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Re: [hreg] CNBC

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  • Chris Manning
    As someone who works with this on a daily basis, I have rather strong feelings when I see arguments put forth by members of the media promoting a Vice Fund
    Message 1 of 16 , Jul 11, 2007
    • 0 Attachment
      As someone who works with this on a daily basis, I have rather strong
      feelings when I see arguments put forth by members of the media
      promoting a "Vice Fund" as a superior investment strategy. It has been
      empirically proven that a well diversified portfolio will generate
      statistically the same financial return over the long run - be it Vice
      or Socially Responsible. However, I am a firm believer that the returns
      of a company transcend purely the financial arena. The returns of a
      company must be viewed from the financial *AND* the social and
      environmental perspective before they can be judged to be good or bad.

      Yes - oil company stocks have historically performed well, however, how
      much of this is truly sustainable over the long run given the facts that
      we know today? As everyone in here knows, the time of "easy" oil is
      behind us. Given this, coupled with the fact that the vast majority of
      oil reserves are not local to America does not bode well for their long
      term growth potential given the turmoil in the world today. I'm not
      trying to predict the future and oil stocks may indeed produce a nice
      financial return for the foreseeable future, but at what cost?

      Finally, to address the comment of "Listen people, you're investing
      here, so stop with the morals and do the smart thing.", the smart thing
      is to create a sustainable and diversified portfolio of investments that
      match your conscience. It is not written anywhere that you have to
      sacrifice return by utilizing a Socially Responsible approach to investing.

      Individual investors need to realize the pivotal role they play in
      helping shape our economy and our society. If they are willing to invest
      in companies (either directly or indirectly) that they have questions
      about or are not responsive to shareholders, they are giving their
      unspoken "stamp of approval" for business as usual. We need to stand up
      for sustainability and create a plan that will give us the return we
      desire - a return consisting of financial, social and environmental
      performance.

      I know most here will agree with me on this, but I just needed to vent
      some after reading the CNBC story.

      Christopher S. Manning
      www.manning-financial.com
      "Sustainable Wealth Management"


      Robert Johnston wrote:
      >
      > Well, the sad truth is we humans live in a world of (self-inflicted)
      > trouble and investing in trouble can be profitable. In Jeremy Siegel’s
      > best-selling book, “The Future for Investors”, copyright 2005, he
      > shows that it isn’t the glamour stocks (technology, etc.) that have
      > won over long periods of time. The highest rate of return of a stock
      > since 1957 (he calls it his “descendants portfolio”—a 1957 stock and
      > all its spinoffs etc.) was Phillip Morris at 4626.4%, or 19.75% annual
      > rate of return—this despite all the tobacco litigation, etc. The other
      > highlighted group was oil stocks. The top 5 performers since 1957 of
      > the 20 largest 1957 stocks were oil companies. Royal Dutch Petroleum
      > and its descendants have returned 13.64% annually, and the others were
      > also in the 12-13% range.
      >
      > I think there will be good investment opportunities in renewables, but
      > finding them is the trick. When a sector is as hot as the renewable
      > energy, distributed power storage, etc., sector is now (with lots of
      > venture capital, IPOs, etc.) one must be cautious as an investor. As
      > the .com bubble should have taught us--even if we didn’t learn from
      > the history of radio technology stocks, computer stocks, biotech
      > stocks, etc.—there will be a huge shake-out and it is hard to predict
      > the winners among new technology companies. And Siegel’s point is that
      > even if you could predict the winners, you might not do as well as
      > with the staid sin companies and oil. The reason is that the new tech
      > companies are priced to perfection, so even if they deliver the
      > expected growth, the stock won’t be that hot.
      >
      > Robert
      >
      > ------------------------------------------------------------------------
      >
      > *From:* hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] *On Behalf
      > Of *Susan Modikoane
      > *Sent:* Tuesday, July 10, 2007 11:29 PM
      > *To:* peakoil@...; hreg@yahoogroups.com
      > *Subject:* [hreg] CNBC
      >
      > I've been working out at a gym and, therefore, had time to catch CNBC.
      > It was interesting to watch them insist that people invest in
      > Conoco-Phillips tonight, stating that they have reached $80 a share
      > and that if you look at their data, that means their stock will rise
      > to $120.
      >
      > Another show was insisting that people invest in arms and oil,
      > highlighting the "Vice Fund," as a great idea.
      >
      > "Listen people, you're investing here, so stop with the morals and do
      > the smart thing."
      >
      > They had a reporter out in the street interviewing people who all said
      > they'd prefer to invest in renewable energy. They cited one example of
      > an oil company that had done well and never compared it to any stock
      > in the renewable energy sector! Then they ran the splashy type, "Vice
      > stocks may do better than renewable energy."
      >
      > Scary!
      >
      > ------------------------------------------------------------------------
      >
      > Choose the right car based on your needs. Check out Yahoo! Autos new
      > Car Finder tool.
      > <http://us.rd.yahoo.com/evt=48518/*http:/autos.yahoo.com/carfinder/;_ylc=X3oDMTE3NWsyMDd2BF9TAzk3MTA3MDc2BHNlYwNtYWlsdGFncwRzbGsDY2FyLWZpbmRlcg--%20>
      >
      >
      >
    • evelyn sardina
      The thing about it is that the power of making desicions is constantly being taken away from people! At my job, it is now a practice to automatically enroll
      Message 2 of 16 , Jul 11, 2007
      • 0 Attachment
        The thing about it is that the power of making desicions is constantly being taken away from  people!  At my job, it is now a practice to automatically enroll everyone that walks in the door in a 401k type of plan.The paper work reads: You may get 50% of every dollar you invest after your vesting term, etc.   We have thousnds of employees all over the world. You can opt out but the mayority of the people don't unnderstand how any of this works!  You would think that this is good but the truth is that this is not guaranteed savings like social security ( i'm not going to get into the social security issue) but at least this is backed by our goverment ( backed by the goverment and i am not getting into this one either) I'm just saying.   Then you have a corporation putting the money into whatever they can make the most money out of.  As you know they get paid to recommend particular stock, as all brokers do.   We are talking corporations here.  When you invest in the 401k at my job you do not pick the companies you want to invest in, they invest  the employees  money in what they want.  Again more and more we give more power to corporations whojonly care about the bottom dollar. 

        Chris Manning <cmanning@...> wrote:
        As someone who works with this on a daily basis, I have rather strong
        feelings when I see arguments put forth by members of the media
        promoting a "Vice Fund" as a superior investment strategy. It has been
        empirically proven that a well diversified portfolio will generate
        statistically the same financial return over the long run - be it Vice
        or Socially Responsible. However, I am a firm believer that the returns
        of a company transcend purely the financial arena. The returns of a
        company must be viewed from the financial *AND* the social and
        environmental perspective before they can be judged to be good or bad.

        Yes - oil company stocks have historically performed well, however, how
        much of this is truly sustainable over the long run given the facts that
        we know today? As everyone in here knows, the time of "easy" oil is
        behind us. Given this, coupled with the fact that the vast majority of
        oil reserves are not local to America does not bode well for their long
        term growth potential given the turmoil in the world today. I'm not
        trying to predict the future and oil stocks may indeed produce a nice
        financial return for the foreseeable future, but at what cost?

        Finally, to address the comment of "Listen people, you're investing
        here, so stop with the morals and do the smart thing.", the smart thing
        is to create a sustainable and diversified portfolio of investments that
        match your conscience. It is not written anywhere that you have to
        sacrifice return by utilizing a Socially Responsible approach to investing.

        Individual investors need to realize the pivotal role they play in
        helping shape our economy and our society. If they are willing to invest
        in companies (either directly or indirectly) that they have questions
        about or are not responsive to shareholders, they are giving their
        unspoken "stamp of approval" for business as usual. We need to stand up
        for sustainability and create a plan that will give us the return we
        desire - a return consisting of financial, social and environmental
        performance.

        I know most here will agree with me on this, but I just needed to vent
        some after reading the CNBC story.

        Christopher S. Manning
        www.manning-financial.com
        "Sustainable Wealth Management"


        Robert Johnston wrote:
        >
        > Well, the sad truth is we humans live in a world of (self-inflicted)
        > trouble and investing in trouble can be profitable. In Jeremy Siegel’s
        > best-selling book, “The Future for Investors”, copyright 2005, he
        > shows that it isn’t the glamour stocks (technology, etc.) that have
        > won over long periods of time. The highest rate of return of a stock
        > since 1957 (he calls it his “descendants portfolio”—a 1957 stock and
        > all its spinoffs etc.) was Phillip Morris at 4626.4%, or 19.75% annual
        > rate of return—this despite all the tobacco litigation, etc. The other
        > highlighted group was oil stocks. The top 5 performers since 1957 of
        > the 20 largest 1957 stocks were oil companies. Royal Dutch Petroleum
        > and its descendants have returned 13.64% annually, and the others were
        > also in the 12-13% range.
        >
        > I think there will be good investment opportunities in renewables, but
        > finding them is the trick. When a sector is as hot as the renewable
        > energy, distributed power storage, etc., sector is now (with lots of
        > venture capital, IPOs, etc.) one must be cautious as an investor. As
        > the .com bubble should have taught us--even if we didn’t learn from
        > the history of radio technology stocks, computer stocks, biotech
        > stocks, etc.—there will be a huge shake-out and it is hard to predict
        > the winners among new technology companies. And Siegel’s point is that
        > even if you could predict the winners, you might not do as well as
        > with the staid sin companies and oil. The reason is that the new tech
        > companies are priced to perfection, so even if they deliver the
        > expected growth, the stock won’t be that hot.
        >
        > Robert
        >
        > ------------------------------------------------------------------------
        >
        > *From:* hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] *On Behalf
        > Of *Susan Modikoane
        > *Sent:* Tuesday, July 10, 2007 11:29 PM
        > *To:* peakoil@...; hreg@yahoogroups.com
        > *Subject:* [hreg] CNBC
        >
        > I've been working out at a gym and, therefore, had time to catch CNBC.
        > It was interesting to watch them insist that people invest in
        > Conoco-Phillips tonight, stating that they have reached $80 a share
        > and that if you look at their data, that means their stock will rise
        > to $120.
        >
        > Another show was insisting that people invest in arms and oil,
        > highlighting the "Vice Fund," as a great idea.
        >
        > "Listen people, you're investing here, so stop with the morals and do
        > the smart thing."
        >
        > They had a reporter out in the street interviewing people who all said
        > they'd prefer to invest in renewable energy. They cited one example of
        > an oil company that had done well and never compared it to any stock
        > in the renewable energy sector! Then they ran the splashy type, "Vice
        > stocks may do better than renewable energy."
        >
        > Scary!
        >
        > ------------------------------------------------------------------------
        >
        > Choose the right car based on your needs. Check out Yahoo! Autos new
        > Car Finder tool.
        >
        >
        >
        >




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        Play Sims Stories at Yahoo! Games.

      • Chris Manning
        You bring up a great point. Often times, it is outside of an individuals control on what type of investments they have within their retirment plans. I
        Message 3 of 16 , Jul 11, 2007
        • 0 Attachment
          Message
          You bring up a great point.  Often times, it is outside of an individuals control on what type of investments they have within their retirment plans.  I already know the arguement the companies give:  "It is our fiduciary responsibility to choose the investments that will generate the best financial return for our employees."
           
          This is why it is vitally important for individuals to try and understand the intricacies of any retirement plan they may have.  There may be a way to self-direct the investments or at least to choose which mutual funds you want utilize.  Be sure and explore what your options are - what investment choices you have - the advantages/disadvantages of each course of action.
           
          I know this sounds more simplistic than it actually is, however, we must understand the power that our investment choices can have on society as a whole and work to create change.
           
           
          -----Original Message-----
          From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of evelyn sardina
          Sent: Wednesday, July 11, 2007 3:44 PM
          To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
          Subject: Re: [hreg] CNBC

          The thing about it is that the power of making desicions is constantly being taken away from  people!  At my job, it is now a practice to automatically enroll everyone that walks in the door in a 401k type of plan.The paper work reads: You may get 50% of every dollar you invest after your vesting term, etc.   We have thousnds of employees all over the world. You can opt out but the mayority of the people don't unnderstand how any of this works!  You would think that this is good but the truth is that this is not guaranteed savings like social security ( i'm not going to get into the social security issue) but at least this is backed by our goverment ( backed by the goverment and i am not getting into this one either) I'm just saying.   Then you have a corporation putting the money into whatever they can make the most money out of.  As you know they get paid to recommend particular stock, as all brokers do.   We are talking corporations here.  When you invest in the 401k at my job you do not pick the companies you want to invest in, they invest  the employees  money in what they want.  Again more and more we give more power to corporations whojonly care about the bottom dollar. 

          Chris Manning <cmanning@hal- pc.org> wrote:

          As someone who works with this on a daily basis, I have rather strong
          feelings when I see arguments put forth by members of the media
          promoting a "Vice Fund" as a superior investment strategy. It has been
          empirically proven that a well diversified portfolio will generate
          statistically the same financial return over the long run - be it Vice
          or Socially Responsible. However, I am a firm believer that the returns
          of a company transcend purely the financial arena. The returns of a
          company must be viewed from the financial *AND* the social and
          environmental perspective before they can be judged to be good or bad.

          Yes - oil company stocks have historically performed well, however, how
          much of this is truly sustainable over the long run given the facts that
          we know today? As everyone in here knows, the time of "easy" oil is
          behind us. Given this, coupled with the fact that the vast majority of
          oil reserves are not local to America does not bode well for their long
          term growth potential given the turmoil in the world today. I'm not
          trying to predict the future and oil stocks may indeed produce a nice
          financial return for the foreseeable future, but at what cost?

          Finally, to address the comment of "Listen people, you're investing
          here, so stop with the morals and do the smart thing.", the smart thing
          is to create a sustainable and diversified portfolio of investments that
          match your conscience. It is not written anywhere that you have to
          sacrifice return by utilizing a Socially Responsible approach to investing.

          Individual investors need to realize the pivotal role they play in
          helping shape our economy and our society. If they are willing to invest
          in companies (either directly or indirectly) that they have questions
          about or are not responsive to shareholders, they are giving their
          unspoken "stamp of approval" for business as usual. We need to stand up
          for sustainability and create a plan that will give us the return we
          desire - a return consisting of financial, social and environmental
          performance.

          I know most here will agree with me on this, but I just needed to vent
          some after reading the CNBC story.

          Christopher S. Manning
          www.manning- financial. com
          "Sustainable Wealth Management"


          Robert Johnston wrote:
          >
          > Well, the sad truth is we humans live in a world of (self-inflicted)
          > trouble and investing in trouble can be profitable. In Jeremy Siegel’s
          > best-selling book, “The Future for Investors”, copyright 2005, he
          > shows that it isn’t the glamour stocks (technology, etc.) that have
          > won over long periods of time. The highest rate of return of a stock
          > since 1957 (he calls it his “descendants portfolio”—a 1957 stock and
          > all its spinoffs etc.) was Phillip Morris at 4626.4%, or 19.75% annual
          > rate of return—this despite all the tobacco litigation, etc. The other
          > highlighted group was oil stocks. The top 5 performers since 1957 of
          > the 20 largest 1957 stocks were oil companies. Royal Dutch Petroleum
          > and its descendants have returned 13.64% annually, and the others were
          > also in the 12-13% range.
          >
          > I think there will be good investment opportunities in renewables, but
          > finding them is the trick. When a sector is as hot as the renewable
          > energy, distributed power storage, etc., sector is now (with lots of
          > venture capital, IPOs, etc.) one must be cautious as an investor. As
          > the .com bubble should have taught us--even if we didn’t learn from
          > the history of radio technology stocks, computer stocks, biotech
          > stocks, etc.—there will be a huge shake-out and it is hard to predict
          > the winners among new technology companies. And Siegel’s point is that
          > even if you could predict the winners, you might not do as well as
          > with the staid sin companies and oil. The reason is that the new tech
          > companies are priced to perfection, so even if they deliver the
          > expected growth, the stock won’t be that hot.
          >
          > Robert
          >
          > ------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ------
          >
          > *From:* hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto:hreg@ yahoogroups. com] *On Behalf
          > Of *Susan Modikoane
          > *Sent:* Tuesday, July 10, 2007 11:29 PM
          > *To:* peakoil@lists. riseup.net; hreg@yahoogroups. com
          > *Subject:* [hreg] CNBC
          >
          > I've been working out at a gym and, therefore, had time to catch CNBC.
          > It was interesting to watch them insist that people invest in
          > Conoco-Phillips tonight, stating that they have reached $80 a share
          > and that if you look at their data, that means their stock will rise
          > to $120.
          >
          > Another show was insisting that people invest in arms and oil,
          > highlighting the "Vice Fund," as a great idea.
          >
          > "Listen people, you're investing here, so stop with the morals and do
          > the smart thing."
          >
          > They had a reporter out in the street interviewing people who all said
          > they'd prefer to invest in renewable energy. They cited one example of
          > an oil company that had done well and never compared it to any stock
          > in the renewable energy sector! Then they ran the splashy type, "Vice
          > stocks may do better than renewable energy."
          >
          > Scary!
          >
          > ------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ------
          >
          > Choose the right car based on your needs. Check out Yahoo! Autos new
          > Car Finder tool.
          >
          >
          >
          >




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          Moody friends. Drama queens. Your life? Nope! - their life, your story.
          Play Sims Stories at Yahoo! Games.

        • evelyn sardina
          At my work they let you self direct to what they choose for you! Can you say Enron? Look, something is better than nothing and nothing is what most people
          Message 4 of 16 , Jul 11, 2007
          • 0 Attachment
            At my work they let you self direct to what they choose for you!
            Can you say Enron?  Look, something is better than nothing and nothing is what most people have.  You are right, education is the key.  Most kids are learning about this in school these days. The thing is that the don't earn money yet.  People also think they have to have a lot of money to invest.  It is not what you make but what you do with it and how much of it you get to keep in the end. Most poor people stay poor for lack of knowledge. It's like a desease.  I say do it all! Buy a green home or retrofit and take the money that you save in energy and buy green stock.  Mostly buy through direct purchase and if you if you don't care to do the work, let someone like yourself  guide them.  Some people just don't like making these desicions on their own, so it is worth it to have someone handle it for them.  To me anything is better than your employer whom at anytime can  tell you......Sorry but you gave us your money now you have to do what we say.  How about they fire you right before you become 100 percent vested! Oh but wait a minute, maybe they are thinking you will quit and forget about taking your money with you!  Just kidding, I know they wouldn't do that.

            Chris Manning <cmanning@...> wrote:
            You bring up a great point.  Often times, it is outside of an individuals control on what type of investments they have within their retirment plans.  I already know the arguement the companies give:  "It is our fiduciary responsibility to choose the investments that will generate the best financial return for our employees."
             
            This is why it is vitally important for individuals to try and understand the intricacies of any retirement plan they may have.  There may be a way to self-direct the investments or at least to choose which mutual funds you want utilize.  Be sure and explore what your options are - what investment choices you have - the advantages/disadvan tages of each course of action.
             
            I know this sounds more simplistic than it actually is, however, we must understand the power that our investment choices can have on society as a whole and work to create change.
             
             
            -----Original Message-----
            From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto:hreg@ yahoogroups. com] On Behalf Of evelyn sardina
            Sent: Wednesday, July 11, 2007 3:44 PM
            To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
            Subject: Re: [hreg] CNBC

            The thing about it is that the power of making desicions is constantly being taken away from  people!  At my job, it is now a practice to automatically enroll everyone that walks in the door in a 401k type of plan.The paper work reads: You may get 50% of every dollar you invest after your vesting term, etc.   We have thousnds of employees all over the world. You can opt out but the mayority of the people don't unnderstand how any of this works!  You would think that this is good but the truth is that this is not guaranteed savings like social security ( i'm not going to get into the social security issue) but at least this is backed by our goverment ( backed by the goverment and i am not getting into this one either) I'm just saying.   Then you have a corporation putting the money into whatever they can make the most money out of.  As you know they get paid to recommend particular stock, as all brokers do.   We are talking corporations here.  When you invest in the 401k at my job you do not pick the companies you want to invest in, they invest  the employees  money in what they want.  Again more and more we give more power to corporations whojonly care about the bottom dollar. 

