22 OctRogers appoints president, Enterprise Business Unit

Guy Laurence, Rogers President and Chief Executive Officer has announced the appointment of Nitin Kawale to president, Enterprise Business Unit, effective 1 December. In this role, Kawale will be responsible for the delivery of the companys Enterprise business strategy and commercial plan covering Small and Medium Business, Enterprise and Public Sector customers.

Kawale joins Rogers from Cisco Systems Canada where he held the position of president since 2008 with responsibility for all aspects of the Canadian operation including sales, marketing, finance, distribution and services. He has been with Cisco since 1995 serving a variety of domestic and international roles including: Worldwide Strategy and Worldwide Mobility as well as Cisco Canada executive roles in Enterprise, Small and Medium Business, and Public Sector businesses.

22 OctBusiness Briefs: Oct. 21

Snyder, of Anderson, received an Outstanding Achievement Award for his work to fostering diversity at the college. Snyder hired the college’s first vice president for diversity, equity and inclusion and commissioned a study that resulted in a proposal to create a statewide diversity program. The college has a minority student enrollment of over 25,000 students.

The college has also increased the level of Minority Business Enterprise and Woman-Owned Business Enterprise purchases by 93 percent since 2007.

Ivy Tech is one of Indiana’s largest and fastest growing colleges and serving more than 200,000 students at 32 campuses and 100 learning centers.

To see your good news, special recognition or other business news here, contact Traci Moyer at traci.moyer@heraldbulletin.com or call 648-4250.

22 OctSaline Area Chamber of Commerce honors top businesses in annual enterprise …

SALINE–The best of the best business in the Saline area were recently honored during a ceremony held by the Saline Area Chamber of Commerce.

The 19th annual Business Enterprise Awards took place Thursday, Oct. 16 at the Stonebridge Golf Club in Ann Arbor.

The ceremony featured the presentation of the Lifetime Achievement Award, 2014 Small Business of the Year and 2014 Large Business of the Year. Government officials were on hand to give tributes to each award winner. Officials included Congressman Tim Walberg, State Rep. Gretchen Driskell and Saline Mayor Brian Marl.

Lifetime Achievement Award

The Robison-Bahnmiller Funeral Home received the award in recognition of the businesss long history of outstanding contributions to the Saline community.

This is a big deal to us and we are very grateful for the honor, said Alison Robison, wife of owner Jim Robison.

Alison Robison spoke about the evolution of the funeral home, which the couple purchased from the Bahnmillers in 1984.

In 1982, just four months after the birth of their daughter, they moved from Ann Arbor to the apartment above the funeral home. At the request of Gerald and Mildred Bahnmiller they moved to Saline to become the next owners of the business.

Once again, I found I had a limited and fairy tale understanding of what I had signed on for and what we had committed to doing, she said.

She recalled stories of raising two children above the funeral home and working to live up to the reputation of the Bahnmillers and Lockwood families. Continued…

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22 OctArrow Reports Third-Quarter Earnings Per Share Up 8.9%, Strong Asset Quality …

GLENS FALLS, NY, Oct. 20, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Arrow Financial Corporation (NasdaqGS® – AROW) announced operating results for the three- and nine-month periods ended September 30, 2014. Net income for the third quarter of 2014 was $6.15 million, an increase of $524 thousand, or 9.3%, from net income of $5.62 million for the third quarter of 2013. Diluted earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter was $0.49, an 8.9% increase from the comparable 2013 quarter, when diluted EPS was $0.45. Return on average assets for the 2014 third quarter was 1.13%, and return on average equity for the 2014 third quarter was 12.22%. Net income for the first nine months of 2014 was $17.0 million, an increase of $980 thousand, or 6.1%, from net income of $16.0 million for the first nine months of 2013. Diluted EPS for the nine-month period was $1.35, a 5.5% increase from the comparable 2013 period, when diluted EPS was $1.28.

Arrow President and CEO

Thomas J. Murphy stated, Arrow delivered another quarter of solid performance, with increased net income, earnings per share and net interest margin. We posted record highs for total loans outstanding and total stockholders equity. In addition, our income from our trust division and commission income from insurance agency operations continues to grow, and we maintained excellent asset quality and strong capital ratios.

