Blog 77: F.I.R.E. by Xavier Lo, FIA, FRM, MBA

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Today’s blog isn’t anything new, but I’m sure its something that you have all encountered at some point these few years, especially on social media. Lets have a look at FIRE.

FIRE is not really the hot, yellowish red thing that burns you when you touch it. FIRE is a lifestyle choice, and stands for Financial Independence [財務自由], Retire Early [提前退休]. Historically, maybe in an older generation, a lot of our lifestyles were modelled around working hard and then retiring at around 65 years old or so. Some problems that people pointed out with this type of lifestyle is that firstly, you would spend a significant part of your life working [長時間工作]. Secondly, you’re essentially trading your own time for money [時間換金錢]. That just means if suddenly you were unable to go to work, or you were made redundant [炒魷魚], you suddenly have no more income. That’s pretty unstable!

So what is this FIRE lifestyle? It was popularised by millennials [千禧年代] who think that they should try to save as much as they can so that they can invest their savings to generate income [被動收入]. They will be able to achieve financial independence when their income from investments is more than their spendings. That means even if they quit their jobs tomorrow, it will not be a problem as they have enough money to sustain their life. Obviously, this is not an easy task to do, as it means that you will need to really sacrifice a lot of your enjoyment and hobbies while you’re young. However, in return, you’ll get a lot more free time, and will be able to enjoy life more freely without being stuck with a job!

This isn’t a lifestyle for everyone, and I’m not asking all of you to follow this. But the one thing you should learn from FIRE is that generating more passive income is always a good thing. Keep saving up!

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