizes our community’s breakthrough SWR findings of recent years.]

Woman’s Day, Hey, Big Spender: 20 Things to Do With $20 (May 9, 2006)
Juicy Excerpt: Rob Bennett, author of Passion Saving: The Path to Plentiful Free Time and Soul-Satisfying Work, suggests giving your teen $20 and this challenge: Check out The Complete Tightwad Gazette, by Amy Dacyczyn, from the library, then spend the money using one of the book’s techniques.

3M Stemwinder, Smart Savers Create Emergency Funds
Juicy Excerpt: He added that, because the home mortgage is the largest fixed expense for most people, those who have paid off their mortgages or who live in less expensive homes do not need as large an emergency fund.

Medill News Service, Break the Bank or Break Up? With the Right Tools, Couples Can Survive Fiscal Differences
Juicy Excerpt: The first date went well, but when Bennett asked her out again, she agreed on one condition: that they go out in her luxury car instead of his jalopy.

Medill News Service, Things to Know Before You Shack Up
Juicy Excerpt: If, for example, one person has to move to another city, makes more money than the other, or loses a job, uncertainty and resentment may jeopardize the relationship. “If you’re going to [move in together], do it for some other reason,” Bennett said.

Loudoun Business, Loudouners Make the Move: Jumping Jobs, Careers, Is the New Norm. (March 2006)
Juicy Excerpt: “As long as you need money, you’re always going to be compromising. You’re always going to be settling,” he said.

Monster.com, Budget Your 2006 Bonus (Link No Longer Available)
Juicy Excerpt: “A worker should put the money into a personal ‘freedom fund,’ where it can finance some future move up the success ladder,” says Rob Bennett, author of Passion Saving: The Path to Plentiful Free Time and Soul-Satisfying Work.

RetireEarlyHomePage.com, Book Review–Passion Saving
Juicy Excerpt: Mr. Bennett evidences an unusual skill….You’ll have to buy a copy….Extraordinary….A massive heap of crap.

PRWeb.com, Retirement Planning Tools Give Dangerous Advice
Juicy Excerpt: Rob Bennett, founder of the Financial Freedom Community (a group of Internet discussion boards), today announced the launch of an effort to bring the community’s findings to the attention of retirees before the flaws in the retirement planning tools cause millions of busted retirements.

BankRate.com, When Does It Make Sense to Relocate?
Juicy Excerpt: Rob Bennett, the author of Passion Saving: The Path to Plentiful Free Time and Soul-Satisfying Work, says usually “it’s not a good idea to make a move just because one particular job position sounds promising. If the new area offers [employment] opportunities outside the job being taken, it makes sense to make the move.”

Glamour, Seven Reasons It’s Great to Be a Woman at Work Now (March 2006 Issue)
Juicy Excerpt: Today, intuition is as essential as e-mail. “Many ‘male’ skills, the kinds of things learned by doing calculations or by planning, are now being performed by software programs,” says Rob Bennett, author of Passion Saving: The Path to Plentiful Free Time and Soul-Satisfying Work. ‘The ‘female’ skills are the ones employers most need to hire humans to perform.”

MarketWatch.com, Better Ways to Use Your $5 a Week Lottery Allotment
Juicy Excerpt: Challenging experts around the country for the best use of $260 per year yielded some interesting responses. Rob Bennett of Purcellville, Va., is the author of the book Passion Saving: The Path to Plentiful Free Time and Soul-Satisfying Work and the Financial Freedom Blog at PassionSaving.com. Bennett suggests you invest the $260 on a budget. But you’ll like his budgeting technique.

The Hartford Courant, Taking the Leap: They Quit Their Day Jobs to Follow Their Dreams
Juicy Excerpt: Rob Bennett of Washington, D.C., interviewed hundreds of middle-class workers for his book Passion Saving: The Path to Plentiful Free Time and Soul-Satisfying Work. He writes in an e-mail, “I sometimes get the feeling that there is no one today who does not carry around in the back of his or her head at least one ‘What if I tried?’ scenario for dramatic career change.”

BoomerMarketAdvisor.com, As the Retirement Focus Shifts to the Distribution Phase, Advisors Need a New Set of Tools
Juicy Excerpt: “Many of the retirement planning tools now in use suffer from a grave flaw,” says Rob Bennett, the author of the Financial Freedom Blog, a daily column on PassionSaving.com. “They fail to adjust for the valuation level that applies on the start date of retirement.”

