Cents & Sensibility: Women's Financial Clubs PDF Print E-mail
Written by Kelley C. Long   
Wednesday, 28 October 2009 05:41

Cents & Sensibility: Women's Financial Clubs
Money talk can be awkward, but our financialista offers tips for starting your own financial education club that will help you have fun while increasing your money prowess.

Investment clubs rose in popularity during the tech boom of the late '90s when even the most unsophisticated investors could make a killing in the stock market. Everyday people were forming groups of like-minded investors to pool their money and take a chance on the market. The number of clubs has decreased a bit since the tech bubble burst, but they still exist and can be a great way for investors to dabble in stocks without having to invest their life savings.

However, starting and running an investment club can be a cantankerous endeavor, with stringent rules for running the club, maintaining records and possible complications with legal and taxation issues. The obvious point of forming an investment club is to make a buck, but an almost equally appealing result is the knowledge of investing and other financial concepts gained. If you're looking to become more savvy about the world of investing but not quite ready to make a financial commitment to an investment club, consider forming a financial education club or a money club.

A money club has a similar focus to an investment club, with the biggest difference being the lack of financial obligation. In my experience, gathering women together to talk about money can be more challenging than convincing a man to accompany you to the mall for a day of shoe shopping — on his dime!

Therefore, use your creative side to make your money club fun. Assign a theme to each meeting, with food, drink and dress to match. Or combine your money education with a speaker on a lighter topic. For example, if the topic is consumer discretionary stocks, invite the store manager from your favorite department store to give an update on current fashion trends.

To start your own money club, first you must find a reasonable number of friends interested in joining. Set a date for the first meeting, and establish the ground rules at this time. I suggest that all members agree to the following:

Objective of the club: This can be as simple as stating that the club is being formed for members to collaborate and educate each other on various aspects of money, or it can have a more specific objective like assisting all members with becoming debt-free in five years.

Frequency and date/time of meetings: Consistency is important, so decide how often you want to meet. Once a month is probably ideal, but for busy members once a quarter may be preferable. You may select a permanent location or establish a rotation among members' homes.

Responsibilities of members: It is a good idea to state how many meetings a member may miss before being considered dropped from the club. For this reason, you may also choose to institute dues, which can cover expenses like refreshments and educational materials.

Officer roles: At a minimum, one person should be designated the president or organizer, and another should be named the education officer. The president will maintain the consistency of the group, including announcing meetings and maintaining a member list. The education officer will set the schedule of topics. The responsibility for presenting a topic can be shared among members, or the education officer can have that as her chief duty. You also may wish to have a treasurer if there are dues involved and perhaps even a secretary to maintain the member list and topics covered.

Above all, the purpose of a money club is to educate and empower each other while having fun and staying in touch with friends. Let me know if you would like a suggested list of topics or assistance with starting your own club, and I would be happy to help.

Happy learning!
Kelley C. Long -

Kelley Long is a certified public accountant (CPA), Cincy Chic's former financial columnist, a downtowner, and a financial coach and owner of Kelley C. Long Consulting. You can e-mail her at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .Read More >>

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