            Chris Manning <cmanning@hal- pc.org> wrote:
            As someone who works with this on a daily basis, I have rather strong
            feelings when I see arguments put forth by members of the media
            promoting a "Vice Fund" as a superior investment strategy. It has been
            empirically proven that a well diversified portfolio will generate
            statistically the same financial return over the long run - be it Vice
            or Socially Responsible. However, I am a firm believer that the returns
            of a company transcend purely the financial arena. The returns of a
            company must be viewed from the financial *AND* the social and
            environmental perspective before they can be judged to be good or bad.

            Yes - oil company stocks have historically performed well, however, how
            much of this is truly sustainable over the long run given the facts that
            we know today? As everyone in here knows, the time of "easy" oil is
            behind us. Given this, coupled with the fact that the vast majority of
            oil reserves are not local to America does not bode well for their long
            term growth potential given the turmoil in the world today. I'm not
            trying to predict the future and oil stocks may indeed produce a nice
            financial return for the foreseeable future, but at what cost?

            Finally, to address the comment of "Listen people, you're investing
            here, so stop with the morals and do the smart thing.", the smart thing
            is to create a sustainable and diversified portfolio of investments that
            match your conscience. It is not written anywhere that you have to
            sacrifice return by utilizing a Socially Responsible approach to investing.

            Individual investors need to realize the pivotal role they play in
            helping shape our economy and our society. If they are willing to invest
            in companies (either directly or indirectly) that they have questions
            about or are not responsive to shareholders, they are giving their
            unspoken "stamp of approval" for business as usual. We need to stand up
            for sustainability and create a plan that will give us the return we
            desire - a return consisting of financial, social and environmental
            performance.

            I know most here will agree with me on this, but I just needed to vent
            some after reading the CNBC story.

            Christopher S. Manning
            www.manning- financial. com
            "Sustainable Wealth Management"


            Robert Johnston wrote:
            >
            > Well, the sad truth is we humans live in a world of (self-inflicted)
            > trouble and investing in trouble can be profitable. In Jeremy Siegel’s
            > best-selling book, “The Future for Investors”, copyright 2005, he
            > shows that it isn’t the glamour stocks (technology, etc.) that have
            > won over long periods of time. The highest rate of return of a stock
            > since 1957 (he calls it his “descendants portfolio”—a 1957 stock and
            > all its spinoffs etc.) was Phillip Morris at 4626.4%, or 19.75% annual
            > rate of return—this despite all the tobacco litigation, etc. The other
            > highlighted group was oil stocks. The top 5 performers since 1957 of
            > the 20 largest 1957 stocks were oil companies. Royal Dutch Petroleum
            > and its descendants have returned 13.64% annually, and the others were
            > also in the 12-13% range.
            >
            > I think there will be good investment opportunities in renewables, but
            > finding them is the trick. When a sector is as hot as the renewable
            > energy, distributed power storage, etc., sector is now (with lots of
            > venture capital, IPOs, etc.) one must be cautious as an investor. As
            > the .com bubble should have taught us--even if we didn’t learn from
            > the history of radio technology stocks, computer stocks, biotech
            > stocks, etc.—there will be a huge shake-out and it is hard to predict
            > the winners among new technology companies. And Siegel’s point is that
            > even if you could predict the winners, you might not do as well as
            > with the staid sin companies and oil. The reason is that the new tech
            > companies are priced to perfection, so even if they deliver the
            > expected growth, the stock won’t be that hot.
            >
            > Robert
            >
            > ------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ------
            >
            > *From:* hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto:hreg@ yahoogroups. com] *On Behalf
            > Of *Susan Modikoane
            > *Sent:* Tuesday, July 10, 2007 11:29 PM
            > *To:* peakoil@lists. riseup.net; hreg@yahoogroups. com
            > *Subject:* [hreg] CNBC
            >
            > I've been working out at a gym and, therefore, had time to catch CNBC.
            > It was interesting to watch them insist that people invest in
            > Conoco-Phillips tonight, stating that they have reached $80 a share
            > and that if you look at their data, that means their stock will rise
            > to $120.
            >
            > Another show was insisting that people invest in arms and oil,
            > highlighting the "Vice Fund," as a great idea.
            >
            > "Listen people, you're investing here, so stop with the morals and do
            > the smart thing."
            >
            > They had a reporter out in the street interviewing people who all said
            > they'd prefer to invest in renewable energy. They cited one example of
            > an oil company that had done well and never compared it to any stock
            > in the renewable energy sector! Then they ran the splashy type, "Vice
            > stocks may do better than renewable energy."
            >
            > Scary!
            >
            > ------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ------
            >
            > Choose the right car based on your needs. Check out Yahoo! Autos new
            > Car Finder tool.
            >
            >
            >
            >




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            Play Sims Stories at Yahoo! Games.


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          • Robert Johnston
            Evelyn, this is moving off-topic, but your message seems to confuse 401k s and regular pensions. I don t believe there is such a thing as vesting with respect
            Message 5 of 16 , Jul 11, 2007
            • 0 Attachment

              Evelyn, this is moving off-topic, but your message seems to confuse 401k’s and regular pensions.  I don’t believe there is such a thing as vesting with respect to 401k’s, only for pensions.  Often, you self-direct your investments in 401k’s from a limited number of mutual funds your company’s 401k administrator makes available.  Your pension, on the other hand, is generally invested by the company.  That’s if it is a defined benefit plan.  If instead you have a SEP-IRA or something like that as your corporate pension (i.e., defined contribution plan), then you may have a choice over its investment as well.  But I don’t understand your vesting comment if in fact we are talking about a 401k.  And your 50% comment—they can’t tell you that you “may” get 50% of every dollar after you are vested—the money is yours and they can’t take it away (if 401k).  On the other hand, it is common for companies to offer matching.  Thus, they may be offering a 50% match on your contributions, so that if you invest $1, they’ll add $0.50 to the pot.  That is usually a great deal for employees, and I always make sure I contribute the amount necessary to receive the maximum employer match on my 401k contributions.  I don’t think IRS regulations allow them to make those matches only after an extended “vesting” period (I think they can delay the offer to new employees, so that they can only sign up at the next annual sign-up period, but I don’t think they can go longer than that; in any case, it doesn’t sound like your employer is doing that because you said they enroll people automatically when they walk in the door).  Chris, any comments?  (I’m certainly not a financial professional!)

               

              I think automatic enrollment in 401k’s is a good deal because with a 50% match it is a “no-brainer” that virtually every employee should want to participate.  You have the option to opt out if you want to (as you said).  Don’t you think it is better for the company to default to the option in the employee’s best interest rather than default to the option that costs the company less and impoverishes employees?  I don’t see why you should criticize them for that.  (If it is some crazy deal where the only investment is company stock, though, then I retract all I’ve said, and suggest you go work for someone else!).

               

              On the one hand it may seem that limited investment choices in a 401k means that the company has taken power away from the employees.  But not really.  In the past, companies with traditional pensions made ALL the investment decisions AND controlled the pot of gold when you retired.  Unless you were lucky enough to have a plan with COLA’s, you would feel the pinch of inflation as you retired on a fixed pension (i.e., that $40,000/yr pension would in 20 years be like living on $22,000).  Now, as more of the financial responsibility gets shifted to employees (through 401k’s and through defined contribution plans), employees are actually getting more choices.  And, when you retire, you can take the pot of gold with you, roll it into an IRA and do virtually anything with it you want to investment-wise.  That is actually a lot more choice than used to exist in the future.  Many Republicans would like to do something like that with Social Security, but it has been bitterly opposed by those who think the government should make the investment decisions rather than the employees.  (In this case, “investment” is a euphemism for government spending in other areas, making clear why many politicians oppose it).

               

              I for one would much rather have control of my retirement nest egg than leave it to the government.  They are spending my social security contributions faster than I can pay them in (it is a Ponzi scheme anyway since all I really pay for are the existing recipients; nothing is being saved for me).  And, investing on my own gives me the opportunity to achieve higher rates of return, and to have a nest egg to pass on to my children when I die (social security payments die with you unless your children are minors).

               

              One final comment:  The whole basis for 401k’s is that they are tax-deferred accounts.  Why do we feel the government is offering us such a good deal by making tax-deferred accounts available?  If we had less government and lower tax rates, we wouldn’t need tax-deferred accounts.  Remember what is happening here:  They are taking the money YOU earned, and they are letting you invest it without taking 28-36% of it from you immediately.  For the favor of not robbing you immediately, they promise to rob you when you retire and start withdrawing the money.  And for that we thank them?

               

              Robert

               


              From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups.com ] On Behalf Of evelyn sardina
              Sent: Wednesday, July 11, 2007 7:00 PM
              To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
              Subject: RE: [hreg] CNBC

               

              At my work they let you self direct to what they choose for you!

              Can you say Enron?  Look, something is better than nothing and nothing is what most people have.  You are right, education is the key.  Most kids are learning about this in school these days. The thing is that the don't earn money yet.  People also think they have to have a lot of money to invest.  It is not what you make but what you do with it and how much of it you get to keep in the end. Most poor people stay poor for lack of knowledge. It's like a desease.  I say do it all! Buy a green home or retrofit and take the money that you save in energy and buy green stock.  Mostly buy through direct purchase and if you if you don't care to do the work, let someone like yourself  guide them.  Some people just don't like making these decisions on their own, so it is worth it to have someone handle it for them.  To me anything is better than your employer whom at anytime can  tell you......Sorry but you gave us your money now you have to do what we say.  How about they fire you right before you become 100 percent vested! Oh but wait a minute, maybe they are thinking you will quit and forget about taking your money with you!  Just kidding, I know they wouldn't do that.

              Chris Manning <cmanning@hal- pc.org> wrote:

              You bring up a great point.  Often times, it is outside of an individuals control on what type of investments they have within their retirment plans.  I already know the arguement the companies give:  "It is our fiduciary responsibility to choose the investments that will generate the best financial return for our employees."

               

              This is why it is vitally important for individuals to try and understand the intricacies of any retirement plan they may have.  There may be a way to self-direct the investments or at least to choose which mutual funds you want utilize.  Be sure and explore what your options are - what investment choices you have - the advantages/disadvan tages of each course of action.

               

              I know this sounds more simplistic than it actually is, however, we must understand the power that our investment choices can have on society as a whole and work to create change.

               

               

              -----Original Message-----
              From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@ yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of evelyn sardina
              Sent: Wednesday, July 11, 2007 3:44 PM
              To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
              Subject: Re: [hreg] CNBC

              The thing about it is that the power of making desicions is constantly being taken away from  people!  At my job, it is now a practice to automatically enroll everyone that walks in the door in a 401k type of plan.The paper work reads: You may get 50% of every dollar you invest after your vesting term, etc.   We have thousnds of employees all over the world. You can opt out but the mayority of the people don't unnderstand how any of this works!  You would think that this is good but the truth is that this is not guaranteed savings like social security ( i'm not going to get into the social security issue) but at least this is backed by our goverment ( backed by the goverment and i am not getting into this one either) I'm just saying.   Then you have a corporation putting the money into whatever they can make the most money out of.  As you know they get paid to recommend particular stock, as all brokers do.   We are talking corporations here.  When you invest in the 401k at my job you do not pick the companies you want to invest in, they invest  the employees  money in what they want.  Again more and more we give more power to corporations whojonly care about the bottom dollar. 

              Chris Manning <cmanning@hal- pc.org> wrote:

              As someone who works with this on a daily basis, I have rather strong
              feelings when I see arguments put forth by members of the media
              promoting a "Vice Fund" as a superior investment strategy. It has been
              empirically proven that a well diversified portfolio will generate
              statistically the same financial return over the long run - be it Vice
              or Socially Responsible. However, I am a firm believer that the returns
              of a company transcend purely the financial arena. The returns of a
              company must be viewed from the financial *AND* the social and
              environmental perspective before they can be judged to be good or bad.

              Yes - oil company stocks have historically performed well, however, how
              much of this is truly sustainable over the long run given the facts that
              we know today? As everyone in here knows, the time of "easy" oil is
              behind us. Given this, coupled with the fact that the vast majority of
              oil reserves are not local to America does not bode well for their long
              term growth potential given the turmoil in the world today. I'm not
              trying to predict the future and oil stocks may indeed produce a nice
              financial return for the foreseeable future, but at what cost?

              Finally, to address the comment of "Listen people, you're investing
              here, so stop with the morals and do the smart thing.", the smart thing
              is to create a sustainable and diversified portfolio of investments that
              match your conscience. It is not written anywhere that you have to
              sacrifice return by utilizing a Socially Responsible approach to investing.

              Individual investors need to realize the pivotal role they play in
              helping shape our economy and our society. If they are willing to invest
              in companies (either directly or indirectly) that they have questions
              about or are not responsive to shareholders, they are giving their
              unspoken "stamp of approval" for business as usual. We need to stand up
              for sustainability and create a plan that will give us the return we
              desire - a return consisting of financial, social and environmental
              performance.

              I know most here will agree with me on this, but I just needed to vent
              some after reading the CNBC story.

              Christopher S. Manning
              www.manning- financial. com
              "Sustainable Wealth Management"


              Robert Johnston wrote:
              >
              > Well, the sad truth is we humans live in a world of (self-inflicted)
              > trouble and investing in trouble can be profitable. In Jeremy Siegel’s
              > best-selling book, “The Future for Investors”, copyright 2005, he
              > shows that it isn’t the glamour stocks (technology, etc.) that have
              > won over long periods of time. The highest rate of return of a stock
              > since 1957 (he calls it his “descendants portfolio”—a 1957 stock and
              > all its spinoffs etc.) was Phillip Morris at 4626.4%, or 19.75% annual
              > rate of return—this despite all the tobacco litigation, etc. The other
              > highlighted group was oil stocks. The top 5 performers since 1957 of
              > the 20 largest 1957 stocks were oil companies. Royal Dutch Petroleum
              > and its descendants have returned 13.64% annually, and the others were
              > also in the 12-13% range.
              >
              > I think there will be good investment opportunities in renewables, but
              > finding them is the trick. When a sector is as hot as the renewable
              > energy, distributed power storage, etc., sector is now (with lots of
              > venture capital, IPOs, etc.) one must be cautious as an investor. As
              > the .com bubble should have taught us--even if we didn’t learn from
              > the history of radio technology stocks, computer stocks, biotech
              > stocks, etc.—there will be a huge shake-out and it is hard to predict
              > the winners among new technology companies. And Siegel’s point is that
              > even if you could predict the winners, you might not do as well as
              > with the staid sin companies and oil. The reason is that the new tech
              > companies are priced to perfection, so even if they deliver the
              > expected growth, the stock won’t be that hot.
              >
              > Robert
              >
              > ------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ------
              >
              > *From:* hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@ yahoogroups. com ] *On Behalf
              > Of *Susan Modikoane
              > *Sent:* Tuesday, July 10, 2007 11:29 PM
              > *To:* peakoil@lists. riseup.net; hreg@yahoogroups. com
              > *Subject:* [hreg] CNBC
              >
              > I've been working out at a gym and, therefore, had time to catch CNBC.
              > It was interesting to watch them insist that people invest in
              > Conoco-Phillips tonight, stating that they have reached $80 a share
              > and that if you look at their data, that means their stock will rise
              > to $120.
              >
              > Another show was insisting that people invest in arms and oil,
              > highlighting the "Vice Fund," as a great idea.
              >
              > "Listen people, you're investing here, so stop with the morals and do
              > the smart thing."
              >
              > They had a reporter out in the street interviewing people who all said
              > they'd prefer to invest in renewable energy. They cited one example of
              > an oil company that had done well and never compared it to any stock
              > in the renewable energy sector! Then they ran the splashy type, "Vice
              > stocks may do better than renewable energy."
              >
              > Scary!
              >
              > ------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ------
              >
              > Choose the right car based on your needs. Check out Yahoo! Autos new
              > Car Finder tool.
              >
              >
              >
              >




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              Play Sims Stories at Yahoo! Games.

               

               


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            • evelyn sardina
              My point is that when you invest with your company they make your desicions, good or bad; green or not. When you contribute to the 401k you are usually vested
              Message 6 of 16 , Jul 12, 2007
              • 0 Attachment
                  My point is that when you invest with your company they make your desicions, good or bad; green or not.  When you contribute to the 401k you are usually vested in increments of years that you work for the company, so if you leave the company before you are vested they just give you a part of it when you could have invested it yourself and kept your profits. You are right about social security but the way I look at it, there are many people benefiting from it right now. If they did not have social security they would have nothing. It may not be much but it is something.  I also think that retirement should be balanced  between government and the individual. Their is too much risk in letting it all go one way or the other. This does not mean that I agree with what they are doing. And you actually made my point, they will get you sooner or later. The idea is that if you invest in a government taxed deffered plan you would have more money to ''grow'' but the reality is that in the future someone is going to have to pay for this deficit.  I rather pay now and know that what I have is clear.  But look at how this ties to renewables.  People are spending an aweful lot of money on energy, leaving people with less discretionary income to invest.  If you start by doing things that save you money (in the end)  you would be able to have more to enjoy at retirement. At retirement a person with a sustainable home could live with a smaller income.  A person on a fixed income does not only have to choose between their medicines and food, but weather they will sit in an oven (or igloo if in he north)  or not.  I say get your home as energy efficient  and sustainable as possible and make concsious investments that will benefit future generations. 

