Friday, 26 June 2015

Till Debt Do Us Part

An article from the Yahoo!Finance pages has the shocking headline:
43% of people in relationships have no idea what their partner earns
Why the number isn’t the expected 50%, I have no idea. 

Assuming that all women tell their men what they earn (and the Bible is quite clear on this - 1 Corinthians 11:9 “for indeed man’s paycheck was not created for the woman's sake, but woman’s paycheck is for the man's sake”), it would appear that some 14% of men tell their wives / partners what they earn, or possibly 14% haven’t done a good job of safeguarding their salaries from prying eyes. 

In my experience, this can only lead to trouble.

The article also rather casually mentions that one of the things couples share are ‘chores’ – whatever they are. The first definition I found when I looked the word up, was:
the everyday work around a house or farm
I can’t for the life of me fathom why this routine, and frankly not very exciting, stuff would ever be shared. 

Call me old fashioned, but this is political correctness gone mad. 
As for ‘investable assets’, they are no one’s business but the man’s. Opening the door to including women in financial decision making, especially in the more speculative area of sporting investment decisions, is a recipe for disaster.

I’ve written before that my own wife takes absolutely no interest in my investing whatsoever and it’s far better that way. No one should feel that they are answerable to anyone but themselves when making a betting decision. The last thing you want after a loss is to have to explain it to someone, as Peter Nordsted famously admitted to on one occasion, or have someone reminding you about it, and as for wins – well they are best kept to yourself lest they trigger requests for designer handbags or other luxury accoutrements.

Maybe it’s because I am a ‘boomer’ while my wife is not, but there’s also the.....  oh never mind, it’ll have to wait - she needs a hand with folding laundry. Meanwhile, here’s the article:
Couples are used to sharing most things — family holidays, chores, the occasional dessert — but many still have a hard time sharing the contents of their bank accounts.
According to a new Fidelity survey, 43% of couples said they had no idea how much their partner earns. When asked to hazard a guess, 10% were off by more than $25,000. Their better half’s paycheck wasn’t all they were in the dark about.
More than one-third of couples surveyed couldn’t agree on the balances of their investable assets. Nearly half (48%) said they have no idea how much they will need to save for retirement in order to sustain their current lifestyle and another 47% disagreed on the amount.
Boomer couples (for the purposes of Fidelity’s survey, those born between 1946 and 1964) were the most likely generation to find themselves at odds with their partner about their household finances. Sixty percent of boomers couldn’t say how much their Social Security benefit might be (F.Y.I. you can download your free Social Security statement anytime you want).
The fact that so many couples aren’t on the same page financially isn’t entirely a symptom of miscommunication or necessarily a signal that there’s an imbalance in household finance management. One of the lasting impacts of the recession has been a changing employment landscape, which has left many families with irregular incomes. More employers are leaning on contract or freelance work and by the year 2020, independent contractors are expected to make up 40% of the U.S. workforce.
“As more and more people go into freelance work, it makes it harder for people to predict their own income, much less their partner’s,” says John Sweeney, Executive VP of Retirement and Investing Strategies for Fidelity. “But when your compensation becomes more variable, it’s even more important to have budgets established and make sure you’re in line with how much you’re spending.”
Till debt do us part

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