Ecuadorian wise men of the past had a deep understanding of nature… astronomy and sense of place as this positional structure at the entrance of Cotacachi shows. That wisdom can help us think beyond logic when it comes to retiring from the rat race at any age… 30, 40, 50, 60 or later despite living in a predatory world.
Ecuador is a great place to retire at any age… right now.
A March 7, 2102 Yahoo.finance.com article entitled “Ecuador Seen as New Retirement Hot Spot” by Alina Dikik says: The warm weather, cheap housing, and inexpensive healthcare are a draw, especially for baby boomers with eroded nest eggs and a sense of adventure.
For retirees, leaving the United States often means a more affordable way of life, including low-cost healthcare, real estate and even gasoline prices. Cherry-picking a warm weather spot can offer another perk. Some expatriate retirees also point to the social benefits that accrue when they become part of a tight knit community.
Logistics like health insurance and banking have been surprisingly easy, says Connie Pombo. The Pombos pay $85 per month for comprehensive health insurance with Nova Ecuador, a national insurer.
Pombo says most retirees prefer to simply pay out of pocket for doctor visits, which are less than $20 per appointment.
How Long Will Ecuador be a Good Place for Retirement?
Not everything is perfect.
The article goes on to say: Ecuador is still in the infancy stage in terms of attracting … the infrastructure is still not as strong as other places like Costa Rica. Many Americans are not prepared for the language and the culture.
Real estate scams are common and can include hidden fees. It’s unregulated and nobody is enforcing the laws.
Ecuador has recently seen an increase in long-term home rentals, which can be a good alternative to buying, she adds. Negotiating a two or three-year lease can halve monthly payments. For example, a three-bedroom, waterfront condo can rent for $700 with a multiyear lease.
Unexpected living expenses also add up… the cost of furniture, appliances and electronics, can sell for up to three times. Western-sized clothing can be especially difficult to find… Americans tend to be a lot bigger.
The article also points out that retired expats are required by the U.S. government to pay taxes, even if residing abroad plus it says: Crowder also cautions Americans thinking of retiring abroad to not be overly trusting. White-collar crime is becoming a concern for some retirees in Ecuador. “Gated communities have these big austere looking fronts, but a lot of crime is committed by insider jobs,” says Crowder who owns a home in Ecuador. He warns against an increasing number of expat criminals who establish trust with retirees by speaking fluent English. Expect to be bombarded with ways to part with your money from locals too.
A local attorney can help start the year-long residency process and specify which notarized documents are necessary before leaving the United States. Brushing up on Spanish and learning about the Ecuadorian language and culture is a must.
Our Ecuador Ateam services help solve three of the problems above:
However Frequency Modulation is more important than helping in Ecuador and Spanish now. FM can help in all the future…. anywhere… with any learning and thinking.
Recent messages have reviewed thoughts on the problems retirement may face in the future. A growing and aging population is breaking down the social economic contract we call money. Saving to retire may not be enough because the purchasing power of money in core industrial nations may fail.
Deciding where to retire is difficult because of the chaotic state in the world.
A previous message at this site said: The mindset of the Western world is indoctrinated on these 3 Ps…position, possession and popularity. These concepts form the foundation of many lives and they are the precursors for stress, tension and poor health as well as financial doom. These structural flaws in our social economic morality create a template for self slavery and potential failure. We voluntarily become chained to our desk or jobs and are willing to even cheat (ranging from small fibs on loan applications to doctoring books to billion dollar Ponzi schemes) to gain the 3Ps. The weakness in this framework of thought also leaves us open to fraud.
The framework of this materialistic mindset goes way beyond the creations of our personal risks as well. The framework reaches to the very core of world’s geo-political tensions and chaos.
This creates a predatory world and super thinking can help us survive in a predatory world.
This is not likely to change quickly. Can we rid ourselves of poverty in our lifetimes… if ever? Deuteronomy 15:11 suggests not when it says: There will always be poor people in the land. Therefore I command you to be openhanded toward your brothers and toward the poor and needy in your land.
In our lifetimes we”ll probably not see a perfect world… we’ll not find perfect places without poor.. without fear… without crime… without tension… and these forces create predators.
What can we do to live and retire amidst all this stress without letting it get us down?
