Wal-Mart's Silver Lining

The Motley Fool's top analysts Chris Hill and Matt Koppenheffer tackle the retail giant's ugly quarter.

May 15, 2014 at 5:00PM

After Wal-Mart's (NYSE:WMT) fifth-straight quarter of falling comparable-store sales, CEO Douglas McMillon blamed the weather for affecting operating costs. Should investors give the stock the cold shoulder?

Today on Investor Beat, Chris Hill and Motley Fool analyst Matt Koppenheffer run through Wal-Mart's struggles with stagnation. Matt sees some positives in Wal-Mart's quarterly report in rising comps in the small-format Neighborhood Market stores and e-commerce. Matt sees Wal-Mart's future in the synthesis of e-commerce and the brick-and-mortar locations. Since the report suggests growth in these two areas, Matt sees this as Wal-Mart's silver lining in an otherwise ugly quarter.

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Chris Hill has no position in any stocks mentioned. Matt Koppenheffer owns shares of Wal-Mart Stores. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. 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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