Also in the third quarter, the Company was named to the Sandler ONeill Sm-All Stars Class of 2014 based on financial performance, and our lead subsidiary, Glens Falls National Bank and Trust Company, launched a fully redesigned website that enhances its online delivery of information and services.

The following list expands on our third-quarter results:

Net Interest Income and Margin:In the third quarter of 2014, on a tax-equivalent basis, our net interest income increased $1.2 million, or 8.7%, compared to the third quarter of 2013, while our tax-equivalent net interest margin increased by 15 basis points from 3.06% in the third quarter of 2013 to 3.21% for the third quarter of 2014. The increase in net interest margin reflected an increase in the yield on investments and a decrease in our cost of deposits offset, in part, by a decrease in the yield on our loan portfolio.

Trust Assets and Related Noninterest Income:Assets under trust administration and investment management at September 30, 2014, were $1.2 billion, an increase of $88.8 million, or 8.0%, from the September 30, 2013, balance of $1.111 billion. The growth in asset balances was generally attributable to a significant rise in the equity markets between the periods and the addition of new accounts. Income from fiduciary activities increased by $620 thousand, or 12.4%, from $5.0 million for the first nine months of 2013, to $5.6 million for the first nine months of 2014.

Loan Growth:For the first nine months of 2014, our loan balances increased by $115.0 million, or 9.1%, with increases in all three of our major segments: residential real estate, commercial and commercial real estate, and consumer automobile.

Our residential real estate loan portfolio grew by $56.2 million, or 12.2%, during the first nine months of 2014. We originated approximately $98 million of residential real estate loans, an increase of 1.3% from approximately $97 million of residential real estate loans originated in the comparable period for 2013. Included in these amounts is an increase of $13.6 million, or 13.4%, in our home equity loan balances, a program we have been promoting in 2014. Our gain on the sale of residential real estate loans for the first nine months of 2014 was significantly less than our gain for the first nine months of 2013, primarily because, in the first two quarters of 2013, we were still selling a high percentage of our originations into the secondary market.

Our commercial and commercial real estate loan portfolio grew by $33.6 million, or 8.3%, during the first nine months of 2014. Even with a very competitive environment for commercial loans, we experienced steady growth over the past nine months.

We also experienced growth from our indirect automobile lending program. We have advanced $166.0 million in new and used automobile loans in the first nine months of 2014, increasing our outstanding balances by $25.3 million, or 6.4%, for the first nine months of 2014.

Asset Quality and Loan Loss Provision:Asset quality remained strong at September 30, 2014, as measured by our low level of nonperforming assets and the low level of net charge-offs. Nonperforming assets of $8.4 million at September 30, 2014, represented only 0.38% of period-end assets, an increase of one basis point from our 0.37% ratio as of December 31, 2013. Net loan losses for the third quarter of 2014, expressed as an annualized percentage of average loans outstanding, were just .05% and only .06% for the nine-month period ended September 30, 2014. All of our asset quality ratios continue to be significantly better than recently reported industry-wide averages.

Our allowance for loan losses was $15.3 million at September 30, 2014, which represented 1.11% of loans outstanding, six basis points below our ratio one year earlier and three basis points below our ratio at December 31, 2013. Our provision for loan losses for the third quarter of 2014 was $444 thousand, primarily reflecting the strong growth in our outstanding loan balances.

Cash and Stock Dividends: We distributed a cash dividend of $.245 per share to stockholders in the third quarter of 2014. The cash dividend was 2% higher than the cash dividend paid in the third quarter of 2013, adjusting both for our 2% stock dividend in September 2014.

Insurance Agency Operations: Insurance commission income rose slightly from $2.4 million for the third quarter of 2013 to $2.5 million for the third quarter of 2014, an increase of $47 thousand, or 2.0%. This improvement was primarily attributable to an increase in new business.

22 OctWatt prepares to expand home lending

Mel Watt, the director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency that oversees the two bailed-out…

The head of a powerful housing regulatory agency announced new steps Monday intended to expand home lending facilitated by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

Mel Watt, the director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency that oversees the two bailed-out government mortgage businesses, said in a speech to the Mortgage Bankers Association in Las Vegas that his agency would work to clear up some of the legal impediments to greater mortgage lending by banks and aim to increase loans with down payments as low as 3 percent.