The Financial Freedom Blog, The Wall Street Journal Endorses Valuation-Adjusted SWRs (See archives for December 2005)
Juicy Excerpt: The scores of Financial Freedom Community members who helped us develop our safe withdrawal rate findings of recent years should all take a bow. The investing insights that we have been talking about since May 2002 are going mainstream.

I write a guest blog entry at the Clever Dude blog entitled A New Approach to “Staying the Course.” I say: “If you, like me, believe that it is possible for prices to be too high, then you should not be sticking with the same stock allocation in your effort to Stay the Course. For investors like us, changes in prices are causing the course to always be in motion. Risks are greater at times of high prices and long-term returns are lower.”

CapitalSpectator.com publishes an article backing the investing ideas explored at this site entitled Back to the Future Again — The Financial Literature Now Favors Active Asset Allocation, But It’s Still Risky. The article states that: “Securities markets appear to be at least partially predictable after all.

CapitalSpectator.com publishes an article supporting our idea that Value Investing and Modern Portfolio Theory make a powerful combination entitled Rethinking Modern Portfolio Theory. The article states that: “Although academics are latecomers to the party, the fact that they’ve arrived only adds more credibility to what Graham taught: valuation matters.”

The Get Rich/Get Right blog links to the article “Getting Over Your Fear of Money” in the “The Turned-On Budget” section of the site.

I post a Letter to the Editor at the Early-Retirement-Planning-Insights.com site entitled More Regarding the International Dimension. I say: “There is reason to believe that Robert Shiller (author of “Irrational Exuberance”) believes that it is possible at least to some extent to avoid the risks of overvaluation in the U.S. market by moving funds to non-U.S. markets.”

Buzz — Page One

Passion Saving in the News — Page Six

This page sets forth links to articles referring to Rob Bennett’s book Passion Saving: The Path to Plentiful Free Time and Soul-Satisfying Work, to his daily Financial Freedom Blog, to the rise of The New School of Safe Withdrawal Rate Analysis (founded and led by Rob), and to Rob’s other writings on the Passion Saving approach to money management.

MSN Money, How Early Retirees Insure Their Health
Juicy Excerpt: The Bennett family of Purcellville, Va., has a $10,000 deductible as well as a higher monthly premium: $700. The policy includes maternity benefits, which some high-deductible policies don’t, and the coverage came in handy during Mary Bennett’s pregnancy with her younger son, now 5, when complications required her hospitalization.

Lindauerheads Investment Forum, Why No Love for Valuation-Informed Indexing?
Juicy Excerpt: I’ve been further looking at Bennett’s site and it certainly is an interesting read for anyone who hasn’t looked at it. You’ve got to love that he gives “twenty criticisms” of his own approach and “ten weaknesses” with himself as a money advisor….If he’s a self-described “egomaniac” and a “numbers dunce,” I’m not sure he’s the one to be taking the non-stationary correlations from the Shiller paper and reifying them in the form of a retirement simulator. Still, if Shiller’s mostly right and if the behavioral finance people who say people can’t really stomach “stocks for the long term” are mostly right, then i think there’s definitely something to be said for the basic strategy.

The Digerati Life, Deconstructing Market Timing Strategies
Juicy Excerpt: Market timing appears to have various flavors and not all timing approaches may lead to investment underperformance. I say this, while citing this piece about market timing [these words link to the article “Market Timing — What Works and What Does Not,” which appears at the “Valuation-Informed Indexing” section of the PassionSaving.com site), which attempts to describe different approaches that fall under the timing umbrella.

Motley Fool Investing Analysis Clubs, New Calculator Predicts Poor Long-Term Growth
Juicy Quote: It sounds like Bennett and Russell have put lots of time into the research behind this calculator, so it will be interesting to see if they are right…. Move the P/E slider to about 6 and watch your possible returns grow! As you say, it’s an interesting tool.

Andrey’s Blog, Financial Freedom (Link No Longer Available)
Juicy Excerpt: I like this “down to the earth” blog about gaining financial freedom http://www.passionsaving.com/index.html. Simple tips for regular people.

NoNiche Internet Magazine, How I Became Addicted to Not Watching Television [Link No Longer Available]
Juicy Excerpt: My encouraging word is that it is not only television that is addictive. Running is addictive. Reading is addictive. Conversation with friends is addictive. Planning a start-up business is addictive.