First, living in a calm life in a world of stress we can develop a historical perspective on the world’s problems creating by this eternal jockeying for the three Ps… possessions… position and power.
To get one perspective, let’s follow a vine of social discontent back about a hundred years to WWI as it impacts our forward thinking on where to invest… where to do business…. where to live and retire now.
This vine leads us to WWI and the Balkans.
According to Wikepedia: The causes of the military conflict, which began in central Europe in August 1914, included many intertwined factors, such as the conflicts and antagonisms of the four decades leading up to the war. Militarism, alliances, imperialism, and nationalism played major roles in the conflict as well. However, the immediate origins of the war lay in the decisions taken by statesmen and generals during the July Crisis of 1914, the spark (or casus belli) for which was the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria by Gavrilo Princip, an irredentist Serb. However, the crisis did not exist in a void; it came after a long series of diplomatic clashes between the Great Powers over European and colonial issues in the decade prior to 1914 which had left tensions high. In turn these diplomatic clashes can be traced to changes in the balance of power in Europe since 1870.. Fundamentally the war was sparked by tensions over territory in the Balkans. Austria-Hungary competed with Serbia and Russia for territory and influence in the region and they pulled the rest of the great powers into the conflict through their various alliances and treaties. The topic of the causes of, or guilt for, the First World War is one of the most studied in all of world history. Scholars have differed significantly in their interpretations of the event.
If so, tensions in the Balkans were a driving force in social military tensions at the turn of the last century.
The Balkans include:
* Bosnia and Herzegovina
Other countries sometimes included are:
The problems remain with us today, plus according to many WWI was the root of WWII. Winston Churchill described the treaty of Versailles, “monstrous” and “malignant.”
WWII created such tension that Harry Truman and many others were so paranoid about Communism that the Truman Doctorine evolved which led to the Korean and the Vietnam War.
The Vietnam War kick started America’s drug problem which has created such wealth that Mexican and Colombia drug lords can undermine federal authority and even create risk in places where Americans typically retire… Southern California… Arizona… South Florida.
The LA Times has a huge section in its paper entitled “The drug war at our doorstep”.
An NPR.com article entitled “Mexican Drug War Brings Violence To Arizona” says: Home invasion and kidnappings are on the rise in Arizona. State authorities pin the blame on Mexican organized crime. Host Cheryl Corley speaks with Ariz. Attorney General Terry Goddard about how he hopes to address the problem.
This problem hit South Florida first. When enforcement efforts intensified in South Florida and the Caribbean, the Colombian organizations formed partnerships with the Mexico-based traffickers to transport cocaine through Mexico into the United States and spread the drug wars across the American south.
This is one vine of history in a thick foliage of reality that is so dense it creates a dark jungle that no amount of logic can penetrate.
On the subject of military political history am reading one really fascinating book now… “Twilight Warriors”.
The Twilight Warriors, is the winner of the 2011 Samuel Eliot Morison Award for Naval Literature and looks at the final—and most brutal—battle of the Pacific war: Okinawa.
This is especially interesting to me (and many boomers) because my father was a Seabee attached to the Marines. Wounded in the invasion of Iwo Jima, he was hospitalized in Hawaii and scheduled to return to battle probably in the invasion of Japan… which would have been perilous.
During his hospitalization the Battle of Okinawa became the most expensive naval battle in American history, with almost 10,000 American casualties. Thirty ships were lost, and over 350 more were damaged, many beyond repair. Okinawa taught President Truman a grim lesson: “any weapon,” even an atomic bomb, “was preferable to an invasion” and this perhaps was a fulcrum point in the fabric of reality determining “to be or not to be”. Had dad gone onto another invasion I might not have been.
Random House also reported that “Twilight Warriors” was a History Book Club Main Selection and a Featured Alternate of the Book of the Month Club and the Military Book Club.
Where is it safe to go in a predatory world ? Where will we be able to afford to live? Where will we find peace?
The answer is not a nation or state… but is in a state of being… being more intelligent… more flexible… more intuitive wherever you go… or are led.
How can we figure out these answers?
We cannot. Logic is a deficient tool in our universe where chaos rules along with order. This graph from Jame’s Gleick’s book “Chaos, Making a new Science” shows how everything in our universe moves from states of order to disorder.
