Young people face unprecedented financial challenges: rising student debt, stiff competition for jobs, barriers to home ownership, dwindling state benefits and prospects of a longer working life. Today, students need financial knowledge and skills more than ever before, not just to build their own financial security, but to create the new generation of advisers that can help all citizens navigate the complex world of personal finance.
Essential Personal Finance is a guide to all the key areas of personal finance: budgeting, managing debt, savings and investments, insurance, securing a home and laying the foundations for retirement. It also provides an introduction to some of the essential foundations of a modern undergraduate finance qualification, including:
- The nature of financial institutions, markets and economic policy that shape the opportunities and decisions that individuals face.
- The range of financial assets available to households, the risk-return trade-off, basics of portfolio construction and impact of tax.
- The importance of the efficient market hypothesis and modern portfolio theory in shaping investment strategies and the limitations of these approaches.
- Behavioural finance as a key to understanding factors influencing individual and market perceptions and actions.
- Using financial data to inform investment selection and to create financial management tools that can aid decision-making.
- A comprehensive companion website accompanies the text to enhance students' learning and includes answers to the end-of-chapter questions.
Written by authors who contribute experience as financial advisers, practitioners and academics, Essential Personal Finance examines the motivations, methods and theories that underpin financial decision-making, as well as offering useful tips and guidance on money management and financial planning. The result is a compelling combination of an undergraduate textbook aimed at students on personal finance and financial services courses, and a practical guide for young people in building their own financial strength and capability.
Table of Contents
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Part I Have a vision and a plan
1 The necessity of private wealth
2 Defining and achieving your desired lifestyle and legacy
3 Money and happiness
4 Plan your future
Part II Build a secure foundation
5 The pillars of wealth: budgeting and saving
Tony Byrne and Lien Luu
6 Insuring risks
Part III Multiply your wealth
7 Residual income
8 A place to live
9 Make wise investments
Tony Byrne and Jonquil Lowe
10 Saving for later life
11 Help from your family
Part IV The next steps
12 Take action
Lien Luu is a Chartered and Certified Financial Planner and a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Insurance. She is also a Registered Life Planner and has previously worked as a financial planner helping clients build wealth. Lien is currently an Associate Head of School for Enterprise and Commercial in the School of Economics, Finance and Accounting, Coventry Business School and has taught at universities for more than 15 years.
Jonquil Lowe is an economist and has previously worked as an investment analyst and head of the Money Research Group at Which?. Jonquil is now Senior Lecturer in Economics and Personal Finance at The Open University and also a freelance researcher/author.
Jason Butler is an author of the first and second editions of The Financial Times Guide to Wealth Management: How to plan, invest and protect your financial assets. He is also a columnist for The Financial Times where, as ‘The Wealthman’, he writes about personal finance-related issues. Jason also provides expert comments on personal finance to BBC Radio and a range of other publications, media and websites.
Tony Byrne is a financial planner and an ex-accountant. He has been a regular contributor to both national and local press for many years. He has written a regular column for Money Marketing for more than 10 years. He is a previous Chairman of The Institute of Financial Planning Northern Home Counties branch.
‘This book is impressive in both the range and depth of coverage of key elements of personal finance. It is unusual to find a book that attempts to provide both academic and practical perspectives, and yet can still manage to be accessible to those with limited or expert knowledge in the topic. This book will clearly benefit both undergraduate and postgraduate students of financial services, but will also benefit those who are interested in learning more about the topic.’ — Steven Leonard, The University of the West of Scotland, UK
‘An essential text book on personal finance, dealing with the discipline in an innovative way… The style is lively and pithy, and will appeal both to the casual reader and to the undergraduate student studying at university or for professional exams. Topics are clearly laid out with relevant, topical case studies, activities and end of chapter questions. Hitherto little explored areas such as youth unemployment and getting help from your family and the impact of these on personal financial decisions adds a unique dimension to this book.’ — M. Shahid Nawaz, Glasgow Caledonian University, UK
‘This book is a well written textbook that brings together all the essential components of financial planning in one place. It can also serve as a reference book for many to use at a later date when going through different stages of life as each life stage presents different needs and challenges’ — Dr Pushpa Wood ONZM, Director Westpac Massey Financial Education and Research Centre, Massey University, New Zealand.