Smarter Financial Choices For Wealthy High School Students

Teaching at Singapore American School has taught me a sub-culture I never knew existed. 

When I first arrived, I asked some of my students what their favorite hobbies were.  “Shopping,” they replied.

Shopping? How could kids without jobs enjoy shopping as their favorite past time? 

Then it dawned on me.  Many of these kids are given cash to spend as they wish.  A surprising amount gets blown on high-end clothes and accessories.

I recently asked two of my Personal Finance students about this.  “Once you have a handbag, you’re done, right?” 

“Not so,” they replied.  “Many girls at our school buy multiple handbags every year.”

My two students, Kelly Chung and Anna Phillips, then determined what the long-term opportunity cost of such extravagances really is.  

While doing so, they showed an alternative use for such cash–one that would make the world a much better place. 

You can view their screencast below. 


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Andrew Hallam

I’m a financial columnist for Canada’s national paper, The Globe and Mail, as well as for AssetBuilder, a financial service firm based in Texas. I’m also the author of Millionaire Teacher: The Nine Rules of Wealth You Should Have Learned in School (2nd Ed. Wiley 2017) and The Global Expatriate’s Guide To Investing: From Millionaire Teacher to Millionaire Expat (Wiley 2015). My mission is to educate, motivate and inspire people on basic retirement planning and best practices for investing, using evidence-based strategies. I'm happy to comment on your questions. However, please read the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and the Comments Policy.

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1 Response

  1. DIY Investor says:

    Impressive video. Kelly and Anna presented a valuable lesson for all. So many people today are on the verge of retiring but have meager assets to support themselves. And they don’t know why. The answer is in the video.


  2. no one has more first hand experience helping expat investors

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