Changes Made in 2013 Could Finally Start Paying Off for 2 Companies

Will Apache Corp and Petrobras bust out of their slumps in 2014? One of our analysts believes this might just happen.

Jan 8, 2014 at 10:33AM

This segment is from Thursday's edition of 'Digging for Value', in which sector analysts Joel South and Taylor Muckerman discuss energy & materials news with host Alison Southwick. The twice-weekly show can be viewed on Tuesdays & Thursdays. It can also be found on Twitter, along with our extended coverage of the energy & materials sectors @TMFEnergy.

Companies not treating investors to double digit percentage gains in 2013 really let shareholders down. The overall market soared, but Apache Corp (NYSE:APA) and Petrobras (NYSE:PBR) barely broke even and lost more than 30%, respectively. Will 2014 be any different? Motley Fool analyst Taylor Muckerman believes that it might given Apache's refocused efforts in the United States and Petrobras' activity in the pre-salt formation set to increase. All of this should help lead oil and natural gas production higher, hopefully followed closely by gains in the stock market. For more on this topic, tune in to the video below.

One thing that likely won't change? Our ongoing energy boom
Record oil and natural gas production is revolutionizing the United States' energy position. Finding the right plays while historic amounts of capital expenditures are flooding the industry will pad your investment nest egg. For this reason, the Motley Fool is offering a comprehensive look at three energy companies set to soar during this transformation in the energy industry. To find out which three companies are spreading their wings, check out the special free report, "3 Stocks for the American Energy Bonanza." Don't miss out on this timely opportunity; click here to access your report -- it's absolutely free. 

Joel South has no position in any stocks mentioned. Taylor Muckerman has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. (ADR). Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

A Financial Plan on an Index Card

Keeping it simple.

Aug 7, 2015 at 11:26AM

Two years ago, University of Chicago professor Harold Pollack wrote his entire financial plan on an index card.

It blew up. People loved the idea. Financial advice is often intentionally complicated. Obscurity lets advisors charge higher fees. But the most important parts are painfully simple. Here's how Pollack put it:

The card came out of chat I had regarding what I view as the financial industry's basic dilemma: The best investment advice fits on an index card. A commenter asked for the actual index card. Although I was originally speaking in metaphor, I grabbed a pen and one of my daughter's note cards, scribbled this out in maybe three minutes, snapped a picture with my iPhone, and the rest was history.

More advisors and investors caught onto the idea and started writing their own financial plans on a single index card.

I love the exercise, because it makes you think about what's important and forces you to be succinct.

So, here's my index-card financial plan:


Everything else is details. 

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