Midwest Book Review: Redefining Financial Literacy

Midwest Book Review: Redefining Financial Literacy

Redefining Financial Literacy
Cindy Couyoumjian with R. F. Georgy

Greenleaf Book Group Press
$24.99 Buy now

Redefining Financial Literacy: Unlocking the Hidden Forces of Your Financial Future is recommended reading for not just business readers seeking a redefinition of financial savvy, but women, in particular, who need to better embrace their role as changers and savvy financial managers of their retirement funds.

Cindy Couyoumjian moved from her focus on an allocation strategy which had cemented her approach to business for seventeen years into uncharted (for her) waters in the multi-asset endowment model.

Alternative investment strategies used to be a choice of the rich, limited to large institutions and wealthy individuals. As they became more accessible to ordinary people, they moved not only to a different level of investment strategy, but into different levels of investors via newfound access to the technological tools who did not necessarily have experience about how to use them: “Another reason alternative investments became available to the average investor was technological innovation. The digital revolution, more specifically computing power, has transformed financial markets and made it possible to record, track, move, store, and analyze previously unmanageable and unthinkable amounts of data. Mathematical innovations, such as the Black–Scholes options pricing formula, enabled investors to quickly and easily price complex financial products such as derivatives and structured securities. In many ways the convergence of several forces helped open up alternative investments to the general public.”

From how to better understand endowments and their relationship to asset classes, to working within the revised investment platform that holds both opportunities and ongoing barriers to women, Redefining Financial Literacy excels at identifying common pitfalls, discussing strategies for overcoming them, and educating female investors about the bigger picture of alternative investing strategies: “What we have today is a disconnect between a promising future where women will be the financial decision-makers and the skewed reality of women being intimidated by male financial advisors.”

There are hidden forces at play behind money management that any savvy woman needs to better understand in order to make more informed, successful decisions. Couyoumjian identifies these forces in the “outdated 60/40 investment model” typical of retirement systems, then shows women how to assess alternative models that may mitigate these investment risks.

More than a singular formula, Redefining Financial Literacy provides an analytical approach to investment that many women won’t have considered before. More importantly, it places the risk assessment of underlying factors within the realm of the average investor’s understanding.

In exposing, analyzing, and showing how to best utilize these hidden influences, Redefining Financial Literacy cultivates an informed, educated discussion. This will attract all kinds of investors, but particularly average female investors who have, until now, largely been omitted from investment discussion circles at this level.

Any woman looking to better manage her own retirement options and approaches needs to place Redefining Financial Literacy at the top of her financial reading list.