Friday, May 28, 1999

Teaching Others To Be Foolish

by Russell Hunter

The other day it was announced that my company is merging with Microsoft. When employees were informed of the merger two months ago, we knew one of the great things about it would be that we'd be getting Microsoft stock options. Having been Foolish for about a year, I thought I should help some others understand stocks better. I know that many people have no clue what stocks are, much less understand what employee stock options are. So I held a discussion at lunch time on stocks to help others understand what they were getting and to see if I could learn from others. It ended up that I led most of the discussion.

In the discussion we talked about:

How stocks work;

What are employee stock options are;

I gave a big warning about taxes and schedule D;

Using the money from the options to get out of debt before buying that new boat;

Investing in index funds;

Maxing out your 401(k);

Putting money into a Roth IRA;

Having a self-managed IRA so you can pick your own stocks;

And finally, tax tips for reducing college expenses.

People asked me were I learned all of this stuff. I answered, ""

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