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Commentary

A Simple Plan for Financial Independence

Examining personal finance through the lens of economics yields a nifty road map for accumulating wealth.

What would you do if you could do anything? Not superhero anything, but if you woke up tomorrow and had all your bills paid from now until forever, what would you do with your time? Take your dream job that pays far less than your current one? Write your magnum opus? Volunteer full-time? Whatever you answer, the premise is the same. Financial independence means being master of your own time.

Some people call this retirement, some call it independent wealth, and some getting out of the rat race--but in every case the goal is the same: to reach a point in life when you don’t need to work for a paycheck anymore. There are countless books that claim to have the “secret” to unlocking this path, but really there is no secret. By learning a couple of simple economic concepts, the way forward becomes obvious. You’ll still need to do the hard work, but at least mapping your course will be easier.

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