                Robert Johnston <junk1@...> wrote:
                Evelyn, this is moving off-topic, but your message seems to confuse 401k’s and regular pensions.  I don’t believe there is such a thing as vesting with respect to 401k’s, only for pensions.  Often, you self-direct your investments in 401k’s from a limited number of mutual funds your company’s 401k administrator makes available.  Your pension, on the other hand, is generally invested by the company.  That’s if it is a defined benefit plan.  If instead you have a SEP-IRA or something like that as your corporate pension (i.e., defined contribution plan), then you may have a choice over its investment as well.  But I don’t understand your vesting comment if in fact we are talking about a 401k.  And your 50% comment—they can’t tell you that you “may” get 50% of every dollar after you are vested—the money is yours and they can’t take it away (if 401k).  On the other hand, it is common for companies to offer matching.  Thus, they may be offering a 50% match on your contributions, so that if you invest $1, they’ll add $0.50 to the pot.  That is usually a great deal for employees, and I always make sure I contribute the amount necessary to receive the maximum employer match on my 401k contributions.  I don’t think IRS regulations allow them to make those matches only after an extended “vesting” period (I think they can delay the offer to new employees, so that they can only sign up at the next annual sign-up period, but I don’t think they can go longer than that; in any case, it doesn’t sound like your employer is doing that because you said they enroll people automatically when they walk in the door).  Chris, any comments?  (I’m certainly not a financial professional! )
                I think automatic enrollment in 401k’s is a good deal because with a 50% match it is a “no-brainer” that virtually every employee should want to participate.  You have the option to opt out if you want to (as you said).  Don’t you think it is better for the company to default to the option in the employee’s best interest rather than default to the option that costs the company less and impoverishes employees?  I don’t see why you should criticize them for that.  (If it is some crazy deal where the only investment is company stock, though, then I retract all I’ve said, and suggest you go work for someone else!).
                On the one hand it may seem that limited investment choices in a 401k means that the company has taken power away from the employees.  But not really.  In the past, companies with traditional pensions made ALL the investment decisions AND controlled the pot of gold when you retired.  Unless you were lucky enough to have a plan with COLA’s, you would feel the pinch of inflation as you retired on a fixed pension (i.e., that $40,000/yr pension would in 20 years be like living on $22,000).  Now, as more of the financial responsibility gets shifted to employees (through 401k’s and through defined contribution plans), employees are actually getting more choices.  And, when you retire, you can take the pot of gold with you, roll it into an IRA and do virtually anything with it you want to investment-wise.  That is actually a lot more choice than used to exist in the future.  Many Republicans would like to do something like that with Social Security, but it has been bitterly opposed by those who think the government should make the investment decisions rather than the employees.  (In this case, “investment” is a euphemism for government spending in other areas, making clear why many politicians oppose it).
                I for one would much rather have control of my retirement nest egg than leave it to the government.  They are spending my social security contributions faster than I can pay them in (it is a Ponzi scheme anyway since all I really pay for are the existing recipients; nothing is being saved for me).  And, investing on my own gives me the opportunity to achieve higher rates of return, and to have a nest egg to pass on to my children when I die (social security payments die with you unless your children are minors).
                One final comment:  The whole basis for 401k’s is that they are tax-deferred accounts.  Why do we feel the government is offering us such a good deal by making tax-deferred accounts available?  If we had less government and lower tax rates, we wouldn’t need tax-deferred accounts.  Remember what is happening here:  They are taking the money YOU earned, and they are letting you invest it without taking 28-36% of it from you immediately.  For the favor of not robbing you immediately, they promise to rob you when you retire and start withdrawing the money.  And for that we thank them?
                Robert

                From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of evelyn sardina
                Sent: Wednesday, July 11, 2007 7:00 PM
                To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                Subject: RE: [hreg] CNBC
                At my work they let you self direct to what they choose for you!
                Can you say Enron?  Look, something is better than nothing and nothing is what most people have.  You are right, education is the key.  Most kids are learning about this in school these days. The thing is that the don't earn money yet.  People also think they have to have a lot of money to invest.  It is not what you make but what you do with it and how much of it you get to keep in the end. Most poor people stay poor for lack of knowledge. It's like a desease.  I say do it all! Buy a green home or retrofit and take the money that you save in energy and buy green stock.  Mostly buy through direct purchase and if you if you don't care to do the work, let someone like yourself  guide them.  Some people just don't like making these decisions on their own, so it is worth it to have someone handle it for them.  To me anything is better than your employer whom at anytime can  tell you......Sorry but you gave us your money now you have to do what we say.  How about they fire you right before you become 100 percent vested! Oh but wait a minute, maybe they are thinking you will quit and forget about taking your money with you!  Just kidding, I know they wouldn't do that.

                Chris Manning <cmanning@hal- pc.org> wrote:
                You bring up a great point.  Often times, it is outside of an individuals control on what type of investments they have within their retirment plans.  I already know the arguement the companies give:  "It is our fiduciary responsibility to choose the investments that will generate the best financial return for our employees."
                This is why it is vitally important for individuals to try and understand the intricacies of any retirement plan they may have.  There may be a way to self-direct the investments or at least to choose which mutual funds you want utilize.  Be sure and explore what your options are - what investment choices you have - the advantages/disadvan tages of each course of action.
                I know this sounds more simplistic than it actually is, however, we must understand the power that our investment choices can have on society as a whole and work to create change.
                -----Original Message-----
                From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@ yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of evelyn sardina
                Sent: Wednesday, July 11, 2007 3:44 PM
                To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                Subject: Re: [hreg] CNBC
                The thing about it is that the power of making desicions is constantly being taken away from  people!  At my job, it is now a practice to automatically enroll everyone that walks in the door in a 401k type of plan.The paper work reads: You may get 50% of every dollar you invest after your vesting term, etc.   We have thousnds of employees all over the world. You can opt out but the mayority of the people don't unnderstand how any of this works!  You would think that this is good but the truth is that this is not guaranteed savings like social security ( i'm not going to get into the social security issue) but at least this is backed by our goverment ( backed by the goverment and i am not getting into this one either) I'm just saying.   Then you have a corporation putting the money into whatever they can make the most money out of.  As you know they get paid to recommend particular stock, as all brokers do.   We are talking corporations here.  When you invest in the 401k at my job you do not pick the companies you want to invest in, they invest  the employees  money in what they want.  Again more and more we give more power to corporations whojonly care about the bottom dollar. 

                Chris Manning <cmanning@hal- pc.org> wrote:
                As someone who works with this on a daily basis, I have rather strong
                feelings when I see arguments put forth by members of the media
                promoting a "Vice Fund" as a superior investment strategy. It has been
                empirically proven that a well diversified portfolio will generate
                statistically the same financial return over the long run - be it Vice
                or Socially Responsible. However, I am a firm believer that the returns
                of a company transcend purely the financial arena. The returns of a
                company must be viewed from the financial *AND* the social and
                environmental perspective before they can be judged to be good or bad.

                Yes - oil company stocks have historically performed well, however, how
                much of this is truly sustainable over the long run given the facts that
                we know today? As everyone in here knows, the time of "easy" oil is
                behind us. Given this, coupled with the fact that the vast majority of
                oil reserves are not local to America does not bode well for their long
                term growth potential given the turmoil in the world today. I'm not
                trying to predict the future and oil stocks may indeed produce a nice
                financial return for the foreseeable future, but at what cost?

                Finally, to address the comment of "Listen people, you're investing
                here, so stop with the morals and do the smart thing.", the smart thing
                is to create a sustainable and diversified portfolio of investments that
                match your conscience. It is not written anywhere that you have to
                sacrifice return by utilizing a Socially Responsible approach to investing.

                Individual investors need to realize the pivotal role they play in
                helping shape our economy and our society. If they are willing to invest
                in companies (either directly or indirectly) that they have questions
                about or are not responsive to shareholders, they are giving their
                unspoken "stamp of approval" for business as usual. We need to stand up
                for sustainability and create a plan that will give us the return we
                desire - a return consisting of financial, social and environmental
                performance.

                I know most here will agree with me on this, but I just needed to vent
                some after reading the CNBC story.

                Christopher S. Manning
                www.manning- financial. com
                "Sustainable Wealth Management"


                Robert Johnston wrote:
                >
                > Well, the sad truth is we humans live in a world of (self-inflicted)
                > trouble and investing in trouble can be profitable. In Jeremy Siegel’s
                > best-selling book, “The Future for Investors”, copyright 2005, he
                > shows that it isn’t the glamour stocks (technology, etc.) that have
                > won over long periods of time. The highest rate of return of a stock
                > since 1957 (he calls it his “descendants portfolio”—a 1957 stock and
                > all its spinoffs etc.) was Phillip Morris at 4626.4%, or 19.75% annual
                > rate of return—this despite all the tobacco litigation, etc. The other
                > highlighted group was oil stocks. The top 5 performers since 1957 of
                > the 20 largest 1957 stocks were oil companies. Royal Dutch Petroleum
                > and its descendants have returned 13.64% annually, and the others were
                > also in the 12-13% range.
                >
                > I think there will be good investment opportunities in renewables, but
                > finding them is the trick. When a sector is as hot as the renewable
                > energy, distributed power storage, etc., sector is now (with lots of
                > venture capital, IPOs, etc.) one must be cautious as an investor. As
                > the .com bubble should have taught us--even if we didn’t learn from
                > the history of radio technology stocks, computer stocks, biotech
                > stocks, etc.—there will be a huge shake-out and it is hard to predict
                > the winners among new technology companies. And Siegel’s point is that
                > even if you could predict the winners, you might not do as well as
                > with the staid sin companies and oil. The reason is that the new tech
                > companies are priced to perfection, so even if they deliver the
                > expected growth, the stock won’t be that hot.
                >
                > Robert
                >
                > ------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ------
                >
                > *From:* hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@ yahoogroups. com ] *On Behalf
                > Of *Susan Modikoane
                > *Sent:* Tuesday, July 10, 2007 11:29 PM
                > *To:* peakoil@lists. riseup.net; hreg@yahoogroups. com
                > *Subject:* [hreg] CNBC
                >
                > I've been working out at a gym and, therefore, had time to catch CNBC.
                > It was interesting to watch them insist that people invest in
                > Conoco-Phillips tonight, stating that they have reached $80 a share
                > and that if you look at their data, that means their stock will rise
                > to $120.
                >
                > Another show was insisting that people invest in arms and oil,
                > highlighting the "Vice Fund," as a great idea.
                >
                > "Listen people, you're investing here, so stop with the morals and do
                > the smart thing."
                >
                > They had a reporter out in the street interviewing people who all said
                > they'd prefer to invest in renewable energy. They cited one example of
                > an oil company that had done well and never compared it to any stock
                > in the renewable energy sector! Then they ran the splashy type, "Vice
                > stocks may do better than renewable energy."
                >
                > Scary!
                >
                > ------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ------
                >
                > Choose the right car based on your needs. Check out Yahoo! Autos new
                > Car Finder tool.
                >
                >
                >
                >




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              • Chris Manning
                I would like to introduce The Green Chamber as a new national and regional organization comprised of both for-profit and non-profit organizations. We are
                Message 7 of 16 , Jul 12, 2007
                • 0 Attachment
                  Message
                  I would like to introduce The Green Chamber as a new national and regional organization comprised of both for-profit and non-profit organizations.  We are incredibly excited as we prepare for our launch on July 18.  A brief article on our group can be found at:  http://www.treehugger.com/files/2007/07/green_chamber_l.php
                   
                  Our goals are as follows:
                   
                  1. Educating and promoting Green principles to communities and at all levels of life: Local to County to State to Federal to Global;
                   
                  2. Promoting Fair Trade, Non-toxic materials, recycling and waste reduction, and alternative energy use in our business and personal practice;
                   
                  3. Developing strategic partnerships and alliances with other green and non-green business for-profit and non-profit organizations to enhance members and business opportunities. 
                   
                  As a regional VP of the Green Chamber (Texas, Louisiana and Arkansas), I would like to gather feedback from anyone that may be interested in our organization as to what they would like to see come from our local region.
                   
                  I look forward to having an opportunity to meet people as we grow our organization and would like to end with a thought from The Green Chamber:
                   
                   
                   "It is time to plant our green seeds in the ghettos, on roof tops, in the suburbs and in the heartland. It is time to connect our sustainability drives to the political process. Connect our schools, spiritual centers, businesses, non-profits and political parties. It is time to agree on a set of reasonable, staged green standards to certify our common values and sustainable profit making,  being wary of green washing instead to connect local resources to local resources and then to regional supply structures. It is time to be Holistic and Sustainable for our global children and their families to come.
                   
                  Local first, then up green channels to the national stage and back down. At the polls and the farmers markets. Sustainability at work ."   
                   
                  Christopher Manning
                   
                  Regional VP
                  Texas/Louisiana/Arkansas
                   
                  Manning & Associates Financial Services
                  "Sustainable Wealth Management"
                   
                   
                • Susan Modikoane
                  Robert - There is such a thing as vesting in a 401K. And you should know that. To force an employee to select between the various Fidelity or Oppenheimer
                  Message 8 of 16 , Jul 12, 2007
                  • 0 Attachment
                    Robert -
                     
                    There is such a thing as vesting in a 401K.  And you should know that.
                     
                    To force an employee to select between the various Fidelity or Oppenheimer funds that keep feeding the corporations that are draining our economy to sustain them in Iraq is not only bad investing, it's un-American.
                     
                    Tonight Senator Reid proudly announced that they were proposing leaving Iraq in 3 months, leaving 20,000 US troops in Iraq to protect "our assets" there.
                     
                    "We" don't have any assets there.
                     


                    Robert Johnston <junk1@...> wrote:
                    Evelyn, this is moving off-topic, but your message seems to confuse 401k’s and regular pensions.  I don’t believe there is such a thing as vesting with respect to 401k’s, only for pensions.  Often, you self-direct your investments in 401k’s from a limited number of mutual funds your company’s 401k administrator makes available.  Your pension, on the other hand, is generally invested by the company.  That’s if it is a defined benefit plan.  If instead you have a SEP-IRA or something like that as your corporate pension (i.e., defined contribution plan), then you may have a choice over its investment as well.  But I don’t understand your vesting comment if in fact we are talking about a 401k.  And your 50% comment—they can’t tell you that you “may” get 50% of every dollar after you are vested—the money is yours and they can’t take it away (if 401k).  On the other hand, it is common for companies to offer matching.  Thus, they may be offering a 50% match on your contributions, so that if you invest $1, they’ll add $0.50 to the pot.  That is usually a great deal for employees, and I always make sure I contribute the amount necessary to receive the maximum employer match on my 401k contributions.  I don’t think IRS regulations allow them to make those matches only after an extended “vesting” period (I think they can delay the offer to new employees, so that they can only sign up at the next annual sign-up period, but I don’t think they can go longer than that; in any case, it doesn’t sound like your employer is doing that because you said they enroll people automatically when they walk in the door).  Chris, any comments?  (I’m certainly not a financial professional! )
                    I think automatic enrollment in 401k’s is a good deal because with a 50% match it is a “no-brainer” that virtually every employee should want to participate.  You have the option to opt out if you want to (as you said).  Don’t you think it is better for the company to default to the option in the employee’s best interest rather than default to the option that costs the company less and impoverishes employees?  I don’t see why you should criticize them for that.  (If it is some crazy deal where the only investment is company stock, though, then I retract all I’ve said, and suggest you go work for someone else!).
                    On the one hand it may seem that limited investment choices in a 401k means that the company has taken power away from the employees.  But not really.  In the past, companies with traditional pensions made ALL the investment decisions AND controlled the pot of gold when you retired.  Unless you were lucky enough to have a plan with COLA’s, you would feel the pinch of inflation as you retired on a fixed pension (i.e., that $40,000/yr pension would in 20 years be like living on $22,000).  Now, as more of the financial responsibility gets shifted to employees (through 401k’s and through defined contribution plans), employees are actually getting more choices.  And, when you retire, you can take the pot of gold with you, roll it into an IRA and do virtually anything with it you want to investment-wise.  That is actually a lot more choice than used to exist in the future.  Many Republicans would like to do something like that with Social Security, but it has been bitterly opposed by those who think the government should make the investment decisions rather than the employees.  (In this case, “investment” is a euphemism for government spending in other areas, making clear why many politicians oppose it).
                    I for one would much rather have control of my retirement nest egg than leave it to the government.  They are spending my social security contributions faster than I can pay them in (it is a Ponzi scheme anyway since all I really pay for are the existing recipients; nothing is being saved for me).  And, investing on my own gives me the opportunity to achieve higher rates of return, and to have a nest egg to pass on to my children when I die (social security payments die with you unless your children are minors).
                    One final comment:  The whole basis for 401k’s is that they are tax-deferred accounts.  Why do we feel the government is offering us such a good deal by making tax-deferred accounts available?  If we had less government and lower tax rates, we wouldn’t need tax-deferred accounts.  Remember what is happening here:  They are taking the money YOU earned, and they are letting you invest it without taking 28-36% of it from you immediately.  For the favor of not robbing you immediately, they promise to rob you when you retire and start withdrawing the money.  And for that we thank them?
                    Robert

                    From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of evelyn sardina
                    Sent: Wednesday, July 11, 2007 7:00 PM
                    To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                    Subject: RE: [hreg] CNBC
                    At my work they let you self direct to what they choose for you!
                    Can you say Enron?  Look, something is better than nothing and nothing is what most people have.  You are right, education is the key.  Most kids are learning about this in school these days. The thing is that the don't earn money yet.  People also think they have to have a lot of money to invest.  It is not what you make but what you do with it and how much of it you get to keep in the end. Most poor people stay poor for lack of knowledge. It's like a desease.  I say do it all! Buy a green home or retrofit and take the money that you save in energy and buy green stock.  Mostly buy through direct purchase and if you if you don't care to do the work, let someone like yourself  guide them.  Some people just don't like making these decisions on their own, so it is worth it to have someone handle it for them.  To me anything is better than your employer whom at anytime can  tell you......Sorry but you gave us your money now you have to do what we say.  How about they fire you right before you become 100 percent vested! Oh but wait a minute, maybe they are thinking you will quit and forget about taking your money with you!  Just kidding, I know they wouldn't do that.

                    Chris Manning <cmanning@hal- pc.org> wrote:
                    You bring up a great point.  Often times, it is outside of an individuals control on what type of investments they have within their retirment plans.  I already know the arguement the companies give:  "It is our fiduciary responsibility to choose the investments that will generate the best financial return for our employees."
                    This is why it is vitally important for individuals to try and understand the intricacies of any retirement plan they may have.  There may be a way to self-direct the investments or at least to choose which mutual funds you want utilize.  Be sure and explore what your options are - what investment choices you have - the advantages/disadvan tages of each course of action.
                    I know this sounds more simplistic than it actually is, however, we must understand the power that our investment choices can have on society as a whole and work to create change.
                    -----Original Message-----
                    From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@ yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of evelyn sardina
                    Sent: Wednesday, July 11, 2007 3:44 PM
                    To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                    Subject: Re: [hreg] CNBC
                    The thing about it is that the power of making desicions is constantly being taken away from  people!  At my job, it is now a practice to automatically enroll everyone that walks in the door in a 401k type of plan.The paper work reads: You may get 50% of every dollar you invest after your vesting term, etc.   We have thousnds of employees all over the world. You can opt out but the mayority of the people don't unnderstand how any of this works!  You would think that this is good but the truth is that this is not guaranteed savings like social security ( i'm not going to get into the social security issue) but at least this is backed by our goverment ( backed by the goverment and i am not getting into this one either) I'm just saying.   Then you have a corporation putting the money into whatever they can make the most money out of.  As you know they get paid to recommend particular stock, as all brokers do.   We are talking corporations here.  When you invest in the 401k at my job you do not pick the companies you want to invest in, they invest  the employees  money in what they want.  Again more and more we give more power to corporations whojonly care about the bottom dollar. 

                    Chris Manning <cmanning@hal- pc.org> wrote:
                    As someone who works with this on a daily basis, I have rather strong
                    feelings when I see arguments put forth by members of the media
                    promoting a "Vice Fund" as a superior investment strategy. It has been
                    empirically proven that a well diversified portfolio will generate
                    statistically the same financial return over the long run - be it Vice
                    or Socially Responsible. However, I am a firm believer that the returns
                    of a company transcend purely the financial arena. The returns of a
                    company must be viewed from the financial *AND* the social and
                    environmental perspective before they can be judged to be good or bad.

                    Yes - oil company stocks have historically performed well, however, how
                    much of this is truly sustainable over the long run given the facts that
                    we know today? As everyone in here knows, the time of "easy" oil is
                    behind us. Given this, coupled with the fact that the vast majority of
                    oil reserves are not local to America does not bode well for their long
                    term growth potential given the turmoil in the world today. I'm not
                    trying to predict the future and oil stocks may indeed produce a nice
                    financial return for the foreseeable future, but at what cost?

                    Finally, to address the comment of "Listen people, you're investing
                    here, so stop with the morals and do the smart thing.", the smart thing
                    is to create a sustainable and diversified portfolio of investments that
                    match your conscience. It is not written anywhere that you have to
                    sacrifice return by utilizing a Socially Responsible approach to investing.

                    Individual investors need to realize the pivotal role they play in
                    helping shape our economy and our society. If they are willing to invest
                    in companies (either directly or indirectly) that they have questions
                    about or are not responsive to shareholders, they are giving their
                    unspoken "stamp of approval" for business as usual. We need to stand up
                    for sustainability and create a plan that will give us the return we
                    desire - a return consisting of financial, social and environmental
                    performance.

                    I know most here will agree with me on this, but I just needed to vent
                    some after reading the CNBC story.

