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on October 18, 2011
This book makes a compelling argument for cash value life insurance versus stocks and mutual funds for long term investment. A good amount of data is presented to back up that argument. However it stops short of providing usable information for moving forward. I recognize that everyone might need a slightly different approach to buying life insurance, but there is for example no information on selecting an agent, no discussion of different policy aspects, no list of things to watch out for, etc. Instead the book is loaded with trademarked terms and referrals to the authors' website for more information. When you get there you are funneled to a form to sign up for a sales pitch from an agent. That makes this basically a $10 sales brochure for the authors. I guess they feel the same way because they essentially give the book away free on the website if you sign up for the pitch.

Note in the book the authors reamed other financial gurus for doing the same thing, ie selling advice and profiting from it. Boo.

Here's all you need to know: Cash value life insurance may be a great option for you if you want a more reliable investment albeit with a lower rate of return (that's because the insurance company takes a piece of the upside in good years and spares you some of the downside in bad, not to mention the fees). Google it to learn more, but insurance is a very complicated market so you'll still be left wondering, so call a few of the top rated insurance providers to compare and consider, ask a friend, etc. Good luck.

Also note: This is one of the few Kindle books I have read that cannot be loaned.

Also also note: I own both cash value and term life insurance policies (I'm worth more dead than alive, as they say) as well as stocks and other investments but I'm not affiliated with any investment business in any way.
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on March 21, 2014
First a disclaimer, I am a Certified Financial Planner and have been for many years. I have held a broker’s license to sell stocks and bonds and so on and an insurance license. After my first couple of years in the business I let my securities and insurance licenses laps as I did not like sales and preferred to work as a fee-only financial planner. As a fee only planner I have always had a fiduciary duty to my clients, basically this means my clients had a legal right to trust me. I thought I would give my opinion of this book or what I have read of it so far.

From time to time driving home from my office I hear commercials like the one that advertised, not so much this book, but the “secrets” that the authors of the book were willing to share with me. I like to call and request whatever free advice or information they offer. The offer in this case was a free copy of the book.

So, when I called I spoke with a nice young woman who asked me what bothers me most, taxes, 401(k)s, or, I think volatility in the market. Of course she did not use the word volatility. She took my name and address and so on and then said she would email me the first two chapters of the book. I said ok and then she asked for a phone number and said one of their agents would call me for a 20 minute “interview” and that the book would be mailed to me. I am talking with their agent next week.

At this point I have only read the first two chapters as that is all I have so far. It turns out that like most things that offer a guaranteed plan or a no lose proposition there is always a catch. The catch is that the book really looks like a sales pitch for the best thing since sliced bread, cash value life insurance.

The first two chapters also disparage 401(k) plans, IRAs (you can’t own insurance in an IRA), and the stock market. Granted there have been and always will be bad years in the market, but the average return over long periods of time in the US market is more than 10%. In most 401(k), (403b), 457 and TSP plans employees make a contribution and the employers match a portion of the plan. A common matching program is that the employer matches 100% of the first three percent of the employees contribution and 50% of the next three percent. This gives an immediate return, just by contributing, of 75%, which is pretty good in my book.

The first two chapters also presents an arithmetic return rather than a geometric return for one of their examples of how bad investing is. The average return on returns of 100%, -50%, 100% and -50% is not 25% but 0 during the holding period. They then compare this with a geometric return on another investment at 6.5% for 4 years with 10,000 invested and came up with $12,960.20. I just ran these numbers on excel and came up with $12,846.66.

In the second chapter the book asked something to the tune of “where are the mutual fund millionaires”. I can answer that, they are all over the place. People who live below their means, saved for years, stayed married, didn't run up credit card debt and used those terrible 401(k)s, IRAs and brokerage accounts.

The first two chapters of the book also have the tax tail wagging the investment dog all over the place. We can never tell what taxes will be like in the future. The product the book seems to be about to market does have some tax characteristics that could currently be useful but that is only an act of congress and a signature of a president away from change at any time. The first couple of chapters also seem to say that these things which will be revealed in later chapters are risk free. What happens if the insurance company who issued your policy goes out of business?