Mark Twain expressed this reality nicely when he said: He is now rising from affluence to poverty.
The logic of logic shows why it will not work in our quantum world. Logic in the form of deductive reasoning concerns what follows necessarily from given premises (if a, then b). Logic requires seeing a reliable given premise a to understand “b”. Quantum mechanics suggests that reality is too complex for our minds to see enough facts. There is too much information to process to come up with accurate premises.
If we cannot think our way to a happy lifestyle… what can we do?
First, we can accept that everything is in perfect order and remember the importance of attitude. Kahlil Gibran, the Lebanese poet, stresses attitude’s value nicely: Your living is determined not so much by what life brings to you as by the attitude you bring to life; not so much by what happens to you as by the way your mind looks at what happens.
Second, we can add frequency modulation into our armory of thought processes to expand our vision when outside events are so unpredictable we cannot depend on logic.
When we think as the shamans of the Andes, we see events…fate…and our free will as being connected. The shamans call this “following the forces of nature”.
The circular thought of the shamans is sometimes difficult to grasp. Some shamans will say something that seems it has no logic…until one day an event…act or an aha starts to make sense.
For example, their concept of fractals is that everything is part of a sacred geometry that leads us to where we should be. They observe what they see and look for hints or clues as to where they should go from what they see.
Here is an example that has been meaningful to me.
The shamans say that any mountain near us when we grow up is our mother (Pacha Mama). They believe that she guides us on our life’s way.
This never made much sense to me until one day when we were visiting our daughter, son in law, grandkids and my mom in Portland, Oregon, where I was born and raised.
Each day I walked out my mom’s front door (she has lived in the same house for 50 years) and enjoyed the view where I grew up.
Mt. Hood… my Pancha Mama. Something was gnawing at me…where had Mt. Hood led me? I missed that connection until…
I returned to Cotacachi and noticed the equivalent geometry. This is Mt. Cotacachi that one can see each day from Cotacachi.
This did not hit me fully until we took my mom to a favorite beach of ours that is our historical escape on Oregon’s coast. I took this photo as I looked down the beach.
This made me think even more about where I had been led.
Mt. Hood and this coastal view were a big part of my youthful formation… pictures I saw as I grew.
Then I realized how similar this geometry is to our beach escape in San Clemente, Ecuador.
Our life in Ecuador in the US and I suspect anywhere we would find ourselves is filled with abundance. Did the sacred geometry beginning with a bullet shot by Gavrilo Princip in Serajevo lead me to Cotacachi and San Clemente? Did these same patterns return us to the USA and bring our involvement in agriculture?
Did we make our decisions to live in these wonderful places because of some impression beyond logic…some deeper message given long ago?
I don’t know the answers to these questions, but do know that the biggest joys in our lives have all come from using frequency modulation to make decisions that are beyond logic.
2015 ScheduleSchedule 2015 Seminars and Courses
We conduct our Investment seminar at Jefferson Landing in Jefferson North Carolina.
Join Merri and me for all the courses and seminars that we’ll conduct to help you gain positive solutions to your economic, financial and lifestyle concerns.
Here is the courses we currently have scheduled in 2015.
Live Long & Prosper MoreOne of the most frequent questions readers ask is “How can I make my savings safer but also sufficient for life?”
“What is the time horizon of a lifetime?” I ask. Time horizons are one of the most important elements in investing and most of us will live longer than we expect.
For example in a moment, you’ll see how this exercise is actually connected to my investing portfolio because it alters my investing timeline.
(Gary Scott doing Andean yoga.)
Overall US life expectancy at birth was 78.8 years in 2013. Women live longer, 76.4 years for men, 81.2 years for women. You’ll be happy to know that those statistics don’t apply to you and me.
How most of us think about life expectancy is wrong. That overall rate is the average of all people, young and old. The older we are, the longer our life expectancy grows. Right now those who are 50 years old, life expectancy is 85.6 for women and 81.6 for men. The expectancy of a 50 year old is 5 or 6 years longer than the overall expectancy.
As we age, the expectancy gets better. At 65 the expect age is 87.9 for women and 85.3 for guys. At 75 there is another boost to 88.6 and 90.5 years.