                    Christopher S. Manning
                    www.manning- financial. com
                    "Sustainable Wealth Management"


                    Robert Johnston wrote:
                    >
                    > Well, the sad truth is we humans live in a world of (self-inflicted)
                    > trouble and investing in trouble can be profitable. In Jeremy Siegel’s
                    > best-selling book, “The Future for Investors”, copyright 2005, he
                    > shows that it isn’t the glamour stocks (technology, etc.) that have
                    > won over long periods of time. The highest rate of return of a stock
                    > since 1957 (he calls it his “descendants portfolio”—a 1957 stock and
                    > all its spinoffs etc.) was Phillip Morris at 4626.4%, or 19.75% annual
                    > rate of return—this despite all the tobacco litigation, etc. The other
                    > highlighted group was oil stocks. The top 5 performers since 1957 of
                    > the 20 largest 1957 stocks were oil companies. Royal Dutch Petroleum
                    > and its descendants have returned 13.64% annually, and the others were
                    > also in the 12-13% range.
                    >
                    > I think there will be good investment opportunities in renewables, but
                    > finding them is the trick. When a sector is as hot as the renewable
                    > energy, distributed power storage, etc., sector is now (with lots of
                    > venture capital, IPOs, etc.) one must be cautious as an investor. As
                    > the .com bubble should have taught us--even if we didn’t learn from
                    > the history of radio technology stocks, computer stocks, biotech
                    > stocks, etc.—there will be a huge shake-out and it is hard to predict
                    > the winners among new technology companies. And Siegel’s point is that
                    > even if you could predict the winners, you might not do as well as
                    > with the staid sin companies and oil. The reason is that the new tech
                    > companies are priced to perfection, so even if they deliver the
                    > expected growth, the stock won’t be that hot.
                    >
                    > Robert
                    >
                    > ------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ------
                    >
                    > *From:* hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@ yahoogroups. com ] *On Behalf
                    > Of *Susan Modikoane
                    > *Sent:* Tuesday, July 10, 2007 11:29 PM
                    > *To:* peakoil@lists. riseup.net; hreg@yahoogroups. com
                    > *Subject:* [hreg] CNBC
                    >
                    > I've been working out at a gym and, therefore, had time to catch CNBC.
                    > It was interesting to watch them insist that people invest in
                    > Conoco-Phillips tonight, stating that they have reached $80 a share
                    > and that if you look at their data, that means their stock will rise
                    > to $120.
                    >
                    > Another show was insisting that people invest in arms and oil,
                    > highlighting the "Vice Fund," as a great idea.
                    >
                    > "Listen people, you're investing here, so stop with the morals and do
                    > the smart thing."
                    >
                    > They had a reporter out in the street interviewing people who all said
                    > they'd prefer to invest in renewable energy. They cited one example of
                    > an oil company that had done well and never compared it to any stock
                    > in the renewable energy sector! Then they ran the splashy type, "Vice
                    > stocks may do better than renewable energy."
                    >
                    > Scary!
                    >
                    > ------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ------
                    >
                    > Choose the right car based on your needs. Check out Yahoo! Autos new
                    > Car Finder tool.
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    >




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                    Play Sims Stories at Yahoo! Games.

                  • Robert Johnston
                    You are absolutely right. Learn something new everyday! (I said I wasn t a financial professional; that s why I asked Chris to comment, but thanks for
                    Message 9 of 16 , Jul 13, 2007
                    • 0 Attachment

                      You are absolutely right.  Learn something new everyday!  (I said I wasn’t a financial professional; that’s why I asked Chris to comment, but thanks for jumping in).  I’ve worked for 2 companies with 401k’s, and neither had vesting in their 401k’s, only in their pensions.  I did a little checking and learned that there are two types of 401k vesting, graded (gradual) and cliff (all at once):

                      With graded vesting, you own an increasing portion of the employer contribution each year you are with your company. If your company had a five-year graded vesting schedule, you could be 20 percent vested after one year, 40 percent vested after two years, etc. By law, the longest graded vesting schedule a 401k plan can have for employer matching contributions is six years.

                      With cliff vesting, the employer contribution goes from zero to 100 percent vested after a set period of time. So if your vesting requirement is three years and you leave your company after two years, you won't get any of the employer contributions. Currently, the longest cliff-vesting schedule allowed by law for employer matching contributions is three years.”

                      Thus, it looks like Evelyn must wait either up to 3 years to be fully vested if a cliff plan, or up to 6 years if a graded plan, though in the latter case, she’d still have partial matching if she left early.  I was still correct in pointing out that she wouldn’t lose any of HER money if she left early (except investment losses, of course).  It is only her employer’s matching funds that can be vested.

                       

                      Thanks for the enlightenment, Susan!

                       

                      Robert

                       

                       


                      From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups.com ] On Behalf Of Susan Modikoane
                      Sent: Friday, July 13, 2007 12:59 AM
                      To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                      Subject: RE: [hreg] CNBC

                       

                      Robert -

                       

                      There is such a thing as vesting in a 401K.  And you should know that.

                       

                      To force an employee to select between the various Fidelity or Oppenheimer funds that keep feeding the corporations that are draining our economy to sustain them in Iraq is not only bad investing, it's un-American.

                       

                      Tonight Senator Reid proudly announced that they were proposing leaving Iraq in 3 months, leaving 20,000 US troops in Iraq to protect "our assets" there.

                       

                      "We" don't have any assets there.

                       



                      Robert Johnston < junk1@plastability. com > wrote:

                      Evelyn, this is moving off-topic, but your message seems to confuse 401k’s and regular pensions.  I don’t believe there is such a thing as vesting with respect to 401k’s, only for pensions.  Often, you self-direct your investments in 401k’s from a limited number of mutual funds your company’s 401k administrator makes available.  Your pension, on the other hand, is generally invested by the company.  That’s if it is a defined benefit plan.  If instead you have a SEP-IRA or something like that as your corporate pension (i.e., defined contribution plan), then you may have a choice over its investment as well.  But I don’t understand your vesting comment if in fact we are talking about a 401k.  And your 50% comment—they can’t tell you that you “may” get 50% of every dollar after you are vested—the money is yours and they can’t take it away (if 401k).  On the other hand, it is common for companies to offer matching.  Thus, they may be offering a 50% match on your contributions, so that if you invest $1, they’ll add $0.50 to the pot.  That is usually a great deal for employees, and I always make sure I contribute the amount necessary to receive the maximum employer match on my 401k contributions.  I don’t think IRS regulations allow them to make those matches only after an extended “vesting” period (I think they can delay the offer to new employees, so that they can only sign up at the next annual sign-up period, but I don’t think they can go longer than that; in any case, it doesn’t sound like your employer is doing that because you said they enroll people automatically when they walk in the door).  Chris, any comments?  (I’m certainly not a financial professional! )

                      I think automatic enrollment in 401k’s is a good deal because with a 50% match it is a “no-brainer” that virtually every employee should want to participate.  You have the option to opt out if you want to (as you said).  Don’t you think it is better for the company to default to the option in the employee’s best interest rather than default to the option that costs the company less and impoverishes employees?  I don’t see why you should criticize them for that.  (If it is some crazy deal where the only investment is company stock, though, then I retract all I’ve said, and suggest you go work for someone else!).

                      On the one hand it may seem that limited investment choices in a 401k means that the company has taken power away from the employees.  But not really.  In the past, companies with traditional pensions made ALL the investment decisions AND controlled the pot of gold when you retired.  Unless you were lucky enough to have a plan with COLA’s, you would feel the pinch of inflation as you retired on a fixed pension (i.e., that $40,000/yr pension would in 20 years be like living on $22,000).  Now, as more of the financial responsibility gets shifted to employees (through 401k’s and through defined contribution plans), employees are actually getting more choices.  And, when you retire, you can take the pot of gold with you, roll it into an IRA and do virtually anything with it you want to investment-wise.  That is actually a lot more choice than used to exist in the future.  Many Republicans would like to do something like that with Social Security, but it has been bitterly opposed by those who think the government should make the investment decisions rather than the employees.  (In this case, “investment” is a euphemism for government spending in other areas, making clear why many politicians oppose it).

                      I for one would much rather have control of my retirement nest egg than leave it to the government.  They are spending my social security contributions faster than I can pay them in (it is a Ponzi scheme anyway since all I really pay for are the existing recipients; nothing is being saved for me).  And, investing on my own gives me the opportunity to achieve higher rates of return, and to have a nest egg to pass on to my children when I die (social security payments die with you unless your children are minors).

                      One final comment:  The whole basis for 401k’s is that they are tax-deferred accounts.  Why do we feel the government is offering us such a good deal by making tax-deferred accounts available?  If we had less government and lower tax rates, we wouldn’t need tax-deferred accounts.  Remember what is happening here:  They are taking the money YOU earned, and they are letting you invest it without taking 28-36% of it from you immediately.  For the favor of not robbing you immediately, they promise to rob you when you retire and start withdrawing the money.  And for that we thank them?

                      Robert


                      From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of evelyn sardina
                      Sent: Wednesday, July 11, 2007 7:00 PM
                      To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                      Subject: RE: [hreg] CNBC

                      At my work they let you self direct to what they choose for you!

                      Can you say Enron?  Look, something is better than nothing and nothing is what most people have.  You are right, education is the key.  Most kids are learning about this in school these days. The thing is that the don't earn money yet.  People also think they have to have a lot of money to invest.  It is not what you make but what you do with it and how much of it you get to keep in the end. Most poor people stay poor for lack of knowledge. It's like a desease.  I say do it all! Buy a green home or retrofit and take the money that you save in energy and buy green stock.  Mostly buy through direct purchase and if you if you don't care to do the work, let someone like yourself  guide them.  Some people just don't like making these decisions on their own, so it is worth it to have someone handle it for them.  To me anything is better than your employer whom at anytime can  tell you......Sorry but you gave us your money now you have to do what we say.  How about they fire you right before you become 100 percent vested! Oh but wait a minute, maybe they are thinking you will quit and forget about taking your money with you!  Just kidding, I know they wouldn't do that.

                      Chris Manning <cmanning@hal- pc.org> wrote:

                      You bring up a great point.  Often times, it is outside of an individuals control on what type of investments they have within their retirment plans.  I already know the arguement the companies give:  "It is our fiduciary responsibility to choose the investments that will generate the best financial return for our employees."

                      This is why it is vitally important for individuals to try and understand the intricacies of any retirement plan they may have.  There may be a way to self-direct the investments or at least to choose which mutual funds you want utilize.  Be sure and explore what your options are - what investment choices you have - the advantages/disadvan tages of each course of action.

                      I know this sounds more simplistic than it actually is, however, we must understand the power that our investment choices can have on society as a whole and work to create change.

                      -----Original Message-----
                      From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@ yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of evelyn sardina
                      Sent: Wednesday, July 11, 2007 3:44 PM
                      To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                      Subject: Re: [hreg] CNBC

                      The thing about it is that the power of making desicions is constantly being taken away from  people!  At my job, it is now a practice to automatically enroll everyone that walks in the door in a 401k type of plan.The paper work reads: You may get 50% of every dollar you invest after your vesting term, etc.   We have thousnds of employees all over the world. You can opt out but the mayority of the people don't unnderstand how any of this works!  You would think that this is good but the truth is that this is not guaranteed savings like social security ( i'm not going to get into the social security issue) but at least this is backed by our goverment ( backed by the goverment and i am not getting into this one either) I'm just saying.   Then you have a corporation putting the money into whatever they can make the most money out of.  As you know they get paid to recommend particular stock, as all brokers do.   We are talking corporations here.  When you invest in the 401k at my job you do not pick the companies you want to invest in, they invest  the employees  money in what they want.  Again more and more we give more power to corporations whojonly care about the bottom dollar. 

                      Chris Manning <cmanning@hal- pc.org> wrote:

                      As someone who works with this on a daily basis, I have rather strong
                      feelings when I see arguments put forth by members of the media
                      promoting a "Vice Fund" as a superior investment strategy. It has been
                      empirically proven that a well diversified portfolio will generate
                      statistically the same financial return over the long run - be it Vice
                      or Socially Responsible. However, I am a firm believer that the returns
                      of a company transcend purely the financial arena. The returns of a
                      company must be viewed from the financial *AND* the social and
                      environmental perspective before they can be judged to be good or bad.

                      Yes - oil company stocks have historically performed well, however, how
                      much of this is truly sustainable over the long run given the facts that
                      we know today? As everyone in here knows, the time of "easy" oil is
                      behind us. Given this, coupled with the fact that the vast majority of
                      oil reserves are not local to America does not bode well for their long
                      term growth potential given the turmoil in the world today. I'm not
                      trying to predict the future and oil stocks may indeed produce a nice
                      financial return for the foreseeable future, but at what cost?

                      Finally, to address the comment of "Listen people, you're investing
                      here, so stop with the morals and do the smart thing.", the smart thing
                      is to create a sustainable and diversified portfolio of investments that
                      match your conscience. It is not written anywhere that you have to
                      sacrifice return by utilizing a Socially Responsible approach to investing.

                      Individual investors need to realize the pivotal role they play in
                      helping shape our economy and our society. If they are willing to invest
                      in companies (either directly or indirectly) that they have questions
                      about or are not responsive to shareholders, they are giving their
                      unspoken "stamp of approval" for business as usual. We need to stand up
                      for sustainability and create a plan that will give us the return we
                      desire - a return consisting of financial, social and environmental
                      performance.

                      I know most here will agree with me on this, but I just needed to vent
                      some after reading the CNBC story.

                      Christopher S. Manning
                      www.manning- financial. com
                      "Sustainable Wealth Management"


                      Robert Johnston wrote:
                      >
                      > Well, the sad truth is we humans live in a world of (self-inflicted)
                      > trouble and investing in trouble can be profitable. In Jeremy Siegel’s
                      > best-selling book, “The Future for Investors”, copyright 2005, he
                      > shows that it isn’t the glamour stocks (technology, etc.) that have
                      > won over long periods of time. The highest rate of return of a stock
                      > since 1957 (he calls it his “descendants portfolio”—a 1957 stock and
                      > all its spinoffs etc.) was Phillip Morris at 4626.4%, or 19.75% annual
                      > rate of return—this despite all the tobacco litigation, etc. The other
                      > highlighted group was oil stocks. The top 5 performers since 1957 of
                      > the 20 largest 1957 stocks were oil companies. Royal Dutch Petroleum
                      > and its descendants have returned 13.64% annually, and the others were
                      > also in the 12-13% range.
                      >
                      > I think there will be good investment opportunities in renewables, but
                      > finding them is the trick. When a sector is as hot as the renewable
                      > energy, distributed power storage, etc., sector is now (with lots of
                      > venture capital, IPOs, etc.) one must be cautious as an investor. As
                      > the .com bubble should have taught us--even if we didn’t learn from
                      > the history of radio technology stocks, computer stocks, biotech
                      > stocks, etc.—there will be a huge shake-out and it is hard to predict
                      > the winners among new technology companies. And Siegel’s point is that
                      > even if you could predict the winners, you might not do as well as
                      > with the staid sin companies and oil. The reason is that the new tech
                      > companies are priced to perfection, so even if they deliver the
                      > expected growth, the stock won’t be that hot.
                      >
                      > Robert
                      >
                      > ------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ------
                      >
                      > *From:* hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@ yahoogroups. com ] *On Behalf
                      > Of *Susan Modikoane
                      > *Sent:* Tuesday, July 10, 2007 11:29 PM
                      > *To:* peakoil@lists. riseup.net; hreg@yahoogroups. com
                      > *Subject:* [hreg] CNBC
                      >
                      > I've been working out at a gym and, therefore, had time to catch CNBC.
                      > It was interesting to watch them insist that people invest in
                      > Conoco-Phillips tonight, stating that they have reached $80 a share
                      > and that if you look at their data, that means their stock will rise
                      > to $120.
                      >
                      > Another show was insisting that people invest in arms and oil,
                      > highlighting the "Vice Fund," as a great idea.
                      >
                      > "Listen people, you're investing here, so stop with the morals and do
                      > the smart thing."
                      >
                      > They had a reporter out in the street interviewing people who all said
                      > they'd prefer to invest in renewable energy. They cited one example of
                      > an oil company that had done well and never compared it to any stock
                      > in the renewable energy sector! Then they ran the splashy type, "Vice
                      > stocks may do better than renewable energy."
                      >
                      > Scary!
                      >
                      > ------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ------
                      >
                      > Choose the right car based on your needs. Check out Yahoo! Autos new
                      > Car Finder tool.
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >




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                    • Chris Manning
                      Robert, You are correct. ERISA sets forth all of the requirements on this, however, these could change if the plan were top-heavy . Generally, larger
                      Message 10 of 16 , Jul 13, 2007
                      • 0 Attachment
                        Message
                        Robert,
                         
                        You are correct.  ERISA sets forth all of the requirements on this, however, these could change if the plan were "top-heavy".  Generally, larger employers make sure this is not the case as they lose some of their tax benefits.
                         
                        Also, I completely agree with Susan that it is un-American to limit the choices in the investment plan to only a handful of mutual funds.  If you examine the underlying assets of many of the mutual funds, you will find that a large portion include the companies that are profiting from Iraq (both directly and indirectly) - can you say military industrial complex?     
                         
                        Unfortunately, there is no easy answer on how to get this changed.  As has been mentioned, it has to start with education.  Education on how your companies retirement plan works, education on how investment and capital can be used as a catalyst for change.  It is my hope that as more employees begin to demand Socially Responsible choices in their retirement plans companies will have to listen and begin offering them.
                         
                        But back to the original topic of CNBC having guests promoting a "Vice Fund" as a superior investment strategy and saying to ignore morals because "this is investing".  Hopefully most people will ignore this for the "hogwash" it is.  There is simply NO evidence available that supports this assertion.  People can profit with principle.   
                         
                        Chris
                         
                         
                         
                         
                        -----Original Message-----
                        From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Robert Johnston
                        Sent: Friday, July 13, 2007 6:08 AM
                        To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                        Subject: RE: [hreg] CNBC

                        You are absolutely right.  Learn something new everyday!  (I said I wasn’t a financial professional; that’s why I asked Chris to comment, but thanks for jumping in).  I’ve worked for 2 companies with 401k’s, and neither had vesting in their 401k’s, only in their pensions.  I did a little checking and learned that there are two types of 401k vesting, graded (gradual) and cliff (all at once):

                        With graded vesting, you own an increasing portion of the employer contribution each year you are with your company. If your company had a five-year graded vesting schedule, you could be 20 percent vested after one year, 40 percent vested after two years, etc. By law, the longest graded vesting schedule a 401k plan can have for employer matching contributions is six years.

                        With cliff vesting, the employer contribution goes from zero to 100 percent vested after a set period of time. So if your vesting requirement is three years and you leave your company after two years, you won't get any of the employer contributions. Currently, the longest cliff-vesting schedule allowed by law for employer matching contributions is three years.”

                        Thus, it looks like Evelyn must wait either up to 3 years to be fully vested if a cliff plan, or up to 6 years if a graded plan, though in the latter case, she’d still have partial matching if she left early.  I was still correct in pointing out that she wouldn’t lose any of HER money if she left early (except investment losses, of course).  It is only her employer’s matching funds that can be vested.

                        Thanks for the enlightenment, Susan!

                        Robert


                        From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of Susan Modikoane
                        Sent: Friday, July 13, 2007 12:59 AM
                        To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                        Subject: RE: [hreg] CNBC

                        Robert -

                        There is such a thing as vesting in a 401K.  And you should know that.

                        To force an employee to select between the various Fidelity or Oppenheimer funds that keep feeding the corporations that are draining our economy to sustain them in Iraq is not only bad investing, it's un-American.

                        Tonight Senator Reid proudly announced that they were proposing leaving Iraq in 3 months, leaving 20,000 US troops in Iraq to protect "our assets" there.

