Round Up: Lost in Corporate America Edition

by JT McGee

“The man.”

“The machine.”

“The institutions.”

People say it’s easy to get lost in corporate America. You show up, put in your hours, and then you leave. You never really know whether you’re actually doing what you need to be doing, or if your work is truly appreciated by your coworkers.

I just read the best short story I’ve ever read in my life. Titled “American Dream,” it’s written by a man who works his way up through the corporate ladder, only to be lost in corporate America. I highly, highly recommend reading it. It takes all of 15 minutes, but it’ll make your day better. I promise.

School update Stomped that geology test. I must have guessed correctly.

Awesome development of the week Receiving $50 in gift cards from American Express. Credit card rewards are awesome…until you realize how much you spent to get them. It’s the “loose change” paradox, where you deposit $100 in change at a bank only to realize you probably spent $1,000 to have that much change.

Stuff to Read

  1. Nelson provides an up close and personal story about Occupy Wall Street from a Canadian’s perspective.
  2. Cameron explains why he doesn’t own an iPhone. Personally, I don’t own one because I have read their financial statements. Fat net profit margins don’t come from nowhere.
  3. Iam1Percent refinances his primary home again. One of the comments says it’s silly as he’ll only save about $13,500. P.S. – I’m opening a “do yo’ refi” business where for the small price of $5,000 I’ll manage the headache of your refi.
  4. Invest it Wisely ran a guest post about exploring options before going to college. I wish I had. I would have gone to community college for 2 years first to work out my need to grow up, and to transfer to a different school. Alas, a scholarship wouldn’t pay for a 2-year school. That’s another story all together.
  5. Retire by 40 asks readers if they’re better off now than 4 years ago. I am. A lot of people are. Anyone who saves diligently and invests intelligently should be. Alas, I’m just starting on the “build my wealth” boat, so small nominal improvements are large changes as a percentage.

Articles I wrote

Gold vs. Gold Miner ETFs: Finding a Fair Ratio at ETFBase.

Why Target Date Bond Funds Beat Bond Index Funds at Darwin’s Money.

Can For Profit Education Outperform in an Upswing? at The College Investor. (Nope!)

Diversification – Why and How to Do it at 20sFinances.

Random Market Thoughts Not Worthy of a Full Post

Stock I’d own if it were cheaper: Chipotle Mexican Grill (CMG.) It’s the apple of fast casual dining – clean, well designed, and expensive. Not impressed with management’s desire to chase after some Asian restaurant concept given that protecting CMG’s growing moat should be #1.

Stock I’m selling: Cutting back on Darling International (DAR) again. At $12-14, it’s a value stock. At $18, it’s a fund manager’s value stock. The difference is expected returns. (Included in my stock market competition picks; $18 was my summer price target. I’m out…again.)

Stock I’m buying: I put some of my Darling proceeds in American Capital Ltd (ACAS). Ranted about ACAS in a post about when to buy dividend stocks. Riding the share repurchase wave for an eventual exit shortly after dividends are reinstated or it sells for a premium to NAV.

“That’s All, Folks!”

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