We know that access to credit remains tight for many borrowers, and we are also working to address this issue in a responsible and thoughtful manner, said Watt, who took over at the FHFA in January and has reversed course from his predecessor, who sought to reduce the role of Fannie and Freddie in the home lending market.

Watt said his agency was working with Fannie and Freddie to provide clear rules of the road to allow lenders to sell the two government-sponsored enterprises home loans without fear that Freddie and Fannie would later require them to repurchase underperforming loans on the grounds that they were misrepresented. Fannie and Freddie do not make home loans directly, but rather create a secondary market for mortgages by buying them from lenders, bundle them into securities to sell to investors and offer insurance on those mortgage-backed securities.

21 OctOwner of Charleston-based CresCom Bank reports 3Q earnings

In addition to CresCom, the parent company owns Crescent Mortgage Co., a national wholesale home lender that does business in 45 states. Profits at that Atlanta-based unit fell 56 percent to $575,000 from the third quarter of 2013. For the first nine months this year, its net income fell 83 percent to $1.6 million.

The decline in net income derived from Crescent Mortgage … can be attributed to the significant declines in mortgage applications, which are at almost 20-year industry lows, Carolina Financial said.

The company has made it a goal to increase its bottom line this year by bringing CresComs profits to the level of earnings exhibited a superior community bank and relying less on the home-lending subsidiary, Rexroad said.

Net income at the retail bank jumped 20 percent $2 million in the third quarter from the same period a year ago.

CresCom has been adding branches, including a newly opened office at Cane Bay Plantation in Berkeley County.

It also is extending the reach of its Grand Strand franchise. CresCom announced in August that it is buying 13 branches from First Community Bank of Bluefield, Va. The offices have deposits of about $230 million and loans totaling $59 million.

Three of the locations are in South Carolina and operate as Peoples Community Bank. The rest are in southeastern North Carolina.

The sale is expected to close by the end of the year.

Carolina Financial is the largest bank owner based in the Charleston region. It has $1 billion in assets and 14 retail branches.

Contact John McDermott at 937-5572.

21 OctThree Small Cap Texas Banking Stocks Cashing In on the Texas Boom (TCBI …

Texas has set another record for job creation with small cap Texas banking stock like Texas Capital Bancshares (NASDAQ: TCBI), ViewPoint Financial Group (NASDAQ: VPFG) and First Financial Bankshares (NASDAQ: FFIN) naturally being well positioned to take advantage of the Texas economic miracle (see my previous article: Texas is Booming and So Are These Texas Stocks (EE, TPL amp; ATO)). I should add that I wrote about these Texas banking stocks back in late 2012 (see: Don’t Mess With Texas Banking Stocks TCBI, VPFG amp; FFIN) and the Texas Workforce Commission has just reported that the Texas economy added 36,400 jobs in September while over the past 12 months, employers added 413,700 jobs — the most ever recorded by the state. Moreover, several companies surveyed by the Dallas Fed responded by saying they are seeing labor market tightness while companies are saying they are experiencing upward wage pressures and staffing firms note that candidates are often receiving multiple offers.

With that in mind, here is a look at three small cap Texas banking stocks that are sure to benefit from the boom in Texas:

  • Texas Capital Bancshares. A member of the Russell 2000 Index and the Samp;P SmallCap 600, small cap Texas Capital Bancshares is the parent company of Texas Capital Bank, a commercial bank that delivers personalized financial services to businesses and entrepreneurs through full-service locations in Austin, Dallas, Fort Worth, Houston and San Antonio. Back in July, Texas Capital Bancshares reported second quarter 2014 earnings and that loans held for investment, excluding mortgage finance, increased 3% and total loans increased 11% on a linked quarter basis, growing 22% and 24%, respectively, from the second quarter of 2013. In addition, mortgage finance loans increased 38% on a linked quarter basis and 30% from the second quarter of 2013; demand deposits increased 21% and total deposits increased 11% on a linked quarter basis, growing 43% and 35%, respectively; net income increased 18% on a linked quarter basis and increased 39% from the second quarter of 2013; and EPS increased 18% on a linked quarter basis and increased 37% from the second quarter of 2013. Texas Capital Bancshares will next report third quarter results on Wednesday, October 22, 2014 at 5:00 PM EDT plus has a trailing P/E of 20.07 and forward P/E 16.06 along with no dividend. On Friday, small cap Texas Capital Bancshares rose 1.05% to $54.69 (TCBI has a 52 week trading range $47.59 to $67.08 a share) for a market cap of $2.36 billion plus the stock is down 10.6% since the start of the year, up 11.9% over the past year and up 226.7% over the past five years.
  • ViewPoint Financial Group. Founded in 1952, small cap ViewPoint Financial Group operates as the holding company for ViewPoint Bank, which provides financial services in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex. The banks deposit products include checking accounts, savings accounts, money market deposits, term certificate accounts, and demand accounts while its lending products consist of one-to-four family residential mortgage loans; home improvement loans; construction mortgage loans; commercial real estate loans; home equity loans; consumer loans, including new and used automobile loans, recreational vehicle loans, and loans secured by savings deposits; and commercial business loans. The bank also offers brokerage services for the purchase and sale of non-deposit investment and insurance products through a third party brokerage arrangement. Back in May, ViewPoint Financial Group announced that the shareholders of LegacyTexas Group, Inc, the holding company for LegacyTexas Bank which operates 20 branches in the Dallas/Fort Worth metropolitan area, had overwhelmingly approved a merger agreement by and between the two companies. The merger is subject to regulatory approvals and customary closing conditions. However and in late August, ViewPoint Financial Group announced that additional time will be required to obtain regulatory approvals and to satisfy customary closing conditions necessary to complete their merger. If and when completed, the merger will result in one of the largest independent banks in the state of Texas, with 51 branches and pro forma assets of over $5 billion. Otherwise, ViewPoint Financial Group will release its third quarter 2014 results after the close of the market on Tuesday, October 21, plus has a forward P/E of 15.66 and a forward dividend of $0.48 for a 1.90% dividend yield. On Friday, small cap ViewPoint Financial Group rose 0.2% to $24.65 (VPFG has a 52 week trading range of $20.72 to $29.59 a share) for market cap of $985.89 million plus the stock is down 9.8% since the start of the year, up 13.6% over the past year and up 75.4% over the past five years.
  • First Financial Bankshares. For more than 124 years and through the Great Depression, the collapse of the Texas economy in the 1980s and the Great Recession, small cap First Financial Bankshares is recognized as one of the nations most financially secure banking institutions, with assets of $5.45 billion, 12 regional banks with 62 banking locations, plus a Trust Company with eight locations, all to serve customers in Texas markets stretching from Hereford in the Panhandle to Orange in southeast Texas. Last Thursday, First Financial Bankshares reported that third quarter earnings rose 19.78% to $23.43 million while net interest income increased 7.46% to $48.89 million. In addition, the provision for loan losses was $896 thousand compared with $1.35 million in the same quarter last year and $1.12 million in the second quarter of 2014 while nonperforming assets as a percentage of loans and foreclosed assets totaled 0.83% on September 30th compared with 0.93% on June 30th and 1.09% on September 30, 2013. The Chairman/CEO commented:

We are pleased to report another quarter of good growth in loans and deposits as well as solid earnings. We continue to pursue opportunities for acquisitions and focus on growing loans, cutting costs and increasing income.

Otherwise, First Financial Bankshares has a trailing P/E of 21.19 and a forward dividend of 18.49 along with a forward dividend of $0.56 for a 2%. On Friday, small cap First Financial Bankshares rose 1.01% to $28.09 (FFIN has a 52 week trading range of $26.58 to $33.76 a share) for a market cap of $1.80 billion plus the stock is down 15.1% since the start of the year, down 9.1% over the past year and up 67.7% over the past five years.

Finally, here is a look at the long term performance chart for all three Texas banking stocks:

As you can see from the above chart, Texas Capital Bancshares, ViewPoint Financial Group and First Financial Bankshares have produced pretty decent returns for investors albeit performance has leveled off this year.

21 OctEnterprise opens new car hire business in Birmingham

CAR rental business Enterprise has opened a new outlet in Birmingham creating five jobs.The new branch in Spring Hill, which will primarily serve the Edgbaston and Ladywood areas, has regenerated the site of a derelict car wash.The building and forecourt of the car wash had been unused for over five years and fell into a poor state, becoming an eyesore. Enterprise has taken control of the location and transformed it into a new rental office and parking area. The new outlet, which will also have a range of commercial vehicles ……for the full story register now for free or login below…

21 OctUnequal efforts to fight inequality

THERE were quite a few disconnects at the recently concluded Annual Meetings of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank. Among the most striking was the disparity between participants’ interest in discussions of inequality and the ongoing lack of a formal action plan for governments to address it. This represents a profound failure of policy imagination — one that must urgently be addressed.