                        "We" don't have any assets there.



                        Robert Johnston < junk1@plastability. com > wrote:

                        Evelyn, this is moving off-topic, but your message seems to confuse 401k’s and regular pensions.  I don’t believe there is such a thing as vesting with respect to 401k’s, only for pensions.  Often, you self-direct your investments in 401k’s from a limited number of mutual funds your company’s 401k administrator makes available.  Your pension, on the other hand, is generally invested by the company.  That’s if it is a defined benefit plan.  If instead you have a SEP-IRA or something like that as your corporate pension (i.e., defined contribution plan), then you may have a choice over its investment as well.  But I don’t understand your vesting comment if in fact we are talking about a 401k.  And your 50% comment—they can’t tell you that you “may” get 50% of every dollar after you are vested—the money is yours and they can’t take it away (if 401k).  On the other hand, it is common for companies to offer matching.  Thus, they may be offering a 50% match on your contributions, so that if you invest $1, they’ll add $0.50 to the pot.  That is usually a great deal for employees, and I always make sure I contribute the amount necessary to receive the maximum employer match on my 401k contributions.  I don’t think IRS regulations allow them to make those matches only after an extended “vesting” period (I think they can delay the offer to new employees, so that they can only sign up at the next annual sign-up period, but I don’t think they can go longer than that; in any case, it doesn’t sound like your employer is doing that because you said they enroll people automatically when they walk in the door).  Chris, any comments?  (I’m certainly not a financial professional! )

                        I think automatic enrollment in 401k’s is a good deal because with a 50% match it is a “no-brainer” that virtually every employee should want to participate.  You have the option to opt out if you want to (as you said).  Don’t you think it is better for the company to default to the option in the employee’s best interest rather than default to the option that costs the company less and impoverishes employees?  I don’t see why you should criticize them for that.  (If it is some crazy deal where the only investment is company stock, though, then I retract all I’ve said, and suggest you go work for someone else!).

                        On the one hand it may seem that limited investment choices in a 401k means that the company has taken power away from the employees.  But not really.  In the past, companies with traditional pensions made ALL the investment decisions AND controlled the pot of gold when you retired.  Unless you were lucky enough to have a plan with COLA’s, you would feel the pinch of inflation as you retired on a fixed pension (i.e., that $40,000/yr pension would in 20 years be like living on $22,000).  Now, as more of the financial responsibility gets shifted to employees (through 401k’s and through defined contribution plans), employees are actually getting more choices.  And, when you retire, you can take the pot of gold with you, roll it into an IRA and do virtually anything with it you want to investment-wise.  That is actually a lot more choice than used to exist in the future.  Many Republicans would like to do something like that with Social Security, but it has been bitterly opposed by those who think the government should make the investment decisions rather than the employees.  (In this case, “investment” is a euphemism for government spending in other areas, making clear why many politicians oppose it).

                        I for one would much rather have control of my retirement nest egg than leave it to the government.  They are spending my social security contributions faster than I can pay them in (it is a Ponzi scheme anyway since all I really pay for are the existing recipients; nothing is being saved for me).  And, investing on my own gives me the opportunity to achieve higher rates of return, and to have a nest egg to pass on to my children when I die (social security payments die with you unless your children are minors).

                        One final comment:  The whole basis for 401k’s is that they are tax-deferred accounts.  Why do we feel the government is offering us such a good deal by making tax-deferred accounts available?  If we had less government and lower tax rates, we wouldn’t need tax-deferred accounts.  Remember what is happening here:  They are taking the money YOU earned, and they are letting you invest it without taking 28-36% of it from you immediately.  For the favor of not robbing you immediately, they promise to rob you when you retire and start withdrawing the money.  And for that we thank them?

                        Robert


                        From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of evelyn sardina
                        Sent: Wednesday, July 11, 2007 7:00 PM
                        To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                        Subject: RE: [hreg] CNBC

                        At my work they let you self direct to what they choose for you!

                        Can you say Enron?  Look, something is better than nothing and nothing is what most people have.  You are right, education is the key.  Most kids are learning about this in school these days. The thing is that the don't earn money yet.  People also think they have to have a lot of money to invest.  It is not what you make but what you do with it and how much of it you get to keep in the end. Most poor people stay poor for lack of knowledge. It's like a desease.  I say do it all! Buy a green home or retrofit and take the money that you save in energy and buy green stock.  Mostly buy through direct purchase and if you if you don't care to do the work, let someone like yourself  guide them.  Some people just don't like making these decisions on their own, so it is worth it to have someone handle it for them.  To me anything is better than your employer whom at anytime can  tell you......Sorry but you gave us your money now you have to do what we say.  How about they fire you right before you become 100 percent vested! Oh but wait a minute, maybe they are thinking you will quit and forget about taking your money with you!  Just kidding, I know they wouldn't do that.

                        Chris Manning <cmanning@hal- pc.org> wrote:

                        You bring up a great point.  Often times, it is outside of an individuals control on what type of investments they have within their retirment plans.  I already know the arguement the companies give:  "It is our fiduciary responsibility to choose the investments that will generate the best financial return for our employees."

                        This is why it is vitally important for individuals to try and understand the intricacies of any retirement plan they may have.  There may be a way to self-direct the investments or at least to choose which mutual funds you want utilize.  Be sure and explore what your options are - what investment choices you have - the advantages/disadvan tages of each course of action.

                        I know this sounds more simplistic than it actually is, however, we must understand the power that our investment choices can have on society as a whole and work to create change.

                        -----Original Message-----
                        From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@ yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of evelyn sardina
                        Sent: Wednesday, July 11, 2007 3:44 PM
                        To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                        Subject: Re: [hreg] CNBC

                        The thing about it is that the power of making desicions is constantly being taken away from  people!  At my job, it is now a practice to automatically enroll everyone that walks in the door in a 401k type of plan.The paper work reads: You may get 50% of every dollar you invest after your vesting term, etc.   We have thousnds of employees all over the world. You can opt out but the mayority of the people don't unnderstand how any of this works!  You would think that this is good but the truth is that this is not guaranteed savings like social security ( i'm not going to get into the social security issue) but at least this is backed by our goverment ( backed by the goverment and i am not getting into this one either) I'm just saying.   Then you have a corporation putting the money into whatever they can make the most money out of.  As you know they get paid to recommend particular stock, as all brokers do.   We are talking corporations here.  When you invest in the 401k at my job you do not pick the companies you want to invest in, they invest  the employees  money in what they want.  Again more and more we give more power to corporations whojonly care about the bottom dollar. 

                        Chris Manning <cmanning@hal- pc.org> wrote:

                        As someone who works with this on a daily basis, I have rather strong
                        feelings when I see arguments put forth by members of the media
                        promoting a "Vice Fund" as a superior investment strategy. It has been
                        empirically proven that a well diversified portfolio will generate
                        statistically the same financial return over the long run - be it Vice
                        or Socially Responsible. However, I am a firm believer that the returns
                        of a company transcend purely the financial arena. The returns of a
                        company must be viewed from the financial *AND* the social and
                        environmental perspective before they can be judged to be good or bad.

                        Yes - oil company stocks have historically performed well, however, how
                        much of this is truly sustainable over the long run given the facts that
                        we know today? As everyone in here knows, the time of "easy" oil is
                        behind us. Given this, coupled with the fact that the vast majority of
                        oil reserves are not local to America does not bode well for their long
                        term growth potential given the turmoil in the world today. I'm not
                        trying to predict the future and oil stocks may indeed produce a nice
                        financial return for the foreseeable future, but at what cost?

                        Finally, to address the comment of "Listen people, you're investing
                        here, so stop with the morals and do the smart thing.", the smart thing
                        is to create a sustainable and diversified portfolio of investments that
                        match your conscience. It is not written anywhere that you have to
                        sacrifice return by utilizing a Socially Responsible approach to investing.

                        Individual investors need to realize the pivotal role they play in
                        helping shape our economy and our society. If they are willing to invest
                        in companies (either directly or indirectly) that they have questions
                        about or are not responsive to shareholders, they are giving their
                        unspoken "stamp of approval" for business as usual. We need to stand up
                        for sustainability and create a plan that will give us the return we
                        desire - a return consisting of financial, social and environmental
                        performance.

                        I know most here will agree with me on this, but I just needed to vent
                        some after reading the CNBC story.

                        Christopher S. Manning
                        www.manning- financial. com
                        "Sustainable Wealth Management"


                        Robert Johnston wrote:
                        >
                        > Well, the sad truth is we humans live in a world of (self-inflicted)
                        > trouble and investing in trouble can be profitable. In Jeremy Siegel’s
                        > best-selling book, “The Future for Investors”, copyright 2005, he
                        > shows that it isn’t the glamour stocks (technology, etc.) that have
                        > won over long periods of time. The highest rate of return of a stock
                        > since 1957 (he calls it his “descendants portfolio”—a 1957 stock and
                        > all its spinoffs etc.) was Phillip Morris at 4626.4%, or 19.75% annual
                        > rate of return—this despite all the tobacco litigation, etc. The other
                        > highlighted group was oil stocks. The top 5 performers since 1957 of
                        > the 20 largest 1957 stocks were oil companies. Royal Dutch Petroleum
                        > and its descendants have returned 13.64% annually, and the others were
                        > also in the 12-13% range.
                        >
                        > I think there will be good investment opportunities in renewables, but
                        > finding them is the trick. When a sector is as hot as the renewable
                        > energy, distributed power storage, etc., sector is now (with lots of
                        > venture capital, IPOs, etc.) one must be cautious as an investor. As
                        > the .com bubble should have taught us--even if we didn’t learn from
                        > the history of radio technology stocks, computer stocks, biotech
                        > stocks, etc.—there will be a huge shake-out and it is hard to predict
                        > the winners among new technology companies. And Siegel’s point is that
                        > even if you could predict the winners, you might not do as well as
                        > with the staid sin companies and oil. The reason is that the new tech
                        > companies are priced to perfection, so even if they deliver the
                        > expected growth, the stock won’t be that hot.
                        >
                        > Robert
                        >
                        > ------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ------
                        >
                        > *From:* hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@ yahoogroups. com ] *On Behalf
                        > Of *Susan Modikoane
                        > *Sent:* Tuesday, July 10, 2007 11:29 PM
                        > *To:* peakoil@lists. riseup.net; hreg@yahoogroups. com
                        > *Subject:* [hreg] CNBC
                        >
                        > I've been working out at a gym and, therefore, had time to catch CNBC.
                        > It was interesting to watch them insist that people invest in
                        > Conoco-Phillips tonight, stating that they have reached $80 a share
                        > and that if you look at their data, that means their stock will rise
                        > to $120.
                        >
                        > Another show was insisting that people invest in arms and oil,
                        > highlighting the "Vice Fund," as a great idea.
                        >
                        > "Listen people, you're investing here, so stop with the morals and do
                        > the smart thing."
                        >
                        > They had a reporter out in the street interviewing people who all said
                        > they'd prefer to invest in renewable energy. They cited one example of
                        > an oil company that had done well and never compared it to any stock
                        > in the renewable energy sector! Then they ran the splashy type, "Vice
                        > stocks may do better than renewable energy."
                        >
                        > Scary!
                        >
                        > ------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ------
                        >
                        > Choose the right car based on your needs. Check out Yahoo! Autos new
                        > Car Finder tool.
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >




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                      • evelyn sardina
                        Thank you Chris and Susan for the help. Sorry Robert, I guess I should have started by saying I have invested this way before. It would have saved us time. I
                        Message 11 of 16 , Jul 14, 2007
                        • 0 Attachment
                          Thank you Chris and Susan for the help. Sorry Robert, I guess I should have started by saying I have invested this way before. It would have saved us time.  I assumed you knew about this type of 401k.  I don't believe in demonizing things and that includes corporations.  I have made my share with this type of investing.  I was just stating my observations.  I have to say that I also think that corporations will come around.  We have a new slew of young educated people that have it in their best interest to turn things around.  As far as me, I am getting up there in age ( very tempting to put money in coal companies, I am not getting any younger )  but I resist knowing my daughter will end up paying the price. What we are seeing is many of us planting the seeds for the younger generations. What a privilage to be able help lay this foundation!  As soon as I have enough years in my company to be 100 percent vested and they have a green fund I will invest in it! 

                          Chris Manning <cmanning@...> wrote:
                          Robert,
                           
                          You are correct.  ERISA sets forth all of the requirements on this, however, these could change if the plan were "top-heavy".  Generally, larger employers make sure this is not the case as they lose some of their tax benefits.
                           
                          Also, I completely agree with Susan that it is un-American to limit the choices in the investment plan to only a handful of mutual funds.  If you examine the underlying assets of many of the mutual funds, you will find that a large portion include the companies that are profiting from Iraq (both directly and indirectly) - can you say military industrial complex?     
                           
                          Unfortunately, there is no easy answer on how to get this changed.  As has been mentioned, it has to start with education.  Education on how your companies retirement plan works, education on how investment and capital can be used as a catalyst for change.  It is my hope that as more employees begin to demand Socially Responsible choices in their retirement plans companies will have to listen and begin offering them.
                           
                          But back to the original topic of CNBC having guests promoting a "Vice Fund" as a superior investment strategy and saying to ignore morals because "this is investing".  Hopefully most people will ignore this for the "hogwash" it is.  There is simply NO evidence available that supports this assertion.  People can profit with principle.   
                           
                          Chris
                           
                           
                           
                           
                          -----Original Message-----
                          From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto:hreg@ yahoogroups. com] On Behalf Of Robert Johnston
                          Sent: Friday, July 13, 2007 6:08 AM
                          To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                          Subject: RE: [hreg] CNBC

                          You are absolutely right.  Learn something new everyday!  (I said I wasn’t a financial professional; that’s why I asked Chris to comment, but thanks for jumping in).  I’ve worked for 2 companies with 401k’s, and neither had vesting in their 401k’s, only in their pensions.  I did a little checking and learned that there are two types of 401k vesting, graded (gradual) and cliff (all at once):
                          “With graded vesting, you own an increasing portion of the employer contribution each year you are with your company. If your company had a five-year graded vesting schedule, you could be 20 percent vested after one year, 40 percent vested after two years, etc. By law, the longest graded vesting schedule a 401k plan can have for employer matching contributions is six years.
                          With cliff vesting, the employer contribution goes from zero to 100 percent vested after a set period of time. So if your vesting requirement is three years and you leave your company after two years, you won't get any of the employer contributions. Currently, the longest cliff-vesting schedule allowed by law for employer matching contributions is three years.”
                          Thus, it looks like Evelyn must wait either up to 3 years to be fully vested if a cliff plan, or up to 6 years if a graded plan, though in the latter case, she’d still have partial matching if she left early.  I was still correct in pointing out that she wouldn’t lose any of HER money if she left early (except investment losses, of course).  It is only her employer’s matching funds that can be vested.
                          Thanks for the enlightenment, Susan!
                          Robert

                          From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of Susan Modikoane
                          Sent: Friday, July 13, 2007 12:59 AM
                          To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                          Subject: RE: [hreg] CNBC
                          Robert -
                          There is such a thing as vesting in a 401K.  And you should know that.
                          To force an employee to select between the various Fidelity or Oppenheimer funds that keep feeding the corporations that are draining our economy to sustain them in Iraq is not only bad investing, it's un-American.
                          Tonight Senator Reid proudly announced that they were proposing leaving Iraq in 3 months, leaving 20,000 US troops in Iraq to protect "our assets" there.
                          "We" don't have any assets there.


                          Robert Johnston < junk1@plastability. com > wrote:
                          Evelyn, this is moving off-topic, but your message seems to confuse 401k’s and regular pensions.  I don’t believe there is such a thing as vesting with respect to 401k’s, only for pensions.  Often, you self-direct your investments in 401k’s from a limited number of mutual funds your company’s 401k administrator makes available.  Your pension, on the other hand, is generally invested by the company.  That’s if it is a defined benefit plan.  If instead you have a SEP-IRA or something like that as your corporate pension (i.e., defined contribution plan), then you may have a choice over its investment as well.  But I don’t understand your vesting comment if in fact we are talking about a 401k.  And your 50% comment—they can’t tell you that you “may” get 50% of every dollar after you are vested—the money is yours and they can’t take it away (if 401k).  On the other hand, it is common for companies to offer matching.  Thus, they may be offering a 50% match on your contributions, so that if you invest $1, they’ll add $0.50 to the pot.  That is usually a great deal for employees, and I always make sure I contribute the amount necessary to receive the maximum employer match on my 401k contributions.  I don’t think IRS regulations allow them to make those matches only after an extended “vesting” period (I think they can delay the offer to new employees, so that they can only sign up at the next annual sign-up period, but I don’t think they can go longer than that; in any case, it doesn’t sound like your employer is doing that because you said they enroll people automatically when they walk in the door).  Chris, any comments?  (I’m certainly not a financial professional! )
                          I think automatic enrollment in 401k’s is a good deal because with a 50% match it is a “no-brainer” that virtually every employee should want to participate.  You have the option to opt out if you want to (as you said).  Don’t you think it is better for the company to default to the option in the employee’s best interest rather than default to the option that costs the company less and impoverishes employees?  I don’t see why you should criticize them for that.  (If it is some crazy deal where the only investment is company stock, though, then I retract all I’ve said, and suggest you go work for someone else!).
                          On the one hand it may seem that limited investment choices in a 401k means that the company has taken power away from the employees.  But not really.  In the past, companies with traditional pensions made ALL the investment decisions AND controlled the pot of gold when you retired.  Unless you were lucky enough to have a plan with COLA’s, you would feel the pinch of inflation as you retired on a fixed pension (i.e., that $40,000/yr pension would in 20 years be like living on $22,000).  Now, as more of the financial responsibility gets shifted to employees (through 401k’s and through defined contribution plans), employees are actually getting more choices.  And, when you retire, you can take the pot of gold with you, roll it into an IRA and do virtually anything with it you want to investment-wise.  That is actually a lot more choice than used to exist in the future.  Many Republicans would like to do something like that with Social Security, but it has been bitterly opposed by those who think the government should make the investment decisions rather than the employees.  (In this case, “investment” is a euphemism for government spending in other areas, making clear why many politicians oppose it).
                          I for one would much rather have control of my retirement nest egg than leave it to the government.  They are spending my social security contributions faster than I can pay them in (it is a Ponzi scheme anyway since all I really pay for are the existing recipients; nothing is being saved for me).  And, investing on my own gives me the opportunity to achieve higher rates of return, and to have a nest egg to pass on to my children when I die (social security payments die with you unless your children are minors).
                          One final comment:  The whole basis for 401k’s is that they are tax-deferred accounts.  Why do we feel the government is offering us such a good deal by making tax-deferred accounts available?  If we had less government and lower tax rates, we wouldn’t need tax-deferred accounts.  Remember what is happening here:  They are taking the money YOU earned, and they are letting you invest it without taking 28-36% of it from you immediately.  For the favor of not robbing you immediately, they promise to rob you when you retire and start withdrawing the money.  And for that we thank them?
                          Robert

                          From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of evelyn sardina
                          Sent: Wednesday, July 11, 2007 7:00 PM
                          To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                          Subject: RE: [hreg] CNBC
                          At my work they let you self direct to what they choose for you!
                          Can you say Enron?  Look, something is better than nothing and nothing is what most people have.  You are right, education is the key.  Most kids are learning about this in school these days. The thing is that the don't earn money yet.  People also think they have to have a lot of money to invest.  It is not what you make but what you do with it and how much of it you get to keep in the end. Most poor people stay poor for lack of knowledge. It's like a desease.  I say do it all! Buy a green home or retrofit and take the money that you save in energy and buy green stock.  Mostly buy through direct purchase and if you if you don't care to do the work, let someone like yourself  guide them.  Some people just don't like making these decisions on their own, so it is worth it to have someone handle it for them.  To me anything is better than your employer whom at anytime can  tell you......Sorry but you gave us your money now you have to do what we say.  How about they fire you right before you become 100 percent vested! Oh but wait a minute, maybe they are thinking you will quit and forget about taking your money with you!  Just kidding, I know they wouldn't do that.

