Dan Ostrov's Financial Resources Page


    Financial advice for 401(k) investing

  1. When you start work, you'll need to start investing in your 401(k). Here's some advice for how to invest showing, surprisingly, that the most lucrative methods of investing also happen to be among the most simple and least time consuming.

  2. To predict how much money you will have in retirement or to compare the effects of two different financial scenarios on your retirement, you can use this retirement Excel spreadsheet.

  3. How important are index funds to successful retirement investing? Extremely. Check out the second half of this recent Frontline from PBS (the first half is great too) or this report on individual investing from NPR or this NPR report on your company 401(k) offerings. Finally, Ron Lieber goes as far as to argue in his New York Times column that companies should actually be sued for not offering index funds in their 401(k) plan offerings here.

    Resources for SCU Faculty and Staff concerning retirement planning

  1. Employees who want to put their money in a single fund and not have to think about it have two excellent choices: Fidelity Freedom Index funds (our default fund for employees who do not select other funds) and Vanguard Target Date Retirement funds (available through either Fidelity or TIAA-CREF). To understand the advantages of these types of funds, as well as their differences, click here.

  2. For employees who would prefer to select their own balance of various asset classes, both Fidelity and TIAA-CREF offer a rich selection of inexpensive index funds, and you can view a list of these funds by clicking here.

  3. For a link to the October 6th 2011 forum on the new SCU retirement funds and general retirement planning, click here.


    Think you can solve our Federal and State budget messes?

  1. What's the state of the U.S. budget? Here's a really clear and simple picture of our federal budget.

  2. Think you can balance the federal budget better than "those clowns in Washington"? Put your money (and our money) where your mouth is: this site lets you try to balance the U.S. budget.

  3. Too overwhelming? Okay, here's something smaller, but possibly harder: this site lets you try to balance the California state budget.


    Facts on the Federal Deficit, Taxes, and Wealth Distribution

  1. The effects of some recent federal laws on the budget can be found here.

    How have the last two presidents contributed to our current debt? Click here.

    Who owns our current debt? Find out here.

  2. Federal tax rates are much less than they used to be. To quickly understand the recent history of the top income tax rate and of the capital gains rate, click here. To see a more full history of all income tax rates, click here.

  3. Significant changes in American wealth distribution can be quickly understood by looking at the four tabs here.

  4. How bad does the future look for Social Security and Medicare? Check out the charts here.