Sunday, November 26

Being Less Poor: Playstation 3 Flatscreen Christmas Edition

It is Christmas time again and once again we have a perfect example of why many people in the US are poor. Because they are blowing money on things like the Playstation 3 video game system by Sony. That sucker sells for over $600 and it does not even include any games with it. Sure, if you can afford the thing, then that is your problem where to cram it in with the other stuff around the TV. However, there is all this talk of 'the poor' in America. I can only guess at how many poor were lined up waiting to get their hands on one of these things.

Now, I am not talking about the poor who were paid to wait in line by some moneybags who has better things to do than stand outside a store for days for something he can order online a couple months from now once the insanity wears off. Nor an I talking about those who purchased one to resell on Ebay. I am talking about almost everyone else who is getting ready to waste $600+ for a game while at the same time complaining that they never have any money. That's basically almost everyone that was waiting in line. No wonder you guys are poor. Not only were you waiting to purchase an overpriced product, but you were also not working to do it. Did you call in sick, or perhaps took a vacation day or two. Maybe you are unemployed and see the game as something that you deserve. No matter the situation, most of the people who purchased this thing probably deserve to be poor, just for the stupidity of the purchase.

Now there is some good to be found in all of this. First, if you were able to find the $600, then you can surely find another $250. And if you were prepared to buy one but were not quick enough to get one, then you have $600 that you can use to make yourself richer. That is by making a direct investment in stock.

Many stocks permit you to make a direct purchase through their websites. Stocks such as General Electric and Exxon Mobil among many others. Many (but not all) pay a dividend every three months. This can be given as either cash or as more stock. The price to open an account it not so great. The fee for the two I listed above is only $250. So for the price of a Playstation 3 you could instead open an account for both GE and XOM and still have $100 left over to purchase one $50 monthly investment for each afterwards. That's right, once the account is open, you can purchase additional stock for as little as $50. That amount should be easy to find, since by not buying a Playstation 3, you won't be buying games for it, or Blu-Ray DVDs. See, you'll be saving a ton in no time.

So which stocks to buy. I have listed two above that I own, but they may not be the right ones for you or the reasons that I purchased them might not be relevant for you. One way that you can narrow down the possible list is to limit your choices to those stocks that issue a dividend. They tend to be more stable and should be making a profit, which is where the dividend comes from. If you want my opinion about a stock, ask in the comments, even anonymously if you wish.

Now, just imagine what you could do by not spending a couple thousand on a flat screen TV! (and then the additional cable fees to get a high definition TV signal and hundreds more for a HD DVD player and disks.)

As always, keep in mind that there are two reasons why people are poor:

- They do not earn enough money
- They spend too much money

People dwell too much on reason one and tend to ignore reason two.

Keep in mind that direct investment makes a great Christmas present and allows you to purchase additional stock each Christmas, birthday or other celebration.

Of course you could also use the $600 to pay off part of your credit card debt......

Read more in the Past Issues:

Being Less Poor - 27 October 2005
Being Less Poor: Update - 18 June 2006



Anonymous said...

So, many Americans are poor because they buy too much high-end home entertainment/gaming systems?


You really have your finger on the pulse of the financial world.



But the advice to invest some stocks wasn't such a bad idea. You don't need to be a populist to have a blog really... You could've left out the first 3/4 of the post, taken out ALL the stuff about your ridiculous "theory" that poverty is caused by nerds buying game systmes, and just posted the advice about stocks. I'm sure I wouldn't even have commented on it, had it not been such a cretinous comment.

ps came here from your FinlandforThought link, where I regularly read your dumb comments too.

Fred Fry said...

"So, many Americans are poor because they buy too much high-end home entertainment/gaming systems?"

That and buying $3 coffees and luxury cars and overpriced homes with 'bonus rooms'and expensive vacations and XM/Sirius radios and so on.

Really, how many hours do you need to work to earn the $700-$800 your going to need to get this thing and a couple games for it taking into account that half your salary will go for taxes and housing, providing your not living at home.