                          Chris Manning <cmanning@hal- pc.org> wrote:
                          You bring up a great point.  Often times, it is outside of an individuals control on what type of investments they have within their retirment plans.  I already know the arguement the companies give:  "It is our fiduciary responsibility to choose the investments that will generate the best financial return for our employees."
                          This is why it is vitally important for individuals to try and understand the intricacies of any retirement plan they may have.  There may be a way to self-direct the investments or at least to choose which mutual funds you want utilize.  Be sure and explore what your options are - what investment choices you have - the advantages/disadvan tages of each course of action.
                          I know this sounds more simplistic than it actually is, however, we must understand the power that our investment choices can have on society as a whole and work to create change.
                          -----Original Message-----
                          From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@ yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of evelyn sardina
                          Sent: Wednesday, July 11, 2007 3:44 PM
                          To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                          Subject: Re: [hreg] CNBC
                          The thing about it is that the power of making desicions is constantly being taken away from  people!  At my job, it is now a practice to automatically enroll everyone that walks in the door in a 401k type of plan.The paper work reads: You may get 50% of every dollar you invest after your vesting term, etc.   We have thousnds of employees all over the world. You can opt out but the mayority of the people don't unnderstand how any of this works!  You would think that this is good but the truth is that this is not guaranteed savings like social security ( i'm not going to get into the social security issue) but at least this is backed by our goverment ( backed by the goverment and i am not getting into this one either) I'm just saying.   Then you have a corporation putting the money into whatever they can make the most money out of.  As you know they get paid to recommend particular stock, as all brokers do.   We are talking corporations here.  When you invest in the 401k at my job you do not pick the companies you want to invest in, they invest  the employees  money in what they want.  Again more and more we give more power to corporations whojonly care about the bottom dollar. 

                          Chris Manning <cmanning@hal- pc.org> wrote:
                          As someone who works with this on a daily basis, I have rather strong
                          feelings when I see arguments put forth by members of the media
                          promoting a "Vice Fund" as a superior investment strategy. It has been
                          empirically proven that a well diversified portfolio will generate
                          statistically the same financial return over the long run - be it Vice
                          or Socially Responsible. However, I am a firm believer that the returns
                          of a company transcend purely the financial arena. The returns of a
                          company must be viewed from the financial *AND* the social and
                          environmental perspective before they can be judged to be good or bad.

                          Yes - oil company stocks have historically performed well, however, how
                          much of this is truly sustainable over the long run given the facts that
                          we know today? As everyone in here knows, the time of "easy" oil is
                          behind us. Given this, coupled with the fact that the vast majority of
                          oil reserves are not local to America does not bode well for their long
                          term growth potential given the turmoil in the world today. I'm not
                          trying to predict the future and oil stocks may indeed produce a nice
                          financial return for the foreseeable future, but at what cost?

                          Finally, to address the comment of "Listen people, you're investing
                          here, so stop with the morals and do the smart thing.", the smart thing
                          is to create a sustainable and diversified portfolio of investments that
                          match your conscience. It is not written anywhere that you have to
                          sacrifice return by utilizing a Socially Responsible approach to investing.

                          Individual investors need to realize the pivotal role they play in
                          helping shape our economy and our society. If they are willing to invest
                          in companies (either directly or indirectly) that they have questions
                          about or are not responsive to shareholders, they are giving their
                          unspoken "stamp of approval" for business as usual. We need to stand up
                          for sustainability and create a plan that will give us the return we
                          desire - a return consisting of financial, social and environmental
                          performance.

                          I know most here will agree with me on this, but I just needed to vent
                          some after reading the CNBC story.

                          Christopher S. Manning
                          www.manning- financial. com
                          "Sustainable Wealth Management"


                          Robert Johnston wrote:
                          >
                          > Well, the sad truth is we humans live in a world of (self-inflicted)
                          > trouble and investing in trouble can be profitable. In Jeremy Siegel’s
                          > best-selling book, “The Future for Investors”, copyright 2005, he
                          > shows that it isn’t the glamour stocks (technology, etc.) that have
                          > won over long periods of time. The highest rate of return of a stock
                          > since 1957 (he calls it his “descendants portfolio”—a 1957 stock and
                          > all its spinoffs etc.) was Phillip Morris at 4626.4%, or 19.75% annual
                          > rate of return—this despite all the tobacco litigation, etc. The other
                          > highlighted group was oil stocks. The top 5 performers since 1957 of
                          > the 20 largest 1957 stocks were oil companies. Royal Dutch Petroleum
                          > and its descendants have returned 13.64% annually, and the others were
                          > also in the 12-13% range.
                          >
                          > I think there will be good investment opportunities in renewables, but
                          > finding them is the trick. When a sector is as hot as the renewable
                          > energy, distributed power storage, etc., sector is now (with lots of
                          > venture capital, IPOs, etc.) one must be cautious as an investor. As
                          > the .com bubble should have taught us--even if we didn’t learn from
                          > the history of radio technology stocks, computer stocks, biotech
                          > stocks, etc.—there will be a huge shake-out and it is hard to predict
                          > the winners among new technology companies. And Siegel’s point is that
                          > even if you could predict the winners, you might not do as well as
                          > with the staid sin companies and oil. The reason is that the new tech
                          > companies are priced to perfection, so even if they deliver the
                          > expected growth, the stock won’t be that hot.
                          >
                          > Robert
                          >
                          > ------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ------
                          >
                          > *From:* hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@ yahoogroups. com ] *On Behalf
                          > Of *Susan Modikoane
                          > *Sent:* Tuesday, July 10, 2007 11:29 PM
                          > *To:* peakoil@lists. riseup.net; hreg@yahoogroups. com
                          > *Subject:* [hreg] CNBC
                          >
                          > I've been working out at a gym and, therefore, had time to catch CNBC.
                          > It was interesting to watch them insist that people invest in
                          > Conoco-Phillips tonight, stating that they have reached $80 a share
                          > and that if you look at their data, that means their stock will rise
                          > to $120.
                          >
                          > Another show was insisting that people invest in arms and oil,
                          > highlighting the "Vice Fund," as a great idea.
                          >
                          > "Listen people, you're investing here, so stop with the morals and do
                          > the smart thing."
                          >
                          > They had a reporter out in the street interviewing people who all said
                          > they'd prefer to invest in renewable energy. They cited one example of
                          > an oil company that had done well and never compared it to any stock
                          > in the renewable energy sector! Then they ran the splashy type, "Vice
                          > stocks may do better than renewable energy."
                          >
                          > Scary!
                          >
                          > ------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ------
                          >
                          > Choose the right car based on your needs. Check out Yahoo! Autos new
                          > Car Finder tool.
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >




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                        • Robert Johnston
                          No problem here! :-) I m sorry your plan is so limited. I m fortunate that my corporation has many options. Robert _____ From: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                          Message 12 of 16 , Jul 14, 2007
                          • 0 Attachment

                            No problem here!  J

                            I’m sorry your plan is so limited.  I’m fortunate that my corporation has many options.

                             

                            Robert

                             


                            From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups.com ] On Behalf Of evelyn sardina
                            Sent: Saturday, July 14, 2007 12:43 PM
                            To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                            Subject: RE: [hreg] CNBC

                             

                            Thank you Chris and Susan for the help. Sorry Robert, I guess I should have started by saying I have invested this way before. It would have saved us time.  I assumed you knew about this type of 401k.  I don't believe in demonizing things and that includes corporations.  I have made my share with this type of investing.  I was just stating my observations.  I have to say that I also think that corporations will come around.  We have a new slew of young educated people that have it in their best interest to turn things around.  As far as me, I am getting up there in age ( very tempting to put money in coal companies, I am not getting any younger )  but I resist knowing my daughter will end up paying the price. What we are seeing is many of us planting the seeds for the younger generations. What a privilage to be able help lay this foundation!  As soon as I have enough years in my company to be 100 percent vested and they have a green fund I will invest in it! 

                            Chris Manning <cmanning@hal- pc.org> wrote:

                            Robert,

                             

                            You are correct.  ERISA sets forth all of the requirements on this, however, these could change if the plan were "top-heavy".  Generally, larger employers make sure this is not the case as they lose some of their tax benefits.

                             

                            Also, I completely agree with Susan that it is un-American to limit the choices in the investment plan to only a handful of mutual funds.  If you examine the underlying assets of many of the mutual funds, you will find that a large portion include the companies that are profiting from Iraq (both directly and indirectly) - can you say military industrial complex?     

                             

                            Unfortunately, there is no easy answer on how to get this changed.  As has been mentioned, it has to start with education.  Education on how your companies retirement plan works, education on how investment and capital can be used as a catalyst for change.  It is my hope that as more employees begin to demand Socially Responsible choices in their retirement plans companies will have to listen and begin offering them.

                             

                            But back to the original topic of CNBC having guests promoting a "Vice Fund" as a superior investment strategy and saying to ignore morals because "this is investing".  Hopefully most people will ignore this for the "hogwash" it is.  There is simply NO evidence available that supports this assertion.  People can profit with principle.   

                             

                            Chris

                             

                             

                             

                             

                            -----Original Message-----
                            From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@ yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of Robert Johnston
                            Sent: Friday, July 13, 2007 6:08 AM
                            To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                            Subject: RE: [hreg] CNBC

                            You are absolutely right.  Learn something new everyday!  (I said I wasn’t a financial professional; that’s why I asked Chris to comment, but thanks for jumping in).  I’ve worked for 2 companies with 401k’s, and neither had vesting in their 401k’s, only in their pensions.  I did a little checking and learned that there are two types of 401k vesting, graded (gradual) and cliff (all at once):

                            With graded vesting, you own an increasing portion of the employer contribution each year you are with your company. If your company had a five-year graded vesting schedule, you could be 20 percent vested after one year, 40 percent vested after two years, etc. By law, the longest graded vesting schedule a 401k plan can have for employer matching contributions is six years.

                            With cliff vesting, the employer contribution goes from zero to 100 percent vested after a set period of time. So if your vesting requirement is three years and you leave your company after two years, you won't get any of the employer contributions. Currently, the longest cliff-vesting schedule allowed by law for employer matching contributions is three years.”

                            Thus, it looks like Evelyn must wait either up to 3 years to be fully vested if a cliff plan, or up to 6 years if a graded plan, though in the latter case, she’d still have partial matching if she left early.  I was still correct in pointing out that she wouldn’t lose any of HER money if she left early (except investment losses, of course).  It is only her employer’s matching funds that can be vested.

                            Thanks for the enlightenment, Susan!

                            Robert


                            From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of Susan Modikoane
                            Sent: Friday, July 13, 2007 12:59 AM
                            To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                            Subject: RE: [hreg] CNBC

                            Robert -

                            There is such a thing as vesting in a 401K.  And you should know that.

                            To force an employee to select between the various Fidelity or Oppenheimer funds that keep feeding the corporations that are draining our economy to sustain them in Iraq is not only bad investing, it's un-American.

                            Tonight Senator Reid proudly announced that they were proposing leaving Iraq in 3 months, leaving 20,000 US troops in Iraq to protect "our assets" there.

                            "We" don't have any assets there.



                            Robert Johnston < junk1@plastability. com > wrote:

                            Evelyn, this is moving off-topic, but your message seems to confuse 401k’s and regular pensions.  I don’t believe there is such a thing as vesting with respect to 401k’s, only for pensions.  Often, you self-direct your investments in 401k’s from a limited number of mutual funds your company’s 401k administrator makes available.  Your pension, on the other hand, is generally invested by the company.  That’s if it is a defined benefit plan.  If instead you have a SEP-IRA or something like that as your corporate pension (i.e., defined contribution plan), then you may have a choice over its investment as well.  But I don’t understand your vesting comment if in fact we are talking about a 401k.  And your 50% comment—they can’t tell you that you “may” get 50% of every dollar after you are vested—the money is yours and they can’t take it away (if 401k).  On the other hand, it is common for companies to offer matching.  Thus, they may be offering a 50% match on your contributions, so that if you invest $1, they’ll add $0.50 to the pot.  That is usually a great deal for employees, and I always make sure I contribute the amount necessary to receive the maximum employer match on my 401k contributions.  I don’t think IRS regulations allow them to make those matches only after an extended “vesting” period (I think they can delay the offer to new employees, so that they can only sign up at the next annual sign-up period, but I don’t think they can go longer than that; in any case, it doesn’t sound like your employer is doing that because you said they enroll people automatically when they walk in the door).  Chris, any comments?  (I’m certainly not a financial professional! )

                            I think automatic enrollment in 401k’s is a good deal because with a 50% match it is a “no-brainer” that virtually every employee should want to participate.  You have the option to opt out if you want to (as you said).  Don’t you think it is better for the company to default to the option in the employee’s best interest rather than default to the option that costs the company less and impoverishes employees?  I don’t see why you should criticize them for that.  (If it is some crazy deal where the only investment is company stock, though, then I retract all I’ve said, and suggest you go work for someone else!).

                            On the one hand it may seem that limited investment choices in a 401k means that the company has taken power away from the employees.  But not really.  In the past, companies with traditional pensions made ALL the investment decisions AND controlled the pot of gold when you retired.  Unless you were lucky enough to have a plan with COLA’s, you would feel the pinch of inflation as you retired on a fixed pension (i.e., that $40,000/yr pension would in 20 years be like living on $22,000).  Now, as more of the financial responsibility gets shifted to employees (through 401k’s and through defined contribution plans), employees are actually getting more choices.  And, when you retire, you can take the pot of gold with you, roll it into an IRA and do virtually anything with it you want to investment-wise.  That is actually a lot more choice than used to exist in the future.  Many Republicans would like to do something like that with Social Security, but it has been bitterly opposed by those who think the government should make the investment decisions rather than the employees.  (In this case, “investment” is a euphemism for government spending in other areas, making clear why many politicians oppose it).

                            I for one would much rather have control of my retirement nest egg than leave it to the government.  They are spending my social security contributions faster than I can pay them in (it is a Ponzi scheme anyway since all I really pay for are the existing recipients; nothing is being saved for me).  And, investing on my own gives me the opportunity to achieve higher rates of return, and to have a nest egg to pass on to my children when I die (social security payments die with you unless your children are minors).

                            One final comment:  The whole basis for 401k’s is that they are tax-deferred accounts.  Why do we feel the government is offering us such a good deal by making tax-deferred accounts available?  If we had less government and lower tax rates, we wouldn’t need tax-deferred accounts.  Remember what is happening here:  They are taking the money YOU earned, and they are letting you invest it without taking 28-36% of it from you immediately.  For the favor of not robbing you immediately, they promise to rob you when you retire and start withdrawing the money.  And for that we thank them?

                            Robert


                            From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of evelyn sardina
                            Sent: Wednesday, July 11, 2007 7:00 PM
                            To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                            Subject: RE: [hreg] CNBC

                            At my work they let you self direct to what they choose for you!

                            Can you say Enron?  Look, something is better than nothing and nothing is what most people have.  You are right, education is the key.  Most kids are learning about this in school these days. The thing is that the don't earn money yet.  People also think they have to have a lot of money to invest.  It is not what you make but what you do with it and how much of it you get to keep in the end. Most poor people stay poor for lack of knowledge. It's like a desease.  I say do it all! Buy a green home or retrofit and take the money that you save in energy and buy green stock.  Mostly buy through direct purchase and if you if you don't care to do the work, let someone like yourself  guide them.  Some people just don't like making these decisions on their own, so it is worth it to have someone handle it for them.  To me anything is better than your employer whom at anytime can  tell you......Sorry but you gave us your money now you have to do what we say.  How about they fire you right before you become 100 percent vested! Oh but wait a minute, maybe they are thinking you will quit and forget about taking your money with you!  Just kidding, I know they wouldn't do that.

                            Chris Manning <cmanning@hal- pc.org> wrote:

                            You bring up a great point.  Often times, it is outside of an individuals control on what type of investments they have within their retirment plans.  I already know the arguement the companies give:  "It is our fiduciary responsibility to choose the investments that will generate the best financial return for our employees."

                            This is why it is vitally important for individuals to try and understand the intricacies of any retirement plan they may have.  There may be a way to self-direct the investments or at least to choose which mutual funds you want utilize.  Be sure and explore what your options are - what investment choices you have - the advantages/disadvan tages of each course of action.

                            I know this sounds more simplistic than it actually is, however, we must understand the power that our investment choices can have on society as a whole and work to create change.

                            -----Original Message-----
                            From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@ yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of evelyn sardina
                            Sent: Wednesday, July 11, 2007 3:44 PM
                            To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                            Subject: Re: [hreg] CNBC

                            The thing about it is that the power of making desicions is constantly being taken away from  people!  At my job, it is now a practice to automatically enroll everyone that walks in the door in a 401k type of plan.The paper work reads: You may get 50% of every dollar you invest after your vesting term, etc.   We have thousnds of employees all over the world. You can opt out but the mayority of the people don't unnderstand how any of this works!  You would think that this is good but the truth is that this is not guaranteed savings like social security ( i'm not going to get into the social security issue) but at least this is backed by our goverment ( backed by the goverment and i am not getting into this one either) I'm just saying.   Then you have a corporation putting the money into whatever they can make the most money out of.  As you know they get paid to recommend particular stock, as all brokers do.   We are talking corporations here.  When you invest in the 401k at my job you do not pick the companies you want to invest in, they invest  the employees  money in what they want.  Again more and more we give more power to corporations whojonly care about the bottom dollar. 

                            Chris Manning <cmanning@hal- pc.org> wrote:

                            As someone who works with this on a daily basis, I have rather strong
                            feelings when I see arguments put forth by members of the media
                            promoting a "Vice Fund" as a superior investment strategy. It has been
                            empirically proven that a well diversified portfolio will generate
                            statistically the same financial return over the long run - be it Vice
                            or Socially Responsible. However, I am a firm believer that the returns
                            of a company transcend purely the financial arena. The returns of a
                            company must be viewed from the financial *AND* the social and
                            environmental perspective before they can be judged to be good or bad.

                            Yes - oil company stocks have historically performed well, however, how
                            much of this is truly sustainable over the long run given the facts that
                            we know today? As everyone in here knows, the time of "easy" oil is
                            behind us. Given this, coupled with the fact that the vast majority of
                            oil reserves are not local to America does not bode well for their long
                            term growth potential given the turmoil in the world today. I'm not
                            trying to predict the future and oil stocks may indeed produce a nice
                            financial return for the foreseeable future, but at what cost?

                            Finally, to address the comment of "Listen people, you're investing
                            here, so stop with the morals and do the smart thing.", the smart thing
                            is to create a sustainable and diversified portfolio of investments that
                            match your conscience. It is not written anywhere that you have to
                            sacrifice return by utilizing a Socially Responsible approach to investing.

                            Individual investors need to realize the pivotal role they play in
                            helping shape our economy and our society. If they are willing to invest
                            in companies (either directly or indirectly) that they have questions
                            about or are not responsive to shareholders, they are giving their
                            unspoken "stamp of approval" for business as usual. We need to stand up
                            for sustainability and create a plan that will give us the return we
                            desire - a return consisting of financial, social and environmental
                            performance.

                            I know most here will agree with me on this, but I just needed to vent
                            some after reading the CNBC story.