This is good news and even better is the fact that a succession of six technical panels established by the Social Security Advisory Board, in 1995, 1999, 2003, 2007, 2011 2013 all stated that Social Security was assuming unrealistic mortality rate improvements. In other words, life expectancy continues to grow.
There is a lot we can do to improve the odds of a long, active life even more. In fact we can improve them much more. A University of Washington publication “12 Reasons Yoga Helps Extend Lifespan” (1) shows 12 wasy that yoga extends life.
A UC San Francisco study “Lifestyle changes may lengthen telomeres that measure cell aging” (2) show that exercise, nutrition, meditation, diet, exercise, social support and yoga can extend life even further, as much as 12 years.
This is why I practice yoga and meditate almost every day and adjust my investing to support a long, busy, lifeline.
How can we have a strategy so our savings, investments & income are sufficient for a full lifetime?
Our life expectancy can be much longer than statistics suggest. That’s really good to know but longer life expectancy is expected to worsen the shortfall in Social Security by 11 percent over the next 75 years. What will a longer, active life due to our savings and budgets?
During nearly five decades of global investing I have noticed that some people, such as Warren Buffett, have a good value strategy that makes sure they do not lose, but increase their wealth again and again.
What is this strategy? It is a good value strategy based on three tactics.
The first tactic is to seek safety before profit.
A research paper that studied Warren Buffett’s investing strategy was published at Yale University’s website. This research shows that the stocks he chooses are safe (with low beta and low volatility), cheap (value stocks with low price – to – book ratios), and high quality (stocks of companies that are profitable, stable, growing, and with high payout ratios).
The second tactic is to maintain staying power. At times Buffet’s portfolio has fallen, but he has been willing and able to wait long periods for the value to reveal itself and prices to recover.
This chart based on a 45 year portfolio study shows that holding a diversified good value portfolio (based on a good value strategy) for 13 month’s time, increases the probability of outperformance to 70%. However those who can hold the portfolio for five years gain a 88% probability of beating the bellwether in the market and after ten years the probability increases to 97.5%. Time is your friend when you use a good value strategy. The longer you can hold onto a well balanced good value portfolio the better the odds of outstanding success.
The Buffett strategy integrates time and value for safety and profit.
A third, limited leveraging, tactic in the strategy boosts profit. Buffett leverages his portfolio at a ratio of approximately 1.6 to 1. The Yale published research paper shows the leveraging methods used by Warren Buffett to amass his $50 billion fortune. The researchers found that the returns from Buffett’s investment company, Berkshire Hathaway, far outweighed those achieved by any rival that has operated for 30 years or more. The research shows that neither luck nor magic are involved. Instead, the paper shows that Buffet’s success hinges on using leverage at the rate of 1.6.
This rate of expansion by the way is called the “Golden Ratio” and it is a mathematical formula that controls the growth of most natural things; trees, the shape of leaves, the spiral of shells, as well as the way economies and societies grow.
To sum up the strategy, Buffet uses Golden Ratio to make large purchases of “cheap, safe, quality stocks”. He uses limits leverage so he can hold on for very long periods of time, surviving rough periods where others might have been forced into a fire sale or a career shift.
The study found that Buffett applies a leverage of about 1.6 to 1, boosting both his risk and excess return in that proportion. He uses the Golden Mean in his borrowing, not too little, not too much.
Thus his many accomplishments include having the conviction, wherewithal, and skill to operate with leverage and significant risk over many decades.
Learn how to use this type of three point strategy with the Purposeful investing Course (Pi). This course is based on my 50 (almost) years of investing experience combined with wisdom gained from some of the world’s best investment managers and economic mathematical scientists.
Pi reveals investing secrets and the sciences that make investing easy, safer, less time consuming and increases the chances of profit.
One secret is to invest with a purpose beyond the cash. When we invest with purpose, doing what we love, we do better and we joyfully put in more energy, time and care. This is nature’s irony. If we chase just the money, human nature tends to make it run away. If we pursue our passion and work with more than concern for the cash, the wealth can’t resist us. This is the purpose behind, “Purposeful investing”.
Slow, Worry Free, Good Value Investing
Stress, worry and fear are three of an investor’s worst enemies. These are major foundations of the Behavior Gap, a trait exhibited by most investors, that causes them to underperform any market they choose. The behavior gap is created by natural human responses to fear. The losses created by this gap grow when investors trade short term under stress. More about the gap in a moment.