West Coast Wiccan Blog, The Need for Greenary of All Kinds (Link No Longer Available)
Juicy Excerpt: It seems to be a truism that pagans are always broke (and therefore I fit right in!)…. I came across an interesting website which I think may help: http://www.passionsaving.com/ The theory of it, that you need to plan your debt reduction and saving and so forth according to exciting goals rather than boring, distant ones, seems to tie right into the conclusion I had already reached when I decided to have a five-year plan of emigrating to England – and doing it debt-free.

ExpertRetirementPlanning.com, Free Expert Resource — The Retirement Risk Evaluator
Juicy Excerpt: You should check out The Retirement Risk Evaluator, an innovative “new school” retirement calculator. The Retirement Risk Evaluator is the very first retirement calculator to take valuation under consideration.

Monster.com, Take Time to Think About Work
Juicy Excerpt: “Many of us have our only quiet time when we’re heading off to sleep,” says Rob Bennett, author of Passion Saving: The Path to Plentiful Free Time and Soul-Satisfying Work.

Bankrate.com, Working Life Goes On for Serial Retirees
Juicy Excerpt: “Now I’m at the point where I only have to make $12,000 a year or so to pay my bills and that covers food, utilities and other day-to-day expenses,” he says.

New Jersey Star-Ledger, Big Buying Sends Dow to Highest Level Ever
Juicy Excerpt: “Investors should lower the amount of their wealth they devote to stocks because the downside is an ocean of pain,’ said Rob Bennett, who writes a financial blog for PassionSaving.com.

Northwest Indiana Times, Tax Refund Burning a Hole in Your Pocket?
Juicy Excerpt: Though paying off old debts may not be as much fun in the short-term, it means “you will be positioned to earn solid, long-term returns and will not have the deadweight of interest payments on old loans holding you down” in the future, Bennett said.

Woman’s World, 10 Ways to Recapture Your Childhood Spirit (Issue dated April 3, 2007)
Juicy Excerpt: “Listen to records that were important to you as a child,” says Rob Bennett, author of Passion Saving: “They will remind you that you are the same person.”

PRWeb.com, Calculator Smashes Safe Withdrawal Rate Myths
Juicy Excerpt: Juicy Excerpt: “The idea that a 4 percent withdrawal is safe for retirements beginning at all valuation levels is a dangerous fantasy,” said Bennett.

Christian Science Monitor, When a Layoff is the Reward for Experience
Juicy Excerpt: “The problem is that pay increases are given partly for merit and partly in response to pressures to satisfy employees who want to feel they are moving forward in their careers over time, says Rob Bennett, publisher of a personal-finance website, PassionSaving.com.

The Get New Rich blog notes that “today’s economy is drastically different from the economy of the past few decades” and uses insights developed at www.PassionSaving.com to develop “10 New Money Management Techniques” that make sense for The New Economy.

The Bogleheads wiki statement on safe withdrawal rates dances about the Retire Early/Indexing Communty findings that the Old School studies are analytically invalid, hinting at the dangers of using these studies to plan a retirement but failing to put forward an explicit warning re their inaccuracies or to provide links to the New School findings. The wiki statement says: “Unfortunately, the term “Safe Withdrawal Rate” is necessarily an ambiguous term. This is because initial methods utilized historical data to statically determine what would have been safe given the actual results that past portfolios would have generated with the variables given. The next logical step, of course, was to use that information to predict future SWRs. Either use is technically correct, but one should always be sure to be clear whether the use is in reference to past or projected SWRs, so that unnecessary argument can be prevented.”

I post a guest blog entry at the Generatiion X Finance blog entitled Price Drops Are Good for Young Investors in the Stock Market. I say: “The reason why price drops make many of today’s investors anxious is that we were told so often during the huge bull that stocks are always the best investment for the long run and most of us are wildly overinvested in stocks today as a result. The answer is to learn how valuations affect long-term stock returns, to lower our stock allocations to more reasonable levels.”

I post a Letter to the Editor at the www.Early-Retirement-Planning-Insights.com site entitled Dividend Theory vs. Dividend Reality. I say: “I’m always interested in discovering how it comes to be that people believe things that are not so because those discoveries often point to fundamental analytical errors and corrections of fundamental analytical errors often generate big pay-offs.”