                            Christopher S. Manning
                            www.manning- financial. com
                            "Sustainable Wealth Management"


                            Robert Johnston wrote:
                            >
                            > Well, the sad truth is we humans live in a world of (self-inflicted)
                            > trouble and investing in trouble can be profitable. In Jeremy Siegel’s
                            > best-selling book, “The Future for Investors”, copyright 2005, he
                            > shows that it isn’t the glamour stocks (technology, etc.) that have
                            > won over long periods of time. The highest rate of return of a stock
                            > since 1957 (he calls it his “descendants portfolio”—a 1957 stock and
                            > all its spinoffs etc.) was Phillip Morris at 4626.4%, or 19.75% annual
                            > rate of return—this despite all the tobacco litigation, etc. The other
                            > highlighted group was oil stocks. The top 5 performers since 1957 of
                            > the 20 largest 1957 stocks were oil companies. Royal Dutch Petroleum
                            > and its descendants have returned 13.64% annually, and the others were
                            > also in the 12-13% range.
                            >
                            > I think there will be good investment opportunities in renewables, but
                            > finding them is the trick. When a sector is as hot as the renewable
                            > energy, distributed power storage, etc., sector is now (with lots of
                            > venture capital, IPOs, etc.) one must be cautious as an investor. As
                            > the .com bubble should have taught us--even if we didn’t learn from
                            > the history of radio technology stocks, computer stocks, biotech
                            > stocks, etc.—there will be a huge shake-out and it is hard to predict
                            > the winners among new technology companies. And Siegel’s point is that
                            > even if you could predict the winners, you might not do as well as
                            > with the staid sin companies and oil. The reason is that the new tech
                            > companies are priced to perfection, so even if they deliver the
                            > expected growth, the stock won’t be that hot.
                            >
                            > Robert
                            >
                            > ------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ------
                            >
                            > *From:* hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@ yahoogroups. com ] *On Behalf
                            > Of *Susan Modikoane
                            > *Sent:* Tuesday, July 10, 2007 11:29 PM
                            > *To:* peakoil@lists. riseup.net; hreg@yahoogroups. com
                            > *Subject:* [hreg] CNBC
                            >
                            > I've been working out at a gym and, therefore, had time to catch CNBC.
                            > It was interesting to watch them insist that people invest in
                            > Conoco-Phillips tonight, stating that they have reached $80 a share
                            > and that if you look at their data, that means their stock will rise
                            > to $120.
                            >
                            > Another show was insisting that people invest in arms and oil,
                            > highlighting the "Vice Fund," as a great idea.
                            >
                            > "Listen people, you're investing here, so stop with the morals and do
                            > the smart thing."
                            >
                            > They had a reporter out in the street interviewing people who all said
                            > they'd prefer to invest in renewable energy. They cited one example of
                            > an oil company that had done well and never compared it to any stock
                            > in the renewable energy sector! Then they ran the splashy type, "Vice
                            > stocks may do better than renewable energy."
                            >
                            > Scary!
                            >
                            > ------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ------
                            >
                            > Choose the right car based on your needs. Check out Yahoo! Autos new
                            > Car Finder tool.
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >




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                            Play Sims Stories at Yahoo! Games.

                             


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                          • phil6142@aol.com
                            I guess this is off topic but I will ask since there has been so much discussion already.  It is my understanding that when you leave a company that you have
                            Message 13 of 16 , Jul 16, 2007
                            • 0 Attachment
                              I guess this is off topic but I will ask since there has been so much discussion already.  It is my understanding that when you leave a company that you have several options for what to do with your 401k (All that you contributed plus your vested portion of the companies contribution).  i.e.  Leave it with that company,  transfer it to your new company, or roll it into a traditional IRA. 

                              Would it be possible to transfer your portion of the 401k to a traditional IRA while you are still working for the same company?


                              -----Original Message-----
                              From: Robert Johnston <junk1@...>
                              To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                              Sent: Sat, 14 Jul 2007 10:56 pm
                              Subject: RE: [hreg] CNBC

                              No problem here!  J
                              I’m sorry your plan is so limited.  I’m fortunate that my corporation has many options.
                               
                              Robert
                               

                              From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups. com] On Behalf Of evelyn sardina
                              Sent: Saturday, July 14, 2007 12:43 PM
                              To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                              Subject: RE: [hreg] CNBC
                               
                              Thank you Chris and Susan for the help. Sorry Robert, I guess I should have started by saying I have invested this way before. It would have saved us time.  I assumed you knew about this type of 401k.  I don't believe in demonizing things and that includes corporations.  I have made my share with this type of investing.  I was just stating my observations.  I have to say that I also think that corporations will come around.  We have a new slew of young educated people that have it in their best interest to turn things around.  As far as me, I am getting up there in age ( very tempting to put money in coal companies, I am not getting any younger )  but I resist knowing my daughter will end up paying the price. What we are seeing is many of us planting the seeds for the younger generations. What a privilage to be able help lay this foundation!  As soon as I have enough years in my company to be 100 percent vested and they have a green fund I will invest in it! 

                              Chris Manning <cmanning@hal- pc.org> wrote:
                              Robert,
                               
                              You are correct.  ERISA sets forth all of the requirements on this, however, these could change if the plan were "top-heavy".  Generally, larger employers make sure this is not the case as they lose some of their tax benefits.
                               
                              Also, I completely agree with Susan that it is un-American to limit the choices in the investment plan to only a handful of mutual funds.  If you examine the underlying assets of many of the mutual funds, you will find that a large portion include the companies that are profiting from Iraq (both directly and indirectly) - can you say military industrial complex?     
                               
                              Unfortunately, there is no easy answer on how to get this changed.  As has been mentioned, it has to start with education.  Education on how your companies retirement plan works, education on how investment and capital can be used as a catalyst for change.  It is my hope that as more employees begin to demand Socially Responsible choices in their retirement plans companies will have to listen and begin offering them.
                               
                              But back to the original topic of CNBC having guests promoting a "Vice Fund" as a superior investment strategy and saying to ignore morals because "this is investing".  Hopefully most people will ignore this for the "hogwash" it is.  There is simply NO evidence available that supports this assertion.  People can profit with principle.   
                               
                              Chris
                               
                               
                               
                               
                              -----Original Message-----
                              From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto:hreg@ yahoogroups. com] On Behalf Of Robert Johnston
                              Sent: Friday, July 13, 2007 6:08 AM
                              To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                              Subject: RE: [hreg] CNBC
                              You are absolutely right.  Learn something new everyday!  (I said I wasn’t a financial professional; that’s why I asked Chris to comment, but thanks for jumping in).  I’ve worked for 2 companies with 401k’s, and neither had vesting in their 401k’s, only in their pensions.  I did a little checking and learned that there are two types of 401k vesting, graded (gradual) and cliff (all at once):
                              With graded vesting, you own an increasing portion of the employer contribution each year you are with your company. If your company had a five-year graded vesting schedule, you could be 20 percent vested after one year, 40 percent vested after two years, etc. By law, the longest graded vesting schedule a 401k plan can have for employer matching contributions is six years.
                              With cliff vesting, the employer contribution goes from zero to 100 percent vested after a set period of time. So if your vesting requirement is three years and you leave your company after two years, you won't get any of the employer contributions. Currently, the longest cliff-vesting schedule allowed by law for employer matching contributions is three years.”
                              Thus, it looks like Evelyn must wait either up to 3 years to be fully vested if a cliff plan, or up to 6 years if a graded plan, though in the latter case, she’d still have partial matching if she left early.  I was still correct in pointing out that she wouldn’t lose any of HER money if she left early (except investment losses, of course).  It is only her employer’s matching funds that can be vested.
                              Thanks for the enlightenment, Susan!
                              Robert

                              From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups. com] On Behalf Of Susan Modikoane
                              Sent: Friday, July 13, 2007 12:59 AM
                              To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                              Subject: RE: [hreg] CNBC
                              Robert -
                              There is such a thing as vesting in a 401K.  And you should know that.
                              To force an employee to select between the various Fidelity or Oppenheimer funds that keep feeding the corporations that are draining our economy to sustain them in Iraq is not only bad investing, it's un-American.
                              Tonight Senator Reid proudly announced that they were proposing leaving Iraq in 3 months, leaving 20,000 US troops in Iraq to protect "our assets" there.
                              "We" don't have any assets there.


                              Robert Johnston <junk1@plastability. com> wrote:
                              Evelyn, this is moving off-topic, but your message seems to confuse 401k’s and regular pensions.  I don’t believe there is such a thing as vesting with respect to 401k’s, only for pensions.  Often, you self-direct your investments in 401k’s from a limited number of mutual funds your company’s 401k administrator makes available.  Your pension, on the other hand, is generally invested by the company.  That’s if it is a defined benefit plan.  If instead you have a SEP-IRA or something like that as your corporate pension (i.e., defined contribution plan), then you may have a choice over its investment as well.  But I don’t understand your vesting comment if in fact we are talking about a 401k.  And your 50% comment—they can’t tell you that you “may” get 50% of every dollar after you are vested—the money is yours and they can’t take it away (if 401k).  On the other hand, it is common for companies to offer matching.  Thus, they may be offering a 50% match on your contributions, so that if you invest $1, they’ll add $0.50 to the pot.  That is usually a great deal for employees, and I always make sure I contribute the amount necessary to receive the maximum employer match on my 401k contributions.  I don’t think IRS regulations allow them to make those matches only after an extended “vesting” period (I think they can delay the offer to new employees, so that they can only sign up at the next annual sign-up period, but I don’t think they can go longer than that; in any case, it doesn’t sound like your employer is doing that because you said they enroll people automatically when they walk in the door).  Chris, any comments?  (I’m certainly not a financial professional! )
                              I think automatic enrollment in 401k’s is a good deal because with a 50% match it is a “no-brainer” that virtually every employee should want to participate.  You have the option to opt out if you want to (as you said).  Don’t you think it is better for the company to default to the option in the employee’s best interest rather than default to the option that costs the company less and impoverishes employees?  I don’t see why you should criticize them for that.  (If it is some crazy deal where the only investment is company stock, though, then I retract all I’ve said, and suggest you go work for someone else!).
                              On the one hand it may seem that limited investment choices in a 401k means that the company has taken power away from the employees.  But not really.  In the past, companies with traditional pensions made ALL the investment decisions AND controlled the pot of gold when you retired.  Unless you were lucky enough to have a plan with COLA’s, you would feel the pinch of inflation as you retired on a fixed pension (i.e., that $40,000/yr pension would in 20 years be like living on $22,000).  Now, as more of the financial responsibility gets shifted to employees (through 401k’s and through defined contribution plans), employees are actually getting more choices.  And, when you retire, you can take the pot of gold with you, roll it into an IRA and do virtually anything with it you want to investment-wise.  That is actually a lot more choice than used to exist in the future.  Many Republicans would like to do something like that with Social Security, but it has been bitterly opposed by those who think the government should make the investment decisions rather than the employees.  (In this case, “investment” is a euphemism for government spending in other areas, making clear why many politicians oppose it).
                              I for one would much rather have control of my retirement nest egg than leave it to the government.  They are spending my social security contributions faster than I can pay them in (it is a Ponzi scheme anyway since all I really pay for are the existing recipients; nothing is being saved for me).  And, investing on my own gives me the opportunity to achieve higher rates of return, and to have a nest egg to pass on to my children when I die (social security payments die with you unless your children are minors).
                              One final comment:  The whole basis for 401k’s is that they are tax-deferred accounts.  Why do we feel the government is offering us such a good deal by making tax-deferred accounts available?  If we had less government and lower tax rates, we wouldn’t need tax-deferred accounts.  Remember what is happening here:  They are taking the money YOU earned, and they are letting you invest it without taking 28-36% of it from you immediately.  For the favor of not robbing you immediately, they promise to rob you when you retire and start withdrawing the money.  And for that we thank them?
                              Robert

                              From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups. com] On Behalf Of evelyn sardina
                              Sent: Wednesday, July 11, 2007 7:00 PM
                              To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                              Subject: RE: [hreg] CNBC
                              At my work they let you self direct to what they choose for you!
                              Can you say Enron?  Look, something is better than nothing and nothing is what most people have.  You are right, education is the key.  Most kids are learning about this in school these days. The thing is that the don't earn money yet.  People also think they have to have a lot of money to invest.  It is not what you make but what you do with it and how much of it you get to keep in the end. Most poor people stay poor for lack of knowledge. It's like a desease.  I say do it all! Buy a green home or retrofit and take the money that you save in energy and buy green stock.  Mostly buy through direct purchase and if you if you don't care to do the work, let someone like yourself  guide them.  Some people just don't like making these decisions on their own, so it is worth it to have someone handle it for them.  To me anything is better than your employer whom at anytime can  tell you......Sorry but you gave us your money now you have to do what we say.  How about they fire you right before you become 100 percent vested! Oh but wait a minute, maybe they are thinking you will quit and forget about taking your money with you!  Just kidding, I know they wouldn't do that.

                              Chris Manning <cmanning@hal- pc.org> wrote:
                              You bring up a great point.  Often times, it is outside of an individuals control on what type of investments they have within their retirment plans.  I already know the arguement the companies give:  "It is our fiduciary responsibility to choose the investments that will generate the best financial return for our employees."
                              This is why it is vitally important for individuals to try and understand the intricacies of any retirement plan they may have.  There may be a way to self-direct the investments or at least to choose which mutual funds you want utilize.  Be sure and explore what your options are - what investment choices you have - the advantages/disadvan tages of each course of action.
                              I know this sounds more simplistic than it actually is, however, we must understand the power that our investment choices can have on society as a whole and work to create change.
                              -----Original Message-----
                              From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto:hreg@ yahoogroups. com] On Behalf Of evelyn sardina
                              Sent: Wednesday, July 11, 2007 3:44 PM
                              To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                              Subject: Re: [hreg] CNBC
                              The thing about it is that the power of making desicions is constantly being taken away from  people!  At my job, it is now a practice to automatically enroll everyone that walks in the door in a 401k type of plan.The paper work reads: You may get 50% of every dollar you invest after your vesting term, etc.   We have thousnds of employees all over the world. You can opt out but the mayority of the people don't unnderstand how any of this works!  You would think that this is good but the truth is that this is not guaranteed savings like social security ( i'm not going to get into the social security issue) but at least this is backed by our goverment ( backed by the goverment and i am not getting into this one either) I'm just saying.   Then you have a corporation putting the money into whatever they can make the most money out of.  As you know they get paid to recommend particular stock, as all brokers do.   We are talking corporations here.  When you invest in the 401k at my job you do not pick the companies you want to invest in, they invest  the employees  money in what they want.  Again more and more we give more power to corporations whojonly care about the bottom dollar. 

                              Chris Manning <cmanning@hal- pc.org> wrote:
                              As someone who works with this on a daily basis, I have rather strong
                              feelings when I see arguments put forth by members of the media
                              promoting a "Vice Fund" as a superior investment strategy. It has been
                              empirically proven that a well diversified portfolio will generate
                              statistically the same financial return over the long run - be it Vice
                              or Socially Responsible. However, I am a firm believer that the returns
                              of a company transcend purely the financial arena. The returns of a
                              company must be viewed from the financial *AND* the social and
                              environmental perspective before they can be judged to be good or bad.

                              Yes - oil company stocks have historically performed well, however, how
                              much of this is truly sustainable over the long run given the facts that
                              we know today? As everyone in here knows, the time of "easy" oil is
                              behind us. Given this, coupled with the fact that the vast majority of
                              oil reserves are not local to America does not bode well for their long
                              term growth potential given the turmoil in the world today. I'm not
                              trying to predict the future and oil stocks may indeed produce a nice
                              financial return for the foreseeable future, but at what cost?

                              Finally, to address the comment of "Listen people, you're investing
                              here, so stop with the morals and do the smart thing.", the smart thing
                              is to create a sustainable and diversified portfolio of investments that
                              match your conscience. It is not written anywhere that you have to
                              sacrifice return by utilizing a Socially Responsible approach to investing.

                              Individual investors need to realize the pivotal role they play in
                              helping shape our economy and our society. If they are willing to invest
                              in companies (either directly or indirectly) that they have questions
                              about or are not responsive to shareholders, they are giving their
                              unspoken "stamp of approval" for business as usual. We need to stand up
                              for sustainability and create a plan that will give us the return we
                              desire - a return consisting of financial, social and environmental
                              performance.

                              I know most here will agree with me on this, but I just needed to vent
                              some after reading the CNBC story.

                              Christopher S. Manning
                              www.manning- financial. com
                              "Sustainable Wealth Management"


                              Robert Johnston wrote:
                              >
                              > Well, the sad truth is we humans live in a world of (self-inflicted)
                              > trouble and investing in trouble can be profitable. In Jeremy Siegel’s
                              > best-selling book, “The Future for Investors”, copyright 2005, he
                              > shows that it isn’t the glamour stocks (technology, etc.) that have
                              > won over long periods of time. The highest rate of return of a stock
                              > since 1957 (he calls it his “descendants portfolio”—a 1957 stock and
                              > all its spinoffs etc.) was Phillip Morris at 4626.4%, or 19.75% annual
                              > rate of return—this despite all the tobacco litigation, etc. The other
                              > highlighted group was oil stocks. The top 5 performers since 1957 of
                              > the 20 largest 1957 stocks were oil companies. Royal Dutch Petroleum
                              > and its descendants have returned 13.64% annually, and the others were
                              > also in the 12-13% range.
                              >
                              > I think there will be good investment opportunities in renewables, but
                              > finding them is the trick. When a sector is as hot as the renewable
                              > energy, distributed power storage, etc., sector is now (with lots of
                              > venture capital, IPOs, etc.) one must be cautious as an investor. As
                              > the .com bubble should have taught us--even if we didn’t learn from
                              > the history of radio technology stocks, computer stocks, biotech
                              > stocks, etc.—there will be a huge shake-out and it is hard to predict
                              > the winners among new technology companies. And Siegel’s point is that
                              > even if you could predict the winners, you might not do as well as
                              > with the staid sin companies and oil. The reason is that the new tech
                              > companies are priced to perfection, so even if they deliver the
                              > expected growth, the stock won’t be that hot.
                              >
                              > Robert
                              >
                              > ------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ------
                              >
                              > *From:* hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto:hreg@ yahoogroups. com] *On Behalf
                              > Of *Susan Modikoane
                              > *Sent:* Tuesday, July 10, 2007 11:29 PM
                              > *To:* peakoil@lists. riseup.net; hreg@yahoogroups. com
                              > *Subject:* [hreg] CNBC
                              >
                              > I've been working out at a gym and, therefore, had time to catch CNBC.
                              > It was interesting to watch them insist that people invest in
                              > Conoco-Phillips tonight, stating that they have reached $80 a share
                              > and that if you look at their data, that means their stock will rise
                              > to $120.
                              >
                              > Another show was insisting that people invest in arms and oil,
                              > highlighting the "Vice Fund," as a great idea.
                              >
                              > "Listen people, you're investing here, so stop with the morals and do
                              > the smart thing."
                              >
                              > They had a reporter out in the street interviewing people who all said
                              > they'd prefer to invest in renewable energy. They cited one example of
                              > an oil company that had done well and never compared it to any stock
                              > in the renewable energy sector! Then they ran the splashy type, "Vice
                              > stocks may do better than renewable energy."
                              >
                              > Scary!
                              >
                              > ------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ------
                              >
                              > Choose the right car based on your needs. Check out Yahoo! Autos new
                              > Car Finder tool.
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              >




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                            • Chris Manning
                              That all depends on the plan documents for your 401(k). Some companies have it written into the plan where you can transfer a portion while you still work
                              Message 14 of 16 , Jul 16, 2007
                              • 0 Attachment
                                That all depends on the plan documents for your 401(k). Some companies
                                have it written into the plan where you can transfer a portion while you
                                still work there, others don't. I have seen it both ways.