   There is good reason for the spike in interest. While inequality has decreased across countries, it has increased within them, in the advanced and developing worlds alike. The process has been driven by a combination of secular and structural issues, including the changing nature of technological advancement, the rise of “winner-takes-all” investment characteristics and political systems favouring the wealthy, and has been turbocharged by cyclical forces.

   In the developed world, the problem is rooted in unprecedented political polarisation, which has impeded comprehensive responses and placed an excessive policy burden on central banks. Though monetary authorities enjoy more political autonomy than other policymaking bodies, they lack the needed tools to address the challenges that their countries face.

   In normal times, fiscal policy would support monetary policy, including by playing a redistributive role. But these are not normal times. With political gridlock blocking an appropriate fiscal response — after 2008, the United States Congress did not pass an annual budget, a basic component of responsible economic governance, for five years — central banks have been forced to bolster economies artificially. To do so, they have relied on near-zero interest rates and unconventional measures, like quantitative easing to stimulate growth and job creation.

   Beyond being incomplete, this approach implicitly favours the wealthy, who hold a disproportionately large share of financial assets. Meanwhile, companies have become increasingly aggressive in their efforts to reduce their tax bills, including through so-called inversions, by which they move their headquarters to lower-tax jurisdictions.

   As a result, most countries face a trio of inequalities — of income, wealth, and opportunity — which, left unchecked, reinforce one another, with far-reaching consequences. Indeed, beyond this trio’s moral, social, and political implications lies a serious economic concern: instead of creating incentives for hard work and innovation, inequality begins to undermine economic dynamism, investment, employment, and prosperity.

   Given that affluent households spend a smaller share of their incomes and wealth, greater inequality translates into lower overall consumption, thereby hindering the recovery of economies already burdened by inadequate aggregate demand. Today’s high levels of inequality also impede the structural reforms needed to boost productivity, while undermining efforts to address residual pockets of excessive indebtedness.

   This is a dangerous combination that erodes social cohesion, political effectiveness, current gross domestic product growth, and future economic potential. That is why it is so disappointing that, despite heightened awareness of inequality, the IMF-World Bank meetings — a gathering of thousands of policymakers, private-sector participants, and journalists, which included seminars on inequality in advanced countries and developing regions alike — failed to make a consequential impact on the policy agenda.

   Policymakers seem convinced that the time is not right for a meaningful initiative to address inequality of income, wealth, and opportunity. But waiting will only make the problem more difficult to resolve.

   In fact, a number of steps can and should be taken to stem the rise in inequality. In the US, for example, sustained political determination would help to close massive loopholes in estate planning and inheritance, as well as in household and corporate taxation, that disproportionately benefit the wealthy.

   Likewise, there is scope for removing the antiquated practice of taxing hedge and private-equity funds’ “carried interest” at a preferential rate. The way home ownership is taxed and subsidised could be reformed more significantly, especially at the top price levels. And a strong case has been made for raising the minimum wage.

   To be sure, such measures will make only a dent in inequality, albeit an important and visible one. In order to deepen their impact, a more comprehensive macroeconomic policy stance is needed, with the explicit goal of reinvigorating and redesigning structural-reform efforts, boosting aggregate demand and eliminating debt overhangs. Such an approach would reduce the enormous policy burden currently borne by central banks.

   It is time for heightened global attention to inequality to translate into concerted action. Some initiatives would tackle inequality directly, others would defuse some of the forces that drive it. Together, they would go a long way toward mitigating a serious impediment to the economic and social well-being of current and future generations. Project Syndicate  

21 OctHow to Retire Rich

In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is.Yogi Berra

Its October, AKA the major league baseball postseason. As a lifelong baseball fan, I take the wisdom of Yogi Berra seriously. And when it comes to planning for the autumn of life, Yogi is spot on.