Learn how to create profitable strategies that combine good value investments with unique, personal goals.
Spanning the Behavior Gap
Behavior gaps are among the biggest reasons why so many investors fail. Human evolution makes fear the second most powerful motivator. (Greed is the third.) Fear creates investment losses due to behavior gaps. Fear motivates us more strongly than desire. By nature investors are risk adverse, when they should embrace risk. Purpose is the most powerful motivator, stronger than fear and greed. One powerful way to overcome the behavior gap is to invest with a purpose.
Combine your needs and capabilities with the secrets and the math through the Pifolio – The Pi Model Portfolio
Lessons from Pi are based on the creation and management of a Primary Pi Model Portfolio, called the Pifolio. There are no secrets about this portfolio except that it is based entirely on good math.
The Pifolio is a theoretical portfolio of MSCI Country Benchmark Index ETFs that cover all the good value markets using my (almost) 50 years of global experience and my study of the analysis of four mathematical investing geniuses (and friends): Michael Keppler, Eric Roseman, Thomas Fischer (for currency positions) and Richard Smith, PhD (for trailing stop alerts).
The Pifolio analysis begins with Keppler who continually researches international major stock markets and compares their value based on current book to price, cash flow to price, earnings to price, average dividend yield, return on equity and cash flow return. He compares each major stock market’s history.
Michael is a brilliant mathematician. We have tracked his analysis for over 20 years. He continually researches international major stock markets and compares their value based on current book to price, cash flow to price, earnings to price, average dividend yield, return on equity and cash flow return. He compares each stock market’s history. From this, he develops his Good Value Stock Market Strategy. His analysis is rational, mathematical and does not cause worry about short term ups and downs. To invest according to the Country Selection Strategy, it is necessary to construct diversified, risk-controlled, representative country portfolios in every BUY rated country, weighting each country approximately equally in the overall portfolio. It is not appropriate or enough to instruct a stockbroker to simply select stocks in the BUY rated countries.
To achieve this goal of diversification the Pifolio consists of Country Index ETFs that are similar to index mutual fund but are shares normally traded on a major stock exchange that tracks an index of shares in a specific country. ETFs do not try to beat the index they represent. The management is passive and tries to emulate the performance of the index.
A country ETF provides diversification into a basket of equities in the country covered. The expense ratios for most ETFs are lower than those of the average mutual fund as well so such ETFs provide diversification and cost efficiency.
This is an easy, simple and effective approach to zeroing in on value because little management and guesswork is required. You are investing in a diversified portfolio of good value indices. A BUY rating for an index does NOT imply that any stock in that country is an attractive investment, so you do not have to pick and choose shares. You can invest in the index which is like investing in all the shares in the index. All you have to do is invest in an ETF that in turn invests passively in all the shares of the index.
Pi adds my fifty years of experience and brings insights to numerous long term cycles that are part of the universal math that affects all investments.
For example in the 1980s, a remarkable set of two economic circumstances helped anyone who spotted them become remarkably rich. Some of my readers made enough to retire. Others picked up 50% currency gains. Then the cycle ended. Warren Buffett explained the importance of this ending in a 1999 Fortune magazine interview. He said: Let me summarize what I’ve been saying about the stock market: I think it’s very hard to come up with a persuasive case that equities will over the next 17 years perform anything like—anything like—they’ve performed in the past 17!
I did well then, but always thought, “I should have invested more!” Now those circumstances have come together and I am investing in them again.
The circumstances that created fortunes 30 years ago were an overvalued US market (compared to global markets) and an overvalued US dollar.
The two conditions are in place again! There are currently ten good value non US developed markets, plus 10 good value emerging markets.
Pi shows how to easily create a diversified, worry free portfolio that includes each or all of these countries with Country Index ETFs.
The current strength of the US dollar is a second remarkable similarity to 30 years ago. The dollar rose along with Wall Street. Profits came quickly over three years. Then the dollar dropped like a stone, by 51% in just two years. A repeat of this pattern is growing and could create up to 50% extra profit if we start using strong dollars to accumulate good value stock market ETFs in other currencies.