                                Chris


                                phil6142@... wrote:
                                >
                                > I guess this is off topic but I will ask since there has been so much
                                > discussion already. It is my understanding that when you leave a
                                > company that you have several options for what to do with your 401k
                                > (All that you contributed plus your vested portion of the companies
                                > contribution) . i.e. Leave it with that company, transfer it to
                                > your new company, or roll it into a traditional IRA.
                                >
                                > Would it be possible to transfer your portion of the 401k to a
                                > traditional IRA while you are still working for the same company?
                                >
                                >
                                > -----Original Message-----
                                > From: Robert Johnston <junk1@plastability. com>
                                > To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                                > Sent: Sat, 14 Jul 2007 10:56 pm
                                > Subject: RE: [hreg] CNBC
                                >
                                > No problem here! J
                                > I’m sorry your plan is so limited. I’m fortunate that my corporation
                                > has many options.
                                >
                                > Robert
                                >
                                > * From: * hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto:hreg@ yahoogroups. com] *On
                                > Behalf Of *evelyn sardina
                                > *Sent:* Saturday, July 14, 2007 12:43 PM
                                > *To:* hreg@yahoogroups. com
                                > *Subject:* RE: [hreg] CNBC
                                >
                                > Thank you Chris and Susan for the help. Sorry Robert, I guess I should
                                > have started by saying I have invested this way before. It would have
                                > saved us time. I assumed you knew about this type of 401k. I don't
                                > believe in demonizing things and that includes corporations. I have
                                > made my share with this type of investing. I was just stating my
                                > observations. I have to say that I also think that corporations will
                                > come around. We have a new slew of young educated people that have it
                                > in their best interest to turn things around. As far as me, I am
                                > getting up there in age ( very tempting to put money in coal
                                > companies, I am not getting any younger ) but I resist knowing my
                                > daughter will end up paying the price. What we are seeing is many of
                                > us planting the seeds for the younger generations. What a privilage to
                                > be able help lay this foundation! As soon as I have enough years in
                                > my company to be 100 percent vested and they have a green fund I will
                                > invest in it!
                                >
                                > */Chris Manning <cmanning@hal- pc.org>/* wrote:
                                >
                                > Robert,
                                >
                                > You are correct. ERISA sets forth all of the requirements on
                                > this, however, these could change if the plan were "top-heavy".
                                > Generally, larger employers make sure this is not the case as they
                                > lose some of their tax benefits.
                                >
                                > Also, I completely agree with Susan that it is un-American to
                                > limit the choices in the investment plan to only a handful of
                                > mutual funds. If you examine the underlying assets of many of the
                                > mutual funds, you will find that a large portion include the
                                > companies that are profiting from Iraq (both directly and
                                > indirectly) - can you say military industrial complex?
                                >
                                > Unfortunately, there is no easy answer on how to get this
                                > changed. As has been mentioned, it has to start with education.
                                > Education on how your companies retirement plan works, education
                                > on how investment and capital can be used as a catalyst for
                                > change. It is my hope that as more employees begin to demand
                                > Socially Responsible choices in their retirement plans companies
                                > will have to listen and begin offering them.
                                >
                                > But back to the original topic of CNBC having guests promoting a
                                > "Vice Fund" as a superior investment strategy and saying to ignore
                                > morals because "this is investing". Hopefully most people will
                                > ignore this for the "hogwash" it is. There is simply NO evidence
                                > available that supports this assertion. People can profit with
                                > principle.
                                >
                                > Chris
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                > -----Original Message-----
                                > *From:* hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto:hreg@ yahoogroups. com]
                                > *On Behalf Of *Robert Johnston
                                > *Sent:* Friday, July 13, 2007 6:08 AM
                                > *To:* hreg@yahoogroups. com
                                > *Subject:* RE: [hreg] CNBC
                                > You are absolutely right. Learn something new everyday! (I
                                > said I wasn’t a financial professional; that’s why I asked
                                > Chris to comment, but thanks for jumping in). I’ve worked for
                                > 2 companies with 401k’s, and neither had vesting in their
                                > 401k’s, only in their pensions. I did a little checking and
                                > learned that there are two types of 401k vesting, graded
                                > (gradual) and cliff (all at once):
                                > “ With graded vesting, you own an increasing portion of the
                                > employer contribution each year you are with your company. If
                                > your company had a five-year graded vesting schedule, you
                                > could be 20 percent vested after one year, 40 percent vested
                                > after two years, etc. By law, the longest graded vesting
                                > schedule a 401k plan can have for employer matching
                                > contributions is six years.
                                > With cliff vesting, the employer contribution goes from zero
                                > to 100 percent vested after a set period of time. So if your
                                > vesting requirement is three years and you leave your company
                                > after two years, you won't get any of the employer
                                > contributions. Currently, the longest cliff-vesting schedule
                                > allowed by law for employer matching contributions is three
                                > years.”
                                > Thus, it looks like Evelyn must wait either up to 3 years to
                                > be fully vested if a cliff plan, or up to 6 years if a graded
                                > plan, though in the latter case, she’d still have partial
                                > matching if she left early. I was still correct in pointing
                                > out that she wouldn’t lose any of HER money if she left early
                                > (except investment losses, of course). It is only her
                                > employer’s matching funds that can be vested.
                                > Thanks for the enlightenment, Susan!
                                > Robert
                                > * From: * hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto:hreg@ yahoogroups.
                                > com] *On Behalf Of *Susan Modikoane
                                > *Sent:* Friday, July 13, 2007 12:59 AM
                                > *To:* hreg@yahoogroups. com
                                > *Subject:* RE: [hreg] CNBC
                                > Robert -
                                > There is such a thing as vesting in a 401K. And you should
                                > know that.
                                > To force an employee to select between the various Fidelity or
                                > Oppenheimer funds that keep feeding the corporations that are
                                > draining our economy to sustain them in Iraq is not only bad
                                > investing, it's un-American.
                                > Tonight Senator Reid proudly announced that they were
                                > proposing leaving Iraq in 3 months, leaving 20,000 US troops
                                > in Iraq to protect "our assets" there.
                                > "We" don't have any assets there.
                                >
                                >
                                > */Robert Johnston <junk1@plastability. com>/* wrote:
                                >
                                > Evelyn, this is moving off-topic, but your message seems
                                > to confuse 401k’s and regular pensions. I don’t believe
                                > there is such a thing as vesting with respect to 401k’s,
                                > only for pensions. Often, you self-direct your
                                > investments in 401k’s from a limited number of mutual
                                > funds your company’s 401k administrator makes available.
                                > Your pension, on the other hand, is generally invested by
                                > the company. That’s if it is a defined benefit plan. If
                                > instead you have a SEP-IRA or something like that as your
                                > corporate pension (i.e., defined contribution plan), then
                                > you may have a choice over its investment as well. But I
                                > don’t understand your vesting comment if in fact we are
                                > talking about a 401k. And your 50% comment—they can’t
                                > tell you that you “may” get 50% of every dollar after you
                                > are vested—the money is yours and they can’t take it away
                                > (if 401k). On the other hand, it is common for companies
                                > to offer matching. Thus, they may be offering a 50% match
                                > on your contributions, so that if you invest $1, they’ll
                                > add $0.50 to the pot. That is usually a great deal for
                                > employees, and I always make sure I contribute the amount
                                > necessary to receive the maximum employer match on my 401k
                                > contributions. I don’t think IRS regulations allow them
                                > to make those matches only after an extended “vesting”
                                > period (I think they can delay the offer to new employees,
                                > so that they can only sign up at the next annual sign-up
                                > period, but I don’t think they can go longer than that; in
                                > any case, it doesn’t sound like your employer is doing
                                > that because you said they enroll people automatically
                                > when they walk in the door). Chris, any comments? (I’m
                                > certainly not a financial professional! )
                                > I think automatic enrollment in 401k’s is a good deal
                                > because with a 50% match it is a “no-brainer” that
                                > virtually every employee should want to participate. You
                                > have the option to opt out if you want to (as you said).
                                > Don’t you think it is better for the company to default to
                                > the option in the employee’s best interest rather than
                                > default to the option that costs the company less and
                                > impoverishes employees? I don’t see why you should
                                > criticize them for that. (If it is some crazy deal where
                                > the only investment is company stock, though, then I
                                > retract all I’ve said, and suggest you go work for someone
                                > else!).
                                > On the one hand it may seem that limited investment
                                > choices in a 401k means that the company has taken power
                                > away from the employees. But not really. In the past,
                                > companies with traditional pensions made ALL the
                                > investment decisions AND controlled the pot of gold when
                                > you retired. Unless you were lucky enough to have a plan
                                > with COLA’s, you would feel the pinch of inflation as you
                                > retired on a fixed pension (i.e., that $40,000/yr pension
                                > would in 20 years be like living on $22,000). Now, as
                                > more of the financial responsibility gets shifted to
                                > employees (through 401k’s and through defined contribution
                                > plans), employees are actually getting more choices. And,
                                > when you retire, you can take the pot of gold with you,
                                > roll it into an IRA and do virtually anything with it you
                                > want to investment-wise. That is actually a lot more
                                > choice than used to exist in the future. Many Republicans
                                > would like to do something like that with Social Security,
                                > but it has been bitterly opposed by those who think the
                                > government should make the investment decisions rather
                                > than the employees. (In this case, “investment” is a
                                > euphemism for government spending in other areas, making
                                > clear why many politicians oppose it).
                                > I for one would much rather have control of my retirement
                                > nest egg than leave it to the government. They are
                                > spending my social security contributions faster than I
                                > can pay them in (it is a Ponzi scheme anyway since all I
                                > really pay for are the existing recipients; nothing is
                                > being saved for me). And, investing on my own gives me
                                > the opportunity to achieve higher rates of return, and to
                                > have a nest egg to pass on to my children when I die
                                > (social security payments die with you unless your
                                > children are minors).
                                > One final comment: The whole basis for 401k’s is that
                                > they are tax-deferred accounts. Why do we feel the
                                > government is offering us such a good deal by making
                                > tax-deferred accounts available? If we had less
                                > government and lower tax rates, we wouldn’t need
                                > tax-deferred accounts. Remember what is happening here:
                                > They are taking the money YOU earned, and they are letting
                                > you invest it without taking 28-36% of it from you
                                > immediately. For the favor of not robbing you
                                > immediately, they promise to rob you when you retire and
                                > start withdrawing the money. And for that we thank them?
                                > Robert
                                > * From: * hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto:hreg@ yahoogroups.
                                > com] *On Behalf Of *evelyn sardina
                                > *Sent:* Wednesday, July 11, 2007 7:00 PM
                                > *To:* hreg@yahoogroups. com
                                > *Subject:* RE: [hreg] CNBC
                                > At my work they let you self direct to what they choose
                                > for you!
                                > Can you say Enron? Look, something is better than nothing
                                > and nothing is what most people have. You are right,
                                > education is the key. Most kids are learning about this
                                > in school these days. The thing is that the don't earn
                                > money yet. People also think they have to have a lot of
                                > money to invest. It is not what you make but what you do
                                > with it and how much of it you get to keep in the end.
                                > Most poor people stay poor for lack of knowledge. It's
                                > like a desease. I say do it all! Buy a green home or
                                > retrofit and take the money that you save in energy and
                                > buy green stock. Mostly buy through direct purchase and
                                > if you if you don't care to do the work, let someone like
                                > yourself guide them. Some people just don't like making
                                > these deci si ons on their own, so it is worth it to have
                                > someone handle it for them. To me anything is better than
                                > your employer whom at anytime can tell you......Sorry but
                                > you gave us your money now you have to do what we
                                > say. How about they fire you right before you become 100
                                > percent vested! Oh but wait a minute, maybe they are
                                > thinking you will quit and forget about taking your money
                                > with you! Just kidding, I know they wouldn't do that.
                                >
                                > */Chris Manning <cmanning@hal- pc.org>/* wrote:
                                >
                                > You bring up a great point. Often times, it is
                                > outside of an individuals control on what type of
                                > investments they have within their retirment plans. I
                                > already know the arguement the companies give: "It is
                                > our fiduciary responsibility to choose the investments
                                > that will generate the best financial return for our
                                > employees."
                                > This is why it is vitally important for individuals to
                                > try and understand the intricacies of any retirement
                                > plan they may have. There may be a way to self-direct
                                > the investments or at least to choose which mutual
                                > funds you want utilize. Be sure and explore what your
                                > options are - what investment choices you have - the
                                > advantages/disadvan tages of each course of action.
                                > I know this sounds more simplistic than it actually
                                > is, however, we must understand the power that our
                                > investment choices can have on society as a whole and
                                > work to create change.
                                >
                                > -----Original Message-----
                                > *From:* hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto:hreg@
                                > yahoogroups. com] *On Behalf Of *evelyn sardina
                                > *Sent:* Wednesday, July 11, 2007 3:44 PM
                                > *To:* hreg@yahoogroups. com
                                > *Subject:* Re: [hreg] CNBC
                                > The thing about it is that the power of making
                                > desicions is constantly being taken away from
                                > people! At my job, it is now a practice to
                                > automatically enroll everyone that walks in the
                                > door in a 401k type of plan.The paper work reads:
                                > You may get 50% of every dollar you invest after
                                > your vesting term, etc. We have thousnds of
                                > employees all over the world. You can opt out but
                                > the mayority of the people don't unnderstand how
                                > any of this works! You would think that this is
                                > good but the truth is that this is not guaranteed
                                > savings like social security ( i'm not going
                                > to get into the social security issue) but at
                                > least this is backed by our goverment ( backed by
                                > the goverment and i am not getting into this one
                                > either) I'm just saying. Then you have a
                                > corporation putting the money into whatever they
                                > can make the most money out of. As you
                                > know they get paid to recommend particular stock,
                                > as all brokers do. We are talking corporations
                                > here. When you invest in the 401k at my job you
                                > do not pick the companies you want to invest in,
                                > they invest the employees money in what they
                                > want. Again more and more we give more power to
                                > corporations whojonly care about the bottom dollar.
                                >
                                > */Chris Manning <cmanning@hal- pc.org>/* wrote:
                                > As someone who works with this on a daily basis, I
                                > have rather strong
                                > feelings when I see arguments put forth by members
                                > of the media
                                > promoting a "Vice Fund" as a superior investment
                                > strategy. It has been
                                > empirically proven that a well diversified
                                > portfolio will generate
                                > statistically the same financial return over the
                                > long run - be it Vice
                                > or Socially Responsible. However, I am a firm
                                > believer that the returns
                                > of a company transcend purely the financial arena.
                                > The returns of a
                                > company must be viewed from the financial *AND*
                                > the social and
                                > environmental perspective before they can be
                                > judged to be good or bad.
                                >
                                > Yes - oil company stocks have historically
                                > performed well, however, how
                                > much of this is truly sustainable over the long
                                > run given the facts that
                                > we know today? As everyone in here knows, the time
                                > of "easy" oil is
                                > behind us. Given this, coupled with the fact that
                                > the vast majority of
                                > oil reserves are not local to America does not
                                > bode well for their long
                                > term growth potential given the turmoil in the
                                > world today. I'm not
                                > trying to predict the future and oil stocks may
                                > indeed produce a nice
                                > financial return for the foreseeable future, but
                                > at what cost?
                                >
                                > Finally, to address the comment of "Listen people,
                                > you're investing
                                > here, so stop with the morals and do the smart
                                > thing.", the smart thing
                                > is to create a sustainable and diversified
                                > portfolio of investments that
                                > match your conscience. It is not written anywhere
                                > that you have to
                                > sacrifice return by utilizing a Socially
                                > Responsible approach to investing.
                                >
                                > Individual investors need to realize the pivotal
                                > role they play in
                                > helping shape our economy and our society. If they
                                > are willing to invest
                                > in companies (either directly or indirectly) that
                                > they have questions
                                > about or are not responsive to shareholders, they
                                > are giving their
                                > unspoken "stamp of approval" for business as
                                > usual. We need to stand up
                                > for sustainability and create a plan that will
                                > give us the return we
                                > desire - a return consisting of financial, social
                                > and environmental
                                > performance.
                                >
                                > I know most here will agree with me on this, but I
                                > just needed to vent
                                > some after reading the CNBC story.
                                >
                                > Christopher S. Manning
                                > www.manning- <http://www.manning-/> financial. com
                                > "Sustainable Wealth Management"
                                >
                                >
                                > Robert Johnston wrote:
                                > >
                                > > Well, the sad truth is we humans live in a world
                                > of (self-inflicted)
                                > > trouble and investing in trouble can be
                                > profitable. In Jeremy Siegel’s
                                > > best-selling book, “The Future for Investors”,
                                > copyright 2005, he
                                > > shows that it isn’t the glamour stocks
                                > (technology, etc.) that have
                                > > won over long periods of time. The highest rate
                                > of return of a stock
                                > > since 1957 (he calls it his “descendants
                                > portfolio”—a 1957 stock and
                                > > all its spinoffs etc.) was Phillip Morris at
                                > 4626.4%, or 19.75% annual
                                > > rate of return—this despite all the tobacco
                                > litigation, etc. The other
                                > > highlighted group was oil stocks. The top 5
                                > performers since 1957 of
                                > > the 20 largest 1957 stocks were oil companies.
                                > Royal Dutch Petroleum
                                > > and its descendants have returned 13.64%
                                > annually, and the others were
                                > > also in the 12-13% range.
                                > >
                                > > I think there will be good investment
                                > opportunities in renewables, but
                                > > finding them is the trick. When a sector is as
                                > hot as the renewable
                                > > energy, distributed power storage, etc., sector
                                > is now (with lots of
                                > > venture capital, IPOs, etc.) one must be cautious
                                > as an investor. As
                                > > the .com bubble should have taught us--even if we
                                > didn’t learn from
                                > > the history of radio technology stocks, computer
                                > stocks, biotech
                                > > stocks, etc.—there will be a huge shake-out and
                                > it is hard to predict
                                > > the winners among new technology companies. And
                                > Siegel’s point is that
                                > > even if you could predict the winners, you might
                                > not do as well as
                                > > with the staid sin companies and oil. The reason
                                > is that the new tech
                                > > companies are priced to perfection, so even if
                                > they deliver the
                                > > expected growth, the stock won’t be that hot.
                                > >
                                > > Robert
                                > >
                                > > ------------ --------- --------- ---------
                                > --------- --------- --------- ------
                                > >
                                > > *From:* hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto:hreg@
                                > yahoogroups. com] *On Behalf
                                > > Of *Susan Modikoane
                                > > *Sent:* Tuesday, July 10, 2007 11:29 PM
                                > > *To:* peakoil@lists. riseup.net;
                                > hreg@yahoogroups. com
                                > > *Subject:* [hreg] CNBC
                                > >
                                > > I've been working out at a gym and, therefore,
                                > had time to catch CNBC.
                                > > It was interesting to watch them insist that
                                > people invest in
                                > > Conoco-Phillips tonight, stating that they have
                                > reached $80 a share
                                > > and that if you look at their data, that means
                                > their stock will rise
                                > > to $120.
                                > >
                                > > Another show was insisting that people invest in
                                > arms and oil,
                                > > highlighting the "Vice Fund," as a great idea.
                                > >
                                > > "Listen people, you're investing here, so stop
                                > with the morals and do
                                > > the smart thing."
                                > >
                                > > They had a reporter out in the street
                                > interviewing people who all said
                                > > they'd prefer to invest in renewable energy. They
                                > cited one example of
                                > > an oil company that had done well and never
                                > compared it to any stock
                                > > in the renewable energy sector! Then they ran the
                                > splashy type, "Vice
                                > > stocks may do better than renewable energy."
                                > >
                                > > Scary!
                                > >
                                > > ------------ --------- --------- ---------
                                > --------- --------- --------- ------
                                > >
                                > > Choose the right car based on your needs. Check
                                > out Yahoo! Autos new
                                > > Car Finder tool.
                                > >
                                > >
                                > >
                                > >
                                >
                                >
                                >
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