It seems as though every day an article titled 5 Tips for Retirement Saving or something similar hits my inbox. I scan for the authors name, and Im amazed by how often its distinctly contemporaryJennifer, Brandon, or another name of that vintage. Jennifers title is something like staff writer, and I immediately picture a fresh-faced young person with a newly minted journalism degree. After work, maybe she jumps in her starter BMW and heads to a local watering hole with her friends to gripe about student loan repayments.

Jennifer means well. After all, shes just doing her job. She recommends setting financial goals, getting out of debt, living within your means, and saving from a young age. I wont argue with those recommendations. Jennifers grandparents probably did just that. If you can pull off following that advice to a T, chances are youll accumulate a good deal of wealth.

However, once Jennifer has tried to put her advice to practice for a couple of decades, she might understand that its neither simple nor easy, despite how it might sound. Most people know what they should do, but its often tough and painful to execute in real life.

During my 74 years Ive met a lot of successful and rich retired friends who sure didnt go about it Jennifers way. How many baby boomers do you know who married young, raised a family, put their children through school, and consistently saved in their 20s, 30s or even 40s? There are a few, but manyif not mostyoung families lived through a decade or more of Why is there is so much month left at the end of the money?

Several times a month a 50- or 60-year-old Millers Money subscriber writes in asking for help with how to accomplish a last-ditch push to save. Truth be told, most of my friends never got serious about retirement until after theyd raised children. It doesnt mean they were right; its just the way it was. Should they have started earlier? Of course. But they didnt. Some didnt know how, some were overwhelmed by day-to-day expenses, and some overspent on stuff, stuff, and more stuff. Many got serious in the nick of time, but they did it.

Retiring Rich When Youre Under the Wire

Whatever your age, fretting about what you didnt do is futile. Start making the needed changes today.

The best place to begin is to define rich. For our team, rich means having enough money to choose whether or not to work and enough money that you control your time. Rich means you live comfortably according to your personal standards. If youve lived a middle-class lifestyle, a rich retirement means you can maintain that same lifestyle without worry.

Ten days out of high school, I was on a train to Parris Island, South Carolina. One of the best teachers I ever had was SSgt. Thomas R. Phebus. He was an archetypethe ideal combination of common sense and straight talk. Im going to take a page out of his book and share some straight talk on how to make a rich retirement your reality.

The 9-Step Program

#1Saving money is a pain!

When I entered the work force, every major company and most government agencies offered some sort of pension plan. The bottom line: come work for us at age 25, stay for 40 years, retire at 65, and well continue to pay you until you die, normally another 20 years or so.

Pension plans are no longer the norm. Corporate America just couldnt do it. Some filed for bankruptcy and broke their promises. Either way, in the private sector, 401(k)s are the new norm. Theyre optionalno one makes you contribute.

Now local governments are filing for bankruptcy, many unable to fulfill their pension promises. No matter whom you work fora big or small corporation, a government agency, or yourselfif you want to retire, be damn sure youre savinghellip; no matter what youve been promised.

#2Plan to work your tail off.

I dont know anyone whos accumulated even modest wealth working 40 hours a week. If you want to work for 40 years and pay for 60-plus years of life, chances are youll have to do more than that.

When you work, you trade your time, talent, and expertise for money. When you retire, you trade your money for time. In theory, you can work 60 hours a week, live off two-thirds of your income (40 hours worth), and invest the remaining one-third (20 hours worth). However, if you start saving early, perhaps saving income equal to 10 hours of work will be enough. Your savings will have more time to accumulate and compound, and youve bought yourself extra leisure time along the way.

If both spouses are working hard outside the home, which is the norm today, work toward living off of one paycheck and investing the other (or using it to pay off debts and then start investing). Many of our retired friends did just that.

#3Dont complain when others have more.

Someone always will.

This one saddens me. We have a few friends who chose to work 40 hours a week for most of their working lives. They felt it was important to spend more time at home with their families, and theres nothing wrong with that choice. Still, its a trade-off.

I look at it as though they enjoyed mini slices of retirement time when they were young. If thats your choice, dont begrudge others who chose a different path and worked and/or saved more. They dont owe you anything.

#4Get out of debt and stay that way.

Virtually every wealthy friend I have only started to build wealth after eliminating debt, including home mortgages. Some theory-loving pundits suggest taking out a low-interest mortgage and investing the money with the hope of earning more than the mortgage interest. Oh really? Most peoples investments dont perform that well.

The chart below highlights how poorly the average investor stacks up: