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Your take: Fit all finance advice on a 3×5 card


This week a fascinating exercise [3] by University of Chicago professor and Incidental Economist writer Harold Pollack made the rounds in the blogosphere.

Asked by a reader “What is this simple free best personal finance advice that fits on a 3×5 card?” Pollack filled out an index card with what he thinks is all the knowledge you need to manage your personal finances.

Here’s what he came up with:

For those who can’t read his hand-writing, this is the all-around pretty solid personal finance advice offered by Pollack:

Being a guy who spends a lot of time studying public policy, Pollack also throws in at the end that people should support social insurance programs, e.g. Social Security, as a hedge against misfortune.

Your take: What would you write?

What I’m interested in knowing is, given the assignment of putting everything you need to know about money on a 3×5 index card, what would you write?

For the record, as someone who’s read thousands of pages on the intricacies of finance and still feels like I have more to learn, I disagree with Pollack’s premise that it’s possible to fit everything you need to know to be manage your money well on a card like this. But if I was going to try, I’d definitely need to add a few things that Pollack leaves out, such as:

Update: Here’s mine (Pollack actually kind of cheated and used a 4×6 card so that’s why mine is smaller).

What else do you think we need to add or subtract?

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