I post a Letter to the Editor at the www.Early-Retirement-Planning-Insights.com site entitled Refusing to See the Obvious. I say: “Is there information public as to whether securities firms ever make contributions that could in some way influence the types of questions studied or the types of methodologies employed? ”

Buzz — Page One

Passion Saving in the News — Page Seven

This page sets forth links to articles referring to Rob Bennett’s book Passion Saving: The Path to Plentiful Free Time and Soul-Satisfying Work to his daily Financial Freedom Blog, to the rise of The New School of Safe Withdrawal Rate Analysis (founded and led by Rob) and Valuation-Informed Indexing, and to Rob’s other writings on the Passion Saving approach to money management.

Bankrate.com, Find Frugal — But Not Cheap — Gifts
Juicy Excerpt: “Show your affection not by spending a lot but by being creative in picking the perfect gift within the spending limit,” suggests Rob Bennett, author of the daily Financial Freedom Blog at PassionSaving.com.

Fortune, Recipe for a Meltdown
Juicy Excerpt: Forget the chatter, ignore the headlines, and follow the math. Prices will get a lot more attractive. The process is underway. All investors have to do is wait.

Note: This article does not make direct reference to the Valuation-Informed Indexing approach to investing. However, it provides a good summary of the principles that demand that rational investors lower their stock allocations when prices reach the sorts of levels that apply today as well as an explanation of why P/E10 is a better valuation tool than the more frequently cited P/E1.

Aaron Friday writes in his blog entry for February 8, 2008, that: “I stumbled across Rob Bennett’s website in one of my hazy and tired, nightly quests for truth on the internet. This man has a lot to say about saving, spending and investing, and all of it is worth reading. His ideas about using, saving and investing money are what kettlebells are to physical training. They’re functional, they’re powerful, and they’re simple. They will inspire you to learn what makes investing work and what makes financial freedom possible. Just be open-minded and get ready to read, a lot. We’ve exchanged a few emails, and he hasn’t even suggested that I buy his book, which I will. Smart, insightful man. Good guy. Go there and read it all. Your personal wealth is a tool. Use it masterfully, confidently and with a purpose.” I am grateful to Aaron for those extremely kind words.

CareerChanger at Squidoo.com lists as one of her “Practical Career Change Resources” the article at the “Retire Different!” section of the site entitled “Six Unconventional Mid-Life Career Change Tips.”

FrontierMidWife is using PassionSaving.com to “make some plans for my future lifestyle.” She explains that: “I listened to a podcast about this guy who coined this term…passion saving. It’s all about saving in order that you can pursue your passions now, or soon, NOT “saving for retirement.” She adds that, “It actually is a lot like the “Your Money or Your Life” idea,” which is so (that book was the single biggest influence on my thinking in the saving area).

InvestorBlogger links (no longer available) to the article “Financial Pornography Is Not Sexy,” in the “The Self-Directed Life” section of the site.

I post a Letter to the Editor at the Early-Retirement-Planning-Insights.com site entitled Valuations Before the Great SWR Debate.
I say: “The Great Safe Withdrawal Rate Debate is the product of three recent developments. One, we have more access today to statistical data on the long-term performance of stocks than we have had in the final years of any earlier out-of-control bull market. Two, middle-class participation in the stock market is greater today than it was in earlier out-of-control markets (because we now provide for our own retirements, and such). Three, the internet discussion-board communications medium permits sustained questioning of arguments and methodologies to an extent that earlier communications mediums did not.”

The University of Toronto lists the article “Stock Valuation Made Easy” (at the “Investing for Humans” section of the site) as “Recommended Reading.” [Link no longer available.]

The University of Toronto refers its students to PassionSaving.com for background on fundamental analysis of stocks. [Link no longer available.]

Johnny2000 gives us a push at LinkFilter.net

Texas Money Talk lists PassionSaving.com as one of its “Daily Reads.”

I post a Letter to the Editor at the Early-RetirementPplanning-Insights.com site entitled When P/E10 Equals 8. I say: “Drawing down from a portfolio with a high stock allocation is inherently a dangerous business. Most retirees of today have no idea what sort of risks they are taking on when that make that shift from the accumulation stage to the distribution stage.”

The FIRE Finance blog includes “The Financial Freedom Blog” in its list of The Top 100 Personal Finance Blogs (#94 in the “Compete Rankings” list).

Bob’s Financial Web Site presents tables showing the strong correlation between P/E10 values and Year 20 returns.

