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Popular noncredit ABC's of Investing expands into seven topics about personal finances

Feb. 28, 2013

Photo of someone looking at stock market information.

As America’s economy slowly recovers from the recession, many people are understandably cautious about their investments. Careful financial planning is more important now than it has been in many years and, if you want to learn more about money matters, the Community College of Rhode Island has a series of courses that may interest you.

The ABC’s of Investing covers a host of financial topics, each broken down into a single two-hour session. Students can take a single class to learn more about a specific topic, hand-pick a few of them or take all seven to gain a beginner’s overview of personal finance and investing as a whole.

The courses are: “Foundations of Investing,” which covers the basics of stocks, bonds and mutual funds; “Protecting What’s Important,” which is about health, disability and life insurance; “Preparing Your Estate Plan,” about creating a will and taking other steps to care for your family after you are gone; “Taking Stock of the Market,” which is an overview of the stock market; “A Smart Start to Mutual Funds,” about what is in a mutual fund and how to select the right one for you; “Tax-Free Investing: It’s Not What You Make, It’s What You Keep,” which covers how to choose investments with tax advantages; and “A Woman’s Guide to Money Matters,” which is a financial literacy guide specifically for women.

Each of these courses is taught by Anthony Lizzi, a financial advisor at Edward Jones Investments. Lizzi has taught financial literacy courses at CCRI before, but in the format of a regular course that met weekly for two months

“We’ve broken down the material from that course so people can pick and choose what topics they want to learn about,” Lizzi said. “People can take one or two classes to enhance their knowledge of a topic or they can take them all to learn a little bit of everything.”

The goal of the ABC’s of Investing courses is not to turn someone into an expert, Lizzi explained, but to help them make informed decisions.

“The goal is not to get someone to quit their day job, become a day trader and buy and sell investments for a living,” Lizzi said. “I want people to be able to sit down with the professionals in their life, whether it’s their attorney or their accountant, and have an educated discussion with them and understand some of the terms they are using and make informed investment decisions.”

All of the courses in the ABC’s of Investing series are expanded from their original form, but “A Woman’s Guide to Money Matters” is entirely new. The course was created in response to research showing that women are making the majority of investment decisions in most modern marriages, Lizzi said. However, he said this is not the case for older couples, in which men make most of the financial decisions.

“At my practice I always encourage both partners to be involved in financial decisions,” Lizzi said. “But with older couples, when maybe men have taken more of the onus of investing onto themselves, I think it’s really important for women to have an understanding of investments. Women live longer than men and, with divorces and things of that nature, at some point women are going to be controlling their finances, if they aren’t already.”

Lizzi recommended that anyone who is about to be making financial decisions for the first time take all of the courses in the ABC’s of Investing. Otherwise, people can take an in-depth primer about a topic that interests them. Whatever courses students take, Lizzi said they will come away as better investors.

Students can enroll in as many ABC’s courses as they want. The classes will be held at CCRI’s Knight Campus in Warwick on Thursdays from 6 to 8 p.m. March 7 through April 18. Each course costs $25 plus a $5 registration fee.

For a complete schedule, see the online Spring Course Brochure.

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Last Updated: 8/25/16