Want to know how to make more money in 2012? Easy. Monitor your holdings so you can sell losers and buy into big trends. Stop diversifying your investment portfolio, since owing too many funds ensures mediocre results. And don't fall for below-average price/earnings multiples and price-to-book values because cheap stocks can be a recipe for disaster. Sounds like great advice, huh?
Perhaps it is, if you subscribe to Forbes Magazine. After all, those were the top three tips in its 2012 investment guide, which appeared in the same issue as its list of top 20 private companies in the U.S. (In case you're wondering, agribusiness giant Cargill, with estimated sales of $109.6 billion, was No. 1.) All this and more can be gleaned in the magazine's year-end special edition "The 20 New Rules of Money."
These days, most people would agree our society needs new rules for money. Foreclosures, student loans, living wages, double-dip recession, tax-and-spend, bust-and-boom, bull market/bear market, debt ceilings, trade deficits: We're awash in a world where money seems to rule our lives. But what if that could change? What if our concept of money changed? Author Charles Eisenstein wondered the same. So he researched old and new economic theories and wrote a book. He called it "Sacred Economics: Money, Gift and Society in an Age of Transition."
With a clear and compassionate tone, Eisenstein describes how our troubled relationship with money has caused our economic system to teeter like a blindfolded behemoth balancing on stilts made of chopsticks. He ties our concept of a mark, a yen, a buck and a pound to the unparalleled scarcity many experience. And he relates how so-called rational philosophies of money have endangered our planet.
But he doesn't stop there. Eisenstein proposes ways to find stable footing. Some notions, such as replacing debt-bearing interest with negative interest, sound preposterous while others, like local and gift economies, sound na