This is the most exciting opportunity I have seen since we started sending our reports on international investing ideas more than three decades ago. There is so much more to write and the trends are so clear that I have created a short, but powerful report “Three Currency Patterns For 50% Profits or More.” This report shows how to earn an extra 50% from currency shifts with even small investments. I kept the report short and simple, but included links to 153 pages of Keppler Asset Stock Market and Asset Allocation Analysis so you can keep this as simple or as complex as you desire.
The report shows 20 good value investments and a really powerful tactic that allows you to accumulate these bargains now in large or even very small amounts (less than $5,000). There is extra profit potential of at least 50% so the report is worth a lot.
Research shows that most people worry about having enough money if they live long enough. This powerful profit wave can eliminate that concern. My experience of the 17 years in the 1980s and 90s combined with the science shared by my four friends (Keppler, Roseman, Fischer and Smith) can make the next 17 years so rich, you’ll always be rich.
You’ll receive the report “Three Currency Patterns For 50% Profits or More” free when you subscribe to Pi.
The 50 years of experience the Pi course shares also explains when leverage provides extra potential. For example in 1986 I issued a report called The Silver Dip that showed how to borrow 12,000 British pounds (at almost 1.6 to 1 dollars per pound the loan created US$18,600) and use the loan to buy 3835 ounces of silver at around US$4.85 an ounce.
Imagine investing in a spike like this… with leverage!
Silver had crashed, I mean really crashed from $48 per ounce. As prices decreased from early 1983 into 1986, total supply had fallen to 449.7 million ounces in 1986. Mine production was restricted by the low prices at this time, with silver reaching a low for this period of $4.85 in May 1986. Secondary recovery also was constricted by these low prices.
Then silver’s price skyrocketed to over $11 an ounce within a year. The $18,600 loan was now worth $42,185.
The loan was in pounds and in May 1986 the dollar pound rate was 1.55 dollars per pound. So the 12,000 pound loan purchased $18,600 of silver. The pound then crashed to 1.40 dollars per silver. The loan could be paid off for $13,285 immediately creating an extra $5,314 profit. The profit grew to $47,499 in just a year.
Conditions for the silver dip have returned. The availability of low cost loans and silver are at an all time low.
With investors watching global stock markets bounce up and down, many missed two really important profit generating events.
The price of silver has crashed all the way from nearly $50 an ounce to below $14 an ounce as did shares of the iShares Silver ETF (SLV). (Click on chart from Google.com (1) to enlarge.)
At the same time the silver gold ratio hit 80, a strong sign to invest in precious metals.
I prepared a special report “Silver Dip 2015” about a leveraged silver speculation that can increase the returns in a safe portfolio by as much as eight times. The purpose of the report is to share long term lessons gained through 30 years of speculating and investing in precious metals. While working on the report, when the gold silver ratio slipped to 80 and the price of silver dropped below $14 an ounce, I knew I needed to share this immediately.
I released a new report “Silver Dip 2015” so readers can take advantage of these conditions and leverage 1.6 times as a speculation.
The speculation is so time sensitive with such fast profit (but also loss) potential that I will only offer it shortly.
You receive the Silver Dip 2015 FREE when you subscribe to Pi.
Subscribe to the first year of The Personal investing Course (Pi). The annual fee is $299, but to introduce you to this online, course that is based on real time investing, I am knocking $102 off the subscription. Plus you receive the $29.95 report “Three Currency Patterns For 50% Profits or More” and the $27 report “The Silver Dip 2015” free for a total savings of $158.95.
Enroll in Pi. Get the first monthly issue of Pi, the first five “Golden Rules of Investing” and the report “Three Currency Patterns For 50% Profits or More” and “The Silver Dip 2015” right away.
#1: I guarantee you’ll learn ideas about investing that are unique and can reduce stress as they help you enhance your profits through slow, worry free purposeful investing.
If you are not totally happy, simply let me know.
#2: I guarantee to cancel your subscription and refund your subscription fee in full, no questions asked.
#3: I guarantee you can keep the golden rules of investing and “Three Currency Patterns For 50% Profits or More” and “The Silver Dip 2105” report as my thanks for trying.
You have nothing to lose except the fear. You have the ultimate form of financial security to gain.
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