Advice From Confident Investors

Take advantage of publications, podcasts, adult ed classes and other resources, including family members.

A few months ago, I asked readers to share their stories about how they became confident investors (see How to Be a Confident Investor. What you told me is that the spark can come from many different sources — and that should encourage women who are still finding their way or who would like to inspire a new generation.

For starters, family members often play a key role. “When I was 25, my mother implored me to open a savings account,” writes Christina Andersson. “That got me comfortable with other saving and investing vehicles, such as 401(k) plans, Roth IRAs and no-load mutual funds.” Make yourself financially literate, advises Andersson, who read the classic A Random Walk Down Wall Street,, along with Kiplinger’s and Money magazines. “Life is short, so max out your 401(k) and learn to love the Roth IRA.”

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Janet Bodnar

Janet Bodnar is editor-at-large of Kiplinger's Personal Finance, a position she assumed after retiring as editor of the magazine after eight years at the helm. She is a nationally recognized expert on the subjects of women and money, children's and family finances, and financial literacy. She is the author of two books, Money Smart Women and Raising Money Smart Kids. As editor-at-large, she writes two popular columns for Kiplinger, "Money Smart Women" and "Living in Retirement." Bodnar is a graduate of St. Bonaventure University and is a member of its Board of Trustees. She received her master's degree from Columbia University, where she was also a Knight-Bagehot Fellow in Business and Economics Journalism.