Are you just starting out? Learn from our mistakes

Those of us who write and talk about money for a living tend to have our financial acts together. But this has not always been the case. I invited personal finance experts to share what they wish they could tell their youngsters about money.

If the stock market scares you, Michelle Singletary, national columnist for the Washington Post, can understand that. Singletary says she avoided investing for many years because in her first job after college, an older colleague – who was close to retirement age – warned her that stocks were too risky.

Singletary later realized that someone in her twenties had decades to ride out stock market fluctuations and she could have afforded to take a lot more risk with her investments.

“The lesson I learned was to look at my own individual situation and invest according to my timeline and my goals,” says Singletary.

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