The Personal Finance Show

The Personal Finance Show is a place for people to tell their personal finance stories. Everyone has a personal finance story.

29 - John Kalos

April 26th, 2018


John Kalos worked in a bank for a long time.

Over the years he realized that the bank’s mandate was to sell products first and helping people took a back seat to this mandate.

He found himself in a situation where he was being told he had to sell investment products that weren’t right for his clients.

John had enough and decided he could be a financial planner on his own, without the bank forcing sales quotas on him. He could offer his clients the right products for them, based on their individual life situation and goals.

Once out on his own, he could so clearly see that people were still being taken advantage of by the banks, so he created his podcast “Confessions of an Ex-Banker”, which strives to inform Canadians about the important financial stuff that the banks won’t tell you, because it’s not going to help them sell more products.

John is very passionate about actually helping people, and not just selling them a product to get a commission, and then hanging them out to dry, which is unfortunately what many financial professionals have done in the past, leading to mistrust and skepticism of everyone in the personal finance business.

John joined me from Montreal, Quebec to tell his personal finance story and how he’s trying to help people achieve their financial goals.


30 - Hamza Khan


28 - Shannon Lee Simmons

April 19th, 2018


Shannon Lee Simmons wants everyone to have access to unbiased and affordable financial advice.

In late 2010, frustrated that Bay street was only interested in clients that have tons of money, she left her high paying job to start the Barter Babes project. Shannon would offer her financial services in exchange for any good or service that she needed.

Over one year Shannon helped over 300 women and never once accepted cash for her services. Unable to go back to Bay street after that, Shannon realized her only option was to start the best fee-only financial planning firm in Canada.

She called it the New School of Finance and she never looked back.

When she's not helping people at the New School, you can find Shannon in just about every newspaper, and all over Canadian television, promoting her new book Worry-Free Money.

Shannon was nice enough to host me at the New School of Finance where we talked about her personal finance journey.

Shannon was also the first guest to agree to sing on the podcast! Look for that fun segment near the end of the episode.


29 - John Kalos


27 - Brendan Lee Young and Brendan Wood

April 12th, 2018


There are two main types of investing, active and passive.

Active investing is typically for people who have a deep understanding of the investments they are working with. They are trying to time the market by buying an investment when it is low, and growing it to the point where it's grown enough to achieve whatever profit goals they set, then selling that product for a profit. The classic buy low sell high strategy. You have to be paying attention to what's going on in the world and be ready for quick movement to avoid losses. There are people who are very good at this but it is highly risky and not for everyone.

Passive investment is when you buy something and hold onto it. You pay attention as it grows over the years and you control your overall risk by keeping your investments balanced based on the amount of risk you are willing to accept. A typical passive investment is an exchange traded fund or index fund. Passive investment can be done through robo advisors automatically, they take care of the risk management for a small fee, or you can open a brokerage account and do it yourself.

Typically passive investors fall into these two categories: You just want to keep it simple and live your life so you pay a robo advisor half a percent and they take care of everything. You decide you want control over your investments and also want to try to save money on fees and do it all yourself. Usually this type of person enjoys monitoring their investments and taking a hands on role, at least on a semi regular basis.

But what if you fall somewhere in the middle?

You don't want to spend a lot of time on your investments, but you also want to have full control and try to minimize your fees.

Brendan Wood and Brendan Lee Young fall into this category.

They wanted to invest their own money but realized there were so many tedious tasks that still had to be done manually through their online brokerage.

So they created a tool to automate all the manual stuff. A kind of Swiss army knife for do-it-yourself investors.

Both Brendans joined me from the province of New Brunswick to share their personal finance stories and talk about their new portfolio management tool Passiv.

5 Steps to Passive Investing for Retirement:


28 - Shannon Lee Simmons


26 - Matt Matheson

April 5th, 2018


By day, Matt Matheson is a teacher and assistant principal, but when the day is done he takes on his role of Canada's newest personal finance blogger.

Matt started writing at in October 2017 and since then has gotten the attention of some major personal finance publications.

In January 2018 he was published in MoneySense magazine and just recently he was a guest blogger on the popular personal finance site

Matt joined me from Edmonton, Alberta to tell his personal finance story.


27 - Brendan Lee Young and Brendan Wood


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