Weekend reading: Member benefits – Monevator


What caught my eye this week.

A year ago, we added membership to Monevator. Our Mavens and Moguls memberships are basically two tiers of special members-only content, like you see with the wildly-popular SubStack newsletters.


I won’t deny I was nervous about launching this.

Yes, I’d spent nearly two decades collecting hundreds of ‘thank you’ emails from readers – vastly more than for any other work I’ve done – and I’d turned down lots of unsolicited offers of cash, whether to support the site, or to buy my co-blogger @TA some thermal socks.

But we’d been free forever. Moreover we’d spent those years urging readers to save reflexively and to spend wisely. Not to mention we were in a wicked cost-of-living crisis. Or that we needed this new business model to work to keep the lights on at Monevator Towers.


So I wondered if we’d be writing articles exclusively for my mum to not read twice a month.

Happily I needn’t have worried.

My mum still doesn’t read our Monevator member emails. But many hundreds of you do. Nobody has to sign-up to pay for content in a tough media world where everyone is now asking for subscriptions, but loads of you guys have.


After a year in which countless more independent websites have thrown in the towel, we’re still standing.

We can’t thank you enough! Every member is ensuring the future of Monevator.

Content to please you

Happily I’ve enjoyed the content side of membership, too.

The Accumulator can nerd out even more so than usual – free from the tyranny of search engines – and Mavens has motivated him to start a new decumulation model portfolio just for members.

No small commitment given he’s been managing the original Slow & Steady for 15 years already.

Meanwhile, with Moguls I’ve been exploring some of the naughty active investing strands I originally started Monevator to pull on, before deciding to be responsible and to triple-down on highlighting passive investing into index funds as the best solution for most people.

My Moguls articles are far too long – the lengthiest over 5,000 words – and partly because of this the publishing schedule isn’t rock solid. But the feedback to my pieces, Mavens, and guest star contributions from Finumus have all been very heartening.

Frankly, a membership newsletter feels like blogging in the good old days.

There’s no thousands of daily spam comments and emails. The discussion threads are entirely positive and constructive. There are no trolls. And it’s so much nicer writing for real people happy to support you with a few quid a month than for search engines – let alone for AI training models threatening to do away with you altogether.

It’s tempting to make Monevator members-only and to switch off the free content. Life would be easier.

But then I remember why we actually wrote those 2,000-plus free articles in the first place. And also all those thank-yous from people we (or let’s face it, mostly @TA) have helped into the world of investing.

The good vibes still far outweigh the frustrations.

Besides, I know that many of you who signed-up for membership are explicitly supporting us not only for yourselves but also to help us to get the sensible investing message to as many as possible.

Which is both incredibly generous and an executive order for us to keep at it.

Any other business

A couple of quick housekeeping reminders on membership, as it’s been a while.

Firstly, if you’re having any sort of log-in problems it will almost certainly be a cookies issue or because you’re using an ad-blocker.

The membership software needs to use cookies to tell you’re logged in. And there are no ads for members browsing the site anyway.

So far in every case enabling third-party cookies, deleting stored cookies, and/or disabling the ad-blocker for Monevator has solved any log-in problems.

Secondly, there are still a couple of dozen members who are not getting member emails. Some may prefer to read us on the website. But I’m sure others would rather be getting our content in their in-box.

The solution here seems to be to make sure you’re signed-up to our free emails. Use this link to ensure you are. If you’re still having problems then please let me know via our contact form. I can then get you manually re-added to the email list. GDPR regulations mean I need your explicit permission to do so.

Remember there are dedicated Mavens and Moguls article archives.

Finally, I’m thinking of adding a Discord discussion forum for Monevator member investing chat. Do you think you would use it? I’ve resisted calls to add a forum due to the admin headaches, but it might work with members.

Okay, thanks again everyone who signed up for – and renewed – their Monevator membership. You have made all the difference!

Have a great weekend.

From Monevator

How tax can take a bite out of your returns – Monevator

From the archive-ator: Social care in later life is a black hole – Monevator


Note: Some links are Google search results – in PC/desktop view click through to read the article. Try privacy/incognito mode to avoid cookies. Consider subscribing to sites you visit a lot.