Does cash value life insurance have a place in a portfolio? Sometimes it does but not, in my opinion, all that often for most people. For the very wealthy maybe, but for young people and middle income folks who need to maximize their overall financial well being, probably not. When you are young, you need the biggest bang for the buck and cash value insurance is not it. It is not a great way to save money as it is very expensive and it is not generally appropriate for most people as you can purchase much more term insurance to cover what life insurance is really designed for, to help take care of your family if you are out of the picture.
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on November 2, 2011
There is no substance to this book. It is simply a sales tool for their "specially structured" cash value life insurance policy. I cannot comment on whether or not it is a good investment, but only that the book entirely lacks substance to make an informed decision. Also, I would bet that they have people that skew the results of the amazon review page. Most of the positive reviews sound ridiculous to anyone who has read the book, and all of the negative responses have comments in defense of the book and high numbers of people who claim that the review was not useful. I'm sure this review will also go by the wayside, I just hope that it gets read.
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on June 17, 2014
Cash value insurance might be right for some people. But so might also 401k, IRA, term life, and so forth for others. The SMM book made questionable points that I would like to call attention to: On page 51, it talks about horrors of auto loan interest. Really, the additional interest was just for the time factor. And that is the very basic equation: Principal * Rate * Time, with time in years or fraction of years. It is not that all bankers are dishonest and ripping you off. It also plays up horrors of taxes when you start withdrawing from your 401k at retirement; keeps referring to 28% tax bracket. But actually, your taxable income for the taxable year is ON WHAT YOU WITHDRAW from your plan in that taxable year. So, if you withdrew $3000 monthly for a taxable year, ($36000), then subtracted out your personal exemption, standard or itemized deductions, and such on your tax return, you would not likely be in the 28% tax bracket for that year. Also, there are perfectly legal ways to set up wills and bequests and such for the remaining balance of your 401k or IRA when you pass away; to at least guard against - even if not fully eliminate - excessive tax penalties on the heirs. I seriously doubt now that I am going to go through with the phone appointment meeting scheduled for me upon receiving and reading the book.

Joel M. Wilson
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on February 19, 2014
Just heard add for book, came here to check it out. Add states that "with taxes going up, when you pull your retirement money out, it could be taxed at a rate possibly as high as 94%. Sorry, not true. IRS differentiate earnings into "earned income" (work), and "unearned income" (money at work, ie, interest, div's, etc.) ALL money coming out of retirement plans is considered "earned income or work income" and therefore subject to a TOP tax rate of 50%. Even when we had the 70%+ rates, they only applied to unearned income. Build your premise on a lie, little truth usually follows.
Don Wade, CFP
Registered Principal
Legend Equities, Corp
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on July 19, 2013
Mr. Kitchens contacted me to see if I was interested in contracting with his company to obtain 15 leads per month for $1500 per month. He sent me a contract that indicated he would provide appointment leads for $131 each and referrals (no appointment) for $45 each. If I tried to contact the appointment and referrals and they did not answer the phone or respond to messages left, I had no recourse to his company. I asked if they would provide the names of current reps that I could talk to see what their experience was with the system. They said no. They wanted my credit card to charge the $1500 for a minimum of three months, then I could terminate if it was not a good fit. They said they used Satellite Radio and advertised on Blumberg and Fox News. I did not believe that it was a good business arrangement and therefore terminated the call. This transpired over 5 days when they provided a copy of Safe Money Millionaire to read, followed by a contract and video presentations. My feeling was they were searching for nieve new insurance agents to train for $1500 a month.
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on March 13, 2014
I didn't even finish the book but when speaking to a representative, she kept changing her answers to my questions and backtracking. Your best bet is to seek out a qualified licensed financial planner or advisor. There are many advisors that do not charge fee's and can help explain insurance and mutual funds much better. You will also get personalized service as well.
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on September 18, 2013
Here's how it is, people: When somebody tells you that he's unlocked the secret of financial success with a single product, you can be 100% sure that he hasn't.

Does cash value life insurance have a place in some portfolios? Sure. Is it THE answer to all your financial needs? Of course not.

This is snake oil.

Even more scary are some of the reviews here that take a single-minded approach to finance. . ."Stocks didn't work so I'll do life insurance. It's guaranteed." If only it were that simple.

I'm not in the financial field but I'm a person who's invested all his life and who understands the value of diversification, emotional control, rebalancing, and a long-term outlook.

The financial illiteracy of most Americans is frightening, but this kind of baloney is not how you overcome that illiteracy. In fact, it counts on people knowing very little. Be very, very careful before you fall for this stuff.
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on April 7, 2015
This books point is to rope you into their website... It's one big sales pitch.
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on May 16, 2015
Pretty weak book, 80% of the book was anecdotal leading up to the "buy cash life insurance" punchline with little specifics.
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