Bob’s Financial Web Site presents lots of tables on SWRs and P/E10 and such.

The Tightfisted Miser writes a review of my book Passion Saving: The Path to Plentiful Free Time and Soul-Satisfying Work. The blog author writes: “This book is more about motivation than nuts and bolts…. The main focus of this book is changing how you think about money and savings.”

Katy Marquardt writes about the split-off of the Bogleheads community from the Vanguard Diehards community at her U.S. News and World Report blog. I argue in a comment that: “The internet discussion board is an important communications medium of the future. We learn things on discussion boards that we cannot learn through books or magazine articles or speeches. The magic is that we get to see how real live people apply the theories they learned about in books and magazine articles and speeches.”

I write a guest blog entry for the plonkee money blog entitled Saving 10 Percent Is Death. I say: “Telling people to save 10 percent places a ceiling on their saving efforts as often as it places a floor on them. The save-10-percent advice encourages a way of thinking about saving in which people see it as something that must be forced, something that is boring, something that requires self-denial.”

I post a Letter to the Editor at the www.Early-Retirement-Planning-Insights.com site entitled Year 10 Choices. I say: “Should allocation shifts be made only after PE/10 changes have been “confirmed” by holding at the new level for a specified amount of time? Or should the shifts be lagging shifts, completed only after the actual PE/10 has moved a little further in the same direction as the change that prompts the allocation change according to the numbers?”

I post a Letter to the Editor at the www.Early-Retirement-Planning-Insights.com sit entitled The Story Behind the Numbers. I say: “The idea that investors make allocation decisions with the thought of what is going to happen in 30 years uppermost in their minds is a myth. It is a myth without foundation in facts or experience or reason. It is a nonsense assumption.”

Buzz — Page One

Passion Saving in the News — Page Four

This page sets forth links to articles referring to Rob Bennett’s book Passion Saving: The Path to Plentiful Free Time and Soul-Satisfying Work, to his daily Financial Freedom Blog, to the rise of The New School of Safe Withdrawal Rate Analysis (founded and led by Rob), and to Rob’s other writings on the Passion Saving approach to money management.

Softpanorama.org, Saving Your 401(k) Nest Egg From Yourself
Juicy Excerpt: Avid Siegelists [Jeremy Siegel is the author of the book Stocks for the Long Run) might later become disillusioned with the returns offered by stock indexes purchased at high valuations and suddenly realize that there are times when buy-and-hold investing is not nearly so exciting an approach as it has been advertised to be by gurus.

Internet Marketing Journal, Saving for the Future
Juicy Excerpt: I think you’ll find (like I did) that he offers a fresh new perspective that will motivate you to get on track with a solid savings plan.

Woman’s World, Save $500,000 by Retirement with this “Surprise” Advice (October 10, 2006)
Juicy Quote: “Whenever you’re ready to make a purchase, consider how many hours you have to work to buy it,” says Bennett. Those new shoes may not be worth five hours on the job.

The Juneau Empire, Get Over It: Don’t Let Job Rejection Set Back Your Search
Juicy Excerpt: Bennett says another thing you can do is to make a list of the things you’ve learned about yourself and about the job market. “You met people doing the work you want to do,” he says. “What is it about them that appealed to you? Focusing on that may help open your eyes to appealing options that you hadn’t given much consideration to before.”

The Cleveland Plain Dealer, Motivation
Juicy Excerpt: Bennett’s book, Passion Saving: The Path to Plentiful Free Time and Soul-Satisfying Work, is not about conventional advice on how to save money. He says that when saving is something you do out of desire rather than obligation, you will have more success. The key to effective saving is identifying a short-term saving goal that creates within you a strong urge to save. Do that and the rest falls easily into place. The first step to identifying that sort of saving goal is coming to understand what saving really is all about.

The Joy of Life Column, Improve Your Life With a Job That Fits (link no longer available)
Juicy Excerpt: Bennett calls this kind of analysis, which is usually based on salary, a mistake. “Your financial compensation is only part of the total pay package you obtain from the work you do. More important in a long-term sense is what you learn from doing the job,” he writes.

The Houston Chronicle, Gaming Doesn’t Have to Break Your Family’s Bank
Juicy Excerpt: Bennett, a lawyer and tax specialist who blogs on financial affairs at PassionSaving.com, says he can’t think of any spending category with as many bad traits as video games.

Online-College-Education.com, Want a Family-Friendly Career? Parental Advice on How to Break Into One (Link No Longer Available)
Juicy Excerpt: The strain on your bank account isn’t worth one cent of a frivolous purchase, he says. Because of his “Passion Saving” plan, Bennett eats all his meals with his family, takes his boys to the park or the pool every day, and spends more time with his wife, who’s also a stay-at-home parent. And that’s worth more than anything else, he says.

WritersHelper.com, Book Marketing and the Proposal Doctor
Juicy Excerpt: Her comments led me to believe that the best way to market my book was to sell it from my Web site, demonstrate that there is a market for it, and only then to contact publishers for the purpose of distributing it to larger markets.

PRWeb.com. Calculator Predicts Poor Long-Term Stock Returns Due to Valuation Effect
Juicy Excerpt: Investors have been misled by reports on what the historical data says that ignore the effect of changes in stock valuation, said Rob Bennett, co-author of the new calculator.

MSNBC.com, What Motivates Us to Overspend?
Juicy Excerpt: As Rob Bennett, author of The Financial Freedom Blog, so aptly puts it, “Few people see what books you buy; everybody sees what car you drive.

Medill News Service, Have Fun and Hold Down Spending
Juicy Excerpt: Bennett says that it’s a good idea to enjoy eating out at a restaurant, but to move the drinking to someone’s apartment. A bottle of wine when out can cost as much as $25. Buying a bottle of the same wine can cost half as much at a local store.

Forbes, Anonymity and the Net
Juicy Excerpt: Question the right of Net anonymity and you risk an unmitigated thrashing (anonymously, of course). So maybe we are asking for trouble when we dare to say that Internet anonymity is out of control…. It emboldens the mean-spirited and offers them a huge audience for spewing hatred and libel. Caustic cowards are free to one-up one another in invective and vitriol — haters who would tone it down if they had to identify themselves.

Note: Rob’s voice is the strongest voice in our community speaking out against the abusive posting that has caused great damage to six Retire Early boards, including the Motley Fool board, the Early Retirement Forum and the Vanguard Diehards board. He stated in a Letter to the Editor that: “Abusive posters seek power, not free speech. I’ve seen thousands of fine people intimidated into silence in the name of free speech.”

GetYourAssetsInGear.com, Time Is Not a Four-Letter Word (Link No Longer Available)
Juicy Excerpt: The problem is that valuations went so high in the late 1990s that it is taking a long time for stocks to get back to the price levels where they again provide the usual annual real return of about 6.5 percent. We’ll get there, however, and, when we do, stock investing for the long term will be fun again.

MSNBC “Your Career” Column, On Labor Day, Readers Seek Some Work Advice
Juicy Excerpt: This type of relationship building can take time to pay off, Bennett stresses, but when a new position comes up at least you’ll be on the radar screen of more than just your boss.

The owners of the Financial WebRing Forum state:
“We have taken the unusual step of banning a member based on expected behavior rather than actual behavior. Based on what we have seen elsewhere and at his own blog, we have permanently banned Hocus from FWF. What we have seen unfolding in Technical Analysis Anyone? is consistent with what we have seen unfold at other forums. Rather than wait and incur similar chaos, we have acted now.” A forum member named “Squash500 observes: “What I don’t understand is how Hocus can correspond in such a sweet and polite way—-yet he irritates me to no end. ”

The NormxxxRuminates blog sets forth a long excerpt from the article “The Famous Robert Shiller Stock Market Prediction” from the “The Stock-Return Predictor” section of the site.

The Canadian Financial DIY blog lists PassionSaving.com in its Resources section as a site that helps with “fitting investing into life.”

Sweetlip starts a thread at the Early Retirement Forum asking about the people who built the Motley Fool board, including “Rob Bennett, who must have fallen really out of favor with [John Greaney], judging by John’s comments on RetireEarlyHomePage.com.” Sweetlip observes that: “That must have been one helluva catfight to get Hocus so ostracized.” Cute Fuzzy Bunny offers that: “Sometimes people retire early and lose their minds.”

I post a Letter to the Editor at the www.Early-Retirement-Planning-Insights.com site entitled Dollar Cost Averaging at Year 15. I say: “In real life, most 100 percent stock investors would lower their stock allocations dramatically after suffering a big hit. That would bring the 15-year results for 100 percent stocks down dramatically.”

Buzz — Page One