House price growth in rural areas outstrips towns – Guardian

CMA investigates Nationwide’s takeover of Virgin Money – FT Adviser

Leasehold reforms come into force: what they mean – Which

Troubled SIPP provider falls into administration after complaints – FT Adviser

Blackrock’s $20bn ETF is world’s largest Bitcoin fund – Bloomberg via Yahoo

LinkedIn: Gen Z favours stability and holidays over pay – Yahoo Finance

Crypto exchange Gemini returns $2.2bn after 18 month freeze – CNBC

NHS patients to access trials of personalised cancer ‘vaccines’ – NHS

UK government sells back £1.24bn in Natwest shares – AJ Bell

When life forces your hand – A Wealth of Common Sense

Products and services

NS&I quietly increases its interest rates – Telegraph via Yahoo Finance

Cheap and free things to do over half-term – Which

Open an account with low-cost platform InvestEngine via our link and get up to £50 when you invest at least £100 (T&Cs apply. Capital at risk) – InvestEngine

Travelling on Eurostar from the UK is about to become much trickier – Guardian

How credit reference agencies make you the product – Which

Pre-paid travel money cards are poor deal – This Is Money

Amex Preferred Rewards Gold credit card review – Be Clever With Your Cash

£5,000 the magic number to secure Nationwide’s £100 perk – This Is Money

Homes for sale with a kitchen garden, in pictures – Guardian

Election and money mini-special

What is the Tories’ triple-plus lock proposal for pensioners? – This Is Money

Income tax threshold squeeze to last until 2028 says Hunt – Guardian

Labour says it will push on with the British ISA… – CityAM

…but will it reinstate the pension lifetime allowance? – This Is Money

Tories: swap ‘rip-off’ degrees for apprenticeships – BBC & Guardian

Comment and opinion

Remember the calamity of the great market tsunamis – Portfolio Charts

Home or away after FIRE? – Far and Wide

Life’s potholes – Humble Dollar

The history of the UK mortgage market and house prices [Podcast]A.L.T.I.F.

The struggle is real: Uber edition – Contessa Capital

The lesson of Loki? Trade less – Tim Harford

Considering time and quality of life – Meaningful Money

Do you need alternative assets to get rich? – Of Dollars and Data

High core inflation is why consumers are so negative – Cullen Roche

What type of life do you actually want to live? [Podcast]Morningstar

Why are so many stars forced to work after retirement age? – Guardian

Naughty corner: Active antics

The Fed rate cut reflexivity paradox – Apollo

Is now the time to buy Japan? [Search result]FT

The problem with concentrated funds – Behavioural Investment

Does diversity add value to asset management? – Alpha Architect

Fund manager pay depends on AuM, not performance – eFinancial Careers

Kindle book bargains

A Man for All Markets by Edward O. Thorpe – £0.99 on Kindle

Doughnut Economics by Kate Raworth – £0.99 on Kindle

Taxtopia by The Rebel Accountant – £0.99 on Kindle

The $100 Startup by Chris Guillebeau – £0.99 on Kindle

Environmental factors

EVs are cheaper to run than petrol cars, if you charge at home – This Is Money

Can heat pumps be installed in older properties? – Guardian

UK breakthrough could slash carbon emissions from cement – BBC

Buying Baja – Hakai

Robot overlord roundup

Chatbots as a force for good – BBC

Google to refine AI-made search summaries after bizarre results – Guardian

MIT’s Daron Acemoglu is not having all this AI hype [Search result]FT

[On the other hand…] What mom wrought – Humble Dollar

AI helping find ‘world’s loneliest plant’ a partner – BBC

Klarna says GenAI is cutting marketing costs by $70mn annually – Reuters

The next wave of AI hype will be geopolitical [Search result]FT

AI integration and modularisation [Nerdy]Stratechery

Off our beat

When matters as much as whatRaptitude

Trial results for new lung cancer drug are ‘off the charts’, say doctors – Guardian

Chasing Utopia, startup style – Noema

The mounting strains on global shipping [Search result]FT

Let’s just admit it: the algorithms are broken – The Honest Broker

From the baby boom to the baby bust [Search result]FT

What should you do with your stuff before you die? – The Walrus

And finally…

“Unlike any other form of thought, daydreaming is its own reward.”
– Michael Pollan